Hard Drives...Warnings/Recommendations?

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Hard Drives...Warnings/Recommendations?

Post by joelmoore » Sun Sep 16, 2007 5:57 pm

I'm looking at this one: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications ... &CatId=525

I'm trying to determine whether to go internal or external. I bought a Lacie USB 2.0 external drive a couple months ago but it isn't fast enough to keep up with DP or PTLE while tracking multiple tracks. I wonder if I will have a similar problem with Firewire 400/800 and if so should I just go with internal EIDE . I've had no problems with multiple tracks on my internal drives.

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Post by joel hamilton » Sun Sep 16, 2007 8:11 pm

I use the OWC firewire 800 drives. Totally great. USB2.0 is worthless for audio, aside from annoyingly slow backups.

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Post by rwc » Sun Sep 16, 2007 8:51 pm

If you read around you'll see a lot of people will bitch/promote different brands, but seagates never seem to get bashed. They were also the first to have the liquid bearings so the drives were quiet, and the modern drives always run cool.

In an external, I look only for ventilation.. if I see a closed case, I don't bother checking other specs. I also like some padding for durability. My ideal external would be a drive that looks like a cube of jello with a 120mm fan on it. :) I doubt they make these though. :(

If you don't need it to be portable, don't go external. I wouldn't use external for anything other than backup.. internal is going to be more reliable. Most decent PC cases accomodate at least 4 drives. Internal will be more durable(less likely to kick it off the desk), better warranty(1 yr vs 5 year), and better airflow.
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Post by Everybody's X » Sun Sep 16, 2007 8:57 pm

well I just burned a whole weekend reinstalling my OS and DAW because of a bunk-ass western digital drive. :x

Lost another WD about a month ago

so yeah, avoid western digital
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Post by rwc » Sun Sep 16, 2007 9:53 pm

3 of the 4 WDs in the server in my closet died. heh

One after a year, the other a week later, and another a whole 4 months after I got it.

I have to say they have the best RMA process. They will send it out before you send the broken one in and they use UPS 2 day instead of whatever's cheapest.

All very well ventilated.. loud 80mm fans in the front of each bay, drives from 30-37c.

edit: drive death, another reason why if you record people for a living to a DAW, RAID is absolutely necessary, or you'll have some F$%# moments to remember. :(
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Post by Everybody's X » Sun Sep 16, 2007 9:59 pm

I need a raid system for sure.

right now I keep redundant copies of all my audio on 3 different drives. and all sessions are saved to DVD.


the reason I had to deal with it this weekend is the damn OS/DAW backup I made last week wont load up *grrr*
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Post by chris harris » Mon Sep 17, 2007 7:09 am

What exactly is the problem with usb2.0 drives? They're NOT too slow for audio work. I've been using them for years and have never so much as had a hiccup from recording 24 tracks at a time (dumping from analog tape) or playing back 32+ tracks with tons of edits simultaneously. The "Disk" indicator in my performance meter never, ever budges.

I'm working at 24/44.1 though... maybe higher samplerate stuff requires firewire or an internal drive and some sort of RAID setup.

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Post by charlievela » Mon Sep 17, 2007 8:40 am

Yeah I just had a Western Digital die on me too. I'm looking into getting one of these Drobo's


http://youtube.com/watch?v=-jPU3jFvsGY

It seems a lot simpler and cheaper than a RAID.

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Post by GooberNumber9 » Mon Sep 17, 2007 9:31 am

I do all my serious work on an OWC Mercury external over FW800. Quieter than a Glyph (which are really loud) and much cheaper.

That being said, I have had much success with using USB 2.0 occasionally for things. I've always wanted to try running a session off my iPod, just to see.

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Post by BlueMoonshine » Mon Sep 17, 2007 9:44 am

Here's another vote for the OWC Mercury Firewire drives... Great price, reliable, quiet... http://www.macsales.com/

They come mac formatted, but wouldn't be difficult to reformat for a PC...

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Post by ctmsound » Mon Sep 17, 2007 10:12 am

I've got 5 Western Digital drives. Had 'em for years. Never failed.

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Post by lysander » Mon Sep 17, 2007 10:46 am

subatomic pieces wrote:What exactly is the problem with usb2.0 drives? They're NOT too slow for audio work. I've been using them for years and have never so much as had a hiccup from recording 24 tracks at a time (dumping from analog tape) or playing back 32+ tracks with tons of edits simultaneously. The "Disk" indicator in my performance meter never, ever budges.

I'm working at 24/44.1 though... maybe higher samplerate stuff requires firewire or an internal drive and some sort of RAID setup.
I'm with subatomic here -- I use my USB2 drive with my latop, since it only has one firewire port and that goes to the interface. I'd rather use the USB2 drive than daisychain firewire. The performance I'm getting is right in line with what subatomic is reporting. My FW drive does better with sustained transfer, but the USB2 is able to keep up with my needs quite adequately.

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Post by joelmoore » Mon Sep 17, 2007 11:51 am

My experience with USB 2.0 is with a LACIE drive. PTLE reports that it is not a valid drive(will not allow writing audio to this disk). I have no problems transferring data for storage. In DP 4.6 the audio does not write fast enough to the drive. It eventually can't keep up and either crashes the session(freezes) or crashes the OS entirely forcing a restart. If I open a session that is stored on this drive and make edits etc. and then try to save my work the program reports an error -50 and wont allow me to save the changes to the drive. The only way I can save any changes made to a session on the USB drive is by renaming it. I have to rename it every time I want to save it. I also have an external SCSI drive that gives me zero problems with both programs which leads me to believe the problems I am having are USB related(most likely the drive itself).

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Post by jakerock » Mon Sep 17, 2007 12:18 pm

Ive had alot of problems with a Lacie firewire drive... (FW400, "Porche" design)

Not being recognized... Something in the circuitboard not resetting.
Had to open it up, unplug the ribbon cable, turn it on, turn it off, and then it was recognized.

THEN... It stopped responding to this stuff too.
I had the enclosure sitting around for months, and was going to throw it out, but gave it one more try, and it (the enclosure electronics) have been working ever since, with all manner of PATA drives, including laptop drives... Thats a year ago now.

Absoloutely goddamn weird.

On the other hand... I have a Weibetech SATA FW400 enclosure that never fails to be recognized. I recommend those. Really solid, confidence inspiring metal enclosure... Im a sucker for packaging, plus it works!

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Post by joelmoore » Mon Sep 17, 2007 1:02 pm

Yes this one is the "Porsche" design. Got it cheap from COMPUSA. Never again will I even consider setting foot in that place. I should have known better in the first place. But alas, whatever.

I have the same problem with the drive not mounting(not being recognized). I've been able to determine that if the computer crashes and has to be shutdown/restarted manually the drive will not be recognized upon restart 100% of the time. I've had to rewrite the drive index at least 4 times with Disk Warrior because of this. I have been able to recover it every time. But as it is now I just do not trust this drive.

I just ordered the Seagate Barracuda 7200/16mb/500GB internal IDE. So hopefully that wont be a disappointment. I opted for the Seagate versus the "unknown" factor with the OWC Elite Firewire 800. Not only is the price on the FW 800 is $100 more for half the drive space I don't want the FW800 to arrive with the same problems as this LACIE drive ie slow or not allowed by PTLE etc. I know that my multiple internal drives work so I'll just go with that for now.

I'm running a G4 MDD so SATA is not an option for me unless I buy an upgrade kit. I'd rather use EIDE drives inside or go with Firewire/USB instead.
Last edited by joelmoore on Mon Sep 17, 2007 1:17 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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