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Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB,Internal,7200 RPM,3.5" (WD5000KSRTL2) Hard Drive Hard Drives

Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB,Internal,7200 RPM,3.5" (WD5000KSRTL2) Hard Drive

Price:
 $52.95
WD Caviar?? SE16 7200 RPM next-generation SATA hard drives feature up to 500 GB of storage and a 16 MB cache for lightning-fast... Read More
WD Caviar?? SE16 7200 RPM next-generation SATA hard drives feature up to 500 GB of storage and a 16 MB cache for lightning-fast performance. Yes, these reliable drives are fast, but they still deliver technologically advanced acoustics and cool operation. Designed for high-performance computers, multimedia and gaming systems. Minimize
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Author's Rating: Rating: 4/5 stars
2 Reviews from Epinions.com

By:   chui101
Nov 22, 2006
Western Digital Caviar Blue 500 GB,Internal,7200 RPM,3.5" (WD5000KSRTL2) Hard Drive

Best Storage for the Buck

Author's Rating: Rating: 4/5 stars

Pros: Lots of gigs for your bucks.

Cons: A bit on the loud side, slow random read/writes.

The Bottom Line: 
Excellent expansion space, but this is a value drive - not a performance drive.

Author's Review
Building a PVR for HDTV content, I needed a hard drive with lots of chutzpah. Using Anandtech's Real Time Price Engine (RTPE - http://labs.anandtech.com/), I figured that this drive was probably my best bet for a large hard disk.

Some other drives I considered were the Seagate 500GB 7200.10 ($230 street), and the Seagate 320GB ($95 street). I ended up getting the WD5000KS because I decided the extra space was worth it.

Upon installing the drive, I formatted it. No bad sectors were found during the format. The concern about the bad drives being at 10-15% is probably inaccurate - people are more prone to write a review if their product is defective.

The drive reads and writes data quickly. Benchmarking between mine and my friend's Seagate 320GB 7200.10 shows that it is a bit slower on random read/write operations (likely to happen with everyday use). It's not my primary operating system drive, though, so most writes will be sequential read/writes from saving or watching video.

Sustained transfer rates were respectable, essentially tying the Seagate 7200.10. The Seagate uses perpendicular reading, though, so it has a higher areal density, meaning it can read more data on one spin on the disc tray. I imagine the 7200.10 500GB version would be a lot faster than the 320GB.

I have a well-cooled case (Lian-Li PC-V1000), and the drive only reaches about 42-44 degrees Celsius after sustained use. It idles at 35 degrees Celsius. The drive is placed in front of a 120mm fan, which keeps the thermals under control. As for noise, this drive is unnoticeably quiet under normal operation. However, while seeking, it seems to be substantially louder than my friend's 320GB Seagate 7200.10 (which in turn is substantially louder than my old 7200.9 200GB drive). It's not something that bugs me right now, but I was planning on buying 3 more drives and putting them in a RAID5 array. However, I don't know if I will be able to handle the seek noise of 4 of these drives.

All in all, this is a great budget drive. I snagged it from ZipZoomFly for around $170 shipped. (They seem to always have good deals on the WD drives.) Get it if you're looking for expansion space, but I wouldn't recommend this as a operating system drive. If you're looking for a fast primary drive, consider the Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 or a Western Digital Raptor.
 


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