3Ware 9690SA-4I

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Tags: expander, hardware raid, raid, sas, sata
Average Rating:****-
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3Ware/AMCC introduces their newest SAS/SATA RAID that\'s capable of addressing 128 drives. The 3ware 9690SA delivers accelerated SAS performance and the flexibility of internal and external connectivity.

Name: 3Ware 9690SA-4I
Part Number: 9690SA-4I-SGL
Manufacturer: * Others

• Low profile form factor
• PCI Express x8 configurations, PCI Express 1.1 compliant
• Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) 1.1 specification support
• SATA 2.6 specification support
• BIOS PnP (plug and play) and BBS (BIOS boot specification) support
• Operating Temperature Controller: 0°C to 50°C
BBU: 10°C to 40°C
• Power Requirements 18W maximum
• 7.60”L x 2.73”H (19.30cm L x 6.93cm H)

User Reviews

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3Ware 9690SA-4I ****-
death_hawk  |  Mar 15, 2009   05:47 pm

Hardware RAID meets dirt cheap!


Back in the day I purchased an Areca 1280-ML RAID card. It was a 24 port monster worth close to $1800 at the time.

Nowadays RAID has basically doubled (even tripled) in features and hit bottom for pricing.


3Ware introduces their 9690SA series and I fall in love. One single (cheap) RAID card can handle upto 128 drives. For storage that pushes the realm of ridiculous this is the way to go.


I currently have this teamed with a Supermicro SC846E1-R900B chassis enabling me to have upto 24 drives utilizing ONE SAS cable. The chassis also allows for daisy chaining giving me the ability to hook up 128 drives with minimal cabling.


Now... onto the meat of the review.
My current setup is:
-3Ware 9690SA-4I
-Supermicro SC846E1-R900B
-2x (soon to be 24x) WD Black 1TB
-Intel D945GNT
-Pentium D 945
-1GB Generic RAM
-Samsung Slim DVD
-80GB Seagate SATA Drive

Preliminary testing in Windows shows an average read speed of about 150MB/s in RAID0. Since I only have 2 drives at the moment, I'm not exactly pushing the envelope.
Writes are strangely at 8MB/s. Obviously there's something wrong here. I'm trying to isolate the issues.

Preliminary testing in Linux shows even stranger results.

Average Reads are 75MB/s
Average Writes are 67MB/s

Clearly further testing is needed.

I have more drives on order and will update this review as results (and bug squishing) changes. This is where it lost one star. Obviously if further testing yields better results, it'll get upgraded to a 5.

As a note, these speeds are greater than what most consumer level Gigabit equipment can do anyway. If you're not NIC Teaming even speeds shown in Linux wouldn't really bottleneck your Gigabit NIC.

 
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