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Versatile Storage

Where you'll use a storage system will often determine your selection. Whether sitting on a desk, mounted in a server or equipment rack, or placed on whatever surface you can find while working on location, Sonnet's Fusion™ F3 is a great choice for your high-speed storage needs. This 8TB, 2-drive hardware RAID storage system has the features demanded by audio and video professionals—high throughput performance, high capacity, rugged design, and quiet operation—plus the flexibility of a quad interface and the convenience of an integrated universal power supply. Fusion F3 encloses its high-performance 3.5" 7200 RPM SATA drives in a stylish aluminum and steel case that fits equally well in recording studios, high-end A/V racks, and desktop or mobile video editing systems.

All the Right Connections

Fusion F3 Quad InterfaceConnecting Fusion F3 to your computer is simple. This storage system features a quad interface that requires just a single data cable to connect the enclosure to an eSATA host controller card for the fastest data transfers possible. This efficient interface simplifies setup and cuts cable clutter without compromising performance. No SATA? No problem—connected via a single FireWire® 800, FireWire 400, or USB 2.0 cable, the drives can be accessed at the full speed of the respective interface. Sonnet includes the cables for each interface (USB 2.0 with standard, full-size A and B connectors, FireWire 400 to FireWire 800, FireWire 800, and eSATA with Sonnet-exclusive locking connectors) so you don't need to buy a new one or search for a spare.

eSATA, FireWire 800, FireWire 400, USB 2.0 Logos

Fusion F3's efficient quad interface makes it a cinch to connect to your computer or its SATA controller card. Select the eSATA or FireWire 800 interface for maximum speed or medium speed respectively, or choose FireWire 400 or USB 2.0 for flexibility. Sonnet includes the cables for each interface, so you don't need to buy a new one or search for a spare.

Internal Hardware RAID

A built-in high performance RAID controller manages Fusion F3's drives and supports Fast (RAID 0), Safe (RAID 1), and, particularly important to the pro audio community, JBOD(1) (Just a Bunch of Disks) configurations, so you can choose the setup that best suits your needs. Whether you choose Fast for the best performance, Safe for a mirrored backup of your data, or JBOD to work with twice as many audio tracks, changing the drive configuration is nearly as simple as turning the knob on the front of the enclosure and pressing and holding the recessed format button, no application software is required. Unlike some other storage systems, if you move the F3 from computer to computer and change configurations for new projects, you don't have to worry about whether the RAID control application is installed on each computer. Because drive configuration is OS independent, the F3 can be connected directly to an audio editing/mixing interface (and other devices that support the feature) via FireWire interface without requiring a computer to link the storage system and device.

Maximum Performance

200+ MBpsWhen set to Fast mode (RAID 0) and the system connected through an eSATA controller like one of Sonnet's Tempo PCIe or ExpressCard/34 host adapters, Fusion F3 can sustain transfer rates of up to 200 MB/sec read and write, perfect for multichannel audio work and fast enough for multiple streams of compressed video editing. When set to Safe mode (RAID 1) and the system connected via eSATA, Fusion F3 can sustain read/write transfer rates of up to 105 MB/sec while protecting the data by mirroring files on both drives. When set to JBOD mode and the system connected via FireWire or USB, Fusion F3 supports independent seeks of its drives, enabling your audio editing app to work with twice as many tracks as RAID 0, RAID 1, or Span configuration will allow.

Desk-Stackable, Ready to Go

Fusion F3 systems may be stacked on a flat surface. Front-mounted power and drive configuration switches, as well as the status indicators are perfect for easy accessibility. An integrated power supply ensures there's no external brick to dangle or come unplugged. On the go? Sonnet includes a briefcase-style carrying case made just for the Fusion F3, with space for the drive, interface cables, and power cord.

Key Features

Integrated Hardware RAID Controller—Supports fast (RAID 0), safe (RAID 1), and JBOD(1) (Just a Bunch of Disks) configurations; configuration is OS independent.

Flexible Connectivity—eSATA, FireWire 800, FireWire400, and USB 2.0 interfaces enable single cable connection to most computers

Fast—When set to Fast mode (RAID 0) and connected via eSATA, Fusion F3 can sustain transfer rates of up to 200 MB/sec

Durable and Dependable—Rugged aluminum and steel outer case construction, and unique multi-point shock/vibration isolation sleds protect the drives and ensure reliable operation

Elegant Design—An attractive milled aluminum faceplate and metal controls lend the appearance of an audiophile component. Power, activity, and fault indicators automatically dim in darkened A/V installations

Complete Package—Carrying case, locking eSATA, FireWire 800, FireWire 400 and USB 2.0 cables included

Wide Compatibility—Compatible with Sonnet's full line of Tempo PCIe and ExpressCard/34 host controllers

Cross Platform Compatibility—Supports Mac®, Windows®, and Linux® computers

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Audio & Video Environments

Designed for Studio and Mobile Work Environments. Sonnet's Fusion F3 2-drive hardware RAID storage system has the features demanded by audio and video professionals—high throughput performance, rugged design, quiet operation and the convenience of an integrated universal power supply.

Elegant, Informative, and Subtle

Fusion F3’s attractive milled aluminum faceplate and metal controls lend it the appearance of an audiophile component. This handsome face sports multiple LED indicators, providing you instant drive configuration (RAID mode), drive activity, drive and fan fault, and power statuses at a glance, no application required. The five activity LEDs for each drive display more detailed information than other storage systems, indicating higher, lower, and no read/write activity for each drive. Information overload is not a problem; the LEDs' brightness adjusts automatically according to the nearby ambient light levels.

Fusion F3 Front Panel Controls & Status Lights

Easy to Access Front Controls and Status Lights. Fusion F3's front controls and multiple LED indicators provide instant access to power, drive, and RAID mode configurations.

Rugged and Reliable

Rugged DesignFusion F3's rugged aluminum and steel case is designed to withstand rough handling, but what's inside makes this storage system unique and well suited for use in environments such as moving vehicles and front of house equipment racks that cause lesser systems to fail. Mounted side-by-side, each of the F3’s drives is mounted on its own multi-axis shock/vibration isolation sled to virtually eliminate vibration-related problems such as missed seek operations, and cross-coupled vibration—a potential source of soft-error-induced skipped frames in video capture and playback. Fusion F3 supports Sonnet's exclusive locking eSATA cables, which provide a secure link between the F3 and Tempo PCIe and ExpressCard/34 eSATA host controller cards, even when subjected to heavy vibration. Dual temperature-controlled fans with automatic failover help ensure system reliability in difficult operating conditions. Doubling up on fans offers another advantage over storage systems using a single fan by operating at lower speeds and moving more air through the enclosure. In addition, lower spinning speeds mean less noise in your working environment.

 

Fusion F3 Group Shot
See Tech Specs Tab for footnotes
Part No.  
FUS-F3-8TB Discontinued
Hardware  
Warranty 2-Year
External Connectors
  • One locking eSATA
  • Two FireWire 800
  • One USB 2.0
eSATA Interface Speed 3 Gb/s
Data Transfer Speed Up to 195 MB/s, depending on drives, interface, and configuration
Supported Drive Configurations Hardware-based RAID 0, 1, and JBOD(1)
Supported Video Formats Uncompressed 10-bit NTSC HD, DV, HDV, DVCPRO, and uncompressed SD
Power Supply Universal 180W, 100–240V AC, 50–60Hz
Operating Temperature 0º C to 35º C (32º F to 95º F)
Dimensions WxDxH: 8.7 x 13.9 x 2 in (22.1 x 35.3 x 5.1 cm)
Weight (Approximate) 8.5 lbs (3.9 kg)
Package Contents
  • Disk enclosure with two 3.5" hard drives
  • Power cord
  • One 2-meter locking eSATA cable
  • One 2-meter FireWire 800 cable
  • One 2-meter FireWire 800 to FireWire 400 cable
  • One 2-meter USB 2.0 cable
  • Carrying case
  • Documentation


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Compatibility

Mac, Windows(2), or Linux computer


Technical Notes

  1. JBOD mode requires use of USB or FireWire interface.
  2. To support 8TB volumes under Windows requires Windows XP 64-bit, Windows Server 2003 SP1, Windows Vista Enterprise/Ultimate (32- and 64-bit versions), Windows Server 2008 (32- and 64-bit versions), or Windows 7 Professional, Enterprise or Ultimate (32- and 64-bit versions) or later. In order to create volumes greater than 2TB under these operating systems, you must convert the disk to GPT file system. Windows XP 32-bit, Windows Vista Home Basic, Windows Vista Home Premium, and Windows Vista Business do not support volumes greater than 2TB.


Specifications subject to change without notice.

Mac OS LogoWindows LogoLinux Logo eSATA LogoFireWire logo  USB 2.0 logo

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Reviews
TV Technology Review

Review: Sonnet Fusion F3 Portable RAID
"The Sonnet Fusion F3 is a RAID enclosure, populated with two permanently installed 3 TB drives. It's fast enough for serious studio use and rugged enough for mobile production and editing tasks. The enclosure itself is one-half an RU-wide, about two-inches high, and weighs in at about 8.5 pounds. The enclosure, made from steel and milled aluminum, is solid and not overly heavy, and features an independent suspension system for each drive that provides shock and vibration isolation. The power supply is universal and built in, and additionally has a built-in surge protector. Front panel controls set the RAID mode and power on/off, and indicate drive activity and status…

The Sonnet F3 is exactly the kind of high-speed storage device that makes location editing possible and easy. It would also be a natural fit for a truck-based installation, with its low profile, great performance, capacity, rackmounting capability, and shock protection…It is very well designed—both visually and technically—and performs strongly enough to handle the most demanding standard- and high-definition video work. "

Studio Monthly Review

Review: Sonnet Fusion F3 Portable RAID. Peace of Mind for the Professional.
"The Sonnet F3 RAID system is a serious professional tool. It is extremely fast at almost 200 MB/s when configured RAID 0 and silent running for use in shared office environments. The F3 features a multiple FireWire/USB interface with a locking eSATA connector…

While the F3 ships with a nifty valise approximately the size of a standard laptop case, the unit’s primary application is for rack use in a control room environment. With current capacities up to 6TB configured for maximum speed (RAID 0), the F3 will meet the needs very well of top audio/video facilities. I use mine in SAFE MODE (RAID 1) for daily backup of my P2 HPX2700 original camera footage in the field, and for that application the F3 is a rock-solid performer."

DV Product Review

Sonnet Fusion F3 Review
"…What is most notable about this unit is its absolute shock protection. Sonnet has demonstrated the F3’s flawless operation on a vibrating stand, reading/writing data without missing a beat. I’ve bounced it around as well and the data survived my klutziness. The unit is positioned, in fact, as a mobile storage device. It comes with a handled carrying case with room for drive and cables. Of course, the power supply is on board, which is not the case with many portable units.

The F3 is perfect for remote productions under less controlled conditions where offloading data is the priority, along with the option to double-protect the footage with RAID 1 mirroring. Of course, it could be used in a RAID 0 setting as a storage or even editing device. ProRes HQ or DNxHD at even higher data rates can be sustained on a two-drive RAID 0.

The form factor of the F3 also lends itself to rack mounting, and its shock resistance makes it an ideal production truck device.

Everything about this RAID says sturdy and dependable. I would not hesitate to recommend it for the most grueling of remote operations."

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Awards & Case Studies
Quote BubbleSee what reviewers and customers have to say about other Sonnet products in our News section under Product Reviews and Case Studies.