The Contenders & The Test

To make these graphs legible I've left out the SSDs, but note that these are the same benchmarks we use for our SSD reviews. If you want to compare, head on over to our SSD Bench database.

I've included the latest 6Gbps drives from Western Digital and Seagate, the Caviar Black and the Barracuda XT. Both are TB-class drives that are the fastest 7200 RPM offerings you can buy for a desktop today.

I've also included the previous generation 300GB VelociRaptor and the old 150GB Raptor to give you an idea of how far things have come if you're still holding on to one of those old drives.

For you notebook users I ran tests on a Seagate Momentus 5400.6 drive. It's not fast compared to a desktop drive but it gives you an idea of the performance difference that exists between 2.5" and 3.5" drives.

Finally I included an older Seagate Barracuda ES to give you a reference point if you have a 7200 RPM drive that's a few years old.

CPU Intel Core i7 965 running at 3.2GHz (Turbo & EIST Disabled)
Motherboard: Intel DX58SO (Intel X58)
Chipset: Intel X58 + Marvell SATA 6Gbps PCIe
Chipset Drivers: Intel 9.1.1.1015 + Intel IMSM 8.9
Memory: Qimonda DDR3-1333 4 x 1GB (7-7-7-20)
Video Card: eVGA GeForce GTX 285
Video Drivers: NVIDIA ForceWare 190.38 64-bit
Desktop Resolution: 1920 x 1200
OS: Windows 7 x64
Meet the VR200M Sequential Read/Write Speed
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  • jasperjones - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    I have the same question. How do you get 450GB capacity with a platter size of 200GB?

    By using three platters and rending some space on each platter unusuable??????
    Reply
  • Anand Lal Shimpi - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    Correct, you use 200GB platters and don't use all of the space. It's like microprocessor binning, but with platters instead :)

    Take care,
    Anand
    Reply
  • SunLord - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    Hey Anand in theory wouldn't the 450GB drive be faster then a 600GB drive if they configured the firmware to not use the inner 50GB on each of the 3 platters? Reply
  • strikeback03 - Thursday, April 8, 2010 - link

    Which would explain why there isn't much price difference between the 450 and 600GB models, but as you pointed out the price difference is so little as to be rather meaningless.

    Plus, with the combo of the 80GB X25-M and 1TB WD Black available for $10 more than the 600GB VR, the only consumer use for these I can see is if you are limited to a single drive with a tiny case or something.
    Reply
  • Spivonious - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    A 400% price increase for 10-15% performance increase? No thanks, I'll stick with my regular old 7200RPM drive. Reply
  • Chloiber - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    These days, I don't see a reason why I should buy a Raptor. I get all my programs on an SSD, even some games. The rest of my data consinsts of music, movies and some archives. So basically I don't care about random read/write performance on these drives. Plus I need BIG drives. 1-2TB HDDs reach nearly the same sequential transfer rates as the raptors. Plus I dont wan't such noisy components in my system.

    If you only want 1 drive, then maybe the velociraptor is the way to go. But getting 1 drive is the worst decision one can make. I would rather get 2 crappy HDDs than 1 fast HDD.

    As you wrote in the conclusion...performance wise, the raptors are really great, but these days, SSD + (cheap) HDD is the way to go imho.
    Reply
  • vol7ron - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    Agreed. SSDs replaced the need for Raptors, which makes me sad. Other than that, cheap, flexible storage is needed - as attributed by Moore's Law. Reply
  • rpsgc - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    This review is useless without an SSD to compare to. Reply
  • vol7ron - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    You're right, but as stated, go to the workbench and compare for those figures. You'll see that the SSDs would have drastically skewed the graphs. Reply
  • Voo - Tuesday, April 6, 2010 - link

    Yeah but they could've been added to some of latter graphs without a problem (the AT bench for example), that would be inconsistent, but would give some nice overviews without clobbering the graphs too much. Reply

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