Need assistance buying a PC hard drive: Ultra vs. Serial?

Discussion in 'Computers' started by Alf S, Aug 11, 2004.

  1. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer

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    I want to add a second HD to my new PC to store all my analog video captures to edit later but when I looked around at NewEgg and Compusa, I got totally confused.

    The one I'd like to get is a Seagate 120GB that says ATA/100 on the box, but some other brands etc sell some that say "Serial ATA".

    What in the world is the difference? Is one better than the other? Most importantly, is one easier to hook up vs. the other or do they connect the same?

    Here is the Seagates I was looking at. HERE

    Thanks!
    Alf
     
  2. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    While this is debatable, Serial is probably better. It is the newest HD format available. However, your motherboard will likely not be able to use S-ATA unless it is very new, so check that first. Neither is difficult to hook up and the good Ultra drives (look for an 8MB buffer) can compete with S-ATA.
     
  3. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

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    Serial ATA is easier to hookup -- thin wires, no master/slave business. But as Seth said, your motherboard would have to be pretty new.
     
  4. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

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    really? how is this handled with the bios?

    CJ
     
  5. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer

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    I just got a new Medion 5100 P4 Hyper Thread PC so hopefully it's fine for this.
     
  6. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer

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    Note: I just found out I have a 160GB SATA Seagate drive in my Medion.

    So I'm assuming I can just about "plug and play" a new Seagate SATA without much hassle??
     
  7. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Yeah, it's probably got another SATA hookup in there. There's a 120GB Hitachi at Newegg for a pretty good price and it has good reviews.
     
  8. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

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    is there only one drive per channel (serial), is that why there is no master/slave to deal with?

    CJ
     
  9. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    Yep, only one drive per channel. Several motherboards are now incorporating RAID chips into the mobo because the lack of master/slave makes RAID a little simpler. There's even a few that allow RAID across both SATA and IDE which is pretty cool.
     
  10. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    Consider RAID-1 (aka- mirroring), my bleepin 120gb Maxtor just died today without any warning (no noises or clicks). And to make matters worse, recovery services are usually $1200-$2000.

    There goes tons of crap I had. [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    But to sum up:

    More user-friendly and future proof: SATA
    A tad cheaper and compatible with ALL motherboards: ATA

    I just ordered a 200GB SATA Seagate for $133 from Newegg. 5 year warranties on those things now.
     
  11. Alf S

    Alf S Cinematographer

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    I've noticed that the drive I want at Newegg says "OEM" only. Does this mean I need to buy more stuff (wires or adapters?) or should I be good to go since my machine is already set up for SATA?


    Thanks
    Alfer
     
  12. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    In my experience with the last drive I bought, OEM is just the drive only.
     
  13. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

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    Yes, although you might already have what you need. There are two connections: power and data. If the computer already has an SATA drive, you may have a spare unused power connection with the correct connector (15-pin); look at the one that's being used. The motherboard/computer may include an extra data cable (7-pin), although they could have included only one (which you are using now), saving them a nickel or whatever. In that case, you'll have to buy your own. Doing a search on "serial ata cable" on newegg will show what you want; it'll put you back about $5 total.
     

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