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WD Raptor question....

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October 10, 2007 9:57:48 PM

Are raided Raptors clearly better than 7200rpm SATA drives when it comes to gaming, video editing, etc? I'm looking to upgrade a system and don't know if I should just stick with my 2 74GB Raptors or just get a big 320GB or 500GB SATA drive instead. Any help on this matter would be appreciated.

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a b G Storage
October 10, 2007 10:42:11 PM

Your question is wrong.

Raided 0 Raptor drives are much faster at read time (disk access) then a single 7200 drive.

If your games access the disk often rather then store in memory, then you will notice a difference.

October 11, 2007 12:05:44 AM

I noticed a big drop in load times (and a moderate decrease in system boot times) when moving up from a 7200 RPM WD drive w/ 8 MB of cache to a 74 GB 10k RPM Raptor. I felt like I bought too small of a drive, but man was it fast. Keep in mind the 74 GB Raptor is well over 2 years old now (probably 3) and is still the fastest consumer grade drive on the market... that said... other 7200s are getting much closer to it now. I bought mine over 2 years ago... in Oct 2007 I'd probably just get a fast 7200 RPM drive that is nearly as fast, a lot larger and cheaper!
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October 11, 2007 1:30:23 AM

Just because new revisions such as the WD Caviar and Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 are surpassing the raptor in a few benchmarks..Doesn't mean they are a better choice. It's all mostly due to the new technologies that have been released (PMR mostly)...Raptors will still decimate these drives in I/O performance as well as responsiveness. Overall they are still a fantastic buy if you need the speed...

If WD decided to release a refresh of the raptors while bringing all their technology up to todays...It would be quite a different story. This hasn't been done due to the lack of competition I believe. But with the new 7200.11's surpassing the raptor in just as the caviar did before it they might have an intention to release a new raptor...I'm actually hoping they would do this. I'd love a Raptor with PMR and larger disk space...I wonder how those suckers would perform...

But yea...Stick with the raptors. For my next rig nabbing a couple of them with some large storage drives as well.
October 11, 2007 1:50:35 AM

supposedly a major raptor refresh is due out around next summer according to someone who knows someone who works there, a relative if i remember right. 15k rpms being the spec that was mentioned. pmr is a possibility for platter density increase, but whether that will result in a usable capacity increase is a different issue, as they may only decide to stay with the 36, 74, and 150 capacities, for whatever reason. other additions then may be the most likely necessity of sata300, as sata150 would probably be a bottleneck if they include the above specs.

either way, if and when they are released around next summer with at least 15k and pmr, then they 'should' easily be the fastest performing mechanical hdd again on the desktop, possibly trailing only ssds in performance, but not $/GB if current prices dont drop noticably.

but, i agree, it would seem the main reason wd has been pretty stagnant with major raptor updates and pricing, is probably because of the lack of real performance competition on the desktop. that has changed though as of the last few months in a few benchmarks, but before then, raptors really had no desktop competition to speak of.
October 11, 2007 2:35:08 AM

lol..I remember hearing that also. I actually brought up a thread a month or two ago about a raptor refresh and someone posted similar info about a rumor...

Hopefully they release a new raptor...The possibilities of incorporating currently technology into a raptor would have some interesting results. I really do hope they go with a PMR solution...The transfer speeds would improve as well which will give it the top crown again in all the desktop charts. I'd probably nab a couple of them...one for XP and one for Vista..^.^
a b G Storage
October 11, 2007 2:40:31 AM

Nothing wrong with a nice 10k drive as your boot / os / program drive, and a 500gig drive for your data.
a b G Storage
October 11, 2007 3:59:21 AM

Raid 0 for 1TB of data storage...... ! recommended.

You are better off getting a RAID card and doing a nested 1/1/1/1/5 with 40 drives.
October 11, 2007 1:25:27 PM

Another question I have is since the Raptor transfer rate is 1.5GB/s, does that cause a bottleneck in a higher end system with 1333mhz fsb and DDR2-800mhz memory? I know the Raptors have faster read times than SATA300 drives, but I'm worried about the transfer rates when gaming, etc. Please forgive me if thiat sounds like a stupid question but I'm not quite computer knowledgable (but I'm trying). Bottom line is I'd like to know what would be better for gaming performance: 2 Raptors in Raid 0 or a single SATA300 drive?
October 11, 2007 1:48:58 PM

If you want to boot quick, load large maps/data quickly or otherwise do anything drive speed dependent...RAID'ed Raptors work great; I've got 2 and they scream. If you are concerned, get the 500's and RAID them as well for your data; since you already have the Raptors.
October 11, 2007 2:52:25 PM

I'm too lazy to look it up, but I've seen real world benchmarks that show very very little if any performance gain in gaming using a raid 0 setup. Since the OP mentioned for gaming, I don't see the point in doubling your risk of drive failure for no gaming increase in performance.
October 11, 2007 3:25:21 PM

its true... for gaming, raid 0 is not the way to go to boost performance most times, theres not much harm in using it if the OP already owns the hdds, but to purchase them with the hope of a large improvement is money wasted. however, if the OP was interested in doing media editing and such, then raid 0 would make more sense as far as performance is concerned.
October 11, 2007 3:33:20 PM

MikeFL said:
Another question I have is since the Raptor transfer rate is 1.5GB/s, does that cause a bottleneck in a higher end system with 1333mhz fsb and DDR2-800mhz memory? I know the Raptors have faster read times than SATA300 drives, but I'm worried about the transfer rates when gaming, etc. Please forgive me if thiat sounds like a stupid question but I'm not quite computer knowledgable (but I'm trying). Bottom line is I'd like to know what would be better for gaming performance: 2 Raptors in Raid 0 or a single SATA300 drive?


the SATA 1, 1.5gb/s is capable of transfer rates of 150mb/s I think.

No current single hard drive is capable of sending that much data through the link yet.

SATA2 is kind of a silly futurproofing thing, probably wont see rates that fast untill there are multiple read heads in the hard drives or a couple generations of solid state disks pass.
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