19 Jun 2020

The ultimate scratch disks for DaVinci Resolve grading

Over the last 3 months, editors have increasingly stepped away from the post house to cut, grade and finish from home. Unplugged from ultra-fast online storage, editors have felt the pain of small local drives and storage that isn’t up to the job of multi-channel RAW.

The problem is real and becoming increasingly pressing: video resolution is increasing, with 4K and 6K cameras becoming common on the market, and more cameras offering 10-, 12- or 16-bit recording options.

For a creative platform like Baselight, DaVinci Resolve or Adobe After Effectts, this additional data is a godsend as it gives editors, colourists and compositors the flexibility to control the look with no creative boundaries.


Workstations ship as standard with heavyweight CPUs and GPUs and have the power to handle very demanding workflows. What they often do not offer as standard are secondary and tertiary drives. This gives the user the choice to add the specific drives they need for peak performance. A typical set-up is:

  • Fast Primary drive (system disk): OS and DaVinci Resolve program files
  • Fast Secondary drive: live workspace scratch disk
  • Large Tertiary drive: back-up, archive drive and 2D graphics

Media Storage Solved

In post facilities, all data can be centralized on storage networks, whether for project workspaces, nearline or archive. In home studio set-ups or temporary creative spaces, local storage is the solution. Sonnet offers a variety of installed and Thunderbolt-attached solutions for high-speed storage.

  Media Max Performance Max capacity Internal Compatibility External (via Thunderbolt expansion)
M.2 4x4 PCIe NVMe SSD   8TB PCIe Yes
Fusion Dual U.2 U.2 NVMe SSDs   32TB PCIe Yes
Fusion Dual Twin 2.5” SSD   8TB PCIe Yes
Flex J3i

1. 3 x SSD

2. 1 x SSD + 2x HDD

3. 3 x HDD

  36TB PCIe (Mac Pro 2019 only) No

PCIe Storage

Installed via PCIe slots (or via a Thunderbolt expansion chassis), these cards deliver high-speed scratch disk performance.

  • The M.2 4x4 PCIe card offers insane speeds (over 11,000MB/s read/write speeds on the ATTO disk benchmark) and a maximum 8TB capacity which makes it ideal for 4K HDR and 8K projects. Apple users can even install macOS® on one SSD to create an incredibly fast boot drive and create a scratch disk RAID 0 set with the other installed SSDs without loss of performance.
  • Fusion Dual U.2 SSD PCIe card marries extreme speed (up to 3500 MB/s read/write, or 6,250 MB/s in RAID 0 configuration) with a storage high capacity. 
  • The Fusion Dual PCIe card supports professional SSD disks in RAID configuration for over 1000MB/s to deliver the scratch disk platform required for 4K creative projects.

Mac Pro 2019

Designed for the latest Mac Pro, the J3i offers users the flexibility of different configurations. These include:

  • 3 x SSD in RAID 0 for approximately 1300MB/s read/write speeds
  • 3 x HDD for up-to 36TB HDD storage for nearline, archive, back-up and graphics

Installed safely into the Mac Pro chassis, it’s an exceptionally flexible solution.

For more information please contact our Sales Desk:
+44 (0)1457 851000 | sales@holdan.co.uk.

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Sonnet Fusion Dual 2.5-inch SSD RAID
Sonnet Fusion Dual 2.5-inch SSD RAID

Dual 2.5-inch SSD PCIe 3.0 card with hardware RAID controller, plus 10Gbps USB-C port

Sonnet Fusion Flex J3i
Sonnet Fusion Flex J3i

3-drive mounting system for 2019 Mac Pro

Sonnet M.2 4x4 PCIe Card (Silent)
Sonnet M.2 4x4 PCIe Card (Silent)

Four M.2 NVMe SSD Slots On a PCIe 3.0 x16 Card for Mac and Windows (Silent)

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