1.5 TB Low-Power HDDs: Green Gets Big

Big Green: 1,500 MB Storage Mammoths

They offer huge capacity, they’re affordable, and (supposedly) they’re green. Samsung’s Spinpoint F2 EcoGreen battles the Western Digital Caviar Green WD15EADS. Which is the best high-capacity green drive for storage applications?

Why 1.5 TB?

The answer is simple: although 1.5 TB drives are still more expensive per gigabyte than 500 GB or 1 TB disks, they are still much more affordable than the latest 2 TB flagship models. We found the WD 1.5 TB Caviar Green starting at $129, which definitely is acceptable considering its capacity. In contrast, 2 TB drives still cost above $200. The 1.5 TB capacity point should still offer more than enough storage for the many months to come.

Two Types of Storage

If you want to purchase a storage product like a hard drive, you must first define its primary purpose. A performance drive—which is best for hosting your operating system, swap file, and temporary application files—should be as fast as possible. In contrast, drives meant to simply store data don’t have to deliver maximum performance, but are best having a balance of capacity, performance, and low power consumption.
While performance storage solutions are getting faster and faster (see the latest flash SSDs), high-capacity solutions are quickly becoming more efficient. Hence, we will see more and more 3.5” high-capacity hard drives, which aren’t competitive in terms of performance, but are very attractive from a performance per watt and capacity per watt standpoint. Both the WD Caviar Green WD15EADS and Samsung’s new Spinpoint F2 EcoGreen (EG) aim at this market.