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 Lyle Smith

Toshiba N300 NAS HDD Review (8TB)

Toshiba continues to lend more of its focus to the NAS drive market with the release of its N300 line, 3.5-inch hard drives designed for consumer and business/office users looking for a 24x7 high-performing, high-capacity storage solution. Like all drives of this kind, the N300 is optimized for reliability and endurance (a maximum of 180TB/year workload factor), and supports multi-RAID configurations inside NAS devices with up to 8 bays. The N300 family features a 6Gbps SATA interface, comes in capacities of 4TB, 6TB and 8TB, spin at 7,200rpm, and features 1 million hours mean time between failures.

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by Adam Armstrong

WD Red 10TB Review

WD continues to expand the capacities of its popular Red brand of HDDs with the latest being 10TB. With this new bump up in capacity an 8-bay NAS can have a whopping 80TB of capacity without adding any expansion units. The HDDs come in 3.5” form factor making them a simple drop in replacement for lower capacity HDDs that users are looking to upgrade. As with the 8TB Red, WD is using its HelioSeal helium-technology and NASware 3.0.

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by Lyle Smith

Toshiba N300 NAS HDD Review (8TB)

Toshiba continues to lend more of its focus to the NAS drive market with the release of its N300 line, 3.5-inch hard drives designed for consumer and business/office users looking for a 24x7 high-performing, high-capacity storage solution. Like all drives of this kind, the N300 is optimized for reliability and endurance (a maximum of 180TB/year workload factor), and supports multi-RAID configurations inside NAS devices with up to 8 bays. The N300 family features a 6Gbps SATA interface, comes in capacities of 4TB, 6TB and 8TB, spin at 7,200rpm, and features 1 million hours mean time between failures.

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by Adam Armstrong

Seagate BarraCuda Pro 10TB HDD Review

Part of Seagate’s new “Guardian Series,” the BarraCuda Pro is the world’s highest capacity desktop hard disk drive (HDD) topping out at a whopping 10TB. The 3.5” HDD builds off of Seagate’s past innovation to being this ultra-high capacity HDD to market. The capacity isn’t the only selling point for this drive, with 7200 RPM Seagate is claiming high performance, up to 220MB/s max sustained transfer rate. The drive has decent endurance as well for a desktop HDD at 300TB per year or 820GB per day workload rate with 24x7 usage.

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by Tucker Mindrum

Seagate Mobile HDD Review

Seagate’s new Mobile HDD provides 2TB of storage in a 7mm form factor. During a time when SSD innovation leads the market for this form factor, this drive holds unique appeal for users who want to upgrade their laptop storage without switching over. Although SSDs indisputably outperform HDDs, the Mobile HDD allows users to load up to 2TB of storage into their laptop at a fraction of the cost of an SSD.

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by Tucker Mindrum

WD Red 8TB Review

Western Digital has expanded their Red line to include an 8TB model, increasing the maximum capacity of 8-bay NAS units to 64TB so that SOHO users can get even more out of their initial server investment. WD is using their HelioSeal helium-technology to get the higher capacity much like the HGST Ultrastar Helium Drives. WD Reds still make use of NASware 3.0, which Western Digital originally released alongside the 6TB model to expand drive compatibility, allowing users to load Red drives into 8-bay servers (they were previously only recommended up to 5 bays). NASware 3.0 also improved the reliability and performance of Red drives, optimizing them for NAS environments in which downtime can be devastating.

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by Tucker Mindrum

Seagate NAS HDD 8TB Review

Seagate's new NAS 8TB HDD expands their NAS line of drives that is intended to more efficiently serve multi-drive use cases while maintaining the performance and price-point desired by SOHO users. The Seagate NAS HDD utilizes NASWorks firmware, which specifically hones drives for server functionality. In addition to enhancing host compatibility, NASWorks reduces HDD power consumption, which also reduces heat production. NAS environments, in which multiple drives may be operating simultaneously, greatly benefit from the energy efficiency of duty-specific drives. Seagate also constructed this line of HDDs with dual-plane balanced motors, which work to control the vibrations that disk drives produce. Reduced heat production paired with vibration control maximize drive performance and improve server reliability, which helps to maintain the 24/7 operability that is essential for remote access and virtualization.

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by Lyle Smith

WD Black 6TB HDD Review

WD Black has launched a 6TB version (as well as a 5TB model) of the performance-driven family of consumer-grade hard disk drives, which is a 2TB increase in storage compared to the previous 4TB model that we reviewed a few years back. Like its predecessors, the WD Black 6TB is designed to give an overall boost for heavier computing tasks, while offering a good cost per TB. It is an ideal internal storage solution for power consumers looking for the highest possible performance from the market’s current hard disk drive technology as well as those looking for an alternative to the more expensive hybrid drives.

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by Lyle Smith

Seagate Laptop SSHD 1TB Review

Seagate has updated their 2.5 inch laptop SSHD line with potential for improved performance as well as a slight increase in capacity from 750GB to 1TB. The Seagate 2.5" SSHD is equipped with a SATA interface and a 5400-RPM spindle speed, is compatible with PC, Mac, and even certain gaming consoles. Like its predecessor, the HDD part of the hybrid drive allows for the extra storage all the while offering performance close to that of an SSD due their use of NAND flash, though Seagate doesn’t offer any quoted performance numbers. 

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by Lyle Smith

Seagate Desktop SSHD 4TB Review

Designed for desktop PCs, workstations, and high-performance DAS devices, the Seagate Desktop SSHD is the company’s latest foray into the hybrid solid-state drive market. Its SSD-like qualities, coupled with the capacity benefits of hard disk drives, allows the Seagate Desktop SSHD to offer consumers unique features and capabilities over traditional HDDs, including the ability to achieve faster transfer speeds as well as quicker system boot ups. Though proper solid-state drives are continuing to lower their prices and increase in maximum capacity, hybrid drives still have a role to play in the storage market due to their cost effectiveness. The Seagate Desktop is certainly no exception in this regard.

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