by Rob Williams on March 29, 2007 in Storage
How do you make one of the best mobile drives on the market even better? Make it faster, of course. We are taking a look at Seagates latest high-end notebook drive, which offers not only high density, but high-performance.
When Seagate made the announcement of their Momentus 5400.3 160GB drive early last year, the crowds were in awe. Well, I was. I had been using a 60GB drive for months prior to that time, so I understood how much of a burden a notebook can be when you are lacking storage space. Now more than ever, the digital age is filling up our hard drives faster than we can blink. Music collections and even photography can weigh in the 100’s of gigabytes. So when a new high-end notebook drive is announced, we pay attention.
The Momentus 5400.3 160GB was one of the few products we’ve reviewed that we really couldn’t find a fault with. If anything, it was a pricey at launch, but that’s to be expected. However, it wasn’t the perfect choice for enthusiasts or mobile gamers, since it was not 7200 RPM. It can be argued how much importance this actually would be, but for those who want the fastest load times, they had to step back and wait out for the next offering.
Fast forward an entire year and we now have the 7200RPM model we’ve been waiting for. Besides the fact that it’s faster overall, there is another large benefit as well. When the Momentus 5400.3 first launched, it retailed for $330USD. Todays Momentus 7200.2 160GB model will retail for just under $200. Progress, gotta love it! Without further ado, let’s take a look at everything the drive has to offer, then compare it’s performance to the competition.
Without looking at the specs, it’s easy to know what to expect from a 7200 drive compared to a 5400. Read and Write speeds will be improved in addition to latencies and seek times. Because of the faster speed though, it results in higher power consumption. Still, not a huge increase there despite the immediate speed bonuses.
Momentus 5400.3 160GB
Momentus 7200.2 160GB
|Interface Option ||Ultra ATA/100 ||Up to SATA 3Gb/s NCQ |
|Sustained Internal Speed|
Sustained External Speed
|Cache, Multisegmented ||8MB||8MB|
|Average Seek (msec) ||12.5||11|
|Average Latency (msec) ||5.6||4.17|
|Performance Level ||5400||7200|
|Power Seek |
2.0W / 1.8W
0.8W / 0.2W
0.8W / 0.25W
|Shock Operating 1msec (Gs) |
Shock Non-Operating 2msec (Gs)
|Acoustics Idle (bels) |
Performance Seek (bels)
The acoustics are also heightened on the faster drive, but it’s doubtful you will actually hear it unless you are in a dead silent room. That’s been my experience anyway. Here you can see the drive in all it’s glory, front and back.
Now that we have that out of the way, let’s hop right into testing.