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Adaptec by PMC ASR-72405 Enterprise RAID Controller Review - ASR-72405 and SAS HD Cabling

Adaptec by PMC ASR-72405 Enterprise RAID Controller Review
Adaptec by PMC's Series 7 controllers look to redefine the capabilities of the modern RAID controller. With a focus on a high native port count and new SAS HD cabling, the Series 7 controllers deliver an amazing 6.44 GB/s of sequential speed in tandem with 450,000 random IOPS.
By: | RAID/HBA in IT/Datacenter | Posted: Mar 1, 2013 2:59 pm
TweakTown Rating: 92%Manufacturer: Adaptec By PMC

ASR-72405 and SAS HD Cabling




The ASR-72405 comes in a half-length full-height form factor and measures 4.198" x 6.6". This adapter provides 24 native SAS/SATA ports with new SAS HD cables. Four SFF-8643 connectors face upwards near the bracket, and two more face to the rear. The adapter connects via a PCIe Gen3 x8 slot, though it is backwards compatible with PCIe Gen2. The controller houses 1024MB of DDR3-1333 DRAM for caching.




The adapters function from 0-55C without the ZMCP module, and 0-55C with it installed. The card requires 200LFM of airflow for optimum operation. The adapter will throttle if the heat threshold exceeds the limit. The Series 7 adapters consume 12 to 18 Watts, dependent upon the port count. These power specifications were measured with PCIe Gen3 systems and 6G drives.




The heart of the Series 7 RAID controllers is the PMC8015 processor. This very small chip packs quite the punch, delivering 6,600MB/s in sequential speed and 450,000 IOPS in random read speed. Developed by PMC-Sierra, this cornerstone of the Series 7 controller provides Adaptec with a 24-port SAS 2.0 native solution that easily outstrips an x8 PCIe Gen3 connection.




The enhanced density that is a key building block of the Adaptec Series 7 controllers is empowered by the use of the new SAS HD cables. This new type of cable will experience wide deployment from other vendors with the 12Gb/s SAS products. Adaptec made the choice to begin using these cables a year early to maximize the potential of the PM8015. These cables provide a smaller connection that allows Adaptec to pack more connections onto the PCB.




After years of utilizing standard SAS cables these are a refreshing change. Cable routing and management is much simpler due to the thinner profile of the cabling itself. In comparison to previous cables the SAS HD cables are like strands of hair, and flexible enough for tight spaces and quick turns.


Adaptec has a new product line of 6Gb/s SAS HD cables with reasonable price points for use with the Series 7 adaptors. They are also the first to market with unique right angle connections. This will provide the flexibility for deployment into slim form factor servers. The only notable cable type that isn't present in Adaptec's line is dual-port SAS cables.

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