External Storage FAQ:
Our External high performance storage solutions offer Raid, JBOD or single drive options. SAS, USB 2.0, USB 3.0, USB 3.1, USB C. NAS, Thunderbolt 2.0 and Thunderbolt 3.0 storage options. Raid 1, 0, 10, 5 and 6 options available.
For audio production systems, a single drive or 2 or 4 drive Raid is all that is typically needed for a production or sample drive. External Raid 1, 5 or 6 configurations are great for a redundant backup/archiving solution. For an external redundant production drive Raid 10, or Raid 5 is best. We do not recommend a Raid 0 for production drives since there is no redundancy possible. It is safer to run single drives or do a Raid 10 or 5.
Most SATA 7200 rpm and all SSD drives are more than fast enough to deal with well over a hundred audio files playing back at 44.1k or 48k. For high track count 88.2k, 96 or 192k it is best to use SSD drives or a SATA Raid 10 configuration. These options are possible using internal storage on any of the desktops and most of our laptops. On desktops, you can use 4 to 6 internal drives to create Raid volumes. For Laptops Raid volumes, would be possible on any of the external solutions.
For video editing systems, we recommend a minimum of three hard drives. Onedrive for the operating system and programs. SSD drives are great for this. One drive (or raid set) for source files (Media Files), and the third (or raid set) for Export (rendering final output).
Backup and Archiving:
With both video and audio systems we do recommend commercial studios to consider some form of external backup/archiving solution. Most of our external storage solutions offer this options. We also offer robust USB C/3.1 and Thunderbolt 3 Tape backup options as well. Please contact us to discuss your storage requirements.
For AVCHD, XAVC, XDCAM, DSLR, AVC Intra, Pro Res, DNxHD/DNxHR, or Red 4K 2 sets of raid 0 is highly recommended. for Red 5K and others it varies based on workflow and effects/Layers. Generally SSD's or NVMe storage are ideal.
You may also want to consider adding an archival or backup drive or tape based backup to protect your work from disaster.
We offer a full line of external storage solutions from Areca, Cineraid and others. Please contact us to discuss your storage requirements.
An external drive, such as a Thunderbolt 3 or 3/USB3.1, USB3 or NAS units are great solutions especially for large capacity and/or high speed storage. Even though these do take up some desk or rack space, they can be easily detached from the computer and stored in a safe location until it is needed.
While Raid 5/6/10 is a nice way to achieve redundancy, again you should still have an external solution.
When it comes to hard drive space, more is better, you do not want to fill your drives past 65% with mechanical hard drives. While compressed video such as XAVC doesn't really take up all that much space, if you are running other 4K+ media, you can quickly fill drives. More importantly is HDD throughput. SSD drives do not slow down as more capacity is utilized as hard drives will. SSD Drives offer far lower latency response time as well.
The following charts show the approximate drive space usage and speed required for several common types of video:
Codecs usable on single drives: AVCHD, H264, H265, XAVC, XDCam, AVC Intra, Pro Res, DNxHD, R3D 4K
Codecs recommended on raid 0 or SSD: DNxHR, R3D 5K/6K/8K, Aria Raw
4K + Formats requiring ssd raids, NVMe drives, or large SAS raids: Cinema DNG, EXR (depends on bit rate used), TIFF (sequence of still based formats)