A Quartet Of 500 GB HDDs Under $60

The Warhorse: Samsung Spinpoint F--500 GB

The Spinpoint F is a success story, as the drive has been available for much more than a year and is still selling without major modifications. Samsung wanted to be the first to ship a three-platter terabyte drive in 2007, but it lost this title to Western Digital. However, WD managed to be first by sending ahead its Green Power 1 TB drive, which only spins at 5,400 RPM. Since the introduction of the Spinpoint F, Samsung has had various capacity points including the 500 GB version we’re looking at today. Unlike the larger capacity versions, which utilize up to 32 MB of cache memory, the 500 GB HD502IJ only has 8 MB.

Still Solid Performance...

Despite the relatively old age of the product, the Spinpoint F still performs well enough. Its throughput maximum of 97.5 MB/s is fast enough to achieve third place in this comparison, which is the same position the drive reaches in the application and I/O benchmarks.

...But Outdated Efficiency

Samsung loses ground in our access time benchmark, and when it comes to power consumption, efficiency and surface temperature. In these areas, the age of this product seems to have become a disadvantage, as the newest drives—Hitachi’s Deskstar 7K1000.B and the WD Caviar Blue—deliver equal or better performance with much lower power consumption.