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Author Topic: Optimal Computer Hard-drive Configuration?  (Read 2812 times)
Andy M
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« on: October 28, 2007, 07:36:52 PM »
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I currently have a 2.66 Mac Pro, with standard 250GB internal drive, and two 300GB external drives.

Being heavily into digital photography, and having a Canon 5D, I process many 10mb+ RAW files and 70mb+ TIFF files in Lightroom and Photoshop.

The standard hard-drive is noisy as hell and I'm considering getting rid, and the external drives are chocked full of photos etc. These are now a couple of years old, and I may consider updating.

So, I'm looking to buy a few hard-drives; a couple internal, and a couple external (2TB+).

Having just bought Leopard, one external will be used solely for Time Machine, the other external for current stored data.

The internals will be used for day-to-day use. I'm told I should have a relatively small but fast (10,000rpm?) drive for Photoshop etc.

Is there a drive people specifically recommend? Quiet and fast?

Then, I wanted another speedy internal drive, possibly around 500GB to store day-to-day stuff, ready to be backed up via Time Machine.

Is there an optimum setup people would recommend, and brands I should aim for?

Any advice would be hugely appreciated
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Roy
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« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2007, 08:21:08 PM »
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Consider the new Seagate 7200.11 drives. They are very fast and you won't need a 10,000 RPM raptor drive for Photoshop if you partition one and make the first 100 GB your Photoshop scratch disk.

There is info on 7200.11 performance here:
http://www.barefeats.com/hard94.html

I have no idea how noisy the new Seagate drives are, but the 7200.10 drives I'm using are OK.

Time machine is a nice idea, but it isn't a backup solution. Make bootable backups on a regular schedule (e.g. once a week) using a utility like SuperDuper, and store them off-site. There isn't much point in having Time Machine on an external drive with a Mac Pro as you have lots of room for internal drives.
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Roy
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« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2007, 10:12:23 PM »
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As Roy said, the 11 series seagates are very, very good. (I've had lots of trouble with the 9 series though)

Currently I'm using four 500gb R0 in a 2Tb array for my immediate file storage made from Samsung HDD's which are proving to be a very good combination, and they're very quiet too. That sort of space is probably overkill even for most photographers, unless they really pump through the space. The problem with having so much room is backing up becomes a hassle. Because of the high file turn around I have (not just photography, but also CAD, and well... gaming) I tend to get a lot of use out of them.

Using a mac will be a little different, I believe you need to buy a raid card before you can make use of such features.... As such, a nice silent HDD is a good way to go. Raptors are overkill, and can get incredibly hot if ventilation becomes an issue. In a hot computer case a Raptor will be the first to be effected I've personally found.

I agree that a time machine isn't a backup solution, unless you have two, used in a rotating backup. My suggestion is that method. HDD's are cheap these days, and a backup each week isn't as painful a procedure as it used to be.
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Chris_Brown
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« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2007, 11:14:52 AM »
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Quote
So, I'm looking to buy a few hard-drives; a couple internal, and a couple external (2TB+).

Is there a drive people specifically recommend? Quiet and fast?

Is there an optimum setup people would recommend, and brands I should aim for?

Any advice would be hugely appreciated [{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
If you have the time to review authentic bench tests, an excellent source of information can be found [a href=\"http://www.storagereview.com/Testbed4Compare.sr]here[/url]. On this linked page you'll find that the reviewers compare drives based on use, not just mechanical specs. There are also drives coming on the market now with lower power consumption, which could save you a whopping $100 per year.  
« Last Edit: October 29, 2007, 11:26:51 AM by Chris_Brown » Logged

~ CB
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