G-RAID Studio Chassis Upgrade TB2 -> TB3 -- Possible?


#1

Hi, I have four G-RAID Studio 12TB Thunderbolt 2 drives (the ones in black plastic) connected to my old iMac 2013. Now I’m about to upgrade to a new iMac 2017 (unfortunately I cannot wait for the new iMac supposedly coming in 2019), which of course offers Thunderbolt 3 ports. I understand I can still use my G-RAIDs with an Apple TB3-to-TB2 adapter, but since the bottleneck (I assume) are the chassises (not the actual internal hard drives), I wonder if there is any way to trade in the old TB2 chassises for the newer TB3 chassises (or simply purchase the latter)? Surely G-RAID clients that temporarily are chassis-only clients are also considered an important customer base…? :–)

Edit: I just found the following Thunderbolt 3 fully Mac compatible chassis that supports four 3,5" drives:
https://www.akitio.com/desktop-storage/thunder3-quad-x
Can the four G-RAID Studio internal 6TB drives be transferred to this chassis as they are, or could there be any potential incompatibility issues with that (I have the RAID format that joins two physical 6TB drives into one virtual 12TB volume)?


#2

Our chassis use a specific RAID controller in them and we only sell and provide our devices with drives included. If you were to place the drives from a G-RAID into another enclosure like that one it would likely ask you to initialize the drives because it wouldn’t be able to read the RAID header information.

We do not have an exchange process for just the enclosures.


#3

Thanks Rydia! So in practicality I have three options:

a) Continue using the four G-RAID Studio 12TB drives as they are, but add an Apple TB3-to-TB2 adapter to the new iMac, and continue having 20 Gbit speed rather than the 40 Gbit speed (the cheapest option)

b) Sell these drives on eBay and buy four new ones with chassis that already support Thunderbolt 3 (probably the most expensive option)

c) Just sell the chassis on eBay (keeping the discs) and then buy two new Akitio chassis with TB3 support, even though this means that I will have to reinitialize all eight 6TB discs before I can install them, and then restore all data to them afterwards

Well, I’m leaning towards option c (costs less than option b and gives better speed than option a), but I would really appreciate if you could point out any potential further drawbacks or hindrances that I may have missed here, that might make option c more cumbersome than it seems – thanks!


#4

a) you wouldn’t get any better performance moving to a TB3 enclosure. It doesn’t even get TB2 speeds. The drives themselves are the limiting factor and nothing goes fast enough to barely surpass TB1 speeds. That is why USB 3.0 and TB will give the same performance unless you using a 4+ drive RAID system or high end SSDs.

So that should solve your other points as well. There is no speed increase regardless and it will even be the same over USB 3


#5

Wow, I didn’t know the actual drives were the bottlenecks, I thought it was all about the chassis. So what you’re saying is that copying a 5GB file to/from my current G-RAID Studio TB2 from/to my 2013 iMac will take exactly the same time as copying a 5GB file to/from my current drive in an Akitio TB3 chassis from/to a new 2018 iMac with an Apple TB3-to-TB2 adapter? Please clarify/confirm that I understand this correctly – thanks,
Mark


#6

Yes that is exactly correct, you might get a slight sway here or there but very small changes +or minus 10-20MB/s.