Performance: Access Time
As expected, the WD drive cannot work wonders, as the slow rotation speed also has an impact on access time. Nevertheless, the result is still satisfactory. Please note that this number (in milliseconds) includes seek and positioning time. In addition, the drive usually has to wait some instants, before the requested data passes under the read heads.
Performance: Content Creation Winstone 2000
In spite of its low rotational speed, the 450AA is still able to get a better result than our soon-to-be-replaced reference drive, the Seagate ST320430A, which is working at 7,200 rpm. That is obviously due to the large cache memory on the Western Digital drive. It comes with 2 MBytes, whereas the Seagate has to live with 512 kByte only.
Looking at pricewatch.com, you can find this WD drive for less than $200. That's a really good price for a good hard drive. Western Digital is not offering absolute high end capacity drives for some time now. Here, Maxtor and IBM are outplaying each other (80 and 75 GBytes). WD rather tries to offer products with the best price/performance ratio. If you just need a rather large hard drive without having special demands, you will get a timely model which is easy to handle.
With a net price of approximately 0.4 cents per megaByte, the 450AA is able to position itself at the very price/performance top. In comparison to other 5,400-drives, its performance is also at a very good level. Additionally, you won't get heat or vibration problems.