nickapalooza

What Are The Most Reliable, Long-lasting Drives?

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Dunno how to interpret it, but an overwhelming majority of the old computers I cannibalize for parts (that still work) have Seagate drives. That *might* testify a history of dependable drives, if you would take my word for it. Recently, My two

Maxtor 160 GB drives are crapping out on me (I think...one is clicking, which I'm pretty sure is a bad sign, the other may not be functioning due to some other hardware failure...yet to be determined). And, I've had a total of 2 IBM Deathstars die (75GPs) and two more (60GXPs) that are either never recognized, or when they are, they develop bad sectors (only correctable by Hitachi's DFT by writing 0's) so quickly they're basically unusable.

My next purchase will be 2 Seagate SATA drives. (It's always 2 because I do alot of video compression, and reading from 1 & writing to the other results in silky-smooth video compression loving...no hdd thrashing.)

As for DVD burners, I haven't had much experience other than my Plextor 708A & a Sony DRU....something. Frankly, I have brand loyalty to Plextor, that because I've burnt over 600 cds (this much I know) without any explicit burner problems, and I've burnt over 200 DVDs with my Plextor cd & dvd burners, respectively. I love them both. Only problem with the Plextor dvd burner is that it rips DVDs at 2x, which leaves one wanting a hacked drive bios (or a LiteOn DVD-ROM).

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lol, and what prompted that response was to rfarris...I was looking for drive reliabilty, and oddly enough, this was the first place I ended up.

Furthermore, am I insane, stupid, both, or...correct? ...I tried to edit my prior response, but could not find an "edit" button. Is there an edit button?

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Yup! A DVD burner, 3Ware and Raid 5 are your friends.

Actually, I'd recommend raid 1 or 10 with 3Ware controllers if your data is that important.

I believe it's been resolved by the 8500/9500 SATA line, but the 6800 and 750x-xx line are well known for having firmware updates released for them that ONLY were released to FIX problems with their raid-5 implementation.

Yep... The 7506 and 8506 lines I'm wary of after reading that 3Ware document about riser cards on a 66 MHz bus. I experience occasional black screens on reboot with a 8506-4 running at 66 MHz and 64 bits wide (PCI-X)(Supermicro X5DAL-G). RAID 10, no risers. No data corruption or crashes though. My hunch is the issue affects non-riser setups to some degree and 3Ware doesn't want to deal with it. Perhaps RAID 5 is more sensitive to bus corruption issues.

For my last file sever project (RAID 5), I specifically hunted down a 7500-12 because that would run at only 33 MHz and avoid any potential bus issue. Less maximum peformance (only 266 MB/sec on a Supermicro P4SCT+II), but considering my link is gig-e, it's more than adequate. Previous posts here have suggested that the 7506 and 8506 are not fixable with firmware to run at 66 MHz. That it's a hardware problem (as in inadequate design). So yeah it's an issue..

Can anyone here suffering from the RAID 5 corruption issue confirm an improvement after upgrading the firmware?

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just today i read about some new cd technology called Blue-Ray on slashdot that will be up to store about 50gb's of data on a single cd (or at least that's what they're shooting for). ps3 plans to use this for their game cd's. anyone know if there will ever be a burner for these type of cd's? or any idea how much it would cost/speed?

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BluRay is going to ship with a recording standard/format already in place. (At least thats the plan). For the forseeable future though, its going to be rather expensive. Even Dual Layer DVD recordable media is pretty expensive.. but BluRay is in a whole other world of expense, at least right now.

I think there are already BluRay recorders that can record up to about ~23GB of data on a single disc; but they cost in the thousands, and the discs make dual layer DVD media look cheap.

If you search on google, you'll see some scattered info about Blu-Ray, and reviews of the few recorders currently available for sale (most in Japan I think)

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The new recorder will cost around $2780, the 50GB LM-BRM50 disc will cost around $69 and the 25GB LM-BRM25 disc will cost around $32, Matsushita says. :D

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NEC 2500a or 2510a are one of the best DVD-burners out there right now, for a very good price also.

I'd recommend Pioneer, and only Pioneer.

NEC burners in my experience have an unusual problem: While they can burn to many different media, their ability to read said media is lacking.

For example: my 1300 can do quality burns to the media I use in my Pioneers without any problems. BUT the 1300 cannot READ the disc is just burned itself. How odd!

That's an interesting POV. For a different one, I once recommended to someone that I know that they purchase a SCSI Pioneer DVD-ROM, and later regretted it, as it seemed to have a lot more problems reading some discs than any other drive that I'm familiar with, save an old Mitsumi.

I myself recently picked up an NEC ND1300A DVD burner, and some el-cheapo CompUSA "2X" (actually 1X, CompUSA mislabeled them intentionally, it seems) Princo-made media. Arguably some of the worst DVD-R media in existance.

Anyways, with the stock firmware, I could burn to the disc at 2X, but then the drive wouldn't read it. Strange, I thought, but I tried upgrading the firmware to the newest (1.0B), and now, it reads that same disc that I burned, although only at around 2X speed. (Slightly strange, as the NEC is theoretically capable of 12X DVD-ROM reading speed, but perhaps it slows down for recorded discs, or the Princo disc is burned so poorly that it was incapable of reading faster, or the recent ND1300A firmware has a "rip lock" speed-limiting feature just like the later 2500A/2510A models. Until I flash with hacked firmware, I guess I won't know for sure if it's the last reason or not.)

Either way, though, Pioneer really aren't bad drives. I would tend to stay away from Lite-On, as it seems that they've had more than their share of "teething problems" with their DVD burner line. Acer/Benq are even arguably better in many cases.

The NEC drives seem to be: 1) just as good, 2) cheaper, and most importantly 3) easy availability of 3rd-party hacked firmwares, implementing extra features like bitsetting, and removal of unwanted features like "rip lock" and RPC-2 coding.

Not to mention the cheap and easy upgrade of ND2500A drives to DL-capable ND2510A drives. It really does seem like the NEC DVD burners, are the "Lite-On CD-RW burners" of the current generation, if you know what I mean. Cheap, hackable/overclockable, and reasonably quality of both drive and burns.

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Dunno how to interpret it, but an overwhelming majority of the old computers I cannibalize for parts (that still work) have Seagate drives.

a friend of mine actually has a few really old machines he got from *somewhere* that both have ~1gb Seagate drives. from the general consensus it seems the name Seagate pops up the most when it comes to reliability. i think i'll go with them next.

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BluRay is going to ship with a recording standard/format already in place.  (At least thats the plan).  For the forseeable future though, its going to be rather expensive.  Even Dual Layer DVD recordable media is pretty expensive.. but BluRay is in a whole other world of expense, at least right now.

  I think there are already BluRay recorders that can record up to about ~23GB of data on a single disc; but they cost in the thousands, and the discs make dual layer DVD media look cheap.

If you search on google, you'll see some scattered info about Blu-Ray, and reviews of the few recorders currently available for sale (most in Japan I think)

The last I read the main thing slowing down Blue Ray is that it is a writable standard. Hollywood wants them to make a read-only media standard before they are comfortable with allowing their copyrighted material to be mastered for Blue Ray.

Free

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@nickapalooza:

well backing up is redundant, because then you need another drive which could fail just the same, and the loop continues like that.

thats a bad reasoning.

When you have your data duplicated in 2 disks, and one of your disks fail, you can quickly buy a new disk, replace the dead one, and re-back up your data. Thus you are very very safe.

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Well if its DOA :P

I agree with the user above; if you buy a DVD burner, get Pioneer. Every single NEC DVD burner i've seen rejects a large number of media (especially cheaper discs).

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I've had zero problems with my NEC 2500. It may not be the best rated reader, but it is one of the best CD writers as far as quality and media compatibility and is a good DVD writer as well. The price can't be beat either..

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I'm also looking for a new 200gb drive but IDE, I don't have SATA :(

I've only bought 2 drives that failed on me

The first was a 2gb back in 1998ish, and I can't remember what brand it was, except that it wasn't IBM. And in that case it was actually a faulty psu that was killing parts in my computer.

The other was about a 20gb IBM, this one started clicking and refusing to spin up. This was in a friend computer when it started doing this. I managed to get his data off it by dangling the drive from it's ide cable (not the power, it wouldn't work) and then switching on. The drive's torque would twist the drive about a bit, (so make sure it's clear of other parts), and it went. It seemed that it was just the spin-up that was the problem and once it got going it went enough.

Put it on any surface, including foam, with any orientation, or hang on to it even just lightly (while it was dangling) with just 2 fingers and it wouldn't go, and I think the vibration from the psu would prevent it from going when it's weight was on the power cables.

My guess as to why the suspension worked:

Having it so that the drive could twist about when it was spinning up reduced the peak torque that the spindle motor had to put out so that the semi -burned -worn -shorting out wiring didn't have to support such a large current

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For reliability. I've had Seagate and western digital fail on me. Maxtor never has "failed" but I've had a couple of their drives start to make noises on me and I replaced them before I lost any data. Never bought IBM or Samsung.

DVD burners: I have an LG. It was cheap, I love the multi format and it seems to have great compatibility with media and other players.

I'm really surprised you got such civil responses to your thread Nick. First off, it’s not a simple question. No one really knows the answer only that ALL brands fail. Second, what is up with that 2nd post? You wait less than 30 minutes and then criticize people for not responding to a question that's been asked a million times? You never even contributed to this board before, but you sign up to ask your question and then get bossy? Geez.

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I personally have a pioneer dvr-107 and have made very few coasters using cheap 4x matrix dvd-r's with hacked firmware writing at 8x speed instead of 4. I have been looking hard at the NEC 2500a and putting the hacked firmware from the 2510 into it and spending $70 total for a 8x speed dual layer DVD burner.

As for my thoughts on Raid, I would say the best looking thing on the market for reliability and price both factored would be Raid 5. Four 300GB drives, 900GB of storage and 300GB of parity info.... how could you go wrong?

Hard drive reliability, all i can say is that i've had about several WD's go bad on me recently, a 2500 and two 800's, all JB's. I have a maxtor as my system drive now and it is tireless. Built a computer for my fiancee and put in a seagate 80GB PATA . Nice drive. My opinion? stay away from WD like the plague right now. Seagate or Maxtor look like they might be the best right now. According to the reliability survey on here, I would still stay away from the Hitachi's. I just had a deskstar 60 60GB go bad on me after 34 1/2 months though.... and i'm sure everyone knows what that series was known for. It is VASTLY important for good cooling though, and i have two 80mm fans on my drive, a 80mm exhaust on my powersupply, and 4 more 80mm exhaust on my case (the 4 move about 160 cfm continuously and can go up to more like 240 cfm) Lian-Li PC70, Mmmmm.....

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Sorta OT

Walk down memory lain, and remembered the investigation I did 20 years ago when I had to buy a 20 mega byte SCSI driver....

At that time:

Seagate was low-end, cheap drives, low quality, something to be avoided. :blink: .

IBM made extremely expensive, but (for the time) very fast drives.

Quantum was all the rave B) , with very fast and reliable drives, but at double the price compared to Seagate

Conner And Maxtor made a good reliable, but not as fast as Quantum, drives. (I bought one of these, still works! :P )

And the king of reliability was the Mylix driver, Insane prices, like 1000$ :o for 40mb driver (SCSI)

Those days, reliability and speed was a lot different from brand to brand.

(A friend of min, had a Fujitsu ST-01 RLE (ATA-like) 10mb harddriver, that was slower than his floppy driver)

Regards

P.S. In regards to your question, I am currently betting a lot of data :unsure: ; on the 5200rpm 300gb driver from matrox being reliable.

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