WD Black 4TB Hard Drive Review

by Rob Williams on January 2, 2013 in Storage

WD’s Black 4TB is the sort of product that doesn’t need much of an introduction – it speaks for itself. We’re dealing with a standard-sized desktop hard drive that sports a market-leading 4TB of storage. That’s 4,000GB, for those not paying enough attention. It’s impressive on paper, so let’s see how it fares in our benchmarks.

Synthetic: PCMark 7

Futuremark’s PCMark benchmarking suite should need no introduction – it’s been a staple of PC benchmarking for the better half of a decade. PCMark offers a range of tests to gauge every aspect of a computer’s performance and presents it in a neat simple final result. Thankfully, it also breaks down the overall score with individual subsystem scores (such as Memory, Storage, etc) in addition to given individual test results.

As we’re not too concerned with the performance of the PC as a whole, for our testing here we deselect all default tests and run only the “Secondary Storage” suite, with the hard drive in question as the chosen drive. Tests in this suite range from the loading of applications, running a Windows Defender scan, editing video, gaming and more.

PCMark 7 Professional

It’s a good thing I’m not a betting man, because I would have guessed without hesitation that WD’s Black 4TB would perform better than the 2TB model. Instead, we see it fall behind in each test, and fairly significantly “overall” (~9%). This is likely due to the fact that WD specced the 4TB model with 5 platters (800GB) rather than 4 like the 2TB model has. If WD was able to implement 1TB platters like is featured in the NAS-focused Red drives, we very likely would have seen a completely different outcome here.

Let’s see if our other tests back PCMark’s findings up.