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WD Raptor /A7N8X/RAID 0

Last response: in Storage
February 24, 2003 4:08:44 PM

Has anyone got a pair of these yet?

I think this is the Hard Drive I've been looking for to pair up with an Asus A7N8X in a RAID 0 using the SATA interface. Anybody have any speculations on price vs. performance? The target price is around $160 US.

More about : raptor a7n8x raid

March 5, 2003 6:51:43 AM

That's the exact setup I was looking into. =) Supposedly the drives are coming out the end of march to mid april. Would love them sooner...

"Do or do not. There is no try."

-Who else but Yoda could utter such wisdom?
March 5, 2003 1:26:24 PM

That is what I've read as well. Late March- Mid April. Guess I will stick with old PATA drive until I can see benchmarks on the Raptor.
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March 6, 2003 2:46:35 PM

I just received this response from WD-Online

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Western Digital Customer Service and Support

Raptor - WD360GD

Discussion Thread
Response (Jose) 03/06/2003 07:59 AM
We should have the Raptor drive available with in three to four week.
Customer (xxxxxxxxx) 02/27/2003 02:52 PM
I wish to know if the Raptor WD360GD is available for order from either the
Western Digital Online store or another source. If it is not available do
you have a possible release date and from which vendors will it be
March 7, 2003 4:56:56 AM

I was about to place an order on 3WARE Escalade 7000-2 ATA 133 RAID Controller Card and 2 of WD's 8 meg buffer 7.2K RPM 80 GIG HDDs with the idea to run them in RAID 0 but then WD HAD to announce these monsters ... now I await their release and a number of reviews, but I'm almost 100% sure what I'm doing...

2 of the new 10K drives in SATA RAID0 with either HighPoint RocketRAID 1520 or Promise SATA150 TX2 ... now one article on this website stated WD was working with Promise and 3ware but HighPoint was not mentioned so that's confusing me a bit, but considering I doubt I'd ever need 4 drive RAID 0 and 3ware made sure their product is as unaffordable as possible (for the regular gamer), it's pretty much HighPoint RocketRAID 1520 that has my attention now after the benchmark results with the Seagate Barracuda ATA V :) 
March 7, 2003 3:45:37 PM

Okay, So I want to use the SATA/RAID feature of the A7N8X and none of the current Native SATA drives seem to cut the mustard. It occurs to me based on that article the following configuration would be much better than the dual Raptor.

2 - WD1200JB (Special Editions 8meg 120Gig $140each)
2 - SATA/PATA Adapters (est. cost $25each)edited price

Raptor target price is $160each

Dual Raptors $320/72Gig=$4.44/Gig
Dual WD Special Edition $330/240Gig=$1.38/Gig edited calculation due to inacurate SATA/PATA converter price

If the article is correct and the hit for the SATA/PATA conversion is that small then I'm going for the better performing and better price/Gig hard drives. Either way I guess Western Digital wins.

Anybody know if there is a differnce in peformance on the SATA/PATA adapters. I see Asus is offering one. Probably just go with it.

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Cuda on 03/07/03 12:53 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
March 7, 2003 5:13:07 PM

Thanks for the link!
how did I miss that???
with all the anticipation ... I honestly expected this drive to blow away the whole WD IDE lineup with such speed/seek time.
I guess I'm going back to 3WARE Escalade 7000-2 ATA 133 RAID Controller Card RETAIL BOX + WD WESTERN DIGITAL "SPECIAL EDITION" 80GB 7200RPM EIDE HARD DRIVE MODEL # WD800JB - OEM, DRIVE ONLY (x2) ... that'd be about $353 and "free" shipping. :D 

I'm contemplating on placing the order right this moment but I think I might wait until Tom's Hardware has a review on the final product ... sadly supposivly the drives are being shipped to places so there won't be any magical improvement... :( 

Oh well, I didn't care about space, SATA cables or anything else (like noise) but if performance of the WD SEs is better, then I suppose that's what I'd end up with until next year or so...

hmmm...I wonder how much would dual 15K SCSI drive RAID 0 cost :p 
March 10, 2003 10:42:20 AM

AnandTech's preview of the BETA's even "worse"

Edit: When I say "worse" I don't mean the style or things they did, rather the controller they used possibly having some issues with the WD Raptor beta but this might be gone with the final...wait and see I guess //end of edit :) 

than StorageReview's ( but anyhow the NEW actual WD Raptor's amazing compared to the beta sample, glad I don't buy things too fast, the new scores blew me away when I first saw them VS the old scores ... I guess that's pulling me right back to SATA RAID 0 (dual WD Raptor setup) Almost as soon as possible (gonna wait for a few more reviews of the FINAL version of the drive).<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Nk2k on 03/10/03 07:44 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
March 10, 2003 2:31:11 PM

For a less than 40Gig HD those are great scores compared to the larger drives. However, does the additional cost warrant the loss of storage space? Compared to the WD 120Gig SE the Raptor kicksass and takes names. This will be a very tough decision for me. I will probably go with the Raptors if the final production meets or exceeds these numbers. Then just put one of the WD 200Giggers for mass storage on the PATA controller. Need to see more reviews as you can tell I'm on the fence. I pasted a direct comparison from the database.

Device Western Digital Raptor WD360GD BETA (36 GB SATA) Western Digital Caviar WD1200JB (120 GB ATA-100)

Low Level Suite 1.0 WD360GD_BETA WD1200JB
Analyze Disk Read Service Time 8.7 ms 13.5 ms
Analyze Disk Write Service Time 0.0 ms 14.3 ms

WB99 Disk/Read Transfer Rate - Begin 57.6 MB/sec 48.8 MB/sec
WB99 Disk/Read Transfer Rate - End 37.6 MB/sec 29.2 MB/sec

Desktop/Workstation Suite 1.0 WD360GD_BETA WD1200JB
SR Office DriveMark 2002 418 IO/sec 413 IO/sec
SR High-End DriveMark 2002 300 IO/sec 392 IO/sec
SR Bootup DriveMark 2002 455 IO/sec 357 IO/sec
SR Gaming DriveMark 2002 531 IO/sec 505 IO/sec
Unreal Tournament v4.36 420 IO/sec 413 IO/sec
Half-Life: Counterstrike v1.3 441 IO/sec 442 IO/sec
Diablo II: Lord of Destruction v1.09b 376 IO/sec 318 IO/sec
The Sims: House Party 535 IO/sec 515 IO/sec
Black & White v1.1 394 IO/sec 383 IO/sec

Server Suite 1.0 WD360GD_BETA WD1200JB
SR File Server DriveMark 2002 177 IO/sec 130 IO/sec
1 I/O 113 IO/sec 78 IO/sec
4 I/O 117 IO/sec 83 IO/sec
16 I/O 136 IO/sec 106 IO/sec
64 I/O 153 IO/sec 123 IO/sec
SR Web Server DriveMark 2002 181 IO/sec 129 IO/sec
1 I/O 108 IO/sec 71 IO/sec
4 I/O 115 IO/sec 79 IO/sec
16 I/O 141 IO/sec 105 IO/sec
64 I/O 162 IO/sec 127 IO/sec

Environmental Suite 1.0 WD360GD_BETA WD1200JB
Idle Noise 40.4 dB/A@0.7" 47.3 dB/A@0.7"
Net Temperature 20.6 Celsius 17.1 Celsius
Ambient Temperature 24.3 Celsius 25.6 Celsius
Drive Temperature 44.9 Celsius
March 10, 2003 7:53:01 PM

Do we have any idea how these guys fair in a RAID setup? StorageReview should have asked for two drives... =) Also, SR mentioned something about their noise (or at least in the beta sample) it still "whiny?"

"Do or do not. There is no try."

-Who else but Yoda could utter such wisdom?
March 10, 2003 9:12:36 PM

Edit: FIRST OF ALL ... Cuda ... you're comparing stuff to the beta ... the beta was very sucky VS the "final" so I suggest you change that ... //end of edit


that's what I'm about to find out...I was almost done placing an order on newegg for the 3ware IDE raid card with 2 WD SE 80 gigers when something made me wait ... and DAMN it seems very much worth it that I held my money.

I'm guessing/hoping Storage Review and/or Tom's Hardware will do some RAID 0 tests soon :) 

About the "whine" ... it's still there :( 
however, it isn't as loud/annoying as the beta sample was :) 

a bit of whining will get drowned out by my fans and I honestly don't need 160 Gigs (2x80) so these drives may be my dream comming true ... I hope ... anyhow I don't need a ton of storage because my TDK 32x VeloCD and soon enought a DVD burner can take care of that :) 

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by Nk2k on 03/10/03 06:14 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
March 10, 2003 10:58:03 PM

SR says that the raptor will initially ONLY be available to the enterprise channel.
i.e. not us.

And its just bad drawing conclusions form beta software firmware and drives.

<b>"If spam wasn't totally bogus, Hotmail users would be well-endowed, slim people with hair who make big money working at home and having great sex provoked by free porn and herbal Viagra.</b>
March 10, 2003 11:14:40 PM

Following the rather disappointing results of an early beta unit posted last week here on SR, Western Digital did its best to get us a production sample of its 10,000 RPM Serial ATA Raptor WD360GD as soon as possible. We're pleased to report that the drive makes great strides in desktop/workstation/single-user performance and delivers incremental gains in server/multi-user speed.
We've placed results for the production sample in the Performance Database. This is a great time for newer readers to acquaint themselves with this SR feature. Simply follow the link (which is also always available from the top frame) and choose a sort of your favorite index. Once a sort appears, you can compare as many drives as you'd like head-to-head in a few steps.

Check out the Raptor's performance and see why we can't wait for it to flood the channels :) 

straight off their website, and even if it weren't for that it's THE Internet after all, regardless of what they do to sell it (except for possibly putting on some crazy price-tag) there WILL be stores online that offer it...

also, enterprise only would be a bad idea ... especially since the 15K drives, and even some of the 10K SCSI drives beat the crap out of it in the enterprise picture ... it's a whole other story in the rest of the tests so WD might actually make more selling it to enthusiasts :p 
March 10, 2003 11:19:39 PM

im not holding my breath. What is good for the enthusiast is not necessarily best or most profitable for them.

They may not want to compromise their JB lineup just yet... and production numbers of the raptor would still be pretty low i would imagine.

<b>"If spam wasn't totally bogus, Hotmail users would be well-endowed, slim people with hair who make big money working at home and having great sex provoked by free porn and herbal Viagra.</b>
March 11, 2003 3:42:47 AM

pesimistic point of view...

It is true that I don't go all out with the latest and greatest videocard or CPU for a number of reasons. However, with harddrives I was really looking for anything BUT tons of space so this Raptor may be smaller than their JB HDDs but it seems to be the perfect solution for me now (well opposed to the beta sample anyhow).

I'm just saying they WILL produce it and sell it, I don't think it on its own could take out their whole JB fact people that need more storage definitly won't be going with the current Raptor, I got their 120 gig in my server but fastest PC in the house deserves a RAID 0 and I was considering IDE but suddenly this seems so much better...
March 12, 2003 4:04:52 AM

great sig ... After looking at the way Barracuda V RAID 0 acted VS WD's 80 Gig SE drive I got nothing but great expectations with the higher RPM and lower seek time ... I think I'm going to double my RAM as I'm waiting for them to show up, however if WD plans to replace their Special Edition drives with these they'll need to have them come in all sorts of "flavors" (disk size for the most part) because while people like me find the amount of space of these things just right, I can see how some people will definity restate many times that it is too little for the things they do.
March 12, 2003 7:39:54 PM

My Bad These are th SR production review numbers compared to the top of the line WD 200Gig JB version.

Device Western Digital Raptor WD360GD (36 GB SATA) Western Digital Caviar WD2000JB (200 GB ATA-100)

Low Level Suite 1.0 WD360GD WD2000JB
Analyze Disk Read Service Time 8.6 ms 14.8 ms
Analyze Disk Write Service Time 0.0 ms 0.0 ms
WB99 Disk/Read Transfer Rate - Begin 63.1 MB/sec 56.5 MB/sec
WB99 Disk/Read Transfer Rate - End 45.0 MB/sec 32.8 MB/sec

Desktop/Workstation Suite 1.0 WD360GD WD2000JB
SR Office DriveMark 2002 500 IO/sec 431 IO/sec
SR High-End DriveMark 2002 524 IO/sec 427 IO/sec
SR Bootup DriveMark 2002 526 IO/sec 391 IO/sec
SR Gaming DriveMark 2002 625 IO/sec 546 IO/sec
Unreal Tournament v4.36 505 IO/sec 442 IO/sec
Half-Life: Counterstrike v1.3 559 IO/sec 485 IO/sec
Diablo II: Lord of Destruction v1.09b 413 IO/sec 348 IO/sec
The Sims: House Party 625 IO/sec 549 IO/sec
Black & White v1.1 457 IO/sec 413 IO/sec

Ziff-Davis WinBench 99 WD360GD WD2000JB
Business Disk WinMark 99 18.4 MB/sec 16.4 MB/sec
High-End Disk WinMark 99 45.7 MB/sec 36.9 MB/sec
AVS/Express 3.4 32.1 MB/sec 29.4 MB/sec
FrontPage 98 183.6 MB/sec 177.0 MB/sec
MicroStation SE 52.4 MB/sec 47.6 MB/sec
Photoshop 4.0 21.3 MB/sec 16.2 MB/sec
Premiere 4.2 43.4 MB/sec 34.2 MB/sec
Sound Forge 4.0 94.3 MB/sec 66.5 MB/sec
Visual C++ 5.0 59.7 MB/sec 45.3 MB/sec

Server Suite 1.0 WD360GD WD2000JB
SR File Server DriveMark 2002 193 IO/sec 129 IO/sec
1 I/O 123 IO/sec 78 IO/sec
4 I/O 127 IO/sec 83 IO/sec
16 I/O 149 IO/sec 104 IO/sec
64 I/O 170 IO/sec 118 IO/sec
SR Web Server DriveMark 2002 183 IO/sec 115 IO/sec
1 I/O 110 IO/sec 67 IO/sec
4 I/O 116 IO/sec 76 IO/sec
16 I/O 141 IO/sec 99 IO/sec
64 I/O 165 IO/sec 89 IO/sec

Environmental Suite 1.0 WD360GD WD2000JB
Idle Noise dB/A@0.7" 45.5 dB/A@0.7"
Net Temperature Celsius 19.7 Celsius
Ambient Temperature Celsius 24.9 Celsius
Drive Temperature Celsius 44.6 Celsius
March 12, 2003 8:05:24 PM

After looking at the production version review numbers. There is little doubt that I will be purchasing a pair of Raptors. In a SATA/RAID configuration these drives will be great for my needs. The size bothers me a bit, but I only need about 80gig. I guess my trade off is storage for increased performance. Which means next purchase is a single PATA WD 200gig for mass storage in about 6 months. Assuming I can get a couple of these within the next couple of weeks.
March 12, 2003 8:16:30 PM

Here are a couple of places that you can pre-order the Raptors from. I have no idea if these places are any good, or how long it will take them to actually GET the drives, but I found them when doing a search on Pricewatch and figured I'd share the info with the rest of you folks.

<A HREF="" target="_new">Mark One Computers, Inc.</A> (scroll to the bottom of the page)

<A HREF="" target="_new">Royal Computer, Inc.</A>

These sites are claiming availability to be the middle to end of March.
March 12, 2003 10:15:01 PM

I only knew about one of these, but now there's another one ... the price seems to be pretty solid 160ish + times 2 would end up being around 320 and then HighPoint or Promise (around 400 for the whole SATA 10K HDDs RAID 0 setup) ... The controller is the question in my case.

Motherboard I got does not have SATA and I'm not planning on upgrading the motherboard as I love my Asus P4T-E overall, at least until I can get a motherboard with true 200Mhz FSB.

Back to that article I wish I could find a link of - it was 2 Tom's Hardware newsletters away but I didn't keep the newsletter :(  ... It mentioned WD working hard with Promise, 3ware and a few others but HighPoint was NOT in the list and 3ware's wayyyy out of my league so I hope Tom's Hardware does some raid0 tests, or at least single drive tests with the different controllers before I place my order.

I am very curious about the difference controllers would make in performance with the same drive.
March 13, 2003 5:04:53 AM

my bet/hope is on :p 
April 21, 2003 8:09:34 PM

I still haven't purchased a set of these. Has anyone seen what they can do in a RAID situation?
April 25, 2003 8:10:58 PM

Newegg has these for sale now. Anyone bought one and used it yet? I was wanting to use it for my a7n8x, but i wanna see what other people's problems are
April 25, 2003 10:56:14 PM

Yes I am also interested in getting one of these... available here also...

To err is human... to really screw things up you need a computer!
April 27, 2003 7:46:08 AM

I recently got a pair of the raptors for my new vapochill system. Im just waiting on my ram to try them out, im adding a wd 120gb SE for additional drive space. Im hoping they will fly in a raid 0 config , from what i've seen in benchmarks they will.