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SATA and SCSI Cables


SATA Cables

SATA cableSATA (Serial ATA) cables are used to connect high-speed SATA hard drives and optical drives to the motherboard. SATA cables have only seven conductors and are therefore much thinner than ribbon-type IDE cables, which improves airflow and makes them easier to route inside the case. There are also eSATA cables that can be used to connect external SATA drives to a computer.

SATA cables can be as long as one meter in length and are more rugged than IDE cables, which provides for more flexibility in choosing where to mount hard drives. They're also capable of very high data transfer rates -- as high as 300 MB/sec.


Image courtesy of Seagate Corp.SATA devices also use a special power cable. Some SATA drives introduced during the initial transitional period also accepted a standard ATX power connector, but all new power supplies now include SATA connectors.

Some power supplies, in fact, don't have any Molex connectors at all, which can be a problem when you need them for older drives or cards that require them.

No worries, however. If your power supply doesn't have enough of the right kind of connectors, you can purchase an inexpensive adapter that will convert an existing Molex power connector to SATA (or vice-versa).


SCSI Cables

Internal and external SCSI (pronounced "skuzzy") cables are available in a truly staggering variety of shapes, sizes, and even colors to meet the various SCSI standards that have evolved over time, and the needs of designers and users.

SCSI is an excellent interface that has many advantages. SCSI hard drives are very fast and very durable. But they're also very expensive, and our research indicates that they are of almost no interest to home computer builders (especially now that SATA is gaining in popularity).

Since none of the site vistors who have contacted us have ever expressed any interest in SCSI, and because the standards sets for SCSI are ponderous and would require an inordinate amount of space given the limited interest, we will merely provide this link for those who do wish to learn more about SCSI.



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