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This review is from: VANTEC 2-Port SATA II 300 PCIe Host Card w/RAID Model UGT-ST420R
Pros: The card works - (if raid is not an issue.) You can see your hard drive in the bios, and you can boot to a hard drive, either one, in the bios. Read the back of the box for model number, then find that folder on the installation disk.
Cons: The Raid software is junk. The documentation is weak - overly complicated - and doesn't really match the software, The in-windows raid controller is very strange, counter-intuitive - seems like something a large shop would use - but a large shop would not have a $30 soft raid card. You can set up your raid in the bios though - it might work for you - did not work for me but that might be the fault of my bios. I returned the card.
Other Thoughts: I am comparing this raid with intel matrix manager that my dell supported, because it had an intel northbridge, ich7r as I recall. This motherboard on this compaq microtower DC5800 has a no-name northbridge and doesn't support anything but ide - no ahci, no raid. The bios lets you set up a raid volume, but then my bios would not let me go to windows, or even to setup. However my bios also rejected a scsi card, that I was using on an old pentium 4 machine - so my bios is definitely junk. What I don't like about this raid, is that if you want to delete the raid volume, it will let you, but it won't let you convert a drive back to a non-raid drive, unless you perform low-level format, and destroy your data. The intel matrix manager bios allowed you to take a drive and make it a non-raid drive after you deleted the volume. So I didn't like that part at all. In other words, it won't go in and delete the metadata that it puts on a raid drive, showing connection, etc. Weak - not friendly. I was initially trying to create a raid set with one that had data, another that was empty. But again, it all would have failed because of my bios. I suggest to Vantec - "just try to copy Intel Matrix Manager as close as you can - what you have put together is terrible regarding raid." :)READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: This is my 3rd card - for a 3rd computer. The first I've had for 2 years, the second for a year. And I will likely pick up one more as a spare. This is an ideal home theater card, with hdmi and nice hdmi sound. I successfully support a 50 foot hdmi cable on the installation in the sunroom. (It's a good quality cable from (the river) reduced from about $80 that I got for about 50.) This card can run the original Far Cry, 1600x1200 (that's the same pixel count as 1080p) at ultra settings at around 35 fps, which surprised me. (Not custom ultra where you can tweak the AA even further.) But that was just playing around - I didn't pick it up for gaming.
Cons: Not really a con - but this is a passive card - if you really stress it with lots of gaming I suppose it might heat up - too hot and you'd have to add a fan - not hard to do if you have a spare molex connector. Another item - because hdmi sound is included - your motherboard could kick out the on-board sound - see other thoughts. I see there is a rebate. Great - if the mail loses my paperwork no problem, but I usually always get the rebates.
Other Thoughts: I have one of these in an i7 running the 50 foot hdmi cable. Trick - put a 100% (no zoom) magnifying glass window 2" by 2" on lower right of desktop, to track the mouse when it moves over to the extended desktop 1080p TV across the room - that way you don't have to try to read from across the room - it's all right there in the magnifying glass window. That makes it easy to start a power dvd 13 video on the desktop, slide it over to the TV, then go to the tv, and in your window, right-click "full-screen" again, without squinting from across the room. Slide the player window back before you shut everything down, or you will will wonder where Power dvd went. My i7 allows me to switch between hdmi sound, or on-board sound if the tv is off and I'm playing iTunes. The compaq microtower defaults to hdmi-only regarding the sound, but recently somebody said that when this card is installed - check bios for "on-board sound enable" which option will appear only when the card is installed. So I'll find that out this time.READ FULL REVIEW
Pros: Drive has tested out perfect with HDTune, HD Sentinel, Lifeguard, etc. Was put into place as part of a Raid 1 mirror.
Other Thoughts: I have paid similar on the auction site back when I was considering used drives. For a few dollars, to get brand new, in my opinion is well worth it!READ FULL REVIEW