Pros: I am EXTREMELY impressed with this controller. It seems to take FULL advantage of my SSD's! Running 2 SAMSUNG 840 Pro Series (MZ-7PD512BW - 512GB) in a raid 0 and it's getting a max read speed of 1.06 GB/sec! I had gone through a couple of the cheaper raid controllers seeking these speeds but none were able to deliver. Must say, this one is totally worth it.
Other Thoughts: Make sure you have the drivers ready to go on a USB stick. You have to configure the raid in the device's bios but Windows won't see it unless you install the drivers (during windows installation process). In my case, one of the drives originally showed as "unallocated space" but I was able to fix that in Windows after I installed it (look up how to extend partition).
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Pros: FAST, does SAS 6GB/s, can use one or more SSD for cache with the CacheCade option. mature drivers and config utility. Am running a pair of Samsung 830 SSD's that are mirrored and used as cache, and 4 2TB SAS drives, and this config runs easily 2-3x in speed what my 3ware 9750-8i was getting with 4 2TB SAS drives. Makes dealing with video editing smooth and fast, OS boots up a lot faster. If I wanted, I could put several SSD's in a RAID0 as cache and it would be even faster, but my config maintains a level of safety while greatly increasing speed. The CacheVault option is good too, with that attached instead of a battery, it uses a supercap to back up its RAM onto a flash when power is removed. A supercap should in theory have a longer lifespan than a BBU.
Cons: Cost, goofy hardware dongle to activate certain advanced features.
Other Thoughts: Be sure to get latest FW when you install, especially if using the advanced (i.e. cutting edge) options.
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“FAST, does SAS 6GB/s, can use one or more SSD for cache with the CacheCade option. mature drivers and config utility. ...”— 8/10/2012
“I am EXTREMELY impressed with this controller. It seems to take FULL advantage of my SSD's! Running 2 SAMSUNG 840 ...”— DotScott 5/7/2013