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Onboard SATA & eSATA compatibility

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Renoir, 22 Jul 2006.

  1. Renoir

    Renoir What's a Dremel?

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    Have recently read a lot on esata and have discovered that pretty much all a sata port/controller needs in order to be esata compatible (obviously with addition of say a internal sata cable to pci bracket that includes an esata socket) is to be able to support the different signal transmission voltages that esata requires.

    My question is does anyone know which of the current popular south bridges support these signal levels?

    Seems most of the popular add on sata controllers e.g. from Silicon Image & JMicron are esata compatible as they are being used for just that on many good mobos but am curious if with a simple adaptor which I've seen for about £5 I could use a chipset's native sata ports.

    Just to be clear I'm not looking to do this with my current mobo but rather am curious for a future upgrade as I see esata being a big part of my future back up strategy.

    Be grateful for any info.
     
  2. Renoir

    Renoir What's a Dremel?

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    Based on the following it seems like the ICH8R native SATA ports support eSATA

    Gigabyte-965P-DQ6 included bundle

    The mobo includes 2 pci brackets which essentially turns 4 internal sata ports into 4 esata ports so given that the mobo has 8 ports 6 of which are from the ICH8R that must mean that the ICH8R has the necessary signal levels to support esata?

    Does anyone else know either officially whether any of the other current south bridges support esata or unofficially e.g. through either personal experimentation or deductive reasoning as above?
     
  3. Renoir

    Renoir What's a Dremel?

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    Anyone know of a mobo that has an esata port than runs off the chipset sata controller?
     
  4. Tim S

    Tim S OG

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    I don't think there is one at the moment - every board I've looked at with eSATA over the last few months has had a separate controller chip.
     
  5. Renoir

    Renoir What's a Dremel?

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    Well the link above about the gigabyte board seems to be fairly conclusive about esata support in the ICH8R otherwise how else could that board support 4 esata ports considering that there's only 2 ports that aren't from the ICH8R?

    In addition if you scroll down the page in the following link Hexus.net also seem to think the ICH8R supports esata.

    http://www.hexus.net/content/item.php?item=6233&page=3

    Is there any way you could find out? I've tried to research the issue a fair bit but haven't found anything other than the links I've given.
     
  6. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    We've nothing in the lab to test it, most people use USB or Firewire. You're the first to really want to use eSATA tbh that I know of.

    eSATA is part of the SATA2 spec, but im not sure if the spec is a complete thing: ie you need everything to call it SATA2, or, if you have just 3Gbps speed you can call it SATA2.

    4 of the 6 SATA ports on the Asus P5B we're looking at are red which could indicate that they are eSATA compatible but you dont get any extra PCI brackets in the box for them.
     
  7. Renoir

    Renoir What's a Dremel?

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    Thanks for the reply Bindibadgi :)

    I like to be different :D . I'm mainly thinking for the future because when hard drives hit the price points/capacities I'm after I plan to change my backup strategy from DVD's (PITA) to external HD's so am hoping to have a nice fast interface that doesn't limit the hard drive.

    ISTR the SATA-IO being adamant that just having 3Gbps did not constitute being sata2 and I think that the whole spec needed to be implemented to be sata2 compliant. Even if that last part is correct and with esata being part of the sata2 spec there's no guarantee that the chipset and mobo literature is being accurate in their labelling (marketing rarely is accurate) :wallbash:

    Do you mean to say that 4 of the ICH8R ports are coloured differently in order to suggest differing functionality? As for the pci brackets that is a problem but they are available for under a tenner from Span.com should you want to test this issue in future (although as you say it seems not many people care). That website also sells esata enclosures that come bundled with the necessary pci esata backplate.

    Would be nice to figure this stuff out as I'd like to know my options in future :)
     

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