Package and Contents
Being a server class product, we aren't expecting much in terms of the external boxes. After all, most of these purchases are done by companies with IT managers who know what they are after already. However, Areca does go for a nice looking box for the enthusiast who wants this card. On the front there is a picture showing the two different PCB versions available.
Since the front had the photos of the products, the back is dedicated to a huge array of features and specs. In fact, they are the exact same specs we have listed on our specifications page.
For a RAID controller, the users manual that is supplied is like a phone book. Areca uses one manual for all the different variants of the same card, depending on how many ports it has. The Driver CD included has Windows XP, Server, Vista and quite a few different variants of the Linux OS drivers onboard; so whatever you're running, you should find the driver on this CD.
Rather than using a huge amount of SATA ports along the PCB, Areca has cheated and used MiniSAS ports. Each MiniSAS port supports four drives, and three special cables are included for the 12 drive support this card has.