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Thread: eSATA card recommendations for a Powermac G5

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  1. #1
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    Default eSATA card recommendations for a Powermac G5

    I was wondering if anyone can recommend a PCI-X eSATA card that would actually work in my early 2005 PowerMac G5 (2.7GHz dual processor) running 10.4.11?

    I write "actually" because I recently purchased the LaCie 2 Port eSATA PCI Card (130823) and after a few days of working fine hooked up to a Calvary 1TB USB 2.0/eSATA external drive (CAXA3701T0), it started to shut down my entire workstation unexpectedly and repeatedly.

    I ran disk diagnostic software, did hardware tests, and was ready to call the Apple Store for service when my wife tapped me on the shoulder and said "Um, maybe it's that card you put it." Smart girl.

    After removing the card and rebooting, the system is running fine.

    So...any recommendations? Could it be a voltage problem? I installed as per LaCie's specs (switching jumper cable positions on card) and it's just not behaving nicely.

    Would love to keep using a drive with an eSATA hook-up to take advantage of the speed, instead of keeping it plugged into a lowly USB port.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Default

    Others will provide an answer. LaCie has a bad rap on this site as far as PCI cards like that go.

  3. #3
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    Default

    I did try the card in the other open slots and got the same results - unexpected shutdowns, then some weirdness where icons would look corrupt and menus would be unresponsive.

    No info at the LaCie site and I'm still waiting for word from their Tech Support department. In doing some research, it seems LaCie cards are not recommended.

    As mentioned in the original post, was wondering if it could be a voltage problem perhaps? That would fit in with the shutdown issue. I know only the Apple website forum (link below) it states:

    "Your Macintosh has three expansion slots, labeled 2, 3, and 4, which can accommodate expansion cards up to 12 inches long. Depending upon the model of your Power Mac G5, you can install either PCI or PCI-X cards.

    Maximum power consumption for all four expansion slots (the three PCI expansion cards and the AGP card) should not exceed 90 watts (W)."

    Inside your Power Mac G5

    Saw this online and after speaking with their sales support, I was "assured" it would work, but who knows:

    http://www.satasite.com/esata-sata-ii-4-port-raid.htm

  4. #4
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    We only carry a couple of PCI-X cards, the best one being the Lycom 4X. It is also the cheaper of the bunch. Same chipset as the card as what we use in MacPro. Really fast and definitely compatible.

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  5. #5
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    Default Thanks Rick.

    Will definitely need to take a close look at that card.

    You know, this was posted by a member from another Mac forum, and I'm wondering if there's any truth in it. What do you think:

    "Don't bother with eSATA on PowerMacs, especially if you were hoping for hotpluggable storage. OSX seems to have this pig-headed mentality that SATA = fixed drive, and I read a lot of dramas with SATA cards of all kinds under OSX, be the machine PowerPC or Intel based.

    If you'd bought a USB+eSATA external drive because it was cheaper than a FireWire enclosure, only to spend more than the difference on a SATA card, then your head's screwed on sideways.

    Sell the card, extract the drive from the Calvary enclosure and put it into a Vantec NexStar 3 NST-360UFS case (or something else nice that uses an Oxford chipset). Your Mac will love you. You can then pass on the gutted Calvary carcass to some poor PC user who still thinks eSATA is a good idea."


    Thanks again!

  6. #6
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    External drive functionality is nearly perfect on Macs. Whoever said different is talking from a position of abject ignorance.

    Hotswap is much better with eSATA than with Firewire.

    I think you are reading the wrong places. The important consideration is usually WHO wrote the code for the card. Half baked PC developers who dump their junk on the Mac without any effort towards proper compatibility leads to lots of junk out there.

    However, some generic stuff can be really good, such as the Lycom boards we buy - and test thoroughly, I might add. We make sure we know every detail on the cards and parts we carry. They will work as advertised.

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

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