DVD Burner - IDE vs SATA

Discussion in 'Asus' started by Rhino, Jan 15, 2012.

  1. Rhino

    Rhino Guest

    Am I right in believing that a DVD burner using SATA is going to be
    noticeably faster in burning disks (given the same speed, e.g. 12X) than an
    IDE-based burner?

    It's time I replaced my old burner because it's getting harder and harder to
    coax the drawer open. It can take up to five minutes of clicking on "Eject"
    in the Windows context menu before the darned thing finally opens. I have
    the ASUS-M3A motherboard which has SATA so I assume that I can get a
    SATA-based burner. (Correct me if I'm wrong!)

    How many SATA devices will that board support? I already have two SATA hard
    drives and intend to install a third SATA hard drive very soon so is a SATA
    burner even possible or will I have exhausted my SATA capacity at that

    Sorry, that may be a dumb question. I'm not a hardware guy and know almost
    nothing about SATA and IDE.
    Rhino, Jan 15, 2012
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  2. Rhino

    Rhino Guest

    Please disregard this question. A quick Google brought up this page -
    http://www.computer-hardware-explained.com/sata-vs-ide.html - which says
    SATA is hands-down faster than IDE. I also see from a previous post I had
    made that someone already told me that I could connect 4 SATA devices to my
    ASUS M3A motherboard. That means my two existing SATA hard drives, a SATA
    DVD burner and a third SATA hard drive will all work together on my

    Forgive my bad memory ;-)
    Rhino, Jan 15, 2012
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  3. Rhino

    Paul Guest

    I'm glad you posted here, in a motherboard group, because we can give you
    the right answer.

    First, you have to consider the media limits of the device you're using.
    For example, many people will glom onto "SATA III" for a hard drive
    and say to themselves "dis baby gonna fly". Well, the thing is, the
    platters and head assembly on a rotating media hard drive, have a
    limited transfer speed. On a good day, somewhere in the 125MB/sec to 135MB/sec
    transfer range. SATA III is largely a waste for such a chore. SATA II
    is perfectly acceptable for hard drives. Only an SSD can justify SATA III,
    because it's possible to build flash based drives with less of a media-based
    limitation. (Just keep putting more flash chips in parallel, on more channels.)

    So, let's consider your optical drive question. I'm going to reverse the
    order a bit here, to save time.

    First, I check my DVD burner on my IDE bus. And this is what Nero InfoTool
    reports, for the current transfer mode. IDE has various UDMA modes, and
    the modes are set up to be backward compatible. The fastest mode the bus
    applies, is not always available on the device itself. That's why I'm checking
    it, rather than just reporting the max the bus supports. For example, if
    you visit some website, it promises UDMA6 and 133MB/sec speeds. On my
    optical drive, it reports UDMA4 and 66MB/sec as the bus speed right now.
    The bus can go faster, but the optical drive has chosen those numbers
    as (perfectly acceptable) limits. You'll see why that's good enough in a moment.


    I translate the UDMA4 number, with a table from here.


    "Ultra DMA 4 Ultra ATA/66 66.7 MB/sec

    Next stop, is an article on DVDs. There is a "DVD drive speed"
    table, half way down the page. I take the fastest entry from that
    table. The last time I checked, I couldn't find any 24X media,
    so I don't know if anyone has actually managed to run this
    speed of media in the real world.


    Drive speed 24× 33.24 MB/sec

    That means my IDE connected DVD drive is perfectly acceptable
    for the job (66.7 > 33.24, no starvation will occur). I also
    own a SATA DVD burner as well, and I really don't care
    on a given day, which one is connected. One drive makes a bit
    more motor noise than the other, but that's the only difference
    between my 66MB/sec IDE DVD drive and whatever speed the SATA DVD
    wants to claim.

    By the way, if you're checking your SATA drive for a "UDMA speed",
    the speed reported is bogus. On an Intel system it'll report
    UDMA5, primarily because on Intel IDE ports, they never supported
    more than UDMA5. On other chipsets, you'll see a bogus UDMA6 report.
    The SATA speed is not determined by "UDMA" at all (the hardware
    path is different, it's a high speed serial bus). And such a report
    is primarily present for compatibility reasons, to keep any
    inquisitive software happy. That bogus value reported, has nothing
    to do with the actual hardware transfers.

    The only situation you'd have to worry about, would be placing
    your DVD burner inside a USB2 enclosure. Some enclosure chips plus
    motherboard combinations, cannot hit the 33.24MB/sec speed. For
    example, one ATI Southbridge is down around 20MB/sec USB2 max,
    due to a bad Southbridge design. If you own such a motherboard,
    and you had the mythical 24X DVD media, then you'd be better off
    connecting the burner to your motherboard IDE or SATA ports, rather
    than a USB2 socket.

    Sorry I didn't read your computer-hardware-explained site :)

    Paul, Jan 15, 2012
  4. Rhino

    Rhino Guest

    Wow, you're a wealth of information as usual, Paul! I'm going to need a bit
    of time to digest all of this....

    I'll come back if I have any followup questions.

    Thanks again!
    Rhino, Jan 16, 2012
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