LSI SATA150-2 controller is the last one in this category. Like the controller from Adaptec, this one is based on Silicon Image Sil3112 chip. One of the peculiarities of this solution is extremely long time it takes this controller to create a RAID1 array: it took about 100 hours to be performed! That’s unacceptably long, but you cannot do anything about that in the BIOS settings.
We tested this controller using the BIOS v.5.0.11011038R and the driver v.126.96.36.1993.
The third category includes Promise FT S150 TX2 plus, HighPoint RocketRAID1520, Acard 6890S.
Promise FT S150 TX2 plus is one of the most easily recognizable controllers, and it is the only one to have a driver that can change the request caching mode (Write Back / Write Through).
We tested it using the BIOS v.1.00.0.37 and the driver v.1.00.0.37.
HighPoint RocketRAID1520 is not a native SATA controller. You can notice it in the snapshot below that it is based around the well-known HPT 372 chip, and works with SATA drives through the ubiquitous bridges from Marvel – 88i8030 chips. It’s hard to tell if the converters affected negatively the performance in any way. As we are going to see below, the converters are not the main problem of this controller.
We tested it using BIOS v.2.355 and driver v.2.355.
The last SATA RAID controller is Acard-6890S. The controller from the obscure Acard caused us much trouble during testing. For example, it wouldn’t work with Seagate Barracuda 7200.7 SATA drives (it never went through the Winbench tests), and we had to retest all other controllers with Maxtor DM Plus 9 SATA HDDs. Moreover, this controller was very unstable throughout the tests and used to accidentally crash the array once in a while.
It was tested with the BIOS and drivers version 2.10.
We didn’t include the 3Ware 8500 controller into our today’s testing session for three reasons. First, it is not formally a dual-channel controller. Second, this controller carries cache memory chips onboard and thus belongs to a different class than the reviewed controllers. Third, we are going to dedicate one of our upcoming articles exclusively to 3Ware8500 controller.