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Maxtor's DiamondMax Plus 300 GB Monster

Conclusion: Large, Fast, Quiet-if Only The Warranty Were Longer

Even if the DiamondMax Plus 300 GB isn't nimble enough to take on the faster-spinning flagships from Western Digital and Maxtor, its overall performance is respectable for a 5,400 rpm drive. Above all, the excellent data transfer rates are certainly welcome.

Only the longer seek times resulting from the low turn rate and the lower I/O performance mean this disk makes little sense for demanding users running it under permanent load or as a system drive. That said, the hard drive is not designed to do this. After all, anyone able to cough up the princely sum of around $411 will no doubt have their own operating system hard drive that also spins quicker. A 7,200 rpm 80 GB hard drive with 8 MB of cache will currently set you back little more than $106.

In view of its large storage capacity, the warranty of just one year is dubious, since even in two years, 300 GB should still be big enough to save it from the scrap heap. Even if warranties of several years are reserved for the top 7,200 rpm models, a two-year warranty would at least reduce the vendor's risk of having to honor a warranty of two years. Ultimately, equipment purchases should not only be a question of numbers, but should involve a fair degree of trust, too.

However, it is curretly part of a promotion, which means that if you go for the kit now, the card will be included.