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Old May 5th, 2009, 08:41 AM   #1
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Post NAB 09 optimum RAID for FCP ProRes

Hi all. I just purchased a new Quad Core Mac Pro and I'm looking for the optimum RAID solution to edit Apple ProRes HD material with it. Most of what I shoot is with the JVC GY-HD250 720p. I have been editing on a MacBook Pro laptop with G-RAID firewire drives for the past couple years but now that I have the Mac Pro and the horsepower I'd like to change my editing workflow to post on a very fast RAID system (probably 4TB or so) then archive on firewire drives. I am still looking for the right Blu-Ray recorder to incorporate Blu-Ray archival or original footage as well.

Now that NAB 2009 is over (I couldn't go this year), do any of you have a RAID system that will handle multiple layers of ProRes HD material that you would recommend with the new Mac Pro Quad Dual Core desktop? Thanks for your input. I'd like to keep the initial investment under $3,000 if possible. :)
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Old May 5th, 2009, 04:06 PM   #2
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There are several pro solutions out there... my suggestion would be anything capable of RAID5 from Caldigit. I'm not a user... I just read a lot. There are others that are good as well.

If you have more time than money AND you like to tinker, then you can roll your own far cheeper than buy. But be warned, this is NOT a solution if your livelihood depends on you videos. The current state of off-the-shelf RAID cards is getting better, but it's not to the point yet where a relative novice can buy one, slap it in, and forget about it. The plus side is, when you're done you'll know you're computer a whole lot better. If this is the route you'd like to go, let me know, I can help a little, as I'm still on this long path.

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Old May 5th, 2009, 04:17 PM   #3
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Hi Mark. Thanks so much for the reply. It has been awhile since I've looked at RAID and other storage beyond firewire. I have been editing since 1979 and had one of the first non-linear systems (D-Vision), followed by Media 100, AVID and finally Final Cut Pro. I can well remember the days of building my own RAID solutions. Firewire has been wonderful with FCP but I'm at the point where I need a higher end solution, thus this thread. I did some extensive looking this afternoon and consulted other digital media friends and then decided on the G-Speed eS Pro in a 4TB configuration. It comes with the RAID controller and mini-SAS cable for my Mac Pro. The data speeds look pretty impressive with a 4-drive RAID 0 configuration hitting over 400MB/s and RAID 5 at over 300MB/s.

I know I didn't look long but I think this will be a good transition from Firewire to eventually the possibility of a Fibre Channel solution. Again, thanks for your input and I hope others will jump in here to add their thoughts if there are other better solutions, for the benefit of all. Thanks!
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Old May 5th, 2009, 10:39 PM   #4
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I would look for any raid using mini SAS a the connection. From there you can find a RAID in your price range. The Cal Digit HDElement might be a nice one or the HD One which is the Pro minus some features a stand alone editor can live without.
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Old May 6th, 2009, 09:11 PM   #5
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I was very impressed by the new 4-drive RAID's from G-Technology. They are a proven, stable company (hopefully not apt to go out of business like Medea or Ciprico......don't ask) and they provide a 2-port PCIe card that will match perfectly to their drive. In fact, if you need more speed, you can buy two 4-drive RAID's and stripe them together.

They are called the G-Speed ES and ES Pro. Check 'em out. The price verus performance ratio is pretty darn good. (3TB + the PCIe card/controller for only $1299....pretty darn good) I "think" the Pro version means that they are RAID 6, so if one of the drives pukes it will keep working without loss of data, but operating in a RAID 0 state. Give them a call and double-check.

They are also surprisingly small. About the same size as 4 small beta tapes stacked together.

Cal Digit is very good also, but I didn't have enough time to check them out as throughly as G-Tech.
Sony EX3, Canon 5D MkII, Chrosziel Matte Box, Sachtler tripod, Steadicam Flyer, Mac Pro, Apple/Adobe software - 20 years as a local videographer/editor
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