Consumer HDD Reviews
Consumer hard drive reviews include 2.5" HDDs with 5mm, 7mm or 9.5mm z-heights and 3.5" form factor hard drives. The consumer hard drive review category also includes solid state hybrid drive (SSHD) reviews which focus on hard drives united with flash storage for caching and better overall performance.
by Tucker Mindrum

WD Red Review (6TB, NASware 3.0)

WD was first to market with a duty-specific NAS drive when they launched the Red family over two years ago. They're now onto the third iteration of the 3.5" drive (we previously review the WD Red Pro), which includes an updated firmware, NASware 3.0, and new larger 5TB and 6TB capacities. The top end 6TB drive of course offers a 50% bump over the previous largest Red and is now the largest NAS HDD on the market as of this review. As part of this release, WD is also supporting 8-bay NAS units with the Reds, up from a recommended 5-bays in the prior generation, creating a grand total of up to 48TB raw within a single NAS unit. That's a massive amount of data and thus good news for small offices or those with ever-expanding media collections that need to be able to keep up with their data growth. 

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by Josh Linden

HGST 4TB Deskstar NAS HDD Review

The HGST Deskstar NAS is built on HGST’s 3.5-inch 7,200RPM Deskstar consumer drive platform and is intended for consumer and small business NAS appliances which are typically sold diskless. While the NAS designation implies a priority on reliability and capacity over performance, HGST has used a 7,200RPM platform rather than the typical 5,400RPM for drives in this class and reports seek times of less than 12ms in manufacturer benchmarks. The 7,200 RPM spindle speed is primarily employed in order to reduce the amount of time the drive must remain active in order to complete I/O operations, potentially giving small NAS users a higher-performance alternative to the standard 5K NAS drives or much more expensive enterprise-class HDDs.

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by Tucker Mindrum

Samsung Spinpoint M9T Hard Drive Review

The Samsung Spinpoint M9T hard drive for portable and space constrained devices provides a massive 2TB of storage in a standard 9.5mm, 2.5” form factor. This innovative drive, which provides the largest storage available in a standard drive height, is ideal for the consumer wishing to greatly supplement the storage of their notebook, game system or other unique application.

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by Kevin OBrien

WD Black2 SSD/HDD Review

The WD Blackis a combination drive for portable users that presents both a 1TB HDD and 120GB SSD to the host system leveraging only a single SATA port. Rather than only enhance their hybrid HDD portfolio, WD Labs came up with the idea to essentially sandwich two drives together. The architecture is both novel and pretty impressive. Each drive is managed by a controller that plays traffic cop, directing the IO to each drive from the single SATA port. The drive comes in just the single 1TB/120GB capacity point and has a 9.5mm 2.5" form factor. 

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by Lyle Smith

WD Black 4TB Desktop Hard Drive Review (WD4003FZEX)

The WD Black 4TB desktop hard drive is the latest high-capacity, high-performance drive from WD. The 4TB Black isn't entirely new of course, WD has been shipping a drive in this configuration for over a year. The prior 4TB model, WD4001FAEX, was a big step up at the time as it doubled the capacity of the 2TB Caviar Black and topped throughput by 12%. This time around, the WD4003FZEX doesn't get WD any higher capacity, but it does boast some aggressive performance claims. WD figures performance gains of anywhere between 26%-48% depending on the capacity thanks to an improved dual-core processor and other controller and firmware improvements.

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by Adam Armstrong

Seagate Desktop SSHD Review

The Seagate Desktop SSHD hybrid is the first desktop 3.5" form factor, 6Gb/s SATA interface drive. The SSHD hybrid is Seagate's marriage of solid state performance with hard disk drive capacity at an affordable price. Using NAND flash to increase system performance, Seagate claims the SSHD hybrid will increase system performance by up to 4x faster than standard 7,200 RPM HDD by using adaptive memory technology that learns the data users access most frequently and adds it to the solid-state memory for instant access.

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by StorageReview Enterprise Lab

Seagate Desktop HDD.15 Review (ST4000DM000)

The Seagate Desktop HDD.15 is a 3.5" form factor, 6Gb/s SATA interface drive with a unique spindle speed of 5,900RPM that hits the 4TB capacity mark and is explicitly designed for desktop implementation. Building on their 3TB Barracuda drive (now rebranded HDD.14), the Desktop HDD.15 uses Seagate's 1TB platters inside. Thanks to the slower spindle speed, Seagate has been able to drive down power consumption on the Desktop HDD.15 to an average of 7.5W, an idle rating of 5W, and standup and sleep mode ratings of just 0.75W.

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by StorageReview Enterprise Lab

WD Red 2.5" 1TB HDD Review (WD10JFCX)

The WD Red family of NAS-tuned hard drives is a perfect example of the ways mature technology like the hard drive can continue to be specialized for new applications. Today WD has announced new additions to the Red lineup; two 2.5-inch drives, which will be the first drives of that form factor on the market that are optimized for use with small network attached storage. If WD is correct in their market assessment, there will be a growing demand for small form factor NAS devices, and developing Red HDDs in the smaller form factor will give the company a head start.

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by StorageReview Enterprise Lab

WD Red 4TB HDD Review (WD40EFRX)

WD's Red 4TB HDD expands on the company's current offering with 33% more raw storage capacity than previously available in the same 3.5" form factor with a 6Gb/s SATA interface. The WD Red line also features 1TB, 2TB, and 3TB models, but now consumers and small businesses with one- to five-bay NAS units can install or upgrade to the full 4TB maximum, the most robust storage capacity in the industry. Other standard features with the Red 4TB are a 64MB cache and WD's Intellipower low power spindle. This Intellipower technology is significant as drives in this segment experience continuous 24x7 operation and are required to consume minimal amounts of energy in order to reduce costs.

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by Josh Shaman

Toshiba SSHD Review (MQ01ABDH)

The Toshiba MQ01ABDH is a SSHD that ranges up to 1TB in capacity, features performance assisted by 32MB of DRAM as a buffer and 8GB of Toshiba's own NAND flash, and comes in a slim 7mm (MQ01ADFH) or standard 9.5mm (MQ01ABDH) form factor. As with almost all other HDDs hitting the market these days, the MQ01ABDH spins at 5,400RPM, which helps to reduce power consumption which matches the intended applications. Since the Toshiba SSHDs (which is how they'll be referenced in this review) are shipping in both the slim and standard form factors, the drives are primarily designed for thin and light notebooks where users want to leverage the transfer rates of SSDs without making the sacrifice of surrendering several hundred gigabytes of storage.

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