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Asmedia or Intel?

  • Hi EggXpert,

    I am a first time builder and I need to determine the best way to plug in my hard drives. I have two SSDs I want in RAID 0 (for boot), one SATA III (data), and one SATA II (data). My motherboard is the Maxiums V Forumula, which has two Intel SATA II (black), two Intel SATA III (red), and four Asmedia SATA III (red) ports. It looks like this:





    Could anyone explain the advantage of using Intel or Asmedia and how to best wire my drives? Also, how would I wire for SSD caching to my SATA III mechanical if I get another SSD in the future?


    Thanks for any support,


    [edited by: jleon088, jleon088, jleon088]
  • So this thread is resolved now?


    Read your mobo manual to figure out which header is which but basically the safest way to do is use only Intel and then use AsMedia when you run out of Intel.

    Intel SATA III headers for the two SSDs, but don't put the SSDs in a RAID array because you lose TRIM support for garbage collection that way.  Use one SSD for the OS and the other SSD for programs for isntance, instead of putting the two in an "array"..

    Intel SATA II headers for the hard drives, and DVD drive, even if the hard drives have SATA III 'interface' on them..  Those hard drive would read / write at the same speed no matter which Intel SATA II or Intel SATA III headers you use to connect them.

    If you want to you can also connect those "storage hard drives" to AsMedia instead, after you install Windows on the SSD on the Intel controller and install AsMedia drivers on Windows.


    As always don't install the hard drives at all until after you finish installing Windows.  It's best to have the minimal hardware when you install Windows. After that, you can add the rest. Egyptian 


    [edited by: products, products, products, products, products, products]
  • Yes, it's resolved. Do I indicate it somewhere?

    Is the TRIM support important? Also, would you recommend using one SSD for OS/programs and the second as a cache for the HDD? Finally, does it make sense speed-wise to put the SATA III HDD into the Intel SATA II?



    [edited by: jleon088, jleon088, jleon088]
  • jleon088:

    Yes, it's resolved. Do I indicate it somewhere?

    I think as a thread owner you can choose to mark the thread resolved at the very first post of the thread.  Most people don't.  I didn't see you say Thanks, i ordered it or something that that I wasn't sure if that was the build you are talking about here.  That's all. 

    Is the TRIM support important? Also, would you recommend using one SSD for OS/programs and the second as a cache for the HDD? Finally, does it make sense speed-wise to put the SATA III HDD into the Intel SATA II?

    It can be important.  Depending on how much of the drive is filled and how often you write to the SSD / use your computer basically, there is a chance that you begin to experience delays after all blocks are written once if you don't have TRIM.  And the only way to get the speed back would be not use the computer for a while, reformat the SSDs or delete some files etc if you faced that situation.  Also, lack of TRIM causes uneven wearing of the SSD that it can shorten the life of the SSD. 

    Also, I would like to point out that there is no benefit of putting OS / programs files in a RAID 0 array if that is what you are thinking of.  RAID 0 only improves sequential speed which is relevant in large size file transfers such as transferring pictures / videos.  The sequential speed is good for storage drives and their back up drives.  OS and programs operations depend on random speeds / access time, instead of sequential speeds.  Their operations require the reading of a loooot of tiny bits of data like several kilobytes, that the time it takes for the drive to get to the next bits of data to be read, that is what determines the speed of OS / programs operations.  And that "random speed" / "access time" cannot be improved by putting hard drives or SSDs in a RAID 0. 

    So basically you have nothing to gain performance wise by RAIDIng the SSDs so long as you use the SSDs for an OS or programs , and you just lose TRIM support.  Lol.


    I am not sure how effective the acceleration of the storage drive is. You could try, but usually the perk of using an SSD as a cache space for a hard drive is that you install both the OS and programs on a regular hard drive, and then you can cahce some program files save on the HDD into the SSD space so that those programs load at the SSD speed.

    SSDs do not necessarily have faster sequential speed than hard drives though most do.  They are more for "random access time", not sequential.  

    So, it would make sense to 

    1. Run the Intel SATA controller in RAID "mode"

    2. Run one SSD on Intel SATA III header for the OS

    3. Run another SSD on Intel SATA III header for the programs

    4. Put two storage hard drives in RAID 0 for faster sequential reading and writing, or RAID 1 for redundancy. 

    I mean as far as the speed of your 'data drives" is concerned you can improve the sequential speed by putting a lot of hard drives in a RAID array. At least that way you get more space for the money you spend lol.  Using a more expensive SSD for the caching of a storage drive does not make sense to me..... unless you are doing something I can't think of right now. ...

    [edited by: products, products]
  • Thanks for reading my other threads! I eventually decided on this system and just "finished" the build yesterday afternoon (I am waiting for Windows to come):

    That answer was exactly what I needed. You were detailed and thoughtful.

    Because I do not have two identical HDDs, the plan is to get a second Caviar Black in the future; I would RAID 0 them. For now, I will run the two SSDs on the Intel SATA III (one for Windows and the second for programs), my SATA II HDD on Intel SATA II, and my SATA III HDD on Asmedia SATA III. Should I currently leave RAID mode off?

    Also, my manual is unclear, but I don't think Asmedia headers can be used for RAID. Does that seem accurate?



    [edited by: jleon088, jleon088, jleon088]
  • I've always had Marvell for the 2ndary SATA controller and could do RAID on the 2nd / non-intel controlle. So, I at first thought that in this day and age, a SATA controlller that can't even do RAID 1 or 0 should not exist.

    However, you are probably right!

    No mentioning of RAD. Surprise  .  SHOOCCCKER!!! Knockout  Also, AsMedia doesn't seem to have a US website.  All web  addresses end with .tw. Is that Taiwan? 


    Yeah it sounds like you should install the OS with the the Intel SATA controller set to RAID if you would like to put two hard drives in a RAID array later using the Intel SATA controller.  You'd have to reinstall your operating system if you want to change to mode to RAID later from native IDE or ACHI when you get your 2nd Caviar Black drive in order to put the storage drives in a RAID array.  Just to clarify, you still don't need to put the SSD in a RAID "array" and you shouldn't do that.  You can run the SSDs as two independent drives that are not in any 'array' even if the host controller, the Intel controller, is running in the RAID mode. 

    [edited by: products, products]
  • You have been a big help. Lol, .tw is Taiwan according to Wikipedia.

    For clarity again, I will not put the SSDs into an array until TRIM is supported. (BTW, news is just surfacing about its support on Windows 7 and 8, but I think too new for official OROM releases by mobo manufacturers; I will wait.) You said I should enable RAID mode before the Windows installation, because then I can form an array of mechanical hard drives in the future. If I don't enable the RAID mode before I install Windows, I have to reinstall to change the mode and make an array.


    TRIM-enabled RAID-0 SSD news:,16898.html



    [edited by: jleon088, jleon088, jleon088]