Well, around the same time people had noticed a certain reliablity trend, there were a couple guys who posted here saying how they were in the biz and had higher volume of drives pass through their shop than us mortals see, admonishing to "trust me" Maxtor is wonderbar. Then there's storagereview's reliability database and postings on message boards throughout the net that strongly suggest that Maxtor is poor in the reliability department. Take your pick. For your other choice, the WD SE16, it's reviewed here and discussed in several threads if you havn't already checked them out. It's the same drive as WD's RE2 with a feature turned off, lower burn in time, and lower warranty. A high performer. Hitachi's 7k500 peforms even better but I had my fill with deathstars so I woudn't touch one with a ten foot pole. As for Seagate, though a relatively low performer, based on the STR's survey, net commentary, and my own experience, it's always a contender. So much so, the question for me when getting a drive being; go for a reliable Seagate or take a chance for more performance?