FastATA 1200 speed tests

FastATA (PowerFlyer) is a family of the most advanced EIDE/ATAPI controllers for Amiga 1200/3000/4000 computers.

There are three FastATA models available:
FastATA 4000 controller--a Zorro III card for Amiga 3000 and Amiga 4000 computers,

FastATA ZIV controller--a ZIV card for Amiga1200 with ZIV board and
FastATA 1200 controller--for A1200 in desktop and in tower case.

We did several hard drive speed tests to find out what speed increase comparing to the on-board A1200 IDE port should be expected depending on the turbo card model.

The hard drives raw speed was measured with the DriveSpeed (read), Sysinfo (read) and DiskSpeed (read and write) tests. The practical test consisted in copying a big file (141,592,580 bytes) between two hard drives. The test was performed on the same computer fitted with most popular Amiga 1200 turbo cards.

Choose the turbo card to see the test results (some test results are not on-line yet):

Turbo card model
HDDs on A1200 IDE port
HDDs on FastATA 1200 controller ports
Apollo 1240/40
Blizzard 1230-IV
Blizzard 1260/66
BlizzardPPC 603e & 060/50


The Drivespeed raw read speed test results:
Turbo board
HDD model HDD on A1200 IDE port HDD on FastATA 1200 controller port Speed Increase
Apollo 1240/40 SV8004H 2,310,796 bytes/s 10,657,959 bytes/s 4.61x
SV0643D 2,185,104 bytes/s 10,444,800 bytes/s 4.78x
Blizzard 1230-IV SV8004H 2,440,373 bytes/s 8,160,000 bytes/s 3.33x
SV0643D 2,384,657 bytes/s 8,034,461 bytes/s 3.40x
Blizzard 1260/66 SV8004H 2,451,830 bytes/s 8,561,311 bytes/s 3.51x
SV0643D 2,363,076 bytes/s 8,160,000 bytes/s 3.42x
BlizzardPPC 603e+68060/50 SV8004H 1,723,564 bytes/s 6,144,000 bytes/s 3.56x
SV0643D 1,668,498 bytes/s 5,676,521 bytes/s 3.40x

The time of copying a 141,592,580 byte' file between two hard drives
(reading + buffering + writing + filesystem operations):

Turbo board
HDD model HDD on A1200 IDE port HDD on FastATA 1200 controller port Time Reduction
Apollo 1240/40 from SV8004H 129 seconds 44 seconds 2.93x
from SV0643D 130 seconds 47 seconds 2.77x
Blizzard 1230-IV from SV8004H 179 seconds 47 seconds 3.81x
from SV0643D 177 seconds 49 seconds 3.61x
Blizzard 1260/66 from SV8004H 135 seconds 44 seconds 3.07x
from SV0643D 135 seconds 45 seconds 3.00x
BlizzardPPC 603e+68060/50 from SV8004H 153 seconds 56 seconds 2.73x
from SV0643D 153 seconds 58 seconds 2.64x


• Amiga 1200 rev.2B with Mediator PCI 1200 SX, Voodoo 3, FastEthernet and Spider PCI card
FastATA 1200 MK-II (A1200 PowerFlyer Gold) controller
• Hard drive technical data

SV8004H (partition SDH1:)
Samsung Spin Point V 80GB UATA/100
• Formatted Capacity: 80.0GB
• Interface: 40-pin EIDE
• Rotational Speed: 5400rpm,
• Average Seek Times: 8.9ms,
• Buffer Size: 2MB

SV0643D (partition DH1:)
Samsung Spin Point V 6.4GB UATA/66
• Formatted Capacity: 6.4GB
• Interface: 40-pin EIDE
• Rotational Speed: 5400rpm,
• Average Seek Times: 9.5ms,
• Buffer Size: 512kB


• A1200 motherboard IDE port drived by scsi.device ver. 43.35 from AmigaOS3.9 (28 Dec 1999)
• FastATA 1200 MK-II drived by scsi.device ver. 50.0 generated by ATA3.driver ver. 7.0 (12 Jun 2004)

• Filesystem: PFS3 by Great Effects Development ver. 18.3 (02 July 1999)
• Sysinfo ver. 3.24 by Nic Wilson Software
• DiskSpeed ver. 4.2 by MKSoft Development (17 May 1992)
• DriveSpeed ver. 1.2 by Elbox Computer (05 Dec 1998)
• TEST program (script):

drivespeed scsi.device 0
drivespeed scsi.device 1 ; DH1: speed when connected to the motherboard IDE port
drivespeed scsi.device 2 ; DH1: speed when connected to the FastATA MK-II port
echo "Now we start copying 141,592,580 bytes from SDH1: to DH1:"
copy sdh1:vd-ami2k1_eng.mpg dh1:
echo "File copied!"
delete sdh1:vd-ami2k1_eng.mpg
echo "Now we start copying 141,592,580 bytes from DH1: to SDH1:"
copy dh1:vd-ami2k1_eng.mpg sdh1:
echo "File copied!"
delete dh1:vd-ami2k1_eng.mpg

vd-ami2k1_eng.mpg file is available at Virtual Dimesion website and on the Aminet.
To run the script write: execute TEST


The FastATA controller's design allows transfer of data between its electronics and hard disks connected to its ports at full speed available to PIO modes, i.e. 16.6MB/s. In Amiga 1200, data for the hard drive are sent to/from FastRAM memory installed on the turbo card. Various turbo cards feature differently designed interfaces for communication with the Amiga 1200 mainboard, to which the FastATA 1200 controller is connected. Design of these interfaces imposes some limitations on maximum speeds in data transfer, that is why speeds vary, depending on the turbo card model in the tested configuration.

The tests proved that application of the FastATA 1200 MK-II controller to replace the standard IDE controller integrated with the Amiga 1200 mainboard boosts effective transfers from EIDE disks several times in each of the tested configurations.

The equipment used in testing is publicly available hardware and software. The tests were made on 12 June 2004.