Seagate's 1.5TB Barracuda: Bigger And Better?


Seagate is the first hard drive maker to deliver a hard drive with a capacity exceeding 1 TB. The Barracuda 7200.11 family now sports a 1.5 TB top model, and its test results are ambiguous. On the plus side, the drive delivers excellent throughput of almost 130 MB/s. This is more than Seagate states on the official datasheet and it is a new record for 3.5” 7,200 RPM drives in our test labs. These results are reflected in the PCMark05 file write benchmark.

The 1.5 TB Mammoth is a Storage Drive

However, the drive delivers average I/O performance and it showed a considerably higher power requirement than specified by Seagate. We’ll look into that, but at this point it is safe to say that Seagate’s new 1.5 TB drive is an excellent storage drive, but no more than that. The power consumption is higher than the requirements of other 1 TB drives, but in the context of a 80+ watts in a PC, it may be negligible for many users. Also, if you can reach your target capacity with fewer hard drives, you’ll require less power overall. As long as there is no competition, there is no alternative to getting the Seagate drive. And while it’s certainly good, it doesn’t win across the board.

WD’s RE3 is an Application Drive

The new RAID Edition 3 (RE3) drive from Western Digital was more convincing to us for use as a system drive. Although it is limited to a 110 MB/s throughput, we consider this still sufficient today. The real strength of the RE3 drive is its very quick access time and high I/O performance, which beats the entire 7,200 RPM hard drive competition and leads to nice levels in the performance per watt measurement.