Though it's a huge multi-billion dollar Korean conglomerate spanning many industries, Samsung has been a steady but quiet player in the hard disk arena. Thanks to Australian reseller Red Hill Technology, last August we were able to present our first review of a Samsung disk, a look at the SpinPoint V10200. Since then Samsung has released additional families of drives. Samsung has offered SR a look at the SpinPoint V20400, the successor to the V10200. Though a newer-generation model will soon eclipse it, a look at the V20400 should give us an idea of Samsung's performance relative to the competition.
Like most other current 5400 RPM disks, the V20400 packs 20.4 gigs per platter on up to two disks yielding a flagship capacity of about 41 GB. Samsung specifies seek time at 9 milliseconds. The drive comes equipped with 512 KB of buffer, relatively small in this age of 2 meg ATA caches.
Samsung targets this drive at entry-level OEM and upgrade markets. A three-year warranty backs the drive.
The V20400 ships exclusively with an ATA-100 interface. Remember, since ATA drives have yet to break sequential transfer rates greater than even 45 MB/sec that ATA-66 (and in many cases, even ATA-33) interfaces will run a drive with optimal performance. Our testbed remains equipped with a Promise Ultra66 controller.