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Pure Performance. eSATA Advantage.

Why install an eSATA card into your computer just to connect your external drives when it already has USB 2.0 ports, and maybe even FireWire® 400 or FireWire 800 ports, too? Speed, plain and simple. The eSATA interface offers faster transfer speeds than those other connections—if you plan to work with files and not just back them up, you need eSATA—it delivers the fastest data transfers from storage devices with multiple interfaces(1). But, not all eSATA cards are alike. Sonnet's acclaimed Tempo™ SATA E4P eSATA host controller delivers outstanding performance and simple scalability previously unattainable with mainstream technologies.

Tempo SATA E4P was designed with high definition video work in mind—its PCI Express x4 interface offers huge bandwidth for sustained data throughput of up to 240 MB/s per port, so the card never slows you down. It also offers unprecedented storage expandability—its support for high-performance multi-drive storage systems with port multipliers or hardware RAID controllers enable it to handle up to twenty hard drives(2)(3) at the same time! Port multipliers and hardware RAID controllers manage the data flow of up to five drives in one enclosure, transferring files between your computer and drives through a single locking cable. Connect four storage systems, and using today's highest-capacity drives, you can access an astounding 48 Terabytes of storage!

For maximum performance, you can create a single, large RAID 0 set across multiple drives in two or more enclosures to capture and process uncompressed high definition video, or conquer other high-bandwidth applications. You can just as easily create smaller RAID sets to work with multiple streams of compressed video. For fantastic flexibility, you can work with 20 drives individually and hot-swap(4) them out as needed. You can even work with a combination of RAID sets and individual drives—your choices aren't limited. When your storage needs have outgrown standard solutions, get a Tempo SATA E4P—it'll give you room to grow and blazing performance for the most demanding applications.

Key Features

Professional eSATA interface delivers faster performance than standard eSATA, FireWire 800, FireWire 400, and USB 2.0—transfer files to and from your drives in less time

FIS-based port multiplier-aware, and works with enclosures with hardware RAID controllers—supports up to 16 disk drives(2)

Native PCI Express (PCIe) x4 host bus interface for high-performance applications

Supports Mac OS® X, Windows 7 (Professional or Ultimate), Windows Vista (Enterprise or Ultimate), Windows XP Pro, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008, and Windows Server 2003 RAID features

Supports Sonnet-exclusive locking eSATA data cables

Supports hard drive hot-swapping(4)

SATA II compliant, 3 Gb/s and 1.5 Gb/s drive interface auto-negotiation

Spread Spectrum Clocking (SSC) support for compatibility with all SATA drives



Tempo SATA E4P Connected to Fusion Storage Systems

For maximum performance, you can create a single, large RAID 0 set across multiple drives in two or more enclosures like Sonnet’s Fusion D800P2, Fusion D400QR5, or Fusion R400QR5.

Part No.  
TSATAII-E4P Discontinued
Warranty 5-year
RoHS Compliant Yes
Bus Interface PCI Express x4
External Connectors Four eSATA
Drives Supported Up to 20(2) (5 per port)
Data Transfer Rate Up to 730MB/sec(6)
ATAPI Support No
Drive Types Supported Serial ATA I & II
Firmware Flash-ROM upgradeable to latest firmware version
Bootability Not Supported
Package Contents
  • Tempo SATA E4P host controller card
  • Documentation & software CD
Advanced Features
  • Port multiplier aware
  • FIS-based switching controller
  • Supports hard drive S.M.A.R.T. (Self-Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology) data reporting
  • Spread Spectrum Clocking for compatibility with all SATA drives and lower EMI emissions
  • Bus Mastering frees CPU from data I/O handling

Specifications subject to change without notice.

Mac Logo Windows LogoeSATA Logo roHS Logo






Mac Compatibility(1)

Mac Pro

Xserve (Late 2006) or later (with PCIe Express slots)(5)

Power Mac G5 (with PCI Express slots)

Mac OS X Version 10.5.8+

Mac OS X Server Version 10.5.8+

OS X Yosemite compatible

Windows Compatibility

PC (with PCI Express slots)

Server (with PCI Express slots)

Windows® 8

Windows 7

Windows Vista®

Windows XP

Windows Server 2008 R2

Windows Server 2008

Windows Server 2003

Technical Notes

  1. Sonnet Tempo cards are compatible with most external SATA storage. However, external hard drives with USB 2.0/eSATA dual interface based on the Oxford Semiconductor OXU931DS storage controller chip may not be compatible with Mac OS X when connected via SATA. Known issues are kernel panics occurring when the drive is connected, or the drive not being recognized by the operating system.

    Summary of external SATA storage
    Storage with eSATA alone Compatible
    Storage with triple interfaces Compatible
    Storage with quad interfaces Compatible
    Storage with eSATA plus Firewire 400 and/or 800 Compatible
    Storage with RAID 0, 1, or 5 (multiple drives) Compatible
    Storage with eSATA plus USB (based on JMicron 20366) Compatible
    white spaceThese compatible drives include, but are not limited to:
    - OWC Mercury On-the-Go USB 2.0/eSATA 2.5" portable
    Storage with eSATA plus USB
    white space(based on Oxford OXU931DS)
    Not compatible
    white spaceThese incompatible drives include, but are not limited to:
    - Western Digital My Book™ Premium ES Edition™
    - Seagate Technology FreeAgent™ Pro
    Thermaltake Black X Duet Not compatible
  2. OS X port multiplier support requires version 10.8.5+.
  3. Western Digital manufactures Desktop edition (WD Caviar, Caviar SE, Caviar SE16, and Raptor X) hard drives and Enterprise (RAID) Edition (WD RE, RE2, and Raptor) hard drives. Each type of hard drive is designed to work specifically in either a desktop computer environment, or connected to a RAID controller (hardware or software-based). If you intend to configure Western Digital drives in a RAID set, Sonnet and WD recommend using only their Enterprise edition hard drives. For more information, see this Western Digital FAQ.
  4. SATA drive hot swapping is not supported in a desktop or server PC running Windows. SATA drives connected to Tempo SATA E4P appear to the system as not-removable hard drives and there is no mechanism in Windows to prepare them for removal.
  5. Xserve not compatible with Sonnet SATA cable locking feature.
  6. Achieved with 16-drive RAID 0 set (four Fusion R400P storage systems).

Tempo SATA E4P Performance


Number of Drives Number of Ports Connected RAID Mode Read
SATA Drive,
3TB, 3.5"
1 1 JBOD 150 125
Fusion F2 2 2 RAID 0 200 185
Fusion F3 2 1 RAID 0 200 200
4 1 RAID 5 220 210
4/5 1 RAID 0 240 200
8 2 RAID 0 470 400
12 3 RAID 0 680 570
16 4 RAID 0 730 630


Tempo SATA E4P Read Performance

Tested using quad 2.66 GHz Mac Pro with 4GB RAM running Mac OS X 10.6, 1GB transfers.


Product image Product Name Part No. Description
Locking eSATA cable Sonnet 2-Meter Locking eSATA Cable TCB-SATA-2L-2M eSATA data cable with locking connectors
Sonnet 1-Meter Locking eSATA Cable TCB-SATA-2L-1M eSATA data cable with locking connectors

AMUG Reviews Rating

AMUG Review
"Mac Pro users that are looking for a hard working SATA PM host adapter…will find the Sonnet Tempo E4P is an excellent choice.

Buzzillions Rating

Fast, Reliable, Flexible
I was a bit hesitant to go with a port-multiplier system, thinking that it would adversely affect performance. But both disk subsystems perform extremely well, with the RAID able to sustain uncompressed 1080/60i HDTV without a problem. You could probably get a bit more performance by not using the port multiplier, but then you are limited in the number of drives you can connect, since the densest SATA controller I know of is just 8 ports.

I'm satisfied enough with this that I'm ordering another to install into a new Mac Pro (Intel-based) system."

Buzzillions Rating

Solid Card
Sonnet cards are the best in the industry…Sonnet US based tech support is spot on if needed. In the 10+ years I have owned various Sonnet products, I have never had a problem, or a failure, or needed to call them for tech support.

They work especially well in tandem, so make sure ALL your PCI cards come from Sonnet and you will never have any issues or conflicts."

Buzzillions Rating

Works (Windows 7 64-bit)
Had a bit of trouble installing this in a 64-bit Windows 7 system, but Sonnet's tech support replied to my email within a few minutes. The solution was easy, and everything works as advertised."

Awards & Case Studies
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