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Seagate Cheetah 36ES SCSI Hard Disk Review

By: Cameron Johnson | HDDs in Storage | Posted: Apr 5, 2002 5:00 am
TweakTown Rating: 8.0%Manufacturer: Seagate Technologies



Processor: Intel Pentium 4 2.0GHz


Motherboard: EPoX 4BDA2+


Memory: 256MB DDR-333 Kingmax


Video Card: Leadtek GeForce3 Ti500


Drivers: Intel Application Accelerator


Software Used: SiSoft Sandra 2002, Star Trek Armada, Star Trek Armada II.


Editors Note We swapped out our regular SiS motherboard for an Intel motherboard because of the better ATA-100 IDE protocal of the Intel ICH2 over SiS's 961 or VIA's VT8233A. We also used a cheapo ST Labs Ultra160 SCSI Controller, to reduce costs.


Synthetic Benchmark - SiSoft Sandra 2002


SiSoft Sandra (the System ANalyser, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) 2002 is a synthetic windows benchmark that features different tests used to evaluate different PC subsystems.



As expected the higher transfer rates of the Ultra160 SCSI outpowered the ATA-100 speeds of the IDE subsystem. Since SCSI is a dedicated controller that requires little in the way of CPU cycles to process the data for SCSI drives, it is the ultimate solution for servers and even digital video streaming.


D3D Benchmark - Star Trek Armada


Star Trek Armada is a real world direct 3D benchmark based on DirectX 7 enhancements. Star Trek Armada uses swap files for storage of large graphics and maps during its benchmarking and makes it a great IDE test tool rather than memory. We use command tl_set_memuse=10 to allow the system 10% memory and 90% IDE. Adding a new patch to the program for Star Trek Armada and Armada II we are able to test HDD performance in a greater extent.



First we see the Cheetah win on the Max throughput tests with the swapfile fully utilized over the memory bus.



Next we see the seek time. Amazingly, the Barracuta ATA-3 wins here; we are not sure why but its a big surprise to us.


D3D Benchmark - Star Trek Armada II


Star Trek Armada II is designed on the original Armada engine but with DirectX 8.1 display support, reducing the bottleneck by using fully accelerated 3D Graphics. Like Armada I, Armada II is a more hard disk intense benchmark rather than anything else and is a good indicator if the IDE system has any weaknesses. Again the HDD performance patch was added to this program.



Star Trek Armada II is more high intense HDD performance is pushing the hard disks to their limits, and again the Cheetah is the winner.



This time in seek times the Cheetah wins. Armada II reads more from the HDD's cache, and due to the Cheetah having 4MB as apposed to the 2MB on the IDE drives, it gains a better advantage. This is a test of the HDD to SCSI card data transfer. Update Thanks to some fellas on the OCAU forums they have pointed out to us the benchmarks were wrong, this was due to the patches being IDE not SCSI and mis-reported the transfer rates, We went back adn checked up, re-applied patches for SCSI interface and came up with the right benchmarks. Sorry for all the confusion.


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