updated 02:00 pm EST, Sat February 8, 2014
Drives use compact flash or CFast to emulate SSD RAIDs
Addonics Technologies has released two storage solutions using Compact Flash (CF) cards in five slot drive configurations with the Sapphire five-slot CFast and Sapphire five-slot CF drives. The drives use CFast and Compact Flash cards, respectively, to create RAID arrays for SSD storage solutions, aimed at systems using USB 2.0/3.0 or eSATA interfaces.
Each of the Sapphire five-slot drives looks like a standard removable media reader, giving the user to ability to remove cards freely without the use of tools or having to open up a computer case. Each of the Sapphire five-slot drives houses up to five cards in independent slots, with an LED next to each card slot to show drive activity. The devices are plug-and-play, with an internal port multiplier like the HPM-XU in the USB versions, and are able to be used with any operating system. Power consumption for the Sapphire models comes in at around one watt.
Between the CFast and Compact Flash models, each has a USB and eSATA combo model and an eSATA-only version, differing in their abilities and the way the system they are used with recognizes them. The USB and eSATA combo models will still be seen as independent cards (or drives) by the OS which can then be paired together in a RAID 0, 1, 5, 10, JBOD, or Clone mode connected to the computer for a maximum throughput of 3GB per second.
The eSATA models will see the five separate cards linked together, with throughput reaching 6GB per second depending on the Compact Flash cards used. The drives, still seen as independent cards, can then be formed into the same RAID modes as the USB and eSATA models. However, the eSATA model must be connected to a compatible port multiplier controller.
The Sapphire five-slot drives are available now from Addonics for $279 for the USB/eSATA models, or $249 for the eSATA-only versions.