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Fujitsu MAN3367
  August 20, 2001 Author: Eugene Ra  

Fujitsu MAN Available Capacities *
Model Number
Capacity
MAN3184
18.4 GB
MAN3367
36.7 GB
MAN3735
73.5 GB
* The benchmark scores presented in this review represent expected performance across the entire line.
Estimated Flagship Price: $TBD (73.5 GB)
Evaluation unit provided by Fujitsu America, Inc.


Introduction

Over the past few years, Fujitsu's line of 10,000 RPM drives has been quietly (both figuratively and literally!) delivering excellent performance that contends for a performance crown. Though better contacts with Seagate and Quantum/Maxtor have kept SR's spotlight elsewhere, one shouldn't ignore Fujitsu's line. Let's take a look at their latest, the MAN3367.

Like the Seagate Cheetah 73LP and Maxtor Atlas 10k III, the Fujitsu MAN3367 packs 18 gigabytes of data onto a single platter. A flagship four-platter design yields a 73 GB capacity. The MAN's specified seek time is ambitious- at 4.5 milliseconds it ties the Atlas 10k III as the lowest claimed for a 10k RPM drive. And, like the Atlas, the MAN goes beyond the Cheetah 73LP with a roomy, 8-meg buffer.

The evaluation unit reviewed in this article features an Ultra160 SCSI interface. Fujitsu plans to ship both Ultra160 and, when the infrastructure is in place, Ultra320 SCSI drives. The performance differences gained by the Ultra320 version should be negligible in all cases excepting only huge multi-drive arrays servicing applications that require high transfer rates. A single MAN won't come close to saturating an Ultra160 channel.

Fujitsu rests on the brink of entering the ultra-high-end stakes with the introduction of its 15k RPM MAM series. Until then, however, the MAN represents the manufacturer's state of the art. The MAN targets the highest level of requirements, servicing high-end workstations, transaction servers, AV editing, etc. A representative enterprise-class 5-year warranty backs the drive.


WB99/Win2k Low-Level Measurements

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Click here to examine the STR graph for this drive

The MAN3367's access time comes in at 8.1 milliseconds according to WinBench 99. Subtracting three milliseconds to account for the average rotational latency of a 10,000 RPM drive yields a measured seek time of 5.1 milliseconds, a bit off of the claimed 4.5 mark. Such a score nonetheless bests the Seagate Cheetah 73LP's time by 0.4 ms. It trails Maxtor's Atlas 10k III by a scant yet measurable 0.2 ms.

Outer-zone transfer rates weigh in at 55.4 MB/sec, lagging slightly behind the Cheetah 73LP while leading the Atlas 10k III by roughly the same margin. Inner-zone rates come in higher than the competition with a score of 35.8 MB/sec.


WB99/Win2k WinMarks

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Fujitsu's Business Disk WinMark 99 score of 7.3 MB/sec trails that of Seagate's Cheetah 73LP by a margin of 17%. Similarly, the MAN3367 trails the Atlas 10k III in the High-End Disk WinMark 99 by about 15%. ZD's WinMark suite has admittedly never been a strong point of Fujitsu's drives. How does it fare in IOMeter, though?


IOMeter Performance

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It's in IOMeter that the MAN3367 gets to flex its muscles. The drive's File Server Index (a normalized score of Light, Medium, and Heavy loads) bests the Atlas 10k III by over 9%. The margin is much narrower in the Workstation Index... nonetheless, the Fujitsu stays on top by about 3%. The MAN's lead grows back to 9% in the Database Index. With the Cheetah 73LP trailing the Atlas in all three IOMeter categories, it doesn't even enter the equation.


Conclusion

Fujitsu's drives have long been famous for their low levels of heat and noise. The MAN is no exception, though we can't quite proclaim the MAN3367, a two-platter model, quieter than the four-platter Atlas 10k III. The two were on par with each other in both idle and seek areas. This illustrates just how mainstream 10k RPM drives have become. As a two-disc model, however, the MAN3367 does operate a bit cooler to the touch.

The StorageReview.com Safe Buy Award



Simply put, this designation means we'd purchase this product without regret. Sure, there may be a slightly better, slightly faster, and/or slightly less-expensive model from a competitor, but you can't go wrong with this particular unit. This award is applicable, of course, to all units at the top of their class, but also applies to units that, though not quite best-of-class, provide a strong showing nonetheless. Overall, the MAN scores in delivering performance where it matters. While its WinBench 99 results lag behind the competition, solid scores in IOMeter File Server and Database indices put it ahead of the competition from Maxtor and Seagate. The MAN is a solid choice for applications where expense and/or heat put 15k RPM drives out of the equation. Results like these, however, make the wait for the 15k MAM-series even more agonizing .

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