Will Apple use Serial ATA in new Power Macs

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
With the hope of the new Power Macs going to IBM's 970 and having faster bus speeds, has anyone heard if Apple will adopt the new Serial ATAstandard for faster disk access and easier RAID configuration.

Here is a Q&A from Maxtor on Serial ATA.

www.maxtor.com/en/technologies/serial_ata/faq.htm
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 26
    netromacnetromac Posts: 863member
    There has been rumors about the new powermacs using sata, but I don't think anyone outside of Apple, or besides the people that builds the mother boards / powermacs, really know anything about this. But Apple will most likely try to differentiate the NEW 970 powermacs from the old, and SATA should fit into this picture perfectly with other enhancements. Only time will show what Apple has in store for us.
  • Reply 2 of 26
    powerdocpowerdoc Posts: 8,123member
    It will be a great move from Apple if they convert them to SATA. SATA is very apple fashion : plug and play and have better perfermance than ATA 133.



    SATA and PPC 970 will be winners.
  • Reply 3 of 26
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,268member
    No Apple will not use SATA in the next Powermacs. The benefits of SATA are theoretical faster speed and much smaller cables. However Apple ..upon looking at the Dearth of SATA Devices(few HD no DVD/CDRW) they will stick with the "tried and true" PATA for one to two generations.



    Sure there will be complaints about Apples "old" Tech but the facts are new advances should be met with "Real World" results and SATA does not provide these results. Powermac Case Airflow isn't as poor as the typical Homebuilt ATX case because Apple neatly routes PATA cables very elegantly.
  • Reply 4 of 26
    keyboardf12keyboardf12 Posts: 1,379member
    well said.



    you do know that this will be among the chief complaints june 23rd? Our course as you pointed out. In the real world 99% of the people don't need them yet. if it helps to bring down the price of the first gen 970s then my vote is against.



    i wonder if they could put them on the xserve though as a way to set them apart more. but what would this mean to all the xserve hds now? would the new gen xserve hd use the same connector to the MB?
  • Reply 5 of 26
    bigcbigc Posts: 1,224member
    They make serial ATA to IDE adaptors for $30.
  • Reply 6 of 26
    kcgilkcgil Posts: 23member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by hmurchison

    No Apple will not use SATA in the next Powermacs. The benefits of SATA are theoretical faster speed and much smaller cables. However Apple ..upon looking at the Dearth of SATA Devices(few HD no DVD/CDRW) they will stick with the "tried and true" PATA for one to two generations.





    ___________________



    I agree that it will be more expensive at first, but not by much maybe as high as $100 per unit.

    But, as Apple does currently offer both ATA/66 and ATA/100 side by side in current systems they could do the same for PATA and SATA. That would solve the problem of the lack of DVD/CDRW devices which really wouldn't gain much in performance.



    Apple needs to lead the way
  • Reply 7 of 26
    rbrrbr Posts: 631member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by kcgil

    ___________________



    I agree that it will be more expensive at first, but not by much maybe as high as $100 per unit.

    But, as Apple does currently offer both ATA/66 and ATA/100 side by side in current systems they could do the same for PATA and SATA. That would solve the problem of the lack of DVD/CDRW devices which really wouldn't gain much in performance.



    Apple needs to lead the way




    There is almost no downside to adopting SATA HDs for the new machines. There should be very little cost difference if Apple would just use industry standard parts.



    In the case of optical drives, most of them are run off of a separate controller on the logic board anyway and the devices are slow enough that there probably would be no particular performance benefit from adopting SATA for them at this time. Apple could use the ATA/100 or ATA/133 controller for the optical drives and also leave open the possibility of using that controller for any PATA devices (legacy) that the purchaser might want to install.



    It really is the only logical thing to do for the "new" machine.
  • Reply 8 of 26
    mokimoki Posts: 551member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by kcgil

    With the hope of the new Power Macs going to IBM's 970 and having faster bus speeds, has anyone heard if Apple will adopt the new Serial ATAstandard for faster disk access and easier RAID configuration.

    Here is a Q&A from Maxtor on Serial ATA.

    www.maxtor.com/en/technologies/serial_ata/faq.htm




    It certainly would make sense in a higher performance, totally re-designed machine, would it not?
  • Reply 9 of 26
    amorphamorph Posts: 7,112member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by kcgil

    ___________________



    I agree that it will be more expensive at first, but not by much maybe as high as $100 per unit.

    But, as Apple does currently offer both ATA/66 and ATA/100 side by side in current systems they could do the same for PATA and SATA. That would solve the problem of the lack of DVD/CDRW devices which really wouldn't gain much in performance.




    Actually, I believe Apple currently has ATA/33 for the optical drives and ATA/66 and /100 for hard drives. The ATA/66 bus is only there because OS 9 doesn't grok ATA/100 and Apple didn't bother revving the board that much between last fall and this spring.



    With an all-new, all-OS X board, there's no reason to keep ATA/66 hanging around. Apple could keep ATA/33 for the optical drives, which is more than enough, and offer SATA for hard drives.



    The big questions are: how inexpensive is a SATA drive, and how easy is it to find them? If they're there or almost there at launch, Apple has no reason not to use them. They'll probably have more than one ATA channel regardless, since they seem to be taken with multichannel ATA RAID.
  • Reply 10 of 26
    rbrrbr Posts: 631member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Amorph

    Actually, I believe Apple currently has ATA/33 for the optical drives and ATA/66 and /100 for hard drives. The ATA/66 bus is only there because OS 9 doesn't grok ATA/100 and Apple didn't bother revving the board that much between last fall and this spring.



    With an all-new, all-OS X board, there's no reason to keep ATA/66 hanging around. Apple could keep ATA/33 for the optical drives, which is more than enough, and offer SATA for hard drives.



    The big questions are: how inexpensive is a SATA drive, and how easy is it to find them? If they're there or almost there at launch, Apple has no reason not to use them. They'll probably have more than one ATA channel regardless, since they seem to be taken with multichannel ATA RAID.




    The drives have been shipping for a little while now. They are available from multiple manufacturers and more are coming on line all the time.



    I would vote for keeping ATA 100 or 133 for the optical drives as the chips don't really cost anything more than an ATA 33 chip set and then you would have the option of supporting some existing PATA drives that a user might want to install to transfer data or use for backup or whatever, just because they have some left that work.
  • Reply 11 of 26
    outsideroutsider Posts: 6,008member
    My gut tells me that they will not adopt them in the next version of the PowerMac. With this sort of thing, Apple usually takes a 'wait and see' approach.



    I expect it in the 2004 revision and then, only along-side ATA/100 or 133 to support 'legacy' IDE devices such as DVD/CD drives, and parallel hard drives. It can even be an option to use a PATA drive in a low end machine while using SATA in the mid and high end.
  • Reply 12 of 26
    rhumgodrhumgod Posts: 1,289member
    So from all the talk around here about "improvements", do you think Classic will perform faster emulated (within OS X) that a native OS 9 install (excluding Finder performance, of course)? Now that would be a laugh-getter at WWDC.
  • Reply 13 of 26
    netromacnetromac Posts: 863member
    Some drive prices:



    Seagate 160 GB:

    - Barrucuda Serial ATA/150 7200 RPM 8MB = $207.04

    - Barracuda Ultra ATA/100 7200 RPM 8MB = $190.92

    - Barracuda Ultra ATA/100 7200 RPM 2MB = $155



    Seagate 120 GB:

    - Barrucuda Serial ATA/150 7200 RPM 8MB = $158.52

    - Barracuda Ultra ATA/100 7200 RPM 2MB = $119.73



    Maxtor 160 BG:

    - DiamondMax Plus9 SATA Ultra ATA/133 7200 RPM 8MB = $219.95

    - DiamondMax Plus9 EIDE UDMA/133 7200 RPM 8MB = $168.00

    - Maxtor 160GB EIDE UDMA/133 HD 7200 RPM 2MB = $165.09



    There's a difference but it's not that big. The question is though, does this price difference result in better performance, or is it just to have the right buzz-words in place when the PowerMac 970 ships?
  • Reply 14 of 26
    keyboardf12keyboardf12 Posts: 1,379member
    but how much more the actual chip that has to be on the motherboard?



    anyone?
  • Reply 15 of 26
    netromacnetromac Posts: 863member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by keyboardf12

    but how much more the actual chip that has to be on the motherboard?



    anyone?




    I don't know where to find prices of the serial ata chip, but they can't cost that much more than UATA/133 chips. The price of these chips are also subject to the amount ordered, and Apple would probably get a decent price. The hard drive prices quoted above are also as sold to consumers. OEMs probably get much better prices than we get. But until there are faster or native SATA-drives, the performance benefit of switching to SATA is questionable, and the only reason Apple would do this, at least with the first generation, is to be future-proof (read: don't need to develop a new mother board when faster SATA drives ship) and to have the bragging rights of using SATA in the new PowerMacs.
  • Reply 16 of 26
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,268member
    Netro



    Thanks for the prices. I didn't know there was such a disparity in prices. $40-50 more for the same Mechanism with a SATA interface. That's highway robbery! You will get NO speed increase unless you able to run the drives in a RAID configuration that can support more than 150MBps throughput.



    Once again ..."The King has no clothes"
  • Reply 17 of 26
    rbrrbr Posts: 631member
    You will get NO speed increase unless you able to run the drives in a RAID configuration that can support more than 150MBps throughput.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



    At the moment there is not a huge performance difference, but the plug and play and cabling is better. SATA drives are also all single channel which affects performance in a multi-drive configuration. The drives that will be coming out will be better and then Apple will have to change the logic board appreciably if they have not designed it from the start to accept SATA. Check <tomshardware.com> and <www.storagereview.com>
  • Reply 18 of 26
    mokimoki Posts: 551member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by RBR

    At the moment there is not a huge performance difference, but the plug and play and cabling is better. SATA drives are also all single channel which affects performance in a multi-drive configuration. The drives that will be coming out will be better and then Apple will have to change the logic board appreciably if they have not designed it from the start to accept SATA. Check <tomshardware.com> and <www.storagereview.com>



    All the more reason why Apple would design it that way to start.
  • Reply 19 of 26
    mmmpiemmmpie Posts: 628member
    One key reason to use SATA,

    ATA/100 has a drive size limit of 120GB.

    This limit has been well and truly passed by available hardware now.

    The only way to get big drive support is to go to ATA/133 or SATA.



    SATA is obviously the way of the future, and adds a lot of features that ATA/133 doesnt.



    I hope that Apple supports big drives soon.



    The only reason I can see them holding back is that the drive caddies for the xserve are designed for a parallel interface, and if they want to use them in a Desktop, or upgrade the xserve they will need to use an adapter to maintain compatibility, which is an ugly solution.
  • Reply 20 of 26
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,268member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by mmmpie

    One key reason to use SATA,

    ATA/100 has a drive size limit of 120GB.

    This limit has been well and truly passed by available hardware now.

    The only way to get big drive support is to go to ATA/133 or SATA.



    SATA is obviously the way of the future, and adds a lot of features that ATA/133 doesnt.



    I hope that Apple supports big drives soon.



    The only reason I can see them holding back is that the drive caddies for the xserve are designed for a parallel interface, and if they want to use them in a Desktop, or upgrade the xserve they will need to use an adapter to maintain compatibility, which is an ugly solution.




    It's not ATA-133 that supports larger that 127GB drives it's the 48bit LBA(Logical Block Addressing). Current Macs support these large drives



    Quote:

    There are two primary requirements that must be met for higher capacity hard drives to be fully utilized within a computer.





    1. The computer must have Mac OS X 10.2 or later.



    2. The computer must provide support for the drives via the BootROM.



    http://docs.info.apple.com/article.h...onID=anonymous|170384082
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