Round-Up: Comparison Testing of 22 Hard Disk Drives

Western Digital WD360 Raptor: The Pioneer

Western Digital's WD360 Raptor represents a real milestone in the development and delivery of SATA drives. A 10,000 RPM spindle speed, 8 MB cache, and SATA all come together for the first time in this unit. Other vendors like Hitachi, Maxtor and Seagate couldn't really bring such a drive to market without potentially hurting their more lucrative business segment offerings, long served by their more expensive SCSI drives. In contrast, WD had no qualms about making this move because they had no existing customer base in that market to protect.

The drive's leadership position didn't last long, when the bigger, faster WD740 Raptor followed quickly in the footsteps of this pioneering product.