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Best 640-1500GB HDs for my RAID0 ?

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May 12, 2009 11:04:28 PM

My current Intel Matrix raid 0 with 3 x Maxtor 320GB is to small and slow, so i want new HDs. I would like to start with 2 drives and then upgrade to 3 drives when i need the space and prices have droped.
My first idea was the 1.5TB 7200.11 because I used and early version in pc i build for a friend, after a firmware update the drive has been running without any problems, plus its big and cheap. But I fear the seagates slow seek time wont give max raid 0 performance when i work with small data blocks..?
Speed is most important but noise and price is also important. The WD barracuda blacks impress me, and I know the 2 plate 640GB version scales very well in raid setup. I think the 3 plater 1TB black is a little faster as a single drive but the only raid0 benchmark I have seen shows the 1TB version scales badly in raid, is this true?
I would prefer to start with a 2x1TB or 2x1.5TB raid0 setup, so that 3 drives would give me 3-4.5TB, but with the 640GB version I could go for a 4x640GB setup if its faster??
Because I want to upgrade with more drives later I don't want a HD that's gonna disappear from the market in a few months, so the new 500GB/plate 7200.12 also caught my interest, but their seek time also looks high...
Sadly the WD RE3 & RE4 drives are to expensive for my budget.
The reason I care so much about seek time is that RAID0 is gonna give me very high sustained transfer rates, but it doesn't help seek time.
I want my PC to be fast at booting , unrar´ing, video/audio edit, virus scan, and loading games!
My friend has an old raptor 150GB its really fast when the work load is high, and it has medium transfer speeds but very low seek time!
Please help me select the drive for my needs. thx
Sorry about my bad English.

More about : 640 1500gb hds raid0

a b G Storage
May 13, 2009 12:33:29 AM

The WD Caviar Black 1TB drive is a good choice...

May 13, 2009 3:42:41 AM

Just found a review of the WD Caviar Black 1TB doing very well in RAID 0, and i love the 5year warranty. But I can get Hitachi DeskStar 7K1000.B 1TB drives for only 75€ the Caviar Black cost 99€ where I live. So I can get:

4xHitachi 7K1000.B = 4TB total for 300€
or:
3xCaviar Black = 3TB total for 297€

I am sure I will find a use for the space but what about performance? Im gonna make a small partition first on the disk for OS and appz.
How well does the matrix raid controller from the old Intel P35 chipset cope with 4 HDs vs 3 HDs?
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May 13, 2009 4:35:59 AM

Just checked some local prices as i prefer to pickup my new hds myself ..

Hitachi DeskStar 7K1000.B 1TB for 75€
Barracuda 7200.12 1TB for 87€
WD Caviar black 1TB for 99€
Barracuda 7200.11 1.5TB for 120€

What Raid setup will give the best performance/space/price ratio ?
a b G Storage
May 13, 2009 5:37:05 AM

The Barracuda 7200.12 is an excellent drive as well. I'd probably go with either it or the WD Caviar Black, and I wouldn't get the 7200.11 - it's had some firmware issues in the past that the .12 has fixed. I haven't had significant experience with Hitachi, but that drive is an older model than the WD and Seagate .12 models, and I wouldn't expect it to perform as well.
May 13, 2009 5:49:23 AM

I used an early revision of the 1.5TB 7200.11 building a Gaming PC for a friend aprox. 6 months ago. his drive caused the PC to "pause" for long periods but a firmware update fixed the problem, and the HD is running fine..

Will 4xHitachi outperform 3xWD blacks when using P35 matrix raid 0 ??
a b G Storage
May 13, 2009 8:03:51 AM

I'd tend to lean towards 3 Caviar Blacks over the 4 Hitachis. You tend to hit an area of diminishing returns on the integrated RAID controller, and I also tend to not trust RAID 0 with more than about 3 disks anyways (since failure rate goes up with the number of drives). If you want to save some money, as I said, the 7200.12 series are nice too. You could go with 3 of those, and it would still give excellent performance (roughly on par with the Caviar Blacks - slightly worse in random IOPS, but better sequentials and firmware tuned for desktop apps).
May 14, 2009 4:05:59 PM

The 7200.12 performance is a mixed bag... High seek time an low write speed. Looking at file copy benchmarks I don't think the 7200.12 is the right choice for me, but I would like the low noise level and fast min. read speed!


Hitachi 7K1000.B vs Samsung Desktop F1 1TB.
Can anyone tell me witch is best regarding motor noise and vibration ??
July 7, 2009 1:45:47 AM

I have been using Samsung HD103UJ as storage for data with very positive results. I am surprised nobody has mentioned them in this thread. I initially had 2 of these HDDs in RAID 0 and recently added a 3rd disk in the array. The benchmark read/write speeds using Crystal DiskMark are the highest I have even seen for a HDD either single or in RAID (Seq Read 318.0 MB/s - Write 277.4 MB/s). I also benchmarked the array using HD Tune and HD Tach because I could not believe these figures. All the benchmark tests I ran showed amazing read/write speeds for this 3 HDD RAID 0 array.

Comparatively I have 2 WD Raptor 74GB in RAID 0 with my OS WinVista x64. It is a fast array but the Samsung 3x HDD RAID 0 array is more than twice faster. These are the figures I got using Crystal DiskMark to benchmark my WD Raptor 74GB RAID 0 array (Seq Read 121.2 MB/s - Write 129.3 MB/s).

I have an external 1TB WD10EAVS single disk in a Coolermaster enclosure connected via e-SATA cable to my computer. The benchmark figures for this HDD are as follows: (Seq Read 58.99 MB/s - Write 57.68 MB/s). I know this is a very slow disk not to be compared to the Hitachi Deskstar of the Samsung HD103UJ but I include it here for reference purposes only.

I have read information online that seem to indicate that the Hitachi Deskstar 7K1000.B is the fastest 1TB HDD out there. In terms of price it is pretty much at the same level of the HD103UJ but the cache of the Samsung HDD is 32MB while the Hitachi is only 16MB so I really don't know how it can be faster.

In terms of stability I have to say that I have been using my Samsung HD103UJ for quite a long time now and I have never had a problem with them, either as single disks or in RAID 0 arrays. I am fully satisfied of the quality, speed and stability of these HDDs and in my book they are certainly the best.

One of these days, when I can afford them, I will replace my Raptors for 2 WD Velociraptors 300GB each. Those are the fastest HDD you can think of.
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