Decision at 250 GB: Maxtor MaXLine Plus II vs. Western Digital WD2500JB

Technical Data: Maxtor 7Y250P0 Vs. WD2500JB

  Maxtor 7Y250P0 WD2500JB
Capacity 250 GB 250 GB
Rotation speed 7,200 rpm 7,200 rpm
Access time "<=" 9.0 ms 8.9 ms
Interface UltraATA/133 or Serial ATA / 150 UltraATA/100
Cache memory 8 MB 8 MB
Error rate "<1" at 1015 bits read "<1" at 1014 bits read
Start-stop cycles ">" 50,000 50,000
Included in package Hard drive Hard drive
80-pin ribbon cable
UltraATA/100-Controller (Promise Ultra100 TX2)
Driver/ disk manager
MTBF / MTTF ">" 1,000,000 hrs ?
Warranty 3 years 3 years

When you compare them directly, it becomes apparent that the specifications of the Maxtor drive lie somewhat above those of the WD drive. The interface offers more (theoretical) potential, and the reliability claims are also marginally higher. Here, it is fitting that the write transfer rate is lower: it seems as if the write cache function is not as intensely used, and that safety is the top priority.

By contrast, Western Digital wants to offer a drive that can be used in any computer with its WD2500; thus, they include a generous bundle of accessories, including installation materials, a controller and disk management software. The Ultra ATA/100 interface is by no means inferior to the faster interface of the MaXLine drive. It's completely acceptable.

Test Setup

Test System
Processor Intel Pentium 4, 2.0 GHz
256 kB L2-Cache (Willamette)
Motherboard Intel D845EBT, Intel 845E chipset
RAM 256 MB DDR/PC2100, CL2, Infineon
IDE Controller i845E UltraDMA/100 controller (ICH4)
Silicon Image Sil3112, Serial ATA
Display Adapter NVIDIA GeForce2 MX 400
Network Card 3COM 905TX PCI 100 MBit
Operating System Windows XP Pro 5.10.2600
Service Pack 1
Benchmarks and Tests
Office Applications ZD WinBench 99 - Business Disk Winmark 1.2 c't h2benchw
High-End Applications ZD WinBench 99 - High-End Disk Winmark 1.2
Performance Measurements HD Tach 2.61, c't h2benchw
I/O performance Intel I/O meter
Drivers and Settings
Graphics Driver NVIDIA reference driver 29.42
Drivers Intel Application Accelerator 2.3
DirectX Version 9
Resolution 1024x768, 16 bit, 85 Hz refresh
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