Many SATA to USB adapters list a maximum supported size such as 4TB, 10TB, etc. Why?

For example, this adapter lists a 4TB max whereas this other popular adapter lists 12TB as the max supported.

Here are possible reasons I've thought of:

  1. Higher capacity drives require more power (especially startup power to overcome the inertial mass of the platters) (why not list the power requirement instead?)
  2. Higher capacity drives require some address scheme which isn't supported by the adapter's firmware.

What is the most common reason?

Is an adapter rated for 4TB likely to work with an 8TB drive?

  • 1
    The limitation comes from the SATA controller used in those products. It has nothing to do with the power differences between larger drives (not an issue) nor a concern of the address schema used by the drive.
    – Ramhound
    Mar 5, 2021 at 19:06
  • 1
    What is it about the SATA controller in these converters that limits them? Can you point me to a technical document so I can learn more? Mar 6, 2021 at 15:14
  • Those product pages don’t specify which controllers so I wouldn’t be able to point to the specifications of the controllers themselves. How I know what I said to be true is just based on hundreds of hours of research
    – Ramhound
    Mar 6, 2021 at 15:39
  • @AlexMartian - I don’t provide hardware recommendations and questions seeking hardware recommendations are not within scope, and after 2 years, so no I can’t provide you with any recommendations
    – Ramhound
    Jun 1 at 8:44
  • @Ramhound, somehow my comment with question is not here now. It was not to recommend any particular hardware but to give couple of examples of a technical side of issues that result in size limit (in addition to for most commonly known 2TiB aka 2^32 sectors). Jun 1 at 13:46


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