The ARC-1220 SATA ll RAID host adapter is a high-performance PCI-Express bus to SATA ll Disk Array host adapter. The controller can provide up to 8 SATA ll peripheral devices on a single host adapter. When properly configured, the SATA host adapter can provide non-stop service with a high degree of fault tolerance through the use of RAID technology and advanced array management features. Intel IOP333 processor has integrated the RAID 6 engine inside. It offers Areca the advantage of reduced engineering and development costs, by having the New RAID6 function build-in and integrated part saves on component costs and internal PCI bandwidth. Intel emphasis on architectural commonality in IOPs allows Areca developers to capitalize on their existing code base.
Controller Type: SATA RAID Controller
RAID Level: 1, 3, 5, 6, JBOD
Slot/Port Type: PCI Express x8
Interface: Serial ATA/300
Product Title: Areca ARC-1220 8 Port Serial ATA RAID Controller
Power Score: 4.2 | 4 Reviews
Controller Type: SATA RAID Controller
Drive Array Support: 1, 3, 5, 6, JBOD
Slot/Port Type: PCI Express x8
Interface Type: Serial ATA/300
Interface Connection: 8 x 7-pin SATA Serial ATA/300 - Serial ATA Internal
Maximum Number of Devices Supported: Up to 8 x Physical
Host Transfer Rate: 300 MBps
Installed Cache Memory: 128 MB ECC DDR SDRAM
Maximum Cache Memory: 1 GB
System Type: PC, Unix, Solaris
URL: Manufacturer Link
Product Model: ARC-1220
Brand Name: Areca
RAID Support: Yes
Front Camera: Areca
Product Reviews (4)
TechSupport for Areca in the USA
Strengths: Fast RAID 6 Performance w/ Highest Fault tollerance available.
Weakness: None I can think of.
Alot of people don't know, but I found out that Tekram USA provides tech support for the Areca controller. After emailing Areca Taiwan, they forwarded me to Tekram USA for support on the controller I purchased. The Tekram support team was very helpfull in providing me the right firmware fix immediately.
By Areca USA, So Cal Division; - Apr 25, 2006
Areca – Still Some Rough Edges
Strengths: Insanely fast RAID controller!!!
Weakness: Tech support is slooooow to respond. Controller firmware updates can only be installed via a web interface with an array and operating system fully installed and running.
Note: Most aspects of this review apply to both the 1120 and 1220, they both have nearly identical performance levels. The 1120 is PCI-X, and the 1220 is PCI-e(xpress) The Areca 1220 is a blazingly fast RAID controller that supports pretty much every level of RAID out there, including RAID-6. I have 2 of these controllers, and the more heavily utilized one runs 4x400GB drives in a RAID-5 array,...
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Note: Most aspects of this review apply to both the 1120 and 1220, they both have nearly identical performance levels. The 1120 is PCI-X, and the 1220 is PCI-e(xpress)
The Areca 1220 is a blazingly fast RAID controller that supports pretty much every level of RAID out there, including RAID-6. I have 2 of these controllers, and the more heavily utilized one runs 4x400GB drives in a RAID-5 array, and 2x250GB drives in a RAID-0 stripe.
I recently started working extensively with high definition video. I needed a faster computer, but more important than anything else, I needed extremely fast disk access. I had been using Adaptec’s 2410sa for about 3 years, and while it had been very reliable, it simply did not have the speed required for real time HDV capture.
Enter Areca. I picked up one of these controllers to test out its performance, specifically with HD video editing in mind. After getting it installed and configured, I ran some standard Windows disk benchmarks on the array. Speed was excellent. In fact, the Areca array with one disk in a 4 disk RAID-5 array failed (array degraded state) benchmarked considerably faster than the Adaptec 2410sa did with it’s 4 disk RAID-5 array in an optimal state. The Areca with it’s array in optimal state was definitely an extremely fast array, just as several online reviews had promised.
Obviously, unless you want to use an ancient PCI video card, you need an SLI motherboard so as to have 2xPCI-e slots. I don’t consider this a problem, just mentioning it for clarity.
And unlike some other brands of RAID controllers, Areca will not boot a degraded array by default. This can be a bit of a shock the first time it happens if you are used to some other RAID controller! You need to go into the Areca’s onboard configuration, and mark the degraded array as active. Then when you restart, the degraded array will boot.
There are a few downsides to using Areca however, that I have not seen mentioned anywhere. I had a few problems early in my installation, so I’ll outline my misgivings here.
The PCI-Express (ARC-1220) version often requires being installed in the “wrong” slot. In order to allow a warm boot to happen successfully, the RAID controller needs to be in the primary PCI-e slot and the video in the secondary PCI-e slot on some motherboards. This is not a huge problem, but it is not mentioned in the documentation.
Some motherboards require turning off the floppy drive in the “boot devices” menu to allow warm boots to occur.
My first controller was shipped with firmware v 1.38. (Jan 2006). I had purchased 4 of Western Digital’s new 400GB RE2 series RAID specific enterprise class drives. Much to my surprise, the Areca controller simply could not initialize with these drives attached. It was able to initialize with other drives, but not the RE2s.
I emailed Areca tech support several times, with no response. I tried calling the USA number, which was answered by somebody with a cell phone who spoke broken English, and was “too busy to take my call”, because he was at a trade show. Here I’ve bought a controller that cost more than some computers do, and nobody wants to give any support on it. Grrrrreat.
So I picked up my VoIP phone (what would we do without VoIP???), and dialed the Areca number in Taiwan. It was answered by a pleasant young woman who spoke some broken English. After several attempts, I managed to get the general concept of my problem across to her. She spoke with someone who was in the same room (can you say “small company”?). She translated that person’s reply as “you need firmware version 1.39, but we’re still testing”. How nice! I managed to impart to her that I needed a working controller RIGHT NOW, not a week, or a month from now, so after a few more conversations with the other person, she agreed that they would e-mail me the beta version within 15 minutes.
Sure enough, less than 20 minutes later, I had version 1.39 in my email inbox. Sometime thereafter, I was able to upgrade my controller, and after that, it was pretty much smooth sailing. Firmware upgrades must be done via a web interface, which requires getting at least one drive with an operating system installed on the controller… fortunately, I has a spare 250GB SATA drive which I could use for that purpose.
All in all, this is an amazing controller from a performance perspective. If you are a performance maniac, and a real computer geek, then this controller can not be beat. It was made for you! However, if you are the type of customer that is not comfortable figuring things out on your own, and doing your own tech support, I’d have a hard time recommending this controller to you.
Areca, you need to improve your tech support if you ever want to be a major player in the RAID field... I hope you guys are listening, because you could be one of the best...
By TechnoGuru - Apr 11, 2006
Working fine with the Giga-Byte GA-8N-SLI motherboard RAID 6 Mode
Strengths: Fast, RAID 6 has Excellent Redundancy, the best RAID ever! 500MHz on board processor and the controllers that I have purchase had 256MB cache on board contraire to the 128MB specified in the docs.
Weakness: Controller management interface windows software is lame, they could spend some time and money creating a better user interface with a nice GUI.
This is an excellent product and is working great! I'm working on my 3rd system with this controller. I have been using the Giga-Byte GA-8N-SLI motherboard with the SLI MODE Switch Module in SLI mode, no power connected to the Molex connector next to the Graphics Slot. The RAID 6 support is what enticed me to try this product. so far it is outstanding I have experimented with removing drives from...
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This is an excellent product and is working great! I'm working on my 3rd system with this controller. I have been using the Giga-Byte GA-8N-SLI motherboard with the SLI MODE Switch Module in SLI mode, no power connected to the Molex connector next to the Graphics Slot.
The RAID 6 support is what enticed me to try this product. so far it is outstanding I have experimented with removing drives from the Array during operation to test the fault tollerance. In a 5 drive system (4 in the array and 1 hot spare) you would have to loose 3 drives at the same time in order to loose your data.
By ChrisKremer - Oct 3, 2006
Great if you don't need support
Strengths: Raid 6 is great. Card is fast and reliable. I have used it 24/7 for 5 years with no hickups.
Weakness: Cannot expand raid volume on the fly. Areca tech support one of the worst.
The card will do rebuilds effortlessly without loss of data. If you never want to expand the raid volume, you'll be fine. But if you want to replace drives with larger drives, you're screwed. Areca te
By Depdoc; - Oct 24, 2009