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Hitachi's 4 TB Hard Drives Take On The 3 TB Competition

Test Setup And Comparison Table

System Hardware
HardwareDetails
CPUIntel Core i5-2500K (32 nm, Sandy Bridge, D2), 4C/4T, 3.3 GHz, 4 x 256 KB L2 Cache, 6 MB L3 Cache, w/ HD Graphics 3000, 95 W TDP, 3.7 GHz max. Turbo Boost
Motherboard (LGA 1155)Gigabyte Z68X-UD3H-B3, Revision: 2.0, Chipset: Intel Z68, BIOS: F3
RAM2 x 2 GB DDR3-1333, Corsair TR3X6G1600C8D
System SSDIntel X25-M G1, 80 GB, Firmware 0701, SATA 3 Gb/s
ControllerIntel PCH Z68 SATA 6Gb/s
Power SupplySeasonic X-760 760 W, SS-760KM Active PFC F3
Benchmarks
Performance Measurementsh2benchw 3.16 PCMark 7 1.0.4
I/O PerformanceIOMeter 2006.07.27 Fileserver-Benchmark Webserver-Benchmark Database-Benchmark Workstation-Benchmark Streaming Reads Streaming Writes 4K Random Reads 4K Random Writes
System Software & Drivers
DriverDetails
Operating SystemWindows 7 x64 Ultimate SP1
Intel Inf9.2.0.1030
Intel Rapid Storage10.​5.​0.​1026

Comparison Table

ManufacturerHitachiHitachi
ModelDeskstar 5K4000Deskstar 7K4000
Model NumberHDS5C4040ALE630HDS724040ALE640
Form Factor3.5"3.5"
Capacity4 TB4 TB
Spindle Speed5400 RPM7200 RPM
Other Capacities1.5, 2 TB1.5, 2 TB
Platters55
Cache32 MB64 MB
InterfaceSATA 6Gb/sSATA 6Gb/s
Operating Temperature5-60°C5-60°C
Specified Idle Power4.9 W6.9 W
Measured Idle Power4.7 W7.3 W
Operating Shock (2 ms, read)70 G70 G
ManufacturerHitachiHitachi
ModelDeskstar 5K3000Deskstar 7K3000
Model NumberHDS5C3030ALA630HDS723030ALA640
Form Factor3.5"3.5"
Capacity3TB3TB
Spindle Speed5400 RPM7,200 RPM
Other Capacities1.5, 2 TB1.5, 2 TB
Platters55
Cache32 MB64 MB
InterfaceSATA 6Gb/sSATA 6Gb/s
Operating Temperature5-60°C5-60°C
Specified Idle Power4.8 W6.8 W
Measured Idle Power4.9 W7.1 W
Operating Shock (2 ms, read)70 G70 G
ManufacturerSeagateSeagate
ModelBarracuda XTBarracuda
Model NumberST33000651ASST3000DM001
Form Factor3.5"3.5"
Capacity3TB3 TB
Spindle Speed7,200 RPM7,200 RPM
Other Capacities2 TB0.75, 1, 1.5, 2 TB
Platters53
Cache64 MB64 MB
InterfaceSATA 6Gb/sSATA 6Gb/s
Operating Temperature5-60°C0-60°C
Specified Idle Power6.4 W5.4 W
Measured Idle Power7.4 W5.2 W
Operating Shock (2 ms, read)63 G80 G
ManufacturerWestern Digital
ModelCaviar Green
Model NumberWD30EZRS
Form Factor3.5"
Capacity3 TB
Spindle Speed5400 RPM
Other Capacities2.5 TB
Platters4
Cache64 MB
InterfaceSATA 6Gb/s
Operating Temperature0-60°C
Specified Idle Power5.5 W
Measured Idle Power6.1 W
Operating Shock (2 ms, read)65 G
  • jsowoc
    Good review.

    Did you encounter any issues with testing drives this large (they need a GPT vs MBR, and booting from them also requires a specific setup)?
    Reply
  • JOSHSKORN
    I'm curious, can you install Windows 7 x64 to these 4 TB drives and will the full drive be recognized? With the latest motherboards, of course.

    At that capacity, why bother with 5400 RPM?
    Reply
  • Darkerson
    Nice review. I could use a few of those, but until they have more competition and the prices come down, I can wait.
    Reply
  • blackbirden
    Ony thing i miss from the review is noice level, atleast a subjective one for all who uses them in a htpc or mediastation, do you have any comments on the noice?
    Reply
  • kinggremlin
    Not sure if there is some sort of pricing glitch going on at Newegg right now, but the Hitachi 7K3000 is currently about $400 plus $7 shipping. That's doesn't sound like the value sweet spot this article mentions multiple times for the 3TB capacities. As also mentioned here, for drives this size, speed is not the be-all-end-all. The $300 Hitachi 5400RPM 4TB drive looks like a much better buy than $407 for a 7K3000.
    Reply
  • Achoo22
    I'm pretty disappointed that there aren't multiple points of note regarding expected drive lifetimes, warranties, and return policies in this roundup.

    I have had an incredible failure rate with hard drives beginning around the time that the move to perpendicular recording became the norm. I am not alone in this regard. I'm pretty sure that the drive manufacturer's are aware of serious reliability issues, but their RMA policies are ridiculous. I would be willing to pay current market prices for a new drive if vendors stepped up their game with quality control and some appropriate policies addressing data security in the event that a drive is returned - the risk of granting someone else access to my banking, tax information, and whatever else was on the failed drive is generally not worth returning the drive. Vendors know this, and take advantage of it. Until the situation changes, or drives return to their previous rock-bottom sale prices, I will do everything in my power to avoid purchasing more hard drives.
    Reply
  • I have one 3TB Hitachi and several (>20) 2 TBs mixed from Seagate and WD. I'm impressed with 3TB Hitachi drive, and also I'm very disappointed by Seagate which cut their warranties to 1 year. No more Seagate in my home NAS until they improve the offering. Sorry Seagate, I was a Seagate-only user until you screw up with 7200.11, take advantage of the flooding, rised the prices and cut the warranties.
    Reply
  • Achoo22
    blackbirdenOny thing i miss from the review is noice level, atleast a subjective one for all who uses them in a htpc or mediastation, do you have any comments on the noice?There hasn't been a truly loud hard drive on the market for many years. It shouldn't be an issue.
    Reply
  • outlw6669
    Achoo22There hasn't been a truly loud hard drive on the market for many years. It shouldn't be an issue.My Hitachi 2TB drives beg to differ.
    When they start chugging along, it sounds like a snow plow clearing a parking lot in my room :(
    Reply
  • jacknoll
    If someone could clear up this thing for me:

    I see two parameters for each drive: The media transfer speed and the I/O performance. The first one sounds like the speed to read/write to the disk. AFAIK, it's the speed at which the drive actually reads/writes bits to/from the surface of the platter. In that case, what does the I/O performance mean? It sounds really similar to read/write, but reading these reviews, I get the feeling there's more to I/O.

    Thanks.
    Reply