Enthusiast 2.5" HDDs: Speed or Capacity?

Incorrect Firmware Can Stop The Show

Sometimes the way to the very top can be difficult, as we found out with our first sample of the Spinpoint M5S. When we first ran our benchmark suite, we discovered irregular data transfer rates after putting together the transfer diagram.

At first we believed that the drive was damaged, because performance shouldn't drop that much, but the replacement drive behaved very much the same. Eventually, Samsung found out that the first batch of drives sent to its European office was not using the firmware found on retail drives. After updating the firmware, we saw the performance that I described, and that you will see in the benchmark section of this article.

Drive Comparison Table

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FamilyMHW2 BJ SeriesSpinPoint M5S
Model NumberMHW2160BJHM250JI
Capacity160 GB250 GB
Rotational Speed7,200 RPM5,400 RPM
Available Capacities80, 120 GB80, 120, 160 GB
Cache8 MB8 MB
NV Cache Size--
Warranty3 years3 years