Tag Archives: WD Blue

Tech ARP 20th Anniversary Giveaway Week 7 - Western Digital

Tech ARP 20th Anniversary Giveaway Week 7 – Western Digital!

Tech ARP is now 20 years old! To celebrate, we partnered up with many of the world’s TOP BRANDS to thank you all for your loyal support with a TWENTY-WEEK GIVEAWAY!   

 

Tech ARP Is 20 Years Old & Going Strong!

Time sure FLIES when you are having fun! Twenty years ago, Ken, Chai and I got together to rebrand Adrian’s Rojak Pot as Tech ARP. We were having trouble explaining what rojak was, and that pot did not refer to marijuana / cannabis! 

That was in the good old days of sawing off pipe end caps to turn into CPU water coolers, and modifying SLAB (sealed lead acid batteries) into the world’s first power bank for our PDAs (remember those?).

Those sure were CRAZY DAYS! 

Somehow, we worked our way to the forefront of motherboard technology with our seminal BIOS Optimization Guide, which later got published as Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier : The Definitive BIOS Optimization Guide for PCs.

I don’t know how I did it, but somehow, we did all those crazy stuff while I was still in medical school! CRAZY days indeed!

Over the years, we moved from strength to strength, with Ken hand-developing our own backend, and Chai nurturing our budding forums.

Somehow, we persevered and by the miracle of surviving the passage of time, Tech ARP is Malaysia’s oldest tech website!

Today, we are still pretty much the same team, with FalconeDashkenCarolyn, Hui Xin, Alyssa, Kar Hoe and Brian Chong helping us out here and there. Thank you, guys!

 

The Tech ARP 20-Week Giveaway

To thank you all for sharing our crazy journey over the years, we have prepared a 20-week giveaway contest. Actually, a series of twenty weekly giveaway contests.

We worked with many of the world’s TOP BRANDS to bring you all some goodies. We are also sponsoring some of these giveaways ourselves. Here are some of the brands that will be sponsoring their own giveaways here soon :

[adrotate group=”2″]
  • Acer – Special Edition Laptop!
  • AMD – AMD Ryzen CPUs!
  • BenQ – MONITOR!
  • Cooler Master – CPU coolers, gaming keyboards and more!
  • Dell – POWER COMPANIONS, speakers and more!
  • Edifier – Headphones!
  • GIGABYTE – Motherboards!
  • TP-LINK
  • Western Digital – SSDs + HDDs!

Where possible, we are opening up the giveaways WORLDWIDE. But where our brand partners wish to restrict their giveaways to certain regions or countries, we will notify you of that.

Week 1 Giveaway by Tech ARP

Week 2 Giveaway by Dell

Week 3 Giveaway by Tech ARP

Week 4 Giveaway by BenQ + Tech ARP

Week 5 Giveaway by Dotty’s + Tech ARP

Week 6 Giveaway by Pocophone!

Week 7 Giveaway by Western Digital!

All we ask is that you use your genuine personal Facebook account in our Facebook contests. We will automatically disqualify anyone who uses a Facebook account that is primarily used for contests.

 

Crowdfunding Tech ARP

As we have been for the last twenty years, Tech ARP is a crowdfunded website. We do NOT charge for our articles. So if you wish to help us out, please feel free to donate to our cause. Thank you!



Next Page > Week 1 Giveaway by Tech ARP

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


20th Anniversary Week 1 Giveaway

To kick things off, we are giving away the following prizes for the first week!

The Awesome Prize : Microsoft Lumia 950 Smartphone + Microsoft Display Dock + Tempered Glass Screen Protector

Cool Prize #1 : TP-Link Groovi Ripple Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Cool Prize #2 : TP-Link Groovi Ripple Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Cool Prize #3 : Olike Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 Car Charger with two USB ports

Cool Prize #4 : Olike Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 Car Charger with two USB ports

Contest Period : 31 August to 7 September 2018

Eligibility : WORLDWIDE *

* Tech ARP will pay for standard shipping, but you may opt to pay for expedited or express shipping services.

Week 1 Giveaway Rules

  1. Make sure you LIKE the Tech ARP Facebook page.
  2. Everyone definitely wants The Awesome Prize, but we want to know which of the Cool Prizes you prefer – the Groovi Ripple, or the Olike QC 3.0 car charger.
    So post a comment in our official Facebook post on the Week 1 Giveaway, and tell us which you prefer :
    a) TP-Link Groovi Ripple, or
    b) Olike QC 3.0 Car Charger

  1. SHARE our official Facebook post on your Facebook wall. Please make sure it is PUBLIC, so we can verify.

BONUS : Liking and sharing our posts, or commenting and tagging your friends, will give you a higher chance of winning The Awesome Prize or the prize you want!

That’s it! It’s THAT simple!

Contest Mechanics

[adrotate group=”2″]
  1. At the end of the contest, we will randomly select FIVE contestants.
  2. If any contestant fails to meet any of the rules above, another contestant will be randomly selected.
  3. The Likes, Shares, Comments and Tags of the five verified contestants in the Tech ARP Facebook page will be calculated.
  4. The Awesome Prize winner will be randomly selected from that pool.
  5. The subsequent winners will be randomly selected from that pool, with prize preference given to those who are selected first.
  6. Each contestant may only win one prize, so if his/her number is selected again, it will be discarded and a new number randomly selected.

Got it? Go and try it out!

Note On Gaming Accounts : Contestants who use gaming accounts will be automatically disqualified. Please use your personal Facebook accounts.

 

Week 1 Giveaway Winners!

We are very excited to announce the winners for the Week 1 Giveaway!

Mohd Fahmi wins the Microsoft Lumia 950 Smartphone + Microsoft Display Dock + Tempered Glass Screen Protector!

Faridah Akmal wins a TP-Link Groovi Ripple Portable Bluetooth Speaker!

Alister Lok wins a TP-Link Groovi Ripple Portable Bluetooth Speaker!

Mohd Khairul Zaman wins an Olike Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 Car Charger!

Ivan Ng wins an Olike Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 Car Charger!

Winners, please send your full details to contest @ techarp.com.

Full Name :
Full Address :
Mobile / Contact Number :
Email Address :

LAST CALL : Those who do not submit their details by 12 PM, Friday, 19 October 2018 will forfeit their prizes.

Next Page > Week 2 Giveaway by Dell

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


20th Anniversary Week 2 Giveaway

This week, Dell will be giving away prizes worth more than RM 2,000 / $500!

The Awesome Prizes : Dell PW7015M Power Companion (2 units)

Great Prizes : Dell AE215 Speaker System (2 units)

Cool Prizes : Dell WM514 Wireless Laser Mouse (3 units)

Nice Prizes : Dell AX210 USB Speaker System (6 units)

Dell PW7015M Power Companion (12,000 mAh)

Meet the Dell Power Companion – a handy device that powers select Dell notebooks and ultrabooks, as well as up to two smartphones, tablets or other USB-enabled devices, ensuring users can be more productive on-the-go.

Lightweight and compact, and featuring a 12,000 mAh 4-cell battery that provides reliable power, this compact power solution is designed to deliver in-bag charging so you can stay powered without adding bulk to your bag.

Dell 2.0 Speaker System – AE215

The Dell 2.0 Speaker System (AE215) provides high quality sound experience that fits neatly into almost any desktop setup. With premium sound professionally tuned by award-winning Waves Maxx Audio and a compact and modern design, the speakers deliver a surprising amount of full, deep bass without adding clutter to your desk.

In addition, the Dell AE215 speakers also feature a headphone jack so you can plug in your favourite headphones for a private listening experience without interruptions.

Dell WM514 Wireless Laser Mouse

The Dell WM514 Wireless Laser Mouse is a stylish, high-precision wireless mouse with long battery life. Its laser tracking feature allows for smooth tracking on virtually any surface, and provides quick response times and accurate clicking.

There is no greater option for a clutter-free workspace with its compact size, and unrestricted performance that allows mobile professionals to have all of the expected conveniences of a wireless mouse. The WM514 is also designed for comfort, allowing users to work or play for longer periods without the usual stress on the wrists or hands.

Dell AX210 USB Speaker System

Dell’s AX210 offers great sound for a PC desk with little room. These speakers are a true upgrade in audio quality and functionality. Designed to complement any Dell computer, the speakers give users a unified aesthetic at home or in the office.

Whether you’re enjoying the latest movie, playing an action-packed game, or participating in a video conference, you will be at the center of excellent sound.

Contest Period : 8 to 21 September 2018

Eligibility : WORLDWIDE *

* Tech ARP will pay for standard shipping, but you may opt to pay for expedited or express shipping services.

Week 2 Giveaway Rules

  1. Read the description of the prizes above, as well as these Dell articles :
    The 2018 Dell Precision 3000 Series Workstations Revealed!
    Why Dell Precision Is World’s Preferred Workstation!
    Dell S2719DM Ultra-Thin FreeSync HDR Monitor Preview
  2. Answer just five (5) simple multi-choice questions regarding the prizes and the three Dell articles.
  3. Tell us the sequence of the Great, Cool or Nice prizes that you prefer!
  4. If you want a shot at winning the Awesome Prize, you will need to share our contest post in Facebook. If you want more chances to win the Awesome Prize, tag your friends in our our contest post, or comment or like it.

That’s it! It’s THAT simple!

Contest Mechanics

  1. At the end of the contest, we will randomly select 5 contestants who shared our Facebook contest post. [adrotate group=”2″]
  2. If any contestant fails to answer any question correctly, another contestant will be randomly selected.
  3. The Likes, Shares, Comments and Tags of the five verified contestants to share our Facebook contest post, AND get all five questions correct will be calculated.
  4. Two winners will be randomly selected out of that pool to win an Awesome Prize each.
  5. The subsequent winners will be randomly selected from contestants who correctly answered all five questions, with prize preference given to those who are selected first.
  6. Each contestant may try multiple times but can only win one prize. If he/she has already won, a new contestant will be randomly selected.

Got it? Go and try it out!

 

Week 2 Giveaway Winners!

Here are the correct answers :

  1. How many cells are there in the Dell PW7015M Power Companion?
    4 Cells
  2. What kind of sensor does the Dell WM514 wireless mouse use?
    Laser
  3. How many models are in the 2018 Dell Precision 3000 Series Workstation family? See https://is.gd/ZM3mPj
    4
  4. Which Australian university uses Dell Precision workstations for all its engineering requirements? See https://is.gd/Uwpn5w
    Monash University
  5. What Corning technology is used in the Dell S2719DM monitor? See https://is.gd/5YcTTD
    Iris Glass

We are very excited to announce the winners for the Week 2 Giveaway!

Dell PW7015M Power Companion Winners
zy****@gmail.com
forbi****2k@yahoo.com

Dell AE215 Speaker System
– vee***@hotmail.com
– wchian****@hotmail.com

Dell WM514 Wireless Laser Mouse
– radu@*****.ro
– cheok*******@gmail.com
– open*****@gmail.com

Dell AX210 USB Speaker System
– junwah****@gmail.com
– skyline****@hotmail.com
– Tony******@gmail.com
– 
hiz****@hotmail.de
– retro_*****@yahoo.co.uk
– Koo******@gmail.com

Winners, please send your full details to contest @ techarp.com.

Full Name :
Full Address :
Mobile / Contact Number :
Email Address :

LAST CALL : Those who do not submit their details by 12 PM, Friday, 19 October 2018 will forfeit their prizes.

Next Page > Week 3 Giveaway by Tech ARP

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


20th Anniversary Week 3 Giveaway

For the third week, Tech ARP will be sponsoring these awesome prizes!

Awesome Prize #1 : honor Band SS smartwatch

Awesome Prize #2 : honor Band SS smartwatch

Cool Prize #1 : VR Box virtual reality glasses

Cool Prize #2 : VR Box virtual reality glasses

Cool Prize #3 : Kaspersky Foldable Bluetooth Keyboard

Cool Prize #4 : Kaspersky Foldable Bluetooth Keyboard

Cool Prize #5 : Honor Tripod Selfie Stick

Cool Prize #6 : Honor Tripod Selfie Stick

Contest Period : 17 September to 30 September 2018

Eligibility : WORLDWIDE *

* Tech ARP will pay for standard shipping, but you may opt to pay for expedited or express shipping services.

Week 3 Giveaway Rules

  1. Make sure you LIKE the Tech ARP Facebook page.
  2. Everyone definitely wants The Awesome Prizes, but we want to know which of the Cool Prizes you prefer :
    – the VR Box virtual reality glasses,
    – the Kaspersky foldable Bluetooth keyboard, or
    – the Honor tripod selfie stick.
    So post a comment in the prize of your choice! If you like, you can post a comment in all three prizes!
  1. SHARE the main contest post, and the prizes you want to win on your Facebook wall. Please make sure it is PUBLIC, so we can verify.

BONUS : Liking and sharing our posts, or commenting and tagging your friends, will give you a higher chance of winning The Awesome Prize or the prize you want!

BONUS : Likesshares, comments or tags on our many Samsung Galaxy Note9 posts will give you a higher chance of winning The Awesome Prize or the prize you want!

That’s it! It’s THAT simple!

Contest Mechanics

[adrotate group=”2″]
  1. At the end of the contest, we will randomly select TEN contestants.
  2. If any contestant fails to meet any of the rules above, another contestant will be randomly selected.
  3. The Likes, Shares, Comments and Tags of the ten verified contestants in the Tech ARP Facebook page will be calculated.
  4. The two Awesome Prize winners will be randomly selected from that pool.
  5. The subsequent winners will be randomly selected from that pool, with prize preference given to those who are selected first.
  6. Each contestant may only win one prize, so if his/her number is selected again, it will be discarded and a new number randomly selected.

Got it? Go and try it out!

Note On Gaming Accounts : Contestants who use gaming accounts will be automatically disqualified. Please use your personal Facebook accounts.

 

Week 3 Giveaway Winners!

We are very excited to announce the winners for the Week 3 Giveaway!

Awesome Prize #1 Winner : Isaac Lee Eng Quin

Awesome Prize #2 : Ken-Boon Teoh

Cool Prize #1 : Yee Mee Chan

Cool Prize #2 : Thomas George

Cool Prize #3 : Jireh Phan

Cool Prize #4 : Spectre Phang

Cool Prize #5 : Vicky Loo

Cool Prize #6 : Ilrelda Koh

Winners, please send your full details to contest @ techarp.com.

Full Name :
Full Address :
Mobile / Contact Number :
Email Address :

Note : Please submit your details by 12 PM, Wednesday, 14 November 2018 or you may forfeit your prize! 😀

Next Page > Week 4 Contest by BenQ + Tech ARP

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


20th Anniversary Week 4 Giveaway

For the 4th week, BenQ and Tech ARP will be sponsoring these awesome prizes!

Incredible Prize : BenQ EW277HDR Eye-Care Monitor

Cool Prize #1 : BenQ Travel Adaptor (White)

Cool Prize #2 : BenQ Travel Adaptor (Black)

Cool Prize #3 : Samsung Travel Adaptor (White)

Cool Prize #4 : Intel + Dell Travel Adaptor (Blue)

The BenQ EW277HDR Eye-Care monitor is part of a new range of BenQ Eye-Care monitors that feature the new Eye-Care technologies like Brightness Intelligence Plus and Low Blue Light.

BenQ specifically highlighted these HDR monitors (including the BenQ EW277HDR) as the best choices to be paired with the PlayStation 4 Pro or PlayStation 4. Here are their key specifications :

BenQ EW3270U

  • 4K UHD resolution – 3840 x 2160 pixels, HDR
  • 31.5-inch VA panel with 95% DCI-P3 colour gamut
  • Brightness Intelligence Plus, Low Blue Light, Flicker-free
  • Price : RM 1,899 (Web | App), US$ 599, £ 442.49

BenQ EL2870U

  • 4K UHD resolution – 3840 x 2160 pixels, HDR
  • 28-inch TN panel with 72% NTSC colour gamut
  • Brightness Intelligence Plus, Low Blue Light, Flicker-free
  • Price : RM 1,399 (Web | App), US$ 429.31£ 338.57

BenQ EW277HDR

  • Full HD resolution – 1920 x 1080 pixels, HDR
  • 27-inch VA panel with 93% DCI-P3 colour gamut
  • Brightness Intelligence Plus, Low Blue Light, Flicker-free
  • Price : RM 829 (Web | App), US$ 199.99£ 214.95

Would you like to own the BenQ EW277HDR Eye-Care monitor? Here’s how!

Contest Period : 24 September to 25 October 2018

Eligibility : Malaysia Only *

* Because it is large and fragile, we require the winner to collect the monitor from us in Selangor or Kuala Lumpur, with Penang as a possibility too. If necessary, the winner may send a representative. We will require a photo to be taken with the winner or representative, with some social media posts.

Week 4 Giveaway Rules

  1. Make sure you LIKE the Tech ARP Facebook page, and the contest post.
  2. You can then :
    a) Post a comment in the contest post, and tag your friends. Make sure you also use the #BenQPS4Monitor hashtag. You can tell us which Cool Prize you prefer, for example, or why you want to win the BenQ monitor.
    b) Share the contest post on your Facebook wall publicly, and use the #BenQPS4Monitor hashtag. You can tag your friends too for extra credit.
    c) Share the contest post in a relevant group, using the #BenQPS4Monitor hashtag.

  1. BONUS : Likesshares, comments or tags on our many Samsung Galaxy Note9 posts will give you a higher chance of winning The Awesome Prize or the prize you want!

That’s it! It’s THAT simple!

Contest Mechanics

[adrotate group=”2″]
  1. At the end of the contest, we will randomly select TEN contestants.
  2. If any contestant fails to meet any of the rules above, another contestant will be randomly selected.
  3. The Likes, Shares, Comments and Tags of the ten verified contestants in the Tech ARP Facebook page will be calculated.
  4. The Incredible Prize winner will be randomly selected from that pool.
  5. The subsequent winners will be randomly selected from that pool, with prize preference given to those who are selected first.
  6. Each contestant may only win one prize, so if his/her number is selected again, it will be discarded and a new number randomly selected.

Got it? Go and try it out!

Note On Gaming Accounts : Contestants who use gaming accounts will be automatically disqualified. Please use your personal Facebook accounts.

Next Page > Week 5 Giveaway by Dotty’s + Tech ARP

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


20th Anniversary Week 5 Giveaway

For the fifth week, Tech ARP and Dotty’s will be sponsoring these awesome prizes!

Awesome Prizes #1 : 5 x iflix Subscription (1 Year)

Awesome Prizes #2 : 5 x Dotty’s RM 100 voucher

Contest Period : 19 September to 29 October 2018

Eligibility : Malaysia Only (for Dotty’s) / Countries that iflix supports *

* The dotty vouchers are only valid in Malaysia. The iflix subscriptions are valid in Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Brunei, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Jordan, Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt, Sudan, Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Morocco and Uganda.

Week 5 Giveaway Rules

  1. Make sure you LIKE the Tech ARP Facebook page, and the contest post.
  2. You can then :
    a) Post a comment in the contest post, and tag your friends. Make sure you tell us which prize you prefer using these hashtags – #IWantFREEiflix or #IWantFREEDottys.
    b) Share the contest post on your Facebook wall publicly, and use either hashtags. You can tag your friends too for extra credit.
    c) Share the contest post in a relevant group, using either hashtags..

  1. BONUS : Likesshares, comments or tags on any of our many Facebook posts will give you a higher chance of winning one of the Awesome prizes!

That’s it! It’s THAT simple!

Contest Mechanics

[adrotate group=”2″]
  1. At the end of the contest, we will randomly select TEN contestants.
  2. If any contestant fails to meet any of the rules above, another contestant will be randomly selected.
  3. The Likes, Shares, Comments and Tags of the ten verified contestants in the Tech ARP Facebook page will be calculated.
  4. The Incredible Prize winners will be randomly selected from that pool, with prize preference given to those who are selected first.
  5. Each contestant may only win one prize, so if his/her number is selected again, it will be discarded and a new number randomly selected.

Got it? Go and try it out!

Note On Gaming Accounts : Contestants who use gaming accounts will be automatically disqualified. Please use your personal Facebook accounts.

 

Week 5 Giveaway Winners!

We are very excited to announce the winners for the Week 5 Giveaway!

Awesome Prize #1 Winner : Franco Kailsan

Awesome Prize #1 Winner : Liza Lee

Awesome Prize #1 Winner : Mohd Fahmi

Awesome Prize #1 Winner : Siew Hong Go

Awesome Prize #1 Winner : Haqeem Norazli

Awesome Prize #2 Winner : Vee Fah

Awesome Prize #2 Winner : Steven Khoo

Awesome Prize #2 Winner : Chai Ser Loon

Awesome Prize #2 Winner : Falcone

Awesome Prize #2 Winner : Cyrus Varrus

Winners, please send your full details to contest @ techarp.com.

Full Name :
Full Address :
Mobile / Contact Number :
Email Address :

Note : Please submit your details by 12 PM, Wednesday, 28 November 2018 or you may forfeit your prize! 😀

Next Page > Week 6 Giveaway by Pocophone!

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


20th Anniversary Week 6 Giveaway

For the sixth week, Pocophone be sponsoring these awesome prizes!

Awesome Prize : Pocophone F1

Cool Prize : Mi Band 2

Contest Period : 1 November to 14 November 2018

Eligibility : Malaysia only for Pocophone F1, Worldwide for Mi Band 2

Week 6 Giveaway Rules

  1. Make sure you LIKE the Tech ARP Facebook page, the Mi Malaysia Facebook page and the contest post.
  2. You can then :
    a) Post a comment in the contest post, and tag your friends. Make sure you tell us which prize you prefer using these hashtags :
    – #FreePocophoneF1 and #XiaomiMY, OR
    #FreeMiBand2 and #XiaomiMY.
    b) Share the contest post on your Facebook wall publicly, and use either hashtags. You can tag your friends too for extra credit.
    c) Share the contest post in a relevant group, using either hashtags..

  1. BONUS : Likesshares, comments or tags on any of our many Facebook posts will give you a higher chance of winning one of the prizes!

Note : Use #FreePocophoneF1 if you are residing in Malaysia. It will qualify you for both the Pocophone F1 and the Mi Band 2. Use #FreeMiBand2 if you are residing outside of Malaysia. It will qualify you for the Mi Band 2.

That’s it! It’s THAT simple!

Contest Mechanics

[adrotate group=”2″]
  1. At the end of the contest, we will randomly select FIVE contestants.
  2. If any contestant fails to meet any of the rules above, another contestant will be randomly selected.
  3. The Likes, Shares, Comments and Tags of the five verified contestants in the Tech ARP Facebook page will be calculated.
  4. The Incredible Prize and Cool Prize winners will be randomly selected from that pool, with prize preference given to those who are selected first.
  5. Each contestant may only win one prize, so if his/her number is selected again, it will be discarded and a new number randomly selected.

Got it? Go and try it out!

Note On Gaming Accounts : Contestants who use gaming accounts will be automatically disqualified. Please use your personal Facebook accounts.

Next Page > Week 7 Giveaway by Western Digital!

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


20th Anniversary Week 7 Giveaway

For the seventh week, Western Digital be sponsoring these awesome prizes!

Awesome Prize : 1 TB Western Digital Blue SSD

Cool Prizes : 8 x 4 TB Western Digital Red HDD

Contest Period : 15 November to 15 December 2018

Eligibility : Klang Valley and Penang only for the HDDs*, Worldwide for SSD

—————-

Week 7 WD Blue SSD Giveaway Rules

  1. Learn about the WD Black NVMe SSD,
  2. Answer these easy questions!

WD Black NVMe SSD

The WD Black NVMe SSD is dedicated for PC gamers who are looking to boost the performance of their gaming rigs.

Featuring sequential read/write speeds up to 3,400/2,800 MB/s, and the innovative Western Digital NVMe SSD storage architecture, it’s where blazing speed and top-tier performance combine to keep up with even the most demanding workloads. Innovative power management and thermal throttling consistently help prevent overheating to deliver smooth, fast performance.

With up to 600TBW, 1.75M hours MTTF and an amazing 5-years limited warranty, the WD Black NVMe SSD is the virtually invincible SSD you can rely on.

Important : Learn more about the 2018 WD Black 3D NVMe SSD here!

Contest Mechanics

[adrotate group=”2″]
  1. At the end of the contest, we will create a pool of those who answered all the questions correct.
  2. If no one managed to answer all of the questions, then a pool will be created of the contestants with the most correct answers.
  3. We will then randomly select the Awesome Prize winner from that pool.

Got it? Go and try it out!

—————-

Week 7 WD Red HDD Giveaway Rules

  1. Make sure you LIKE the Tech ARP Facebook page and the contest post.
  2. You can then :
    a) Post a comment in the contest post, and tag your friends. Please let us know if you can self-collect the HDD using the hashtag #FreeHDD.
    b) Share the contest post on your Facebook wall publicly, and use the #FreeHDD hashtag if you can self-collect the HDD. You can tag your friends too for extra credit.
    c) Share the contest post in a relevant group. Please let us know if you can self-collect the HDD using the hashtag #FreeHDD.

  1. BONUS : Likesshares, comments or tags on any of our many Facebook posts will give you a higher chance of winning one of the prizes!

Collection : Winners of the HDDs must self-collect the WD Red hard disk drives in person, as we want to avoid the risk of damage during delivery. We can arrange to meet with the winners at these locations :

  • Selangor : Mutiara Damansara
  • Kuala Lumpur : TTDI
  • Penang : Seberang Jaya

Warranty : The drives are also provided as-is, without warranty from Western Digital or Tech ARP.

That’s it! It’s THAT simple!

Contest Mechanics

[adrotate group=”2″]
  1. At the end of the contest, we will randomly select TWENTY contestants who used the #FreeHDD hashtag.
  2. If any contestant fails to meet any of the rules above, another contestant will be randomly selected.
  3. The Likes, Shares, Comments and Tags of the twenty verified contestants in the Tech ARP Facebook page will be calculated.
  4. The Cool Prize winners will then be randomly selected from the pool of verified contestants.
  5. Each contestant may only win one prize, so if his/her number is selected again, it will be discarded and a new number randomly selected.

Got it? Go and try it out!

Note On Gaming Accounts : Contestants who use gaming accounts will be automatically disqualified. Please use your personal Facebook accounts.

Go Back To > First PageContests + Events | Home

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


The 1TB WD Blue 3D SSD (WDS100T2B0A) Review

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD is the first Western Digital solid state drive to feature their 64-layer 3D NAND technology that delivers higher storage capacities, performance and endurance, with lower power consumption. Let’s see if the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD delivers on that promise!

 

The WD Blue 3D NAND SSD Family

The WD Blue 3D NAND SSD family consists of four models built upon the same technology. They mainly differ in storage capacities, with some performance characteristics. Here’s a table comparing their key specifications :

Specifications2 TB WD Blue 3D SSD1 TB WD Blue 3D SSD500 GB WD Blue 3D SSD250 GB WD Blue 3D SSD
Model NumberWDS200T2B0A WDS100T2B0AWDS500G2B0AWDS250G2B0A
Storage Capacity2048 GB (Total)
2000 GB (Effective)
1024 GB (Total)
1000 GB (Effective)
512 GB (Total)
500 GB (Effective)
256 GB (Total)
250 GB (Effective)
Overprovisioning48 GB (2.4 %)24 GB (2.4 %)12 GB (2.4 %)6 GB (2.4 %)
SSD ControllerMarvell 88SS1074-BSW2Marvell 88SS1074-BSW2Marvell 88SS1074-BSW2Marvell 88SS1074-BSW2
NAND Flash Type64-layer WD 3D NAND (BiCS3)64-layer WD 3D NAND (BiCS3)64-layer WD 3D NAND (BiCS3)64-layer WD 3D NAND (BiCS3)
SDRAM CacheNoneNone512 MB DDR3256 MB DDR3
InterfaceSATA 6 Gb/sSATA 6 Gb/sSATA 6 Gb/sSATA 6 Gb/s
Peak Sequential Read560 MB/s560 MB/s560 MB/s550 MB/s
Peak Sequential Write530 MB/s530 MB/s530 MB/s525 MB/s
Random Read I/O95,000 IOPS95,000 IOPS95,000 IOPS95,000 IOPS
Random Write I/O84,000 IOPS84,000 IOPS84,000 IOPS81,000 IOPS
Write Endurance500 TB400 TB200 TB100 TB
Slumber Power56 mW56 mW56 mW56 mW
DEVSLP Power5-12 mW5-12 mW5-7 mW5-7 mW
Mean Time To Failure (MTTF)Up to 1.75 million hoursUp to 1.75 million hoursUp to 1.75 million hoursUp to 1.75 million hours
Ambient Temperature0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
Vibration Range5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.9 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.9 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.9 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.9 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
Shock1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine
Dimensions100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm
Weight57.9 g37.4 g37.4 g37.4 g
Warranty3 Years3 Years3 Years3 Years

 

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD Up Close!

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) comes in a deceptively light cardboard box. Let’s unbox it and take a closer look!

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) is a low-profile 2.5″ drive, with a thickness of only 7 mm. This is thinner than the regular 9.5 mm drives, making it suitable for all 2.5″ drive bays, even in thin laptops.

Next Page > 3D NAND, nCache 2.0 Technology, SSD Controller & SATA Interface

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


The WD 3D NAND Technology

Western Digital first announced their 64-layer 3D NAND technology, also known as BiCS3, last year. However, it was only slated for commercial volume production in the first half of 2017.

BiCS3 was developed jointly with their technology and manufacturing partner, Toshiba. It not only uses 64-layers, but also 3-bits-per-cell technology to achieve high capacity (256 to 512 gigabits per chip) and performance at a much lower cost.

 

SanDisk nCache 2.0 Technology

SanDisk nCache 2.0 is a proprietary pseudo-SLC caching technology that greatly increases the write performance of the solid state drive. Here is an old infographic (from their Ultra II SSD) that shows how it works :

A small portion (about 4%) of the NAND memory blocks are set to run in the SLC mode, which allows for a much higher write speed. This SLC portion serves as a fast write cache for all writes to the drive, allowing for write speeds of up to 530 MB/s.

The data is later transferred to the TLC portion using the special On Chip Copy feature. This proprietary feature allows the transfer to occur internally on-die without affecting any other transfers.

In a 1TB drive, about 40 GB is reserved for use as the nCache 2.0 write cache. That translates into an effective write cache size of about 13 GB.

[adrotate group=”1″]

 

The Marvell 88SS1074 SSD Controller

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) uses the Marvell 88SS1074 SSD controller, which boasts the following key features :

  • Supports up to 4 NAND channels, with up to 8 NAND chips per channel
  • Features Marvell’s third-generation NANDEdge low-density parity check (LDPC) technology
  • Supports SATA 3.2 (6.0 Gbps)
  • Toggle 2 and ONFI2 support at up to 400 MT/s
  • Integrated DEVSLP (Device Sleep) mode for low power support
  • Supports 256-bit AES hardware encryption
  • Built on 28 nm CMOS process

The Marvell NANDEdge LDPC technology allows for reliable on-the-fly error correction of the 3-bit TLC flash memory, with minimal impact on latency, performance and power consumption.

However, the Marvell 88SS1074 is likely to fall short in sustained throughput, because it only supports 4 NAND channels. Competing controllers like the Phison S10, for example, boast 8 NAND channels, allowing twice as many NAND chips to be accessed simultaneously.

 

SATA 6 Gb/s Interface

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) is a Serial ATA drive, with native support for SATA 6 Gb/s interface. It is backward-compatible, so you will have no problem using it with older SATA 3 Gb/s controllers. However, the faster SATA 6 Gb/s interface is necessary for optimal performance because this SSD is capable of a peak transfer rate of 560 MB/s.

Like all Serial ATA drives, it comes with the standard SATA data (left) and power (right) connectors, and is hot-pluggable. That means you can connect and disconnect this solid state drive while the PC is still running. There is no jumper block, because there’s really nothing for you to set. It’s just plug and play!

Next Page > SSD Endurance & Maintenance

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


SSD Endurance

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) is rated for a lifetime write lifespan of 400 TBW (Terabytes Written). That does not seem like a lot (equal to overwriting the drive just 400 times), but it is considered enterprise-grade endurance. Many consumer-grade SSDs of equivalent capacity are rated at around 75-100 TBW.

Based on a typical consumer DWPD (Drive Writes Per Day) of 20 GB per day, this 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) will last at least 54 years.

Please note that this long lifespan is due to the large capacity. The 500 GB and 250 GB SanDisk Ultra 3D SSDs are rated at 200 TBW and 100 TBW respectively. That corresponds to an estimated lifespan of 27 years and 13.5 years respectively.

Like all other current SSDs, the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) comes with certain features to help extend its lifespan :

Wear Levelling

Unlike hard disk drives, flash-based SSDs write and overwrite data in large blocks of 512 KB to 1 MB in size. Even if you only need to write one byte of data, it has to erase and overwrite an entire block. This causes a lot of wear on the memory cells and greatly reduces their lifespan.

To help extend the lifespan of the drive, SSDs perform wear levelling by spreading the writes, so that the flash memory cells have equal wear. The lifespan of the memory cells remain unchanged, but it prevents some of them from failing earlier due to excessive wear.

Write Combine Cache

SSDs also use a write buffer to temporarily store and combine the writes before they are actually written to the flash memory. This reduces the number of block erases required, and consequently, extends the lifespan of the flash memory cells.

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) uses the aforementioned nCache 2.0 technology instead of a dedicated SDRAM write combine cache. It reserves about 4% of the NAND blocks and uses them in the SLC mode.

The resulting nCache 2.0 write cache may not be as fast as an SDRAM cache, but it is much larger in size. The 1TB WD Blue SSD, for example, boasts a large 1 GB DDR3L memory cache, but that is nothing compared to the 13 GB (or so) SLC cache in the 1TB WD Blue 3D SSD.

TRIM

Current SSDs support the TRIM command, otherwise known as the ATA8-ACS-2 DATA SET MANAGEMENT command. Operating systems that support TRIM (e.g. Microsoft Windows 7) will notify the SSD when data blocks are deleted in the file system. This allows the SSD to perform garbage collection in the background – internally erasing the affected blocks so that they are ready to be written to.

Without the TRIM command, the SSD will not know when a block of data has been deleted by the operating system. When new data is written to the same block of data, it will force the SSD to perform the time-consuming read-erase-modify-write cycle, which not only cripples performance but also increases wear on the affected memory cells.

Multi-Stream

This is a new SSD technology that was introduced in May 2015, as part of the T10 SCSI Standard. Multi-stream greatly improves performance and extends lifespan by reducing or even eliminating garbage collection.

It achieves this by marking data writes that are associated with one another, or have a similar lifetime, with a unique stream ID. This allows the SSD controller to pack all data writes with the same stream ID into the same block.

When the operating system deletes data, it is likely that they are all packed into the same block. If the block has not been written to the SSD, then this eliminates the pending write operation completely. If the block has been written to the SSD, then this would only require that single block to be erased, instead of multiple blocks (which would happen if the data was not all packed into the same block).

 

SSD Maintenance

First of all, you should never, ever defragment solid state drives. Spatial fragmentation of data on the SSD has no effect on its performance. Fragmented data are accessed as quickly as nicely-packed blocks, so it’s pointless to defragment the data blocks. Doing so will only reduce the lifespan of the flash memory cells by putting them under additional wear.

3D NAND flash memory will only last about 1,000 erase/write cycles – about the same as TLC NAND memory. You will want to minimise the number of times each flash memory cell is erased.

[adrotate group=”2″]

You should also use an operating system that supports the TRIM command. If you are using one of the following operating systems, then you have nothing to worry about :

  • Microsoft Windows 7, or better
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2, or better
  • Linux 2.6.33, or better
  • FreeBSD 8.2, or better
  • Mac OS X Snow Leopard, or better

If not, you should consider upgrading your operating system. Otherwise, you will need to perform manual garbage collection on a regular basis, either using a manufacturer utility, or newer defragmentation software that specifically supports solid state drives.

Basically, these utilities will retrieve the list of free blocks from the operating system’s file system and pass it to the SSD in the form of TRIM commands, so that it will know which blocks to erase internally. Again, these utilities are not necessary if you are using an operating system that supports TRIM.

Next Page > Over-Provisioning, Capacity, Transfer Rate Profile, WinBench Results & Transfer Rate Range

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


Testing The SanDisk Ultra 3D NAND SSD

Processors Intel Core i7-2600K
Motherboard Intel DP67BG
Memory Four Kingmax 2 GB DDR3-1333 modules
Graphics Card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060
SSD & HDD Drives 8 TB Western Digital Gold
1 TB + 120 GB WD Black²
1 TB WD Blue 3D SSD
1 TB SanDisk Ultra 3D SSD
1 TB WD Blue SSD
1 TB WD VelociRaptor
256 GB OCZ Vector
240 GB HyperX Savage
240 GB Intel 520 Series
160 GB Intel X25-M G2
Operating System Microsoft Windows 7 64-bit
Microsoft Windows Vista 32-bit

Testing Methodology

 

Over-Provisioning & Usable Capacity

This 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) has a maximum storage capacity of 1,024 GB, courtesy of eight 128 GB SanDisk 3D NAND chips. Of that, a mere 24 GB has been set aside for garbage collection, wear levelling and replacement of failing blocks.

Ordinarily, the limited 2.4% over-provisioning may impact long-term performance and lifespan. However, Western Digital mitigated that using a large 13 GB pseudo-SLC write cache they call nCache 2.0.

After it is formatted in NTFS, the actual formatted capacity is 1,000,202,039,296 bytes. This is slightly (202 MB) more than the official formatted capacity of 1,000 GB.

With about 124 MB of space allocated to the NTFS file system, the actual usable capacity is just above 1,000 GB.

 

Transfer Rate Profile

We compared the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) to the 1TB WD Blue SSD. As you can see, it has a sustained throughput of about 378 MB/s, which makes it almost twice as fast as the 1TB WD Blue SSD, which uses TLC NAND memory.

[adrotate group=”1″]

 

Business Disk WinBench 99

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) did very well in this test, beating its brother, the 1TB SanDisk Ultra 3D SSD (Price Check) by 17%!

Drive Model Capacity Business Disk
WinMark 99
Difference Useful Links
Intel 520 Series 240 GB 77.7 MB/s + 7.2% Review Lowest $
WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB 72.5 MB/s Baseline Lowest $
Western Digital Black² 120 GB 63.1 MB/s – 14.9% Review Lowest $
OCZ Vector 256 GB 62.1 MB/s – 16.7% Review Lowest $
SanDisk Ultra 3D 1 TB 62.0 MB/s – 16.9% Review Lowest $
WD Blue SSD 1 TB 62.0 MB/s – 16.9% Review Lowest $
HyperX Savage 240 GB 61.9 MB/s – 17.1% Review Lowest $
Intel X25-M G2 160 GB 50.4 MB/s – 43.8% Review Lowest $
WD VelociRaptor 1 TB 29.8 MB/s – 143.3% Review Lowest $
WD Gold 8 TB 23.3 MB/s – 211.2% Review Lowest $

 

High-End Disk WinBench 99

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) did very well in the High-End test, beating virtually all other competitors, except for the 240 GB HyperX Savage and the 240 GB Intel 520 Series SSDs.

Drive Model Capacity High-End Disk
WinMark 99
Difference Useful Links
Intel 520 Series 240 GB Beyond limit NA Review Lowest $
OCZ Vector 256 GB Beyond limit NA Review Lowest $
WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB 283 MB/s Baseline Lowest $
SanDisk Ultra 3D 1 TB 277 MB/s – 2.2% Review Lowest $
HyperX Savage 240 GB 262 MB/s – 8.0% Review Lowest $
Western Digital Black² 120 GB 246 MB/s – 15.0% Review Lowest $
WD Blue SSD 1 TB 220 MB/s – 28.6% Review Lowest $
Intel X25-M G2 160 GB 215 MB/s – 131.6% Review Lowest $
WD VelociRaptor 1 TB 172 MB/s – 164.5% Review Lowest $
WD Gold 8 TB 23.3 MB/s – 212.8% Review Lowest $
[adrotate group=”1″]

 

Transfer Rate Range

This chart shows you the range of memory cell-to-controller transfer rates for SSDs, or the range of platter-to-buffer transfer rates from the innermost track to the outermost track in HDDs.

Despite boasting an official peak read speed of 560 MB/s, the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) could only hit 386 MB/s. That is impressive in its own right, but puts it below the 256 GB OCZ Vector and the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSDs.

Next Page > IO Meter Benchmark Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


IO Meter

We compared the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) against the 1TB WD Blue SSD. If you wish to see how the SanDisk Ultra 3D SSD compares to other solid state drives, take a look at our Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide, which we will be updating shortly.

 

Throughput (Random Access)

Test 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
512 KB Read 371.71 MB/s 239.84 MB/s + 55.0%
512 KB Write 488.55 MB/s 257.09 MB/s + 90.0%
4 KB Read 32.48 MB/s 24.93 MB/s + 30.3%
4 KB Write 75.94 MB/s 53.31 MB/s + 42.4%

The small random reads and writes are the most important tests for applications that make a lot of random accesses, so these would be key performance indicators for SSDs that are often used as boot drives.

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) did incredibly well in this test, solidly beating the 1TB WD Blue SSD. Thanks to its built-in nCache 2.0 technology, it delivered almost twice the large random write performance of the 1TB WD Blue SSD!

 

Random Access Time

Test 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
512 KB Read 1.41 ms 2.19 ms – 35.5%
512 KB Write 1.07 ms 2.04 ms – 47.4%
4 KB Read 0.13 ms 0.17 ms – 25.1%
4 KB Write 0.05 ms 0.08 ms – 29.8%

The random write performance of the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) was truly stellar, in comparison to the 1TB WD Blue SSD.

 

Random CPU Utilization

Test 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
512 KB Read 29.50 % 7.16 % + 312.0%
512 KB Write 30.12 % 7.31 % + 312.3%
4 KB Read 32.53 % 9.94 % + 227.2%
4 KB Write 35.72 % 11.91 % + 199.9%

The only downside – the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) uses up a lot more CPU performance than the 1TB WD Blue SSD. About 3X more CPU performance, on average!

[adrotate group=”1″]

 

IO Meter (Sequential Accesses)

We compared the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) against the 1TB WD Blue SSD. If you wish to see how the SanDisk Ultra 3D SSD compares to other solid state drives, take a look at our Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide, which we will be updating shortly.

 

Sequential Throughput

Test 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
512 KB Read 510.62 MB/s 250.14 MB/s + 104.1%
512 KB Write 494.55 MB/s 255.54 MB/s + 93.5%
4 KB Read 84.74 MB/s 63.35 MB/s + 33.8%
4 KB Write 75.98 MB/s 59.15 MB/s + 28.5%

The sequential read and write performance indicators determine how fast you can copy and move files. This is also important in determining how fast you can launch an application or game.

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) did marvellously in this test, coming in twice as fast as the 1TB WD Blue SSD in large, sequential reads and writes.  It also had a large boost in small sequential read and write performance.

 

Sequential Access Time

Test 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
512 KB Read 1.03 ms 2.10 ms – 51.2%
512 KB Write 1.06 ms 2.05 ms – 48.3%
4 KB Read 0.05 ms 0.07 ms – 26.7%
4 KB Write 0.05 ms 0.07 ms – 22.4%

 

Sequential CPU Utilization

Test 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
512 KB Read 29.61 % 8.69 % + 240.7%
512 KB Write 29.11 % 5.76 % + 405.4%
4 KB Read 36.38 % 15.93 % + 128.4%
4 KB Write 35.69 % 15.42 % + 131.5%

Again, the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) took up a significant amount of CPU processing power.

Next Page > IOPS Scaling Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


IOPS Scaling (Random)

In these tests, we tested the drive’s ability to tackle multiple input/output operations. We compared the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) against the 1TB WD Blue SSDFor more performance comparisons, please take a look at the Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide.

Even though the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) is rated for enterprise-class endurance, its Marvell 88SS1074 controller is just not capable of handling too many simultaneous operations. It appears to handle up to 8 simultaneous transactions.

Its nCache 2.0 technology appears to have compensated for its limited NAND channels, allowing it greatly supersede the performance of the 1TB WD Blue SSD, even though they both use the same SDD controller.

 

4 KB Random Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
1 7,928 IOPS 6,086 IOPS + 30.3%
8 46,297 IOPS 38,444 IOPS + 20.4%
32 64,051 IOPS 36,145 IOPS + 77.2%

 

4 KB Random Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
1 18,539 IOPS 13,015 IOPS + 42.5%
8 49,559 IOPS 39,066 IOPS + 26.9%
32 51,495 IOPS 39,115 IOPS + 31.6%

 

512 KB Random Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
1 709 IOPS 457 IOPS + 55.0%
8 1,075 IOPS 537 IOPS + 100.4%
32 1,077 IOPS 544 IOPS + 97.9%

 

512 KB Random Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue 3D SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
1 932 IOPS 490 IOPS + 90.0%
8 946 IOPS 522 IOPS + 81.4%
32 961 IOPS 522 IOPS + 84.3%
[adrotate group=”1″]

 

IOPS Scaling (Sequential)

In these tests, we tested the drive’s ability to tackle multiple input/output operations. We compared the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) against the 1TB WD Blue SSDFor more performance comparisons, please take a look at the Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide.

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) did much better than the 1TB WD Blue SSD, even though they both use the same SDD controller.

 

4 KB Sequential Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
1 20,688 IOPS 15,466 IOPS + 33.8%
8 66,011 IOPS 41,425 IOPS + 59.4%
32 65,146 IOPS 37,963 IOPS + 71.6%

 

4 KB Sequential Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue 3D SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
1 18,550 IOPS 14,440 IOPS + 28.5%
8 49,505 IOPS 38,840 IOPS + 27.5%
32 54,477 IOPS 39,188 IOPS + 39.0%

 

512 KB Sequential Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
1 974 IOPS 477 IOPS + 104.1%
8 1,079 IOPS 544 IOPS + 98.3%
32 1,065 IOPS 540 IOPS + 97.2%

 

512 KB Sequential Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 1 TB WD Blue SSD Difference
1 943 IOPS 487 IOPS + 93.5%
8 1,025 IOPS 521 IOPS + 96.5%
32 1,026 IOPS 521 IOPS + 96.8%

Next Page > AS SSD Benchmark Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


AS SSD Benchmark

AS SSD Benchmark is a simple and easy-to-use SSD benchmark by Alex Intelligent Software. It not only tests the drive’s sequential transfer rates and access times, but also its performance at both single-threaded and multi-threaded 4K IOPS.

 

Sequential Transfers

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
HyperX Savage 516.0 MB/s + 1.9% Price, Review
WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 506.6 MB/s Baseline Price
OCZ Vector 500.3 MB/s – 1.2% Price, Review
SanDisk Ultra 3D 493.5 MB/s – 2.6% Price, Review
Intel 520 Series 293.9 MB/s – 42.0% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 280.6 MB/s – 44.6% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 260.2 MB/s – 48.6% Price, Review
Intel X25-M G2 179.0 MB/s – 64.7% Price, Review

 

Single-Threaded 4K IOPS Performance

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 48.2 MB/s Baseline Price
SanDisk Ultra 3D 48.1 MB/s – 0.2% Price, Review
Intel 520 Series 45.7 MB/s – 5.1% Price, Review
HyperX Savage 40.2 MB/s – 16.5% Price, Review
OCZ Vector 38.6 MB/s – 19.9% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 35.0 MB/s – 27.4% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 31.7 MB/s – 34.2% Price, Review
Intel X25-M G2 30.7 MB/s – 36.3% Price, Review
[adrotate group=”1″]

 

Multi-Threaded 4K IOPS Performance

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
SanDisk Ultra 3D 347.3 MB/s + 1.5% Price, Review
WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 342.3 MB/s Baseline Price
OCZ Vector 338.6 MB/s – 1.1% Price, Review
HyperX Savage 257.8 MB/s – 24.7% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 193.6 MB/s – 43.5% Price, Review
Intel 520 Series 177.5 MB/s – 48.2% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 164.9 MB/s – 51.8% Price, Review
Intel X25-M G2 125.2 MB/s – 63.4% Price, Review

 

Access Time

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
HyperX Savage 0.065 ms – 13.4% Price, Review
OCZ Vector 0.067 ms – 10.1% Price, Review
WD Blue 3D NAND SSD 0.075 ms Baseline Price
SanDisk Ultra 3D 0.076 ms + 1.3% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 0.078 ms + 4.7% Price, Review
Intel X25-M G2 0.089 ms + 18.8% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 0.119 ms + 59.1% Price, Review
Intel 520 Series 0.162 ms + 116.8% Price, Review

Next Page > ATTO Disk Benchmark Results, Verdict, Award & Prices

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


ATTO Disk Benchmark

ATTO Disk Benchmark is a free benchmark that allows you to compare the performance of solid state drives using a variety of transfer sizes. It also allows us to determine if the SSD performs data compression to improve performance, and extend lifespan.

 

I/O Comparison

Results Compressible Data Non-Compressible Data
Minimum Maximum Minimum Maximum
Read Speed 6.5 MB/s 145.1 MB/s 5.8 MB/s 143.6 MB/s
Write Speed 5.6 MB/s 137.2 MB/s 6.1 MB/s 134.2 MB/s

The Marvell 88SS1074 controller does not perform any data compression, which is why the performance results are the same for both compressible and non-compressible data. The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) reached its peak transfer rate with a block size of 1 MB.

 

Multiple I/O Comparison

Results Compressible Data Non-Compressible Data
Minimum Maximum Minimum Maximum
Read Speed 8.8 MB/s 147 2 MB/s 10.2 MB/s 147.5 MB/s
Write Speed 8.3 MB/s 139.6 MB/s 9.0 MB/s 136.5 MB/s

With just 8 simultaneous transactions, the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) reached its peak transfer rate with a block size of 128 KB.

 

Our Verdict & Award

The first 1 terabyte solid state drive we tested was the 1TB WD Blue (WDS100T1B0A) SSD. While it had a large storage capacity, high endurance and a affordable price point, it was not particularly fast.

That changed with the introduction of the 64-layer 3D NAND technology, which not only increases storage capacity and performance, but also reduces cost and power consumption. Now we can have our cake and eat it too.

The 1TB WD Blue 3D SSD (Price Check) is the first Western Digital solid state drive to make use of the 64-layer 3D NAND technology and it sure impressed us with its performance.

Despite using the same SSD controller as the 1TB WD Blue, the 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) was twice as fast in large reads and writes. It accomplished this without using any SDRAM cache, thanks to nCache 2.0 technology.

[adrotate group=”2″]

The 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD (Price Check) will work well as a boot drive, thanks to its excellent small random performance. It will be particularly attractive as an upgrade option for laptops still running on hard disk drives, or smaller SSDs.

Just note that its high performance requires a significant amount of CPU performance. So make sure you pair it with a fast processor.

We like its combination of great performance, large storage capacity and lower cost so much, we think it deserves our Editor’s Choice Award. Great work, Western Digital!

 

WD Blue 3D NAND SSD Prices & Warranty

The WD Blue 3D SSDs are available in storage capacities from 250 GB to 2 TB in the 2.5-inch / 7mm cased drive form factor, at the following price points :

  • 2TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD : $520.97 | RM 3,800
  • 1TB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD : $259.99 | RM 1,596 (MSRP : RM 2,000)
  • 500GB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD : $134.99 | RM 777 (MSRP : RM 1,100)
  • 250GB WD Blue 3D NAND SSD : $83.19 | RM 458 (MSRP : RM 620)

The WD Blue 3D SSD is also available in the single-sided M.2 2280 form factor.

All WD Blue 3D NAND SSDs come with a three-year limited warranty.

Go Back To > First Page | Reviews | Home

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


How To Choose The Best Drive For Your PC

Western Digital colour-codes their hard disk drives not to make the drives look sexier, or to help sell more hard disk drives. They created the WD drive colours to help users understand the distinct advantages or use of each drive family. In this article, Western Digital will help us show you how to choose the best drive for your PC.

 

Every Drive Has A Purpose

There is no better person than Albert Chang, Senior Manager of Product Marketing at WD Asia Pacific, to explain why every drive has a purpose. He also points out a key point that users often forget to factor when consumers purchase a drive – the TCO (Total Cost of Ownership).

That’s right. The TCO is often overlooked, because that is ultimately the price you are paying over the lifetime of a drive. So make sure you don’t just buy the cheapest possible drive, because that may result in a high TCO… including the loss of priceless data.

 

Introducing The Five WD Drive Colours

Here is a quick primer on the five WD drive colours, and how they can help you determine the best drive for your PC.

Now, let’s take a closer look at each WD drive colour, and find out what advantages each drive colour boasts!

[adrotate group=”1″]

 

WD Blue For Mainstream PCs

The WD Blue (Price Check) family are focused on offering highly-affordable drives with large storage capacities.

The WD Blue family does not just consist of hard disk drives. Western Digital also offers WD Blue SSHDs (solid state hybrid drives) and WD Blue SSDs (solid state drives).

For more information, you can read these WD Blue articles :

 

WD Black For High Performance PCs

The WD Black family (Price Check) is targeted at power users and gamers who want the fastest possible hard disk drives for their PCs.

The WD Black drives offer a much higher spindle speed, a very large cache, and a fast processor. For more information, you can read these WD Black articles :

 

WD Red For NAS Storage

The WD Red (Price Check) family of NAS drives is specifically designed for the “always on” environment of a NAS enclosure. They run cooler and vibrate less, greatly increasing their reliability and lifespan in NAS enclosures.

The WD Red drives are also optimised for NAS usage patterns (80% reads, 20% writes), so you will be able to access your files faster than with a regular hard disk drive.

For more information, you can read these WD Red articles :

 

WD Purple For Surveillance

WD Purple drives (Price Check) are designed to handle the high-temperature, “always-on” environment of the CCTV and DVR systems. Regular drives will fail quickly under such conditions.

They are also designed to handle multiple video streams without dropped frames, or gaps in recorded footage… and do this 24/7 without rest!

For more information on the WD Purple, and why it is the best drive for surveillance and CCTV systems, please read :

 

WD Gold For Datacenters

Qualified for nearline storage use in datacenters, datacenter hard disk drives like WD Gold (Price Check) are designed to offer high storage capacities at maximum performance and reliability while operating continuously 24 hours a day in large drive arrays.

So if you want nothing but the best drive to secure your company’s data, there can be no doubt that the WD Gold (Price Check) is the ultimate storage solution.

For more information, you can read these WD Gold articles :

 

What Is The Best Drive For YOU?

The WD drive colours make it extremely simple for you to choose the best drive for the job.

If you want the best hard disk drive for your gaming PC or laptop, the WD Black drives are your best options.

If you just need to store a large amount of data at very low cost, the WD Blue drives are your best bet.

If you have a NAS enclosure, you will not want to use any other drives but WD Red drives for better performance and reliability.

If you have a CCTV system, you will not want to use any other drives but WD Purple drives for stutter-free recording and a long lifespan.

If you are running a server, you will want the high performance and exceptional reliability of the WD Gold drives.

See? The WD drive colours make it extremely easy for you to find the best drive for the job!

[adrotate group=”1″]

 

Disclosure

This post was sponsored by Western Digital.

Go Back To > Guides | Home

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

The WD + SanDisk SSDs With 64-Layer 3D NAND Revealed!

Western Digital earlier announced the development of 64-layer and 96-layer 3D NAND technologies, and now, they are introducing the availability of consumer-grade WD Blue 3D NAND SSDs and SanDisk Ultra 3D SSDs. These are the world’s first consumer-grade solid state drives that use the 64-layer 3D NAND technology to deliver lower power consumption with higher performance, endurance and capacities.

 

The WD + SanDisk SSDs With 64-Layer 3D NAND Technology

Targeting DIY enthusiasts, resellers and system builders, the WD Blue 3D NAND SATA SSDs boast an industry-leading 1.75 million hours MTTF, as well as the quality backing of WD Functional Integrity Testing Lab (F.I.T. Lab) certification.

The SanDisk Ultra 3D SSDs, on the other hand, are intended for gaming and creative enthusiasts who want to improve their PCs. The product delivers enhanced endurance and reliability, no-wait boot-up, shorter application load times, and quicker data transfers.

[adrotate group=”1″]

 

The WD 3D NAND Technology

Western Digital first announced their 64-layer 3D NAND technology, also known as BiCS3, last year. However, it was only slated for commercial volume production in the first half of 2017.

BiCS3 was developed jointly with their technology and manufacturing partner, Toshiba. It not only uses 64-layers, but also 3-bits-per-cell technology to achieve high capacity (256 to 512 gigabits per chip) and performance at a much lower cost.

 

Availability & Pricing

The WD Blue 3D NAND SATA SSDs and SanDisk Ultra 3D SSDs are available in storage capacities from 250 GB to 2 TB in the traditional 2.5-inch / 7mm cased drive form factor. They have the same MSRP:

[adrotate group=”2″]

The WD Blue 3D NAND SATA SSDs are also available in the single-sided M.2 2280 form factor at the following prices:

All WD Blue 3D NAND SATA and SanDisk Ultra 3D SSDs come with a three-year limited warranty.

Go Back To > Events | Home

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

The 1TB WD Blue SSD (WDS100T1B0A) Review

The new WD Blue and WD Green solid state drives are the first product of Western Digital’s acquisition of SanDisk in May 2016. However, it was not Western Digital’s first acquisition of a solid state manufacturer, or even their first solid state drive.

Western Digital acquired the SSD manufacturer, SiliconSystems and released the WD SiliconDrive family in 2009. However, the SiliconDrive family didn’t gain much traction. The SanDisk acquisition though was much larger and far more substantial. Western Digital not only gained access to a wide array of SSD and NAND intellectual property, they now have a substantial and stable NAND flash supply.

Today, we are going to take a look at their top-of-the-line solid state drive –  the 1TB WD Blue SSD (WDS100T1B0A), which features SanDisk’s second-generation 15 nm TLC NAND technology. Check it out!

 

The WD Blue SSD Family

The new WD Blue SSD family will offer 1 TB, 500 GB and 250 GB models, each available in either the 2.5″ or the M.2 form factor. Here is a specification comparison of the three main models :

Specifications1 TB WD Blue SSD500 GB WD Blue SSD250 GB WD Blue SSD
Model NumberWDS100T1B0A (2.5")
WDS100T1B0B (M.2)
WDS500G1B0A (2.5")
WDS500G1B0B (M.2)
WDS250G1B0A (2.5")
WDS250G1B0B (M.2)
Storage Capacity1024 GB (Total)
1000 GB (Effective)
512 GB (Total)
500 GB (Effective)
256 GB (Total)
250 GB (Effective)
Overprovisioning24 GB (2.4 %)12 GB (2.4 %)6 GB (2.4 %)
SSD ControllerMarvell 88SS1074-BSW2Marvell 88SS1074-BSW2Marvell 88SS1074-BSW2
NAND Flash Type15 nm SanDisk TLC NAND15 nm SanDisk TLC NAND15 nm SanDisk TLC NAND
SDRAM Cache1 GB DDR3L SDRAM
(Micron MT41K512M8RG-107 x 2)
1 GB DDR3L SDRAM
(Micron MT41K512M8RG-107 x 2)
512 MB DDR3L SDRAM
(Micron MT41K512M8RG-107)
InterfaceSATA 6 Gb/sSATA 6 Gb/sSATA 6 Gb/s
Peak Sequential Read545 MB/s545 MB/s540 MB/s
Peak Sequential Write525 MB/s525 MB/s500 MB/s
Random Read I/O100,000 IOPS100,000 IOPS97,000 IOPS
Random Write I/O80,000 IOPS80,000 IOPS79,000 IOPS
Write Endurance400 TB200 TB100 TB
Average Active Power70 mW70 mW70 mW
Max. Read Power2.85 W2.85 W2.35 W
Max. Write Power4.40 W4.00 W3.40 W
Slumber Power45-52 mW42-46 mW42-45 mW
DEVSLP Power6.0-9.7 mW6.0-7.7 mW4.9-6.0 mW
Mean Time To FailureUp to 1.75 million hoursUp to 1.75 million hoursUp to 1.75 million hours
Ambient Temperature Range0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
Vibration Range5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.0 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.0 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.0 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
Shock1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine
Warranty3 Years3 Years3 Years
Dimensions2.5" : 100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm
M.2 : 80 mm x 22 mm x 2.38 mm
2.5" : 100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm
M.2 : 80 mm x 22 mm x 2.23 mm
2.5" : 100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm
M.2 : 80 mm x 22 mm x 2.23 mm
Weight2.5" : 59.7 g
M.2 : 7±1 g
2.5" : 37.4 g
M.2 : 7±1 g
2.5" : 37.4 g
M.2 : 7±1 g

 

Unboxing & Closer Look

The 1TB WD Blue SSD comes in a sleek cardboard box. The colour-coded box leaves no doubt that this is a WD Blue drive.

Now, let’s unbox the 1TB WD Blue SSD, and take a closer look.

Next Page > The 1TB WD Blue SSD, Interface, SSD Controller, Flash Memory, SDRAM Cache

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

The 1TB WD Blue SSD

The 1TB WD Blue SSD (WDS100T1B0A) looks like any other 2.5″ slim hard disk drive. It was, after all, built to conform to the 2.5″ form factor, allowing it to easily replace any 2.5″ hard disk drive with a height of 7 mm. But there’s no doubt about its solid state nature when you pick it up – it’s very light!

The label on the underside has a lot of important information, like the model and serial numbers in case you need to RMA it. The label also lists interesting details like the date and place of manufacture. This particular drive was manufactured in China on 9 September 2016.

As it only serves to protect the NAND chips, SSD controller and circuit board inside from static damage, the case is made from plastic. In fact, it will sound hollow when you tap on it because the SSD internally does not take up much space.

 

SATA 6 Gb/s Interface

The 1TB WD Blue SSD is a Serial ATA drive, with native support for SATA 6 Gb/s interface. It is backward-compatible, so you will have no problem using it with older SATA 3 Gb/s controllers. However, the faster SATA 6 Gb/s interface is necessary for optimal performance because this SSD is capable of a peak transfer rate of 545 MB/s.

Like all Serial ATA drives, it comes with the standard SATA data (left) and power (right) connectors, and is hot-pluggable. That means you can connect and disconnect this solid state drive while the PC is still running. There is no jumper block, because there’s really nothing for you to set. It’s just plug and play!

 

The Marvell 88SS1074 SSD Controller

The 1TB WD Blue SSD uses the Marvell 88SS1074 SSD controller, which boasts the following key features :

  • Supports up to 4 NAND channels, with up to 8 NAND chips per channel
  • Features Marvell’s third-generation NANDEdge low-density parity check (LDPC) technology
  • Supports SATA 3.2 (6.0 Gbps)
  • Toggle 2 and ONFI2 support at up to 400 MT/s
  • Integrated DEVSLP (Device Sleep) mode for low power support
  • Supports 256-bit AES hardware encryption
  • Built on 28 nm CMOS process

The Marvell NANDEdge LDPC technology allows for reliable on-the-fly error correction of the 3-bit TLC flash memory, with minimal impact on latency, performance and power consumption.

However, the Marvell 88SS1074 is likely to fall short in sustained throughput, because it only supports 4 NAND channels. Competing controllers like the Phison S10, for example, boast 8 NAND channels, allowing twice as many NAND chips to be accessed simultaneously.

 

The SanDisk TLC Flash Memory

To keep costs low, the 1TB WD Blue SSD uses TLC (Triple Level Cell) flash memory chips, where each cell holds 3-bits. These are SanDisk second-generation planar TLC chips, built on the 15 nm process. There are a total of eight of these TLC flash memory chips, each with a capacity of 128 GB.

 

The Micron DDR3L SDRAM Cache

The 1TB WD Blue SSD has a large 1 GB write combine cache, courtesy of two Micron MT41K512M8RG-107 chips. These are DDR3L SDRAM chips with an effective clock rate of 1866 MHz (DDR), a voltage of 1.35 V, and a storage capacity of 512 MB.

This large SDRAM cache allows the WD Blue SSD to mitigate the TLC flash memory’s inherently poor write performance. It also allows writes to the SSD to be combined, reducing wear on the flash memory cells and extending their lifespan.

Next Page > SSD Endurance & Maintenance

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

SSD Endurance

The 1TB WD Blue SSD is rated for a lifetime write lifespan of 400 TBW (Terabytes Written). That does not seem like a lot (equal to overwriting the drive just 400 times), but it is considered enterprise-grade endurance. Many consumer-grade SSDs of equivalent capacity are rated at around 75-100 TBW.

Based on a typical consumer DWPD (Drive Writes Per Day) of 20 GB per day, this 1TB WD Blue will last at least 54 years. Please note that this long lifespan is due to the large capacity. The 500 GB and 250 GB WD Blue SSDs are rated at 200 TBW and 100 TBW respectively. That corresponds to an estimated lifespan of 27 years and 13.5 years respectively.

Like all other current SSDs, the 1TB WD Blue SSD comes with certain features to help extend its lifespan :

Wear Levelling

Unlike hard disk drives, flash-based SSDs write and overwrite data in large blocks of 512 KB to 1 MB in size. Even if you only need to write one byte of data, it has to erase and overwrite an entire block. This causes a lot of wear on the memory cells and greatly reduces their lifespan.

To help extend the lifespan of the drive, SSDs perform wear levelling by spreading the writes, so that the flash memory cells have equal wear. The lifespan of the memory cells remain unchanged, but it prevents some of them from failing earlier due to excessive wear.

Write Combine Cache

SSDs also use a write buffer to temporarily store and combine the writes before they are actually written to the flash memory. This reduces the number of block erases required, and consequently, extends the lifespan of the flash memory cells.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD boasts a large 1 GB DDR3L memory cache, which should help to really extend the limited lifespan of the TLC flash memory. This allows the 1TB WD Blue to get away with a very small amount of “over-provisioned” space.

TRIM

Current SSDs support the TRIM command, otherwise known as the ATA8-ACS-2 DATA SET MANAGEMENT command. Operating systems that support TRIM (e.g. Microsoft Windows 7) will notify the SSD when data blocks are deleted in the file system. This allows the SSD to perform garbage collection in the background – internally erasing the affected blocks so that they are ready to be written to.

Without the TRIM command, the SSD will not know when a block of data has been deleted by the operating system. When new data is written to the same block of data, it will force the SSD to perform the time-consuming read-erase-modify-write cycle, which not only cripples performance but also increases wear on the affected memory cells.

Multi-Stream

This is a new SSD technology that was introduced in May 2015, as part of the T10 SCSI Standard. Multi-stream greatly improves performance and extends lifespan by reducing or even eliminating garbage collection.

It achieves this by marking data writes that are associated with one another, or have a similar lifetime, with a unique stream ID. This allows the SSD controller to pack all data writes with the same stream ID into the same block.

When the operating system deletes data, it is likely that they are all packed into the same block. If the block has not been written to the SSD, then this eliminates the pending write operation completely. If the block has been written to the SSD, then this would only require that single block to be erased, instead of multiple blocks (which would happen if the data was not all packed into the same block).

 

SSD Maintenance

First of all, you should never, ever defragment solid state drives. Spatial fragmentation of data on the SSD has no effect on its performance. Fragmented data are accessed as quickly as nicely-packed blocks, so it’s pointless to defragment the data blocks. Doing so will only reduce the lifespan of the flash memory cells by putting them under additional wear.

Remember – TLC flash memory will only last about 1,000 erase/write cycles. You will want to minimise the number of times each flash memory cell is erased.

[adrotate banner=”4″]

You should also use an operating system that supports the TRIM command. If you are using one of the following operating systems, then you have nothing to worry about :

  • Microsoft Windows 7, or better
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2, or better
  • Linux 2.6.33, or better
  • FreeBSD 8.2, or better
  • Mac OS X Snow Leopard, or better

If not, you should consider upgrading your operating system. Otherwise, you will need to perform manual garbage collection on a regular basis, either using a manufacturer utility, or newer defragmentation software that specifically supports solid state drives. Basically, these utilities will retrieve the list of free blocks from the operating system’s file system and pass it to the SSD in the form of TRIM commands, so that it will know which blocks to erase internally.

Western Digital does not provide such a utility for their WD Blue SSDs, so if you are using an older operating system, you will need to use a third-party SSD optimisation software. Note that those software are not necessary if you are using an operating system that supports TRIM.

Next Page > Testing The WD Blue SSD, Over-Provisioning & Usable Capacity, Transfer Rate Profile

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Testing The WD Blue SSD

Processors Intel Core i7-2600K
Motherboard Intel DP67BG
Memory Four Kingmax 2 GB DDR3-1333 modules
Graphics Card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060
SSD & HDD Drives 4 TB Western Digital Re
1 TB + 120 GB WD Black²
1 TB WD Blue SSD
1 TB WD VelociRaptor
256 GB OCZ Vector
240 GB HyperX Savage
240 GB Intel 520 Series
160 GB Intel X25-M G2
120 GB OCZ Vertex 2 (E)
90 GB Corsair F90
Operating System Microsoft Windows 7 64-bit
Microsoft Windows Vista 32-bit

Testing Methodology

 

Over-Provisioning & Usable Capacity

This WD Blue SSD has a maximum storage capacity of 1,024 GB, courtesy of eight 128 GB Micron NAND chips. Of that, a mere 24 GB has been set aside for garbage collection, wear levelling and replacement of failing blocks.

Ordinarily, the limited 2.4% over-provisioning may impact long-term performance and lifespan. However, it appears that Western Digital has opted to mitigate that using a large 1 GB DDR3L SDRAM cache.

After it is formatted in NTFS, the actual formatted capacity is 1,000,202,039,296 bytes. This is slightly (202 MB) more than the official formatted capacity of 1,000 GB.

With about 124 MB of space allocated to the NTFS file system, the actual usable capacity is just above 1,000 GB.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Transfer Rate Profile

We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD to the 240GB HyperX Savage. As you can see, it delivered a sustained throughput of between 230 MB/s and 249 MB/s, with occasional bursts to 280 MB/s.

Next Page > WinBench Results, Transfer Rate Range

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Business Disk WinBench 99

The 1TB WD Blue SSD did quite well in this test, matching the performance of the 256 GB OCZ Vector and 240 GB HyperX Savage SSDs.

Drive Model Capacity Business Disk
WinMark 99
Difference Useful Links
Intel 520 Series 240 GB 77.7 MB/s + 25.3% Review Lowest $
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 120 GB 74.4 MB/s + 20.0% Review Lowest $
Corsair F90 90 GB 71.1 MB/s + 14.7% Review
Western Digital Black² 120 GB 63.1 MB/s + 1.8% Review Lowest $
OCZ Vector 256 GB 62.1 MB/s + 0.2% Review Lowest $
WD Blue SSD 1 TB 62.0 MB/s Baseline Lowest $
HyperX Savage 240 GB 61.9 MB/s – 0.2% Review Lowest $
Intel X25-M G2 160 GB 50.4 MB/s – 18.7% Review Lowest $
WD VelociRaptor 1 TB 29.8 MB/s – 51.9% Review Lowest $
WD Re 4 TB 20.4 MB/s – 67.1% Review Lowest $

 

High-End Disk WinBench 99

In the High-End test, the 1TB WD Blue SSD did not do so well, coming in the lower end of the chart, albeit significantly faster than the hard disk drives.

Drive Model Capacity Business Disk
WinMark 99
Difference Useful Links
Intel 520 Series 240 GB Beyond limit NA Review Lowest $
OCZ Vector 256 GB Beyond limit NA Review Lowest $
HyperX Savage 240 GB 262 MB/s + 19.1% Review Lowest $
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 120 GB 250 MB/s + 13.6% Review Lowest $
Western Digital Black² 120 GB 246 MB/s + 11.8% Review Lowest $
Corsair F90 90 GB 231 MB/s + 5.0% Review
WD Blue SSD 1 TB 220 MB/s Baseline Lowest $
Intel X25-M G2 160 GB 215 MB/s – 2.3% Review Lowest $
WD VelociRaptor 1 TB 172 MB/s – 21.8% Review Lowest $
WD Re 4 TB 138 MB/s – 37.3% Review Lowest $
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Transfer Rate Range

This chart shows you the range of memory cell-to-controller transfer rates for SSDs, or the range of platter-to-buffer transfer rates from the innermost track to the outermost track in HDDs.

Despite boasting an official peak transfer rate of 545 MB/s, our tests show that the sustained transfer rate of the 1TB WD Blue SSD is much slower – between 230 and 249 MB/s. This makes it significantly slower than the other SSDs in this comparison. It is important to note though that the 1TB WD Blue SSD remains much faster than even top-of-the-line hard disk drives like the 1TB WD VelociRaptor.

Next Page > IO Meter (Random & Sequential) Benchmark Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

IO Meter

We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD against the 240 GB HyperX Savage. If you wish to see how the WD Blue SSD compares to other solid state drives, take a look at our Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide, which we will be updating shortly.

 

Throughput (Random Access)

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 239.84 MB/s 371.76 MB/s – 35.5%
512 KB Write 257.09 MB/s 488.15 MB/s – 47.3%
4 KB Read 24.93 MB/s 27.57 MB/s – 9.6%
4 KB Write 53.31 MB/s 53.52 MB/s

The small random reads and writes are the most important tests for applications that make a lot of random accesses, so these would be key performance indicators for SSDs that are often used as boot drives.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD held up well in small reads and writes, matching the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD in writes, and coming in just 10% slower in reads. The large SDRAM cache seems to be doing its job very well.

However, it was much slower when it came to large reads and writes. This is due to the TLC the Phison S10 controller used in the HyperX Savage has twice the NAND channels of the WD Blue’s Marvell 88SS1074 controller.

 

Random Access Time

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 2.19 ms 1.41 ms – 35.6%
512 KB Write 2.04 ms 1.07 ms – 47.5%
4 KB Read 0.17 ms 0.15 ms – 11.8%
4 KB Write 0.08 ms 0.08 ms

The small random write access time of the 1TB WD Blue SSD was completely masked by the large SDRAM cache, allowing it to match the performance of the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD. The small random read access time was also very good, coming within 12% of the HyperX Savage. However, due to the lack of NAND channels, its large access times were almost twice as long.

 

Random CPU Utilization

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 7.16 % 1.62 % + 342.0%
512 KB Write 7.31 % 1.81 % + 303.9%
4 KB Read 9.94 % 4.27 % + 132.8%
4 KB Write 11.91 % 8.97 % + 32.8%

For some reason, the 1TB WD Blue SSD took up considerably more CPU time than the HyperX Savage SSD.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

IO Meter (Sequential Accesses)

We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD against the 240 GB HyperX SavageIf you wish to see how the WD Blue SSD compares to other solid state drives, take a look at our Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide, which we will be updating shortly.

 

Sequential Throughput

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 250.14 MB/s 521.02 MB/s – 52.0%
512 KB Write 255.54 MB/s 486.12 MB/s – 47.4%
4 KB Read 63.35 MB/s 24.89 MB/s + 154.5%
4 KB Write 59.15 MB/s 53.65 MB/s + 10.3%

The sequential read and write performance indicators determine how fast you can copy and move files. This is also important in determining how fast you can launch an application or game.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD did very well when the sequential reads and writes were small. It was particular good at small sequential reads. However, when it came to large sequential accesses, the WD Blue’s limited NAND channels came into play… giving it half the throughput of the HyperX Savage SSD.

 

Sequential Access Time

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 2.10 ms 1.01 ms – 51.9%
512 KB Write 2.05 ms 1.08 ms – 47.3%
4 KB Read 0.07 ms 0.16 ms + 128.6%
4 KB Write 0.07 ms 0.08 ms + 14.3%

 

Sequential CPU Utilization

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 8.69 % 1.74 % + 399.4%
512 KB Write 5.76 % 2.17 % + 165.4%
4 KB Read 15.93 % 3.71 % + 329.4%
4 KB Write 15.42 % 9.34 % + 65.1%

Again, the 1TB WD Blue SSD required a lot more CPU time than the HyperX Savage SSD.

Next Page > IOPS Scaling (Random) Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

IOPS Scaling (Random)

In these tests, we tested the drive’s ability to tackle multiple input/output operations. We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD to the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD. For more performance comparisons, please take a look at the Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide.

Even though the 1TB WD Blue SSD is rated for enterprise-class endurance, its Marvell 88SS1074 controller is just not capable of handling too many simultaneous operations. It appears to handle up to 8 simultaneous transactions. Its limited NAND channels also held back its performance in large reads and writes.

 

4 KB Random Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 6,086 IOPS 6,729 IOPS – 9.6%
8 38,444 IOPS 42,254 IOPS – 9.0%
32 36,145 IOPS 58,728 IOPS – 38.4%

 

4 KB Random Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 13,015 IOPS 13,068 IOPS – 0.4%
8 39,066 IOPS 55,906 IOPS – 30.1%
32 39,115 IOPS 57,441 IOPS – 31.9%
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

512 KB Random Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 457 IOPS 709 IOPS – 35.5%
8 537 IOPS 1,072 IOPS – 49.9%
32 544 IOPS 1,076 IOPS – 49.4%

 

512 KB Random Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 490 IOPS 931 IOPS – 47.4%
8 522 IOPS 1,030 IOPS – 49.3%
32 522 IOPS 1,030 IOPS – 49.3%

Next Page > IOPS Scaling (Sequential) Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

IOPS Scaling (Sequential)

In these tests, we tested the drive’s ability to tackle multiple input/output operations. We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD to the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSDFor more performance comparisons, please take a look at the Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD did well in small sequential reads, but it remain limited to 8 simultaneous transactions. When it came to the larger accesses, it was limited by its 4-channel design.

 

4 KB Sequential Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 15,466 IOPS 6,077 IOPS + 154.5%
8 41,425 IOPS 27,982 IOPS + 48.0%
32 37,963 IOPS 58,825 IOPS – 35.5%

 

4 KB Sequential Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 14,440 IOPS 13,097 IOPS + 10.3%
8 38,840 IOPS 56,560 IOPS – 31.3%
32 39,188 IOPS 57,286 IOPS – 31.6%
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

512 KB Sequential Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 477 IOPS 994 IOPS – 52.0%
8 544 IOPS 1,073 IOPS – 49.3%
32 540 IOPS 1,076 IOPS – 49.8%

512 KB Sequential Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 487 IOPS 927 IOPS – 47.5%
8 521 IOPS 1,031 IOPS – 49.5%
32 521 IOPS 1,030 IOPS – 49.4%

Next Page > AS SSD Benchmark Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

AS SSD Benchmark

AS SSD Benchmark is a simple and easy-to-use SSD benchmark by Alex Intelligent Software. It not only tests the drive’s sequential transfer rates and access times, but also its performance at both single-threaded and multi-threaded 4K IOPS.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD did quite well in this test, especially in the multi-threaded 4K IOPS test. Its sequential transfer rate was, again, limited by its 4-channel design.

 

Sequential Transfers

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
HyperX Savage 516.0 MB/s + 98.3% Price, Review
OCZ Vector 500.3 MB/s + 92.3% Price, Review
Intel 520 Series 293.9 MB/s + 12.9% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 280.6 MB/s + 7.8% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 260.2 MB/s Baseline Price
Intel X25-M G2 179.0 MB/s – 31.2% Price, Review
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 172.3 MB/s – 33.8% Price, Review
Corsair F90 140.0 MB/s – 46.2% Review

 

Single-Threaded 4K IOPS Performance

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
Intel 520 Series 45.7 MB/s + 44.2% Price, Review
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 40.6 MB/s + 28.2% Price, Review
HyperX Savage 40.2 MB/s + 27.0% Price, Review
Corsair F90 39.9 MB/s + 25.8% Review
OCZ Vector 38.6 MB/s + 21.8% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 35.0 MB/s + 10.3% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 31.7 MB/s Baseline Price
Intel X25-M G2 30.7 MB/s – 3.1% Price, Review
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Multi-Threaded 4K IOPS Performance

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
OCZ Vector 338.6 MB/s + 74.9% Price, Review
HyperX Savage 257.8 MB/s + 33.2% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 193.6 MB/s Baseline Price
Intel 520 Series 177.5 MB/s – 8.3% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 164.9 MB/s – 14.8% Price, Review
Intel X25-M G2 125.2 MB/s – 35.3% Price, Review
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 122.1 MB/s – 36.9% Price, Review
Corsair F90 118.1 MB/s – 39.0% Review

 

Access Time

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
HyperX Savage 0.065 ms – 17.3% Price, Review
OCZ Vector 0.067 ms – 14.1% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 0.078 ms Baseline Price
Intel X25-M G2 0.089 ms + 13.5% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 0.119 ms + 51.9% Price, Review
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 0.148 ms + 89.1% Price, Review
Corsair F90 0.159 ms + 103.8% Review
Intel 520 Series 0.162 ms + 107.1% Price, Review

Next Page > ATTO Disk Benchmark Results, Our Verdict

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

ATTO Disk Benchmark

ATTO Disk Benchmark is a free benchmark that allows you to compare the performance of solid state drives using a variety of transfer sizes. It also allows us to determine if the SSD performs data compression to improve performance, and extend lifespan.

 

I/O Comparison

Results Compressible Data Non-Compressible Data
Minimum Maximum Minimum Maximum
Read Speed 11.3 MB/s 246.8 MB/s 11.3 MB/s 249.7 MB/s
Write Speed 10.4 MB/s 269.5 MB/s 10.6 MB/s 269.5 MB/s

The Marvell 88SS1074 controller does not perform any data compression, which is why the performance results are the same for both compressible and non-compressible data. The 1TB WD Blue SSD reached its peak transfer rate with a block size of 1 MB.

 

Multiple I/O Comparison

Results Compressible Data Non-Compressible Data
Minimum Maximum Minimum Maximum
Read Speed 26.6 MB/s 286 2 MB/s 26.6 MB/s 285.6 MB/s
Write Speed 24.5 MB/s 273.9 MB/s 24.8 MB/s 274.5 MB/s

With just 8 simultaneous transactions, the 1TB WD Blue SSD reached its peak transfer rate with a block size of 64 KB.

 

Our Verdict

The 1TB WD Blue SSD offers extremely quick random access times like other modern solid state drives. But it is no race car. Due to its 4-channel design, it was half as fast as comparable SSDs at transferring large files. On the other hand, it offers a tremendous amount of space at an affordable price point, and boasts enterprise-class endurance levels. So what does this mean for you, the user?

 

If you are looking for the absolute fastest SSD in the market, then the 1TB WD Blue SSD is not for you. You can find much faster SSDs in the market, albeit at much higher price points.

[adrotate banner=”4″]

But if you are looking for a decent solid state drive with a large storage capacity, and don’t want to sell an arm and a leg for it, the 1TB WD Blue SSD is worth considering. More so if you want something that will last you for many years to come.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD works well as a boot drive, booting up the operating system and applications much faster than any hard disk drive can. It may be much slower than comparable SSDs in certain benchmarks but in real life, it will only mean the operating system and applications start up a bit slower. In fact, you are unlikely to notice any difference unless you compare two systems side-by-side.

The WD Blue SSD‘s large storage capacity is a great boon to laptop users who cannot add a second hard disk drive for more storage. It would obviate the need to use a portable hard disk drive for extra storage. It also allows for an intriguing possibility – install it into a USB enclosure and you have a spacious portable drive that is impervious to shock and vibration!

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Mainstream Hard Disk Drives Keep Getting Better

Hard disk drives have become so commoditised that most users assume that one hard disk drive is no different from another. That’s not true, of course, because there are performance-grade drives, NAS-optimised drives, and even surveillance hard disk drives. Even mainstream hard disk drives have seen remarkable improvements in reliability and performance over the years.

 

Mainstream Hard Disk Drives In The Past

The hard disk drive industry is highly competitive, with many manufacturers competing for the same piece of pie. Hence, mainstream hard disk drives tend to be developed with cost in mind.

As a general rule, they tend to use older technologies, have lower storage capacities, lower performance, and shorter warranties.

 

Less Competition, But Better Drives

Over the years, hard disk drive manufacturers have fallen, merged, or been bought up by their rivals. Today, only three hard disk drive manufacturers remain – Western Digital, Seagate and Toshiba.

Paradoxically, the reduced competition was actually good for the consumer. There was less pressure to compete solely on price. This allowed better mainstream hard disk drives to be developed.

 

Mainstream Hard Disk Drives Today

Today, mainstream hard disk drives are at the forefront of hard disk drive technologies. Even the most basic models feature the latest interface, platter technology and come with large caches for higher performance.

The newer SSHD (Solid State Hybrid Drive) models integrate flash memory technology to offer SSD-like performance, with large storage capacities and much more affordable prices.

Mainstream hard disk drives are also more reliable, boasting the latest data protection features. That’s why manufacturers offer longer warranties today, with most offering 2 years warranty, instead of just 1 year.

 

WD Blue Mainstream Hard Disk Drives

The most popular mainstream hard disk drives in the market today are arguable the WD Blue hard disk drives from Western Digital. Designed for mainstream usage patterns, the WD Blue drives are highly affordable yet boast features like :

  • NoTouch Ramp Load Technology : The drive heads are kept off the disk surface when the drive is idle or not running, to prevent damage to the platters if the drive is dropped or knocked.
  • Data LifeGuard : Advanced algorithms in the firmware that monitor your drive continuously to alert you of any impending failures.
  • IntelliSeek : The drive automatically adjusts its optimum seek speeds to lower power consumption, noise and vibration.

Western Digital offers the WD Blue hard disk drives in a wide variety of storage capacities to suit every need and budget.

[adrotate banner=”4″]

For users who want a boost in performance without paying top dollar for a solid state drive, Western Digital even offers two WD Blue solid state hybrid drive (SSHD) models :

These WD Blue SSHDs are basically WD Blue hard disk drives enhanced with a flash memory cache :

  • NAND Flash Technology : WD Blue SSHDs come with 8 GB of NAND flash memory to perform up to 4-5X faster than traditional 5400 RPM hard disk drives.
  • Self-Learning Technology : Using an advanced set of algorithms, WD Blue SSHDs continuously track data usage to prioritise frequently-used data. It can adapt, learn and optimise itself as new applications and data requests change over time.

Thanks to the flash memory cache, the WD Blue SSHDs offer SSD-like performance, with a large storage capacity at much lower prices than solid state drives.

 

 

Disclosure

This post was sponsored by Western Digital.

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

WD Blue SSHD (WD10J31X) 1TB Review Rev. 2.0

WD Blue SSHD

Western Digital has finally moved into the Solid State Hybrid Drive (SSHD) market with their new WD Blue SSHD drives.

The WD Blue family of mainstream 5400 RPM drives is designed for less strenous use at home and in the office. Like their now-discontinued WD Green family, the emphasis is on reduced power consumption , thermal output and cost, instead of high performance.

That changes with the SSHD variant, which pairs a regular WD Blue drive with an 8 GB SSD. These hybrid drives are able to offer pseudo-SSD performance with the storage capacity and lower cost of regular hard disk drives.

The Western Digital Blue SSHD models support the following features :

8 GB NAND flash for blazing performance – An optimal amount of built-in NAND flash SSD technology enables WD Blue SSHDs to perform at up to four to five times faster than traditional 5400 rpm HDDs, based on PCMark Vantage.

Self-learning technology – Utilizing an advanced set of algorithms, WD Blue SSHDs track SSHD data usage, prioritizing frequently used data for fast access in the solid state portion of the device, adapting, learning and optimizing as new applications and command requests change over time. These advanced algorithms reside in the SSHD firmware, enabling it to make intelligent determinations of which data to store in NAND flash memory, without any influence from the host or related storage device drivers. By pairing SSD-like performance with massive hard drive capacity, WD has created an intelligent hybrid drive that truly offers the best of both worlds.

Synergy delivers value – WD Blue SSHD is equipped with the optimal amount of NAND flash to deliver fast, SSD-like performance over high-capacity storage, significantly lowering the $/GB compared to the higher cost and lower capacity of standalone SSDs.

Simple installation with no special software required – The WD Blue SSHD hybrid drive is self-contained in a traditional HDD form factor, and installs as easily as any traditional hard drive without special drivers or downloads required. WD Blue SSHDs are compatible with most typical computer configurations, including PC and Mac.

Today, we will look at the 1 TB WD Blue (WD10J31X) SSHD, which is a 2.5″ drive for laptops. The other member of the WD Blue SSHD family, at this moment, is the 4 TB WD Blue (WD40E31X) SSHD (read our review here), which is a 3.5″ drive for desktops. Let’s see how well the 1 TB WD Blue (WD10J31X) SSHD performs against the main competitor – the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD, as well as other mobile and desktop HDDs!

 

Specification Comparison

The 1 TB WD Blue (WD10J31X) SSHD is a direct competitor of the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD, so let’s compare their specifications.

Specifications Western Digital Blue SSHD (1 TB) Seagate Laptop SSHD (1 TB)
Model • WD10J31X • ST1000UM000
Advanced Format (AF) • Yes, Emulation Mode • Yes, Emulation Mode
Formatted Capacity • 1,000,204 MB • 1,000,204 MB
Guaranteed Sectors • 1,953,525,168 • 1,953,525,168
Bytes Per Sector • 512 bytes (Emulated)
• 4,096 bytes (Physical)
• 512 bytes (Emulated)
• 4,096 bytes (Physical)
Platters • 2 Platters • 2 Platters
Read/Write Heads • 4 Read/Write Heads • 4 Read/Write Heads
Spindle Speed • 5,400 RPM • 5,400 RPM
SDRAM Cache • 64 MB SDRAM • 64 MB SDRAM
NAND Cache • 8 GB MLC • 8 GB MLC
Average
Seek
• NA • 12.0 ms
Track-to-Track Seek • NA • 2.0 ms (average)
Average Latency • NA • 5.6 ms
Drive Ready Time • NA • < 1.0 seconds (average)
Internal
Data Transfer Rate
(Sustained, Maximum)
• 100 MB/s • 100 MB/s
Maximum I/O
Transfer Rate
• 600
MB/s
• 600
MB/s
Interface • Serial ATA 6 Gb/s • Serial ATA 6 Gb/s
Supported SATA
Data Transfer Modes
• 6.0 Gbits/s
• 3.0 Gbits/s
• 1.5 Gbits/s
• 6.0 Gbits/s
• 3.0 Gbits/s
• 1.5 Gbits/s
SATA Hotplug
Capability
• Yes • Yes
Maximum Height • 9.5 mm
• 0.374 inches
• 9.5 mm
• 0.374 inches
Maximum Width • 69.85 mm
• 2.75 inches
• 69.85 mm
• 2.75 inches
Maximum Length • 100.2 mm
• 3.94 inches
• 100.35 mm
• 3.951 inches
Maximum Weight • 120 g
• 0.27 lb
• 115 g
• 0.254 lb
Power Requirements • +12V DC ± 10 %
• +5V DC ± 5 %
• +12V DC ± 10 %
• +5V DC ± 5 %
Power Consumption • 6.5 W (Spin-Up)
• 1.65 W (Read / Write)
• 0.65 W (Idle)
• 0.225 W (Standby / Sleep)
• 3.7 W (Write)
• 3.1 W (Read)
• 1.1 W (Idle)
• 0.53 W (Standby / Sleep)
Ambient Temperature • 0 °C to 60 °C
(Operating)
• -40 °C to 70 °C (Non-Operating)
• 0 °C to 60 °C
(Operating)
• -40 °C to 70 °C (Non-Operating)
Maximum Shock • 400 G @ 2 ms (Read)
• 1000 G @ 2 ms (Non-Operating)
• 350 G @ 2 ms (Read)
• 1000 G @ 1 ms (Non-Operating)
Drive Acoustics • 24 dBA average (Idle Mode)
• 25 dBA average (Performance Seek Mode)
• 22 dBA average (Idle Mode)
• 24 dBA average (Performance Seek Mode)
Non-Recoverable
Read Errors
• 1 error per 1014 bits read • < 1 error per 1015 bits read
Load/Unload Cycles • 600,000 (minimum) • 600,000 (minimum)
MTBF • NA • NA
Warranty • 3 Years Limited Warranty • 3 Years Limited Warranty
Lowest Price
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Packaging

The 1 TB WD Blue (WD10J31X) SSHD came in a sealed anti-static plastic packet, with a sachet of desiccants inside to keep it dry. To remove it, just tear off the top or cut it open, and slide out the drive.

Be sure to ground yourself before removing and handling the hard disk drive as static can damage it. In particular, you should try to avoid touching the exposed PCB located on the lower underside of the drive.

Next Page > A Closer Look At The WD Blue SSHD

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participate in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donate to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

The WD Blue SSHD (WD10J31X)

Despite having an SSD built-in, the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD looks just like any other 2.5″ notebook hard disk drive. It has a label on the top plate and an uncovered PCB on the underside. The label has a lot of important information, like the hard drive model, storage capacity as well as its date and place of manufacture.

This particular drive was manufactured here in Malaysia on the 28th of May, 2015. Interestingly, Western Digital also added a QR code so you can scan it using your smartphone to learn more about the WD Blue SSHD.

 

SSHD Vs. Dual Drive

[adrotate banner=”4″]

SSHD is short for Solid State Hybrid Drive. It combines a small SSD with a regular hard disk drive. It is not the same thing as a dual drive, like the WD Black2, which is essentially an SSD with a HDD in a single enclosure.

The WD Blue SSHD comes with a much smaller SSD and uses it as a cache. This allows the drive to deliver pseudo-SSD performance at much lower price points. Its SSD component is not user-accessible, unlike the SSD component in a dual drive.

Unlike the WD Black2, there is no special requirement. It behaves just like any other hard disk drive, just with an SSD serving as a secondary cache.

 

Connectors & Jumpers

This is a Serial ATA hard drive, with native support for SATA 6 Gb/s. However, it is backward-compatible so you will have no problem using it with older SATA 3 Gb/s controllers.

The SATA 6 Gb/s interface is necessary for optimal performance since this Western Digital Blue SSHD boasts a maximum sustained internal (platter-to-buffer) transfer rate of 100 MB/s, and a large and fast DDR2 SDRAM cache.

Like all Serial ATA drives, it comes the standard SATA data (left) and power (right) connectors and is hot-pluggable. That means you can connect and disconnect this hard disk drive to your PC while it’s still running.

To the left of the SATA connectors is the jumper block. However, Western Digital does not provide any jumper with their drives. This is because the jumper block should only be used in exceptional cases.

According to Western Digital, jumpering pins 1 and 2 enables Spread Spectrum Clocking (SSC). Placing the jumper across pins 5 and 6 will force the drive to use the slower SATA 3Gbits/s transfer speed. This is only necessary for certain SATA controllers that do not properly implement the SATA 6 Gb/s speed negotiation.

 

Breather Holes

The 1 TB WD Blue SSHD has a small breather hole on the top plate, just above the warning about not covering any drive holes. This hole must not be covered.

Breather holes allow condensation inside the hard disk drive to escape. They also equalize the hard disk drive’s internal pressure with the ambient air pressure. The hard disk drive needs them to function properly, so please make sure you do not occlude these holes.

Next Page > Peeking Under The WD Blue SSHD PCB

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participate in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donate to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

What’s Under The PCB

Western Digital has a penchant for keeping all surface-mounted components on the reverse side of the PCB – to prevent static damage and to allow for better cooling. It’s protected by a thin foam cutout on the chassis side, with a thermal pad to help transfer heat from the HDD controller to the hard disk drive chassis.

The 1 TB WD Blue (WD10J31X) SSHD used the Marvell 88i9441 Soleil-H SSHD controller. It comes with two 600 MHz ARM Cortex-R4 processors and supports hardware 256-bit AES encryption, Native Command Queueing and a 6 Gb/s SATA interface.

To manage the integrated 8 GB flash memory, Western Digital used the JMicron JMF608 NAND flash controller. It supports up to 4 read/write channels at up to 300 Mbits/s (read) and 200 Mbits/s (write) per channel. That works out to a maximum throughput of 150 MB/s (read) and 100 MB/s (write).

The primary cache remains the 64 MB Winbond W9751G6KB-25 DDR2 SDRAM chip – the same memory chip used by the 6 TB Western Digital Red drive. This is is a newer version of the memory chip used in the 4 TB Western Digital RE (WD4000FYYZ), with an operating speed of 800 MHz, 4 memory banks and faster timings of 5-5-5. This gives it a peak transfer rate of 200 MB/s.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

To tie the SSD and HDD components together, Western Digital used the Marvell 88SE9171 PCI Express 2.0 x1 to SATA 6Gb/s switch. This is a 2-port SATA switch.

Unlike the 4 TB WD Blue SSHD (read our review here) which used the ST Microelectronics WDHC8TD motor drive controller, the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD used used a proprietary WD Nautilus motor drive controller.

All of the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD‘s firmware was stored in a 4 Mbit (512 KB) Winbond 25X40CLVIG serial flash memory chip.

Finally, the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD features a single shock sensor, just like the 4 TB Western Digital Blue SSHD (read our review here). The shock sensor allows the drive to detect shock events and automatically park the drive heads to avoid damage.

Next Page > Testing The WD Blue SSHD, Usable Capacity, Temperature

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participate in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donate to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

The Testbed

Processors Intel Core i7-2600K
Motherboard Intel DP67BG
Memory Four Kingmax 2 GB DDR3-1333 modules
Graphics Card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570
Hard Disk Drives 1 TB WD Blue SSHD (WD10J31X)
1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD (ST1000UM000)
1 TB WD Blue Slim (WD10SPCX)

1 TB WD Blue (WD10JPVT)
750 GB WD Scorpio Black (WD7500BPKT)
640 GB WD Scorpio Blue (WD6400BEVT)
500 GB WD Blue Slim (WD5000LPVT)

500 GB WD Scorpio Black (WD5000BEKT)
320 GB WD Scorpio Black (WD3200BEKT)
Operating System Microsoft Windows 7 64-bit
Microsoft Windows Vista 32-bit

 

Testing Methodology

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

[adrotate banner=”4″]
  • Platter Data Transfer Profile
  • Business Disk WinMark 99
  • High-End Disk WinMark 99
  • Disk Transfer Rate (Beginning)
  • Disk Transfer Rate (End)

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 is not fully compatible with Microsoft Windows 7, registering 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 disk drive into 5 partitions of equal sizes. We then tested each partition individually and averaged the results.

 

Usable Capacity

The 1 TB WD Blue SSHD (WD10J31X) has an official formatted capacity of 1,000 GB. We checked that out by formatting it in NTFS using Microsoft Windows 7.

The actual formatted capacity was 1,000,202,039,296 bytes, which is 202 MB lower than the official storage capacity. With about 125 MB allocated to the NTFS file system, the actual usable capacity remained slightly above 1 TB.

 

Maximum Surface Temperature

We monitored the surface temperature of seven hard disk drives during their benchmarks. The following chart shows their operating temperature range, from idle to maximum load. Please note that instead of giving you the absolute numbers, we are showing the temperature delta, which is the difference between the actual temperature and the ambient room temperature.

Due to the extra chips and NAND flash memory, the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD has a high idle temperature. It hit a peak case temperature of 23°C above ambient temperature. This can be a concern inside the confines of a laptop case. This drive is designed to run in relatively hot environments, with a peak ambient temperature of 60°C.

Next Page > Transfer Rate Range, Platter Profile, WinBench Test Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participate in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donate to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Transfer Rate Range

This chart shows you the range of platter-to-buffer transfer rates from the innermost track to the outermost track. In other words, it shows you the range of disk transfer rates of the hard disk drives (from minimum to maximum).

Western Digital rates the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD with a peak throughput of 100 MB/s, but our test shows that it will actually hit 113 MB/s. As you can see, it has exactly the same transfer rate range as the 1 TB WD Blue Slim (WD10SPCX), which is really the HDD component of this SSHD.

 

Platter Profile

The platter profile of the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD we received was very good. There were no noticeable dips in throughput that would signify a significant use of replacement sectors. Lots of them would point to poor platter quality.

We also compared its platter profile to that of the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD, its direct competitor. You can see that the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD starts off with a higher throughput but the Seagate Laptop SSHD is faster from around the 300 GB point onwards.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Business Disk WinBench 99

The 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD remained the top SSHD in this comparison, delivering 55% better performance than the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD. Even so, you can see the benefit of adding just 8 GB of flash memory. The 1 TB WD Blue SSHD was 29% faster than the 750 GB WD Scorpio Black, which is a 7200 RPM hard disk drive.

Hard Disk Drive Model Capacity Business Disk
WinMark 99
Difference Useful Links
Seagate Laptop SSHD
(ST1000UM000)
1 TB 34.90 MB/s + 55.1% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue SSHD
(WD10J31X)
1 TB 22.50 MB/s Baseline Lowest Price!
Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD7500BPKT)
750 GB 16.00 MB/s – 28.9% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD5000BEKT)
500 GB 13.90 MB/s – 38.2% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue
(WD10SPCX)
1 TB 13.00 MB/s – 42.2% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue
(WD10JPVT)
1 TB 12.60 MB/s – 44.0% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue
(WD5000LPVT)
500 GB 11.60 MB/s – 48.4% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD3200BEKT)
320 GB 8.64 MB/s – 61.6% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue
(WD6400BEVT)
640 GB 7.49 MB/s – 66.7% Review Lowest Price!

 

High-End Disk WinBench 99

But when it came to the High-End test, the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD smashed the competition. It was 16% faster than the 750 GB WD Scorpio Black, and 30% faster than the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD!

Hard Disk Drive Model Capacity High-End Disk
WinMark 99
Difference Useful Links
Western Digital Blue SSHD
(WD10J31X)
1 TB 103.0 MB/s Baseline Lowest Price!
Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD7500BPKT)
750 GB 86.7 MB/s – 15.8% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD5000BEKT)
500 GB 86.4 MB/s – 16.1% Review Lowest Price!
Seagate Laptop SSHD
(ST1000UM000)
1 TB 71.7 MB/s – 30.4% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue
(WD5000LPVT)
500 GB 68.5 MB/s – 33.5% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue
(WD10JPVT)
1 TB 65.8 MB/s – 36.1% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue
(WD10SPCX)
1 TB 61.9 MB/s – 39.9% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Scorpio Black
(WD3200BEKT)
320 GB 51.2 MB/s – 50.3% Review Lowest Price!
Western Digital Blue
(WD6400BEVT)
640 GB 32.8 MB/s – 68.2% Review Lowest Price!

Next Page > IO Meter Benchmark Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participate in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donate to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

IO Meter

We compared the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD to the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHDFor more performance comparisons, please take a look at The Hard Disk Drive Performance Comparison Guide.

 

Random Throughput

Test 1 TB WD
Blue SSHD
1 TB Seagate
Laptop SSHD
Difference
512 KB Read 18.48 MB/s 22.39 MB/s + 21.2%
512 KB Write 20.68 MB/s 31.48 MB/s + 52.2%
4 KB Read 0.22 MB/s 0.25 MB/s + 13.6%
4 KB Write 0.22 MB/s 0.25 MB/s + 13.6%

The small random reads and writes are the most important tests for applications that make a lot of random accesses, so those would be key performance indicators for drives that are used as boot or system drives, but not very important for NAS or media storage drives.

In this regard, the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD would make a much better boot drive than the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD. It was almost 14% faster in small accesses and 52% faster in large random writes!

 

Random Access Time

Test 1 TB WD
Blue SSHD
1 TB Seagate
Laptop SSHD
Difference
512 KB Read 23.41 ms 28.28 ms – 17.2%
512 KB Write 16.65 ms 25.52 ms – 34.7%
4 KB Read 16.17 ms 18.41 ms – 12.2%
4 KB Write 16.63 ms 19.23 ms – 13.5%

Since these results are based on the SSD cache of the two SSHDs, we can see that the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD is using a faster SSD than the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD.

 

Random CPU Utilization

Test 1 TB WD
Blue SSHD
1 TB Seagate
Laptop SSHD
Difference
512 KB Read 0.78% 0.45% + 73.3%
512 KB Write 0.85% 0.23% + 269.6%
4 KB Read 0.40% 0.17% + 135.3%
4 KB Write 0.44% 0.31% + 41.9%

The downside though is higher CPU utilization by the drive. Despite the large difference in percentage, this is really minor due to the high performance CPUs we use today.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Sequential Throughput

Test 1 TB WD
Blue SSHD
1 TB Seagate
Laptop SSHD
Difference
512 KB Read 190.00 MB/s 108.31 MB/s + 75.4%
512 KB Write 102.77 MB/s 110.22 MB/s – 6.8%
4 KB Read 31.74 MB/s 52.48 MB/s – 39.5%
4 KB Write 32.12 MB/s 48.14 MB/s – 33.3%

These are the second most important tests for boot drives, and the most important tests for secondary storage drives. The large sequential transfer performance is particularly important because they are often used to store large game or media files, which are all practically larger than than 512 KB these days.

The 1 TB WD Blue SSHD was phenomenal at large reads, delivering a throughput of 190 MB/s. On the other hand, it was slightly slower at large writes, and 30-40% slower at small reads and writes.

 

Sequential Access Time

Test 1 TB WD
Blue SSHD
1 TB Seagate
Laptop SSHD
Difference
512 KB Read 2.76 ms 4.84 ms – 43.0%
512 KB Write 5.10 ms 4.76 ms + 7.2%
4 KB Read 0.13 ms 0.08 ms + 65.8%
4 KB Write 0.13 ms 0.08 ms + 50.1%

Since these results are based on the SSD cache of the two SSHDs, we can see that the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD is using a faster SSD than the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD.

 

Sequential CPU Utilization

Test 1 TB WD
Blue SSHD
1 TB Seagate
Laptop SSHD
Difference
512 KB Read 1.09% 0.50% + 118.0%
512 KB Write 1.50% 1.63% – 8.0%
4 KB Read 4.80% 8.56% – 43.9%
4 KB Write 5.89% 8.95% – 34.2%

Next Page > Our Verdict, Lowest Prices

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participate in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donate to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Our Verdict

Western Digital is very late to the Solid State Hybrid Drive (SSHD) market. Seagate launched the industry’s first SSHD, the Seagate Momentus PSD, back in 2007. It has taken Western Digital 8 years to dip their toes into SSHDs, but we are glad to see that they are off to a good start.

Like all other SSHDs, the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD (WD10J31X) uses a small 8 GB SSD as a fast secondary cache, in addition to the usual SDRAM cache.

This flash memory cache quickly stores all writes to drive, copying them over to the slower hard disk drive over time. Because it retains the written data, the data can be read from the much faster flash memory cache. This improves its read performance, albeit only for the data that is still stored in the cache.

Thanks to its flash memory cache, the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD was about 70% faster than the 1 TB WD Blue Slim (WD10SPCX) in the WinMark tests. This is the same hard disk drive the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD uses, so we can see the effect the small SSD cache has on its real world performance. It was also 20-40% faster than the 750 GB WD Scorpio Black, a high-performance mobile hard disk drive that features a much higher 7200 RPM spindle speed.

When we compared the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD to its direct competitor, the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD, it proved to be :

[adrotate banner=”4″]
  • 75% faster in large sequential reads
  • 52% faster in large random writes
  • 21% faster in large random reads,
  • 14% faster in small random reads and writes
  • 7% slower in large sequential writes
  • 33% slower in small sequential writes
  • 40% slower in small sequential reads

It’s a mixed bag of results, but the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD is faster than the 1 TB Seagate Laptop SSHD in the more important performance aspects. We would peg the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD as the better drive of the two.

The 1 TB WD Blue SSHD could have performed better if Western Digital opted for a better flash controller than the JMF608. This is a 4-channel flash controller limited to 150 MB/s (read) and 100 MB/s (write). Western Digital would do well to use a faster flash controller if they want to maximise the performance of their future SSHDs.

The 1 TB WD Blue SSHD (WD10J31X) is no SSD, but it offers pseudo-SSD performance in the performance aspect that the hard disk drive is weakest at – random accesses. That’s why it “feels” like you are using an SSD. Even though it’s not quite as fast as a real SSD, it comes with an enormous storage capacity and costs far less per GB.

The 1 TB WD Blue SSHD is best used as a boot drive, if you have a dual-spindle laptop that supports two drives. It is also a great upgrade option for older laptops – giving them a new lease of life, thanks to its significantly better performance and storage capacity.

We are very pleased with the 1 TB WD Blue SSHD‘s performance, and we think it deserves our Reviewer’s Choice Award. Congratulations, Western Digital!

 

Lowest Prices


 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participate in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donate to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!