by Rob Williams on May 8, 2006 in Hard Drives
There seems to be a problem that’s constant with computers throughout the years. That problem is not enough storage space to feed our habits. Whether or not you actually need *this* much storage, there’s no denying it’s supremeness.
To perform real world testing, I took a huge conglomerate of files and timed the copies using the Windows clock on another PC.
Seagate Barracuda 500GB
- 1) Copying 1,693 Files worth 3.05GB – 117 Seconds (44.4% faster)
- 2) Extracting 92 RAR Files worth 4.26GB – 217 Seconds (1.38% faster)
- 3) Copying 1 File worth 4.31GB – 167 Seconds (19.7% faster)
- 4) Copying 24,379 Files worth 9.57GB – 574 Seconds (14.28% faster)
Western Digital 160GB
- 1) Copying 1,693 Files worth 3.05GB – 169 Seconds
- 2) Extracting 92 RAR Files worth 4.26GB – 220 Seconds
- 3) Copying 1 File worth 4.31GB – 200 Seconds
- 4) Copying 24,379 Files worth 9.57GB – 656 Seconds
In many of the synthetic benchmarks, the 160GB drive beat out the 500GB, but not here. The only test that the 160GB came close to matching was the extracting of 92 RAR files. I assume this is due to the fact that the end result was one file. When far more files are thrown into the pile, that’s when the 500GB drive deemed superior.
Seagate knows what they are doing, because they continue to impress. It’s too bad I did not have another S-ATA drive on hand, because it would have been a more accurate comparison, but the Barracuda definitely held it’s own. Despite coming short in most of the synthetic benchmarks, it rocked our real world tests. Chances are that going from ATA to S-ATA will vary in performance depending on your system. It’s odd that the 500GB took longer to perform some mundane tasks, such as the Windows installation, because it obviously kept right up to the 160GB in terms of speed.
If you are looking for a new drive to buy, you can’t go wrong with the Barracuda 500GB. After a quick check on an e-tailer, I found that the 500GB’s cost was around $0.55 per 1GB. Comparing to their 250GB drive, which was only $0.38 per 1GB, it’s clear that when you want to have a huge hard drive, you will pay for it. For those of you interested, the 750GB drive was around $0.66 per 1GB, which makes the 500GB well worth it.
Price aside, if you have a need for a large drive, you will not regret a purchase. I am giving the Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 500GB a 9/10 and our Editors Choice award.
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May 8 Addendum: One important factor I forgot to mention in the review was the temperature readings. This should be mentioned, because this particular hard drive is one of the warmest on the market. Currently, during regular computer use, the drive sits at 47°C. This is a huge jump from the compared WD 160GB which after a benchmark, sits at 34°C. Despite the high temps, it’s not in a ‘danger zone’, but if you are planning to throw one in your SFF case, you will want to make sure you have excellent airflow to keep things running smoothly.
May 10 Addendum: Regarding the 3D-Defense system, Seagate had this to say: “Seagate integrates and includes features that enable Data protection
(superb ECC algorithms), Data diagnostics (SeaTools) and Data defense (data off-line scan).“