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New hard disk

Dr.Rock

Active Member
Looking to buy a large capacity E-IDE hard disk (eg 320 GB) for my PC. Looking for 7200 rpm. Any ideas which manufacturers to go for and which to avoid? I'm after something with speed and reliability. Do the ATA numbers (eg ATA-100, ATA 133) make any difference? eg, I notice the Western Digital E-IDE drives, for example, I notice only go up to ATA-100.

Thanks.
 

shezzy2k

Active Member
I would only really be avoiding Maxtor drives based on my experience.

The ATA100 & ATA133 are theoretical and no IDE hard disks delivery anywhere near fully utilising ATA100 bandwidth.

The latest Western Digitals run quite cool & quiet and are IMHO probably the best balance out there right now. Seagate (who recently bought Maxtor) run very fast but are not as quiet as they used to be.

In the real world however, there is not that much difference performance wise amongst the top drive makers.

I hope my rambling helps.
 

Dr.Rock

Active Member
Thanks, Shezzy.

I notice the Seagates have 16MB cache as opposed to Western digital with 8MB cache. Yet, Seagate is cheaper. Does this cache size make a difference in speed? Are Seagate as reliable as Western Digital?

Yes, I heard about the horrors of Maxtor. Also with Hitachi/IBM Deskstar HD's - which is why they're nicknamed as "Deathstar".
 

shezzy2k

Active Member
I cant say that I've noticed any real difference moving from 8MB cache to 16MB cache. Also I don't think that Seagate are any more reliable than WD, but their warranty is longer at 5 years compared to 3 years with WD. I think only the WD RE series give 5 years unless there has been a very recent change.

At the end of the day, a hard disk is going to fail at some stage so I would just get the longest possible warranty.

Also seagate's support in the UK is excellent.
 

HMHB

Distinguished Member
I would rate Seagate and WD about the same. I have tended to buy Seagates as they have met my price/capacity requirements better over the years. I've got about 20 hard drives and none of them have ever failed on me, the oldest one will be about 7 years old now.
God, why did I have to brag about that :suicide: :rolleyes: :D
 

Dr.Rock

Active Member
I think only the WD RE series ...

I read a bit about the Western Digital RE series, RAID Edition. Can they still be used as individual IDE drives (ie master/slave) or only as part of a RAID array? I only read that they are made to be more reliable, but are they just as fast as the non-RAID-Edition drives? If so, then that could go for this one.

Thanks.
 

shezzy2k

Active Member
I read a bit about the Western Digital RE series, RAID Edition. Can they still be used as individual IDE drives (ie master/slave) or only as part of a RAID array? I only read that they are made to be more reliable, but are they just as fast as the non-RAID-Edition drives? If so, then that could go for this one.

Thanks.

Yes they can be used as individual drives.
I've got 5 of them, 4 in RAID 1 and one as my main disk that hosts my operating system & applications. The main difference is that they are supposed to be manufactured to last longer...they are certainly marketed as such, but I reckon it's the same hardware with a longer warranty. I have however read reviews stating that they are slighter slower than the standard drives, but I'd take that with a pinch of salt as I haven't noticed any slowdown as such.

I have to say that I only bought the RE drives because they had a longer warranty for only a few quid more.

TBH you'll be fine with most of the Seagate or WD drives.
 

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