• Overview
  • Tech Specs
  • Performance
  • Accessories

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 Tempo™ SATA X4P eSATA host controller delivers outstanding performance and simple scalability previously unattainable with mainstream technologies.

Tempo SATA X4P was designed with high definition video work in mind—its PCI-X interface offers huge bandwidth for sustained data throughput, 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 60 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 X4P—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 20 disk drives(2)

PCI-X 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


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 D500P, Fusion D400QR5, or Fusion R400QR5.

Part No.  
TSATAII-X4P Discontinued
Warranty 5-year
RoHS Compliant Yes
Bus Interface PCI-X, 64-bit 133 MHz; 32-bit PCI bus 2.2 Compliant, works in any PCI or PCI-X slot
External Connectors Four eSATA
Drives Supported Up to 20(1)
Data Transfer Rate Up to 266MB per second per port
ATAPI Support No
Drives Type Supported Serial ATA I & II
Firmware Flash-ROM upgradeable to latest firmware version
Bootability Not Supported
Package Contents
  • Tempo SATA X4P host controller card
  • Quick start guide
  • 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 drivers and lower EMI emissions
  • Bus Mastering frees CPU from data I/O handling


Specifications subject to change without notice.





OS Compatibility

Power Mac® G5 (with PCI slots(5) or PCI-X slots)

Power Mac G4 (with PCI slots)

Xserve® G4 or G5 (with PCI or PCI-X slot)(6)

OS X(1) 10.5, 10.4.11, or 10.3

OS X(1) Server 10.5, 10.4.11, or 10.3

PC Compatibility

PC (with PCI(4) or PCI-X slots)

Windows® 8, 7, Vista®, XP (SP2)

Windows Server 2008, 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 port multiplier support (multiple drives) 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
  2. Support for up to 20 drives requires the use of drive enclosures employing either an FIS-based port multiplier (like Sonnet's Fusion D500P) or a hardware RAID controller (like Sonnet's Fusion D400QR5 or R400QR5).
  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 natively supported in a desktop or server PC running Windows. SATA drives connected to Tempo SATA X4P appear to the system as not-removable hard drives and there is no mechanism in Windows to prepare them for removal.
  5. Performance will be lower in PCI-only machines.
  6. Xserve not compatible with Sonnet SATA cable locking feature.


Mac Logo Windows LogoeSATA LogoPCI-X Logo roHS Logo



Tempo SATA X4P Performance

Quad 2.66 GHz Mac Pro with 3GB of RAM, AJA Kona3 capture card and Tempo SATA X4P installed, with one Sonnet Fusion D500P storage system connected. Drives were configured as a RAID 0 set.



(1 stream=3.6 MB/s)


(1 strm=7.2 MB/s)


DVCPRO HD 720p 59.94
(1 stream=14.4 MB/s)


DVCPRO HD 1080i 29.97
(1 stream=16 MB/s)


HDV 720p
(1 stream=2.4 MB/s)


HDV 1080i 29.97
(1 stream=3.1 MB/s)


ProRes 422 NTSC SD
(1 stream=5.25 MB/s)


ProRes 422 HQ NTSC SD
(1 stream=7.87 MB/s)


ProRes 422 720p 59.94
(1 stream=18.375 MB/s)


ProRes 422 HQ 720p 59.94
(1 stream=27.5 MB/s)


ProRes 422 1080i 29.97
(1 stream=18.375 MB/s)


ProRes 422 HQ 1080i 29.97
(1 stream=27.5 MB/s)


Uncompressed 8-bit NTSC
(1 stream=21.0 MB/s)


Uncompressed 10-bit NTSC
(1 stream=28.0 MB/s)


Uncompressed 8-bit 720HD
(1 stream=55.2 MB/s)


Uncompressed 10-bit 720 HD
(1 stream=73.6 MB/s)


Uncompressed 8-bit 1080i HD
(1 stream=124.3 MB/s)


Uncompressed 10-bit 1080i HD
(1 stream=165.7 MB/s)


* Supports 1 stream of playback. Capture supported if disk array is less tha 80% full and not extremely fragmented.



  Product 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