As we said in the introduction, HighPoint have been a company which has been around for a long time and offers a whole range of different RAID controllers for varying needs. The RocketRAID 2340 is by far the most advanced we have look at so far and probably one of the most expensive.
Its feature list is by no means small and it's quite the serious piece of equipment especially for small to medium-sized businesses or end-users with far too much money to spend. Using the included Mini-SAS to SATA cables, you have support for up to 16 SATA or SATA II drives and that's clearly the hot point of this product. It's comes with all the hardware features you would expect from a device like this and plenty of different RAID array options are included opening up a bunch of different setup environments.
As far as performance goes, it's very good. While it's not as fast as the Intel ICH8R Southbridge, that is for good reason. The Southbridge in this situation has a dedicated bus link directly to the CPU and as a result the data does not need to travel as far as the data from the RocketRAID 2340 - extra latency is added by having to travel through the PCI Express bus first. Nevertheless, the HPT 2340 controller is very capable in the speed department and when you're talking about average sustained read and write transfer rates, things are pretty much even between both controllers, at least in single drive configurations.
While installation was simple and very painless, some research needs to be applied before buying. When deciding to buy this product, make sure your motherboard will support it properly and fully. The controller uses a PCI Express x8 design, so you'll need either a spare x8 or x16 slot which is able to deliver the full 8 lanes of bandwidth to the card. While the card will work at x4, x2 or x1 lane bandwidth, performance will be hindered and you're not doing the controller any justice running in these modes. Just research your motherboard and chipset before buying and you'll be just fine.
HighPoint's RocketRAID 2340 is quite a high-end RAID controller that offers stacks of great features, very good performance, hassle-free installation and even Windows Vista 23-bit and 64-bit support. It is going to be out of the reach for the average Joe consumer but we are pretty sure it will get the attention of IT managers and server builders. We liked it a lot and cannot find much bad to say about it.
Supports up to 16 SATA or SATA II drives
PCI Express x8 for huge bandwidth throughput
Very good performance
Plenty of RAID array options
Works in many OS including Windows Vista
Simple and easy to setup
BIOS POST screen a little slow
- Latest Pricing
Rating - 9 out of 10 and TweakTown's "MUST HAVE" Best Features Award!
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