Friday, August 6, 2010

Comic art - Dinosaur in evening sun

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In this age of superfast SSDs, mechanical HDDs are being relegated to mass storage duties. They're fine for storing bulky collections of MP3s or videos, but your operating system and high performance apps demand the performance boost offered by SSDs. But if there's one mechanical drive to prove that HDDs still have plenty of life left in them, it's the latest VelociRaptor from WD.

This line of drives, in 450GB and 600GB capacities, has always been known for extreme speed. They've also been known for high temps, but this version ran much cooler than expected. It's actually a 2.5in drive housed in a 3.5in IcePack heatsink, and it remained cool to the touch.

Like earlier VelociRaptors, the latest version leverages high spindle speed to deliver segment do minating performance. At 10,000RPM it's the fastest in this category, and it also has 32MB of cache fed to the Marvell 88i9045- tfj2 controller. The performance figures speak for themselves.

Crystal Disk Mark showed that this is the fastest consumer HDD we've seen. Sequential read and write posted results of 158MB/s and 154MB/s respectively, faster than most budget SSDs. 4k read and write was also impressive for a mechanical drive, at .99MB/s and 1.9MB/s - but it's in this area that SSDs have a massive performance lead. The individual PCMark Vantage HDD tests, based on realworld scenarios, showed that the VelociRaptor can keep up with the recently reviewed, extremely fast, OCZ drive when it comes to adding music files to the WMP library, but it's decimated by a factor of six during application loading.

Considering that this drive can keep pace with budget SSDs in certain scenarios, it's easy to justify the rather high asking price relative to other HDDs. And when compared to the price of SSDs, it's a bargain.

Source Citation
"WD VelociRaptor; Proving that some dinosaurs aren't close to extinction." APC 21 July 2010. General OneFile. Web. 6 Aug. 2010.
Document URL

Gale Document Number:A233021116

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