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644 posts

Ultimate Geek

# 59702 9-Apr-2010 22:53
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What is considered a good, fast, but not too expensive USB HDD to plug into a PVR please. Am I better off to buy a HDD enclosure and hand pick a fast SATA drive? I have a 1TB drive which seems to choke at times during timeshift/playback. Thanks in advance.


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481 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 316743 10-Apr-2010 11:45
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If the external disk is going to be connected via USB, as opposed to say Firewire or eSATA, then the capabilities of the disk inside the external enclosure won't matter too much. The limit on read/write performance will come from the relatively slow USB connection - USB 2.0 only has a bandwidth of 480 Mbit/s.

USB connection is the only option offered by most commercial PVRs, but if the external drive is for a HTPC then faster Firewire or eSATA connections may be possible.

644 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 316848 10-Apr-2010 17:31
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Thanks for that. I guess the drive only has to read and write at the speed of the broadcast simultaneously and consistently (e.g. 10mbps + 10mbps). I imagine many USB HDDs should be ok, but was wondering if any users had particular success with certain models. Thanks in advance.


481 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 316851 10-Apr-2010 17:59
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grolschie: I guess the drive only has to read and write at the speed of the broadcast simultaneously and consistently (e.g. 10mbps + 10mbps).

I haven't got any suggestions, but just a note of caution when you are looking at read/write performance - be careful not to mix-up bits and bytes. Being out by a factor of 8 can be a real headache.

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  # 317096 11-Apr-2010 20:01
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I am just running an OLD 80GB Seagate Barracuda PATA drive for PVR, it's not even in an enclosure, just one of those plug in PATA/SATA/Notebook adapters and power pack... and its running fine, maybe a bit "choked" during seeking, but otherwise fine.

I think alot of it stems down to your STB's internal buffer as well, how much data it builds up before performing a write, I watch the activity light and its pulsing during record and disco time for live tv playback...

As deev8 says, usb2.0 is slow, my old 80Gb is probably slower =)

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Ultimate Geek

  # 318197 14-Apr-2010 09:15
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Thanks for that.

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