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Hard Disk Drive Performance Comparison Guide Rev. 5.4
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Hard Disk Drive Performance Comparison Guide

Hard disk drives, also known as hard drives or simply HDDs, are critical components of every computer. Although flash-based SSDs (solid state drives) are making some inroads, the ubiquitous hard disk drive is still the ultimate storage choice for most users. Hard disk drives provide a large amount of data storage at low cost. Perfect for storing bloated software and all sorts of "interesting stuff" that we download from the Internet.

Of course, the hard disk drive is more than just a repository for our data, or a place to store the games we play. It affects the performance of our PCs, especially how long it takes to launch applications or games, or open up files. Its performance is also critical if you are low on RAM because your PC will use more virtual memory. This is where the Hard Disk Drive Performance Comparison Guide comes in.

In this article, we will be comparing the performance of all the hard disk drives we can get our hands on. This would be similar to our Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide. It may start off small, but we intend to keep adding new hard disk drives and even new benchmarks as we go along. Let's take a look at the hard disk drives we have rounded up for this comparison.

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The Hard Disk Drives

Model

Segment

Capacity

Spindle Speed

Buffer

Interface

Additional
Details

Western Digital Re
(WD4000FYYZ)

3.5"
Enterprise

4 TB

7200 RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Black
(WD4003FZEX)

3.5"
Desktop

4 TB

7200 RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Red Pro
(WD4001FFSX)

3.5" NAS

4 TB

7200 RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Red
(WD40EFRX)

3.5" NAS

4 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Red
(WD30EFRX)

3.5" NAS

3 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Green
(WD30EZRX)

3.5"
Desktop

3 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital AV-GP
(WD30EURS)

3.5" CE

3 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Green
(WD30EZRSDTL)

3.5"
Desktop

3 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Black
(WD2001FASS)

3.5"
Desktop

2 TB

7200 RPM

64 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Green G2
(WD20EARX)

3.5"
Desktop

2 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital RE4-GP
(WD2002FYPS)

3.5"
Enterprise

2 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital AV-GP
(WD20EVDS)

3.5" CE

2 TB

5400+ RPM

32 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Green
(WD20EARS)

3.5"
Desktop

2 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Green
(WD20EADS)

3.5"
Desktop

2 TB

5400+ RPM

32 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Samsung EcoGreen F4
(HD204UI)

3.5"
Desktop

2 TB

5400 RPM

32 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Samsung EcoGreen F2
(HD154UI)

3.5"
Desktop

1.5 TB

5400 RPM

32 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital VelociRaptor
(WD1000DHTZ)

2.5"
Enterprise

1 TB

10,000 RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Black²
(WD1001X06XDTL)

2.5"
Mobile

1 TB

5400 RPM

16 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Laptop SSHD
(ST1000UM000)

2.5"
Mobile

1 TB
+ 8 GB

5400 RPM

64 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Blue Slim
(WD10SPCX)

2.5"
Mobile

1 TB

5400 RPM

16 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Samsung Spinpoint F1
(HD103UJ)

3.5"
Desktop

1 TB

7200 RPM

32 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Black
(WD1001FALS)

3.5"
Desktop

1 TB

7200 RPM

32 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Green
(WD10EARS)

3.5"
Desktop

1 TB

5400+ RPM

64 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar Green
(WD10EADS)

3.5"
Desktop

1 TB

5400+ RPM

32 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Best Price

Western Digital Caviar GP
(WD10EACS)

3.5"
Desktop

1 TB

5400+ RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Scorpio Blue
(WD10JPVT)

2.5"
Mobile

1 TB

5400 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD7500BPKT)

2.5"
Mobile

750 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar SE16
(WD7500AAKS)

3.5"
Desktop

750 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Barracuda ES
(ST3750640NS)

3.5"
Enterprise

750 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Barracuda 7200.10
(ST3750640AS)

3.5"
Desktop

750 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar SE16
(WD6400AAKS)

3.5"
Desktop

640 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Best Price

Western Digital Scorpio Blue
(WD6400BEVT)

2.5"
Mobile

640 GB

5400 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital VelociRaptor
(WD6000HLHX)

2.5"
Enterprise

600 GB

10,000 RPM

32 MB

SATA 6 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Scorpio Black G2
(WD5000BPKT)

2.5"
Mobile

500 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Best Price

Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD5000BEKT)

2.5"
Mobile

500 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Blue Slim
(WD5000LPVT)

2.5"
Mobile

500 GB

5400 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Hitachi CinemaStar 7K1000.C

3.5" CE

500 GB

7200 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Caviar GP
(WD5000AACS)

3.5"
Desktop

500 GB

5400+ RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Barracuda 7200.9
(ST3500641AS)

3.5"
Desktop

500 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Barracuda 7200.8
(ST3400832AS)

3.5"
Desktop

400 GB

7200 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD3200BEKT)

2.5"
Mobile

320 GB

7200 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Scorpio Blue
(WD3200BEVT)

2.5"
Mobile

320 GB

5400 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Western Digital VelociRaptor
(WD3000BLFS)

2.5"
Enterprise

300 GB

10,000 RPM

16 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Momentus 5400.5
(ST9250320AS)

2.5"
Mobile

250 GB

5400 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Momentus 5400.4
(ST9250827AS)

2.5"
Mobile

250 GB

5400 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Momentus 7200.2
(ST9160823AS)

2.5"
Mobile

160 GB

7200 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Momentus 5400.3
(ST9160821A)

2.5"
Mobile

160 GB

5400 RPM

8 MB

Ultra ATA/100

Review
Best Price

Western Digital Raptor X
(WD1500AHFD)

3.5"
Enterprise

150 GB

10,000 RPM

16 MB

SATA 1.5 Gb/s

Review
Best Price

Seagate Momentus 7200.1
(ST910021A)

2.5"
Mobile

100 GB

7200 RPM

8 MB

Ultra ATA/100

Review
Best Price

Hitachi Travelstar 5K160

2.5"
Mobile

80 GB

5400 RPM

8 MB

SATA 3 Gb/s

Best Price

Fujitsu MHT2040AT

2.5"
Mobile

40 GB

4200 RPM

2 MB

Ultra ATA/100

Best Price

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Testing The Hard Drives

The Testbed

Processors

Intel Core i7-2600K

Motherboard

Intel DP67BG

Memory

8 GB DDR3-1600

Graphics Card

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570

Hard Disk Drives

4 TB Western Digital Re (WD4000FYYZ)
4 TB Western Digital Black (WD4003FZEX)
4 TB Western Digital Red Pro (WD4001FFSX)
4 TB Western Digital Red (WD40EFRX)
3 TB Western Digital Red (WD30EFRX)
3 TB Western Digital Caviar Green AFT G2 (WD30EZRX)
3 TB Western Digital AV-GP AFT (WD30EURS)
3 TB Western Digital Caviar Green AFT (WD30EZRS)
2 TB Western Digital Caviar Black (WD2001FASS)
2 TB Western Digital RE4-GP (WD2002FYPS)
2 TB Western Digital AV-GP (WD20EVDS)
2 TB Western Digital Caviar Green G2 AFT (WD20EARX)
2 TB Western Digital Caviar Green AFT (WD20EARS)
2 TB Western Digital Caviar Green (WD20EADS)
2 TB Samsung EcoGreen F4 (HD204UI)
1.5 TB Samsung EcoGreen F2 (HD154UI)
1 TB Western Digital VelociRaptor (WD1000DHTZ)
1 TB Western Digital Black² (WD1001X06XDTL)
1 TB Samsung Spinpoint F1 (HD103UJ)
1 TB Western Digital Caviar Black (WD1001FALS)
1 TB Western Digital Caviar Green AFT (WD10EARS)
1 TB Western Digital Caviar Green (WD10EADS)
1 TB Western Digital Caviar GP (WD10EACS)
1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD (ST1000UM000)
1 TB Western Digital Blue (WD10SPCX)
1 TB Western Digital Scorpio Blue (WD10JPVT)
750 GB Western Digital Scorpio Black (WD7500BPKT)
750 GB Western Digital Caviar SE16 (WD7500AAKS)
750 GB Seagate Barracuda ES (ST3750640NS)
750 GB Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 (ST3750640AS)
640 GB Western Digital Caviar SE16
640 GB Western Digital Scorpio Blue (WD6400BEVT)
600 GB Western Digital VelociRaptor (WD6000HLHX)
500 GB Western Digital Scorpio Black G2 (WD5000BPKT)
500 GB Western Digital Scorpio Black (WD5000BEKT)
500 GB Western Digital Blue Slim (WD5000LPVT)
500 GB Hitachi CinemaStar 7K1000.C
500 GB Western Digital Caviar Green (WD5000AACS)
500 GB Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 (ST3500641AS)
400 GB Seagate Barracuda 7200.8 (ST3400832AS)
320 GB Western Digital Scorpio Black (WD3200BEKT)
320 GB Western Digital Scorpio Blue (WD3200BEVT)
300 GB Western Digital VelociRaptor (WD3000BLFS)
250 GB Seagate Momentus 5400.5 (ST9250320AS)
250 GB Seagate Momentus 5400.4 (ST9250827AS)
160 GB Seagate Momentus 7200.2 (ST9160823AS)
160 GB Seagate Momentus 5400.3 (ST9160821A)
150 GB Western Digital Raptor X (WD1500AHFD)
100 GB Seagate Momentus 7200.1 (ST910021A)
80 GB Hitachi Travelstar 5K160
40 GB Fujitsu MHT2040AT

Operating System

Microsoft Windows 7 64-bit
Microsoft Windows Vista 32-bit

 

Testing Methodology

We tested in Windows 7 and Windows Vista, with the latest updates. We chose to use our "old faithful" benchmarks, IO Meter 2008 and WinBench 99 2.0, with the following tests :

  • Business Disk WinMark 99
  • High-End Disk WinMark 99
  • Disk Transfer Rate (Beginning)
  • Disk Transfer Rate (End)
  • Platter Data Transfer Profile

Business Disk WinMark 99 is a real-world simulation based on three office application suites - Microsoft Office 97, Lotus SmartSuite and Corel WordPerfect Suite 8, as well as a web browser, Netscape Navigator. They are quite dated, but should still reflect the usage patterns of users in an office environment using such applications. The test runs through a script that keeps multiple applications open, while it performs tasks that switches between those applications and Netscape Navigator. The result is the average transfer rate during the script run.

High-End Disk WinMark 99 is a real-world simulation based on AVS/Express 3.4, FrontPage 98, MicroStation SE, Photoshop 4.0, Premiere 4.2, Sound Forge 4.0 and Visual C++ 5.0. However, it differs by running the applications serially, instead of simultaneously. There are individual results for each application but in this comparison, we will be looking only at the weighted average score, which is the average transfer rate during the tests.

Unfortunately, WinBench 99 seemed to have some issues with Windows Vista, or the current Vista driver for the SATA controller. It would register a SetFilePointer error in the Disk Access Time test. So, we were not able to obtain any Disk Access Time results.

In addition, it would keep crashing if the hard drive was tested with a single partition. This is likely due to a limit on the size of the partition that is supported by WinBench 99. We came up with a workaround by dividing the hard drive into several partitions of equal sizes. We tested each partition individually and averaged the results.

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Details & Settings

Introduction
The Hard Disk Drives
Testbed & Methodology

Real World Simulations

Business Disk WinBench 99
High-End Disk WinBench 99

 

Max. Surface Temperature

Synthetic Tests

Disk Transfer Rate

 

Platter Profile (Desktop)
Platter Profile (Mobile)

 

4 KB Access Performance

 

512 KB Access Performance

Conclusion

Conclusion & Summary



Next Page : Business Disk WinBench 99, High-End Disk WinBench 99 >>>

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