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Topic: mobo selection, ATA100 vs 133 question

  1. #1

    mobo selection, ATA100 vs 133 question

    I\'m selecting a motherboard for a lunchbox. The sole purpose is to run Giga, both live and in the studio. I expect to run P4 1.7 GHz with 1GB RAM, the Delta 1010-LT card and 40 GB sys drive/80GB sample drive (7200 RPM) I\'ll be running a sequencer on the system drive as well when playing live, with up to 16 channels of midi-to-Giga, and another 16 channels midi to external module.

    The vendor is offering a choice of these two boards:
    SDRAM board

    DDR board

    He offers the LAN version of either of these, which I don\'t particularly care about one way of the other. My question is:

    Both boards spec out with ATA100. The vendor says he can give me ATA133 I/O for the drives. Is he blowing smoke or can he put a 133 card on the board and get the extra performance? WILL I get extra performance? I want to be ready for V3.0...

    My local experts don\'t want to call this without trying it, and the saving$ DO matter at this point.

    Any knowledgable thoughts on the subject are MOST appreciated. I had also asked about DDR vs SDRAM, but a legacy search convinced me it doesn\'t matter here.


  2. #2

    Re: mobo selection, ATA100 vs 133 question

    For a dual purpose machine (both a sequencer and GS running at the same time), I\'d strongly suggest going with the DDR system becausee of the higher overall performance. As far as ATA-133 vs. ATA-100, the real world performance difference is less than 5%. Remember, the PCI bus itself runs at 133MB/sec: 33MHz * 32 bits (or 4 bytes). For maximum performance with minimum expense, I\'d suggest three drives -- one for the boot/OS/temp files (doesn\'t have to be fast), one for Gigasamples (get one with the fastest access time), and one for audio tracks (a big HD buffer helps here -- the Western Digital JB series with its 8MB buffer comes to mind). It is possible to put everything on one IDE controller -- boot drive on Master 0, audio drive on Slave 0, GS drive on Master 1, and CD drive on Slave 1. Forget what you\'ve heard about mixing ATA-33/66/100/133 on the same channel -- modern IDE controllers have independent timers for each device so that\'s no longer an issue. If the audio app you use makes big use of temp files (Sonar with it\'s \"Picture\" directory is a good example), it would be better to get a second IDE controller and put each drive on the Master channel for full bandwidth.

  3. #3

    Re: mobo selection, ATA100 vs 133 question

    Thanks killerbobjr! An excellent dissertation. That\'s what I\'ve been looking for. I don\'t know if I want to go with three drives right off the top, but if I get timing/click problems, I\'ll defnitely go that way.

    Really appreciated.


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