I've read this topic: How exactly does a SAS SFF-8087 breakout cable work? + RAID/connection questions

Which basically explains that you can go from sata to SAS, but not vice versa.

However, from the store page of the Fantec SRC-2080x7 chassis I've seen a few reviews where people seem to use a breakout cable to connect the sata ports from the motherboard to the Mini SAS port (SFF-8087) on the backplane (where sata HDD's are connected).

Is there an exception to this backplane regarding this cable?

Because the SFF-8087 breakout cable doesn't seem to be working for me. Which would be consistent with the topic I linked above, though I'd be suprised if the people in the reviews haven't tested it before posting their review.

Note: The store page is in german and I've been translating everything to english by using Google Translate

This is the page of the chassis by the manufacturer, but also in german (even the english language at the top-right doesn't help).

EDIT: My backplane model is DH-6GMSAS-03A

1 Answer 1


SFF-8087 connectors are frequently used for SATA multi-port connections as well - on backplanes or sometimes even on RAID controllers. In reverse, you can use a SFF-8087-to-4xSATA fanout cable to connect standard on-board SATA ports to a (passive) SAS cage or the Fantec case you've linked to, where you plug the SATA drives (obviously, SAS drives would fit but won't work).

That said, I've seen some really low-quality fanout cables that were hard to correctly plug into the SFF-8087 receptacle - and in one case extremely hard to remove again. Make sure everything is plugged correctly, the 8087 is latched, and the drives are powered before or together with system power.

  • Hm yes the power lights turn on properly, and the data LED just blinks very briefly upon powering the system but no activity (no spin-up or anything) leading me to believe it has no actual connection to the motherboard. Tried it with both of my SFF-8087 fanout cables as well as in the different backplanes (they're separated in an upper and lower backpane) but no combinations seem to work. If it's true that it should work that at least makes me a happy person because a SAS controller would be way more expensive. I'll have a look if wiggling the cables fixes anything and report back, Thx!
    – xorinzor
    Aug 24, 2018 at 21:44
  • Upon further testing it would seem the upper backplane only provides power to 1 of the 4 HDD's, whereas using the same molex connections on the lower backpane provides power to all 4 HDD's just fine. I'm beginning to suspect there's more to this then just the cables, so I contacted amazon and will wait for their response.
    – xorinzor
    Aug 24, 2018 at 22:17
  • could it potentially have something to do with my Motherboard requiring some kind of compatibility? it's an MSI H55M-E33. I'd doubt it, but backplanes and SAS are pretty new terrain for me.
    – xorinzor
    Aug 24, 2018 at 22:21
  • 1
    SAS cabling is somewhat higher-grade but basically the same as SATA cabling, the different connectors are invisible to the controller or drives. Therefore, if everything is correctly connected it should work in any case. I've even run SAS drives over SATA cables (fanout + adapters) without problems.
    – Zac67
    Aug 24, 2018 at 22:24
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    I think I've figured out why no data connection is made. I have a forward breakout cable, and apparently need a reverse breakout cable.
    – xorinzor
    Aug 25, 2018 at 8:50

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