Stacked up against the Maxtor DiamondMax Plus 40
, its obvious competition, the Fireball Plus LM reveals an interesting contrast. In its outermost zones
, the LM can't quite keep up with the Plus 40, delivering a top sequential transfer rate
of 26.8 MB/sec, over 3 MB/sec lower than the Maxtor drive. However, the drive's STR deteriorates less over the platter
. By the time the innermost zone comes in to play, it's the LM that leads the Plus 40, 20.3 MB/sec vs. 18.5 MB/sec.
It's in the area of access time, however, that the Plus LM shines. Despite its specified 8.5 millisecond seek time, the LM turns in a WinBench 99 Disk Access Time of just 11.5ms. To put this in proper perspective, subtract the 4.17ms of latency that a 7200rpm spindle speed delivers plus a bit of overhead: The LM's average seeks take around 7ms. This means that despite its higher spec, Quantum's drive turns in the lowest access time around, beating out even the 8.2ms spec'ed 'Cuda ATA II... and Maxtor's drive, whose access time clocks in at a relatively lofty 14 milliseconds.