kara2002

Seagate drives made in China

32 posts in this topic

Hi All,

Couldn't resit a deal @ Fry's - Seagate 200GB retail kit PATA for $74 after rebates. I had picked up this drive before and have found it to be an incredible drive in terms of performance, low heat and low noise. The first drive was made in Malaysia.

I open up the box and first thing I notice is the drive is made in Sep 2004 which means my warranty is shortened by 7 seven months (it is now April 2005). I confirmed the warranty by checking the serial # online and also calling Seagate support - so much for their 5 yr warranty claim!

Ok, losing 7 months not a biggie, the next thing I notice is that the drive is made in China! I'm not here to flame made in China, but all the drives I've purchased have been made in Singapore/Malaysia or Thailand. With the exception of a Maxtor 40GB (which died after 3 yrs, but gave me plenty of notice by making funny noises beforehand), the drives have performed extremly well.

My questions are as follows:

1) Is there an easy way to indentify where a drive is made from the outside of the box? The manufacturers used to put this on the box but not anymore. Maybe there is a way to read the serial # perhaps to find out this information.

2) Are there any higher rate of failures with drives made in China (Seagte/ WD/ Maxtor/ Hitachi) vs drives made in Singapore/Malaysia/Thailand. I have heard that Seagate has had a recent problem with their 300GB esp in the external enclosure packing (see Amazon as an example) where people have been experiencing drive failure in < 6 months. Perhaps these drives were made in China (just speculation) ...?

3) If you have a made in China hard drive can you tell me which make and model (when you bought it) and if you have run into any problems such as drive failures/excessive heat or noise etc.

4) Have all the drive manufacturers moved all production exclusively to China (obvioulsly to reduce manufacturing costs) or is it just the PATA manufacturing i.e. SATA is made outside of China.

Thanks in advance.

Kara

p.s. If anyone from Seagate reads this, the warranty period should really start from the day you purchase the drive and not the day it was manufactured. I can accept losing 1-2months due to shipping from factory to sales floor, but losing 7 months is a bit excessive.

p.p.s. To all drive manufacturers, why don't you show on the outside of the box where the drive was made? It's just a sticker after all, if all your factories are setup the same way, showing this information is no big deal.

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Dont know about markings etc, you might be able to read through the silver anti-static bag before you open it though.

The Warranty period should start from the day you bought it, I presume that you are in the US, I live in the UK and our warranty's start from when you buy the product not when it was manufactured.

I have only had good experiences from drive made in China.

I got a batch (5-10 cant remember how many) of drives, Seagate 7200.7 PATA drives, they have all been shipped no problems, they were utterly silent in a case, had a tiny amount of vibration.

Compared to exactly the same drives made elsewhere, they won hands down.

Andy

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The Warranty period should start from the day you bought it, I presume that you are in the US, I live in the UK and our warranty's start from when you buy the product not when it was manufactured.

201905[/snapback]

Actually, Seagate's official policy(atleast here in the States) is from the date of manufacture.

This was discussed in this thread. A summary:

Just did some checking...

Warranty from date of manufacture: Seagate, Western Digital

Warranty from date of purchase: Maxtor, Hitachi, Samsung

196726[/snapback]

-JoeTD

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I bought some Hitachi 80 gig ATA100 drives for use at work that are rebranded "Excel Store." These are made by Hitachi with Hitachi parts and from Hitachi designs just made in China. Im wondering if Hitachi made this China division because of labor issues or something. But these drives work great havent had any problems yet.

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I bought some Hitachi 80 gig ATA100 drives for use at work that are rebranded "Excel Store."  These are made by Hitachi with Hitachi parts and from Hitachi designs just made in China.

201953[/snapback]

:rolleyes: Notorious cheapskate, eh? Excelstor drives may be licensed Hitachi designs, but are not made by Hitachi. Additionally, any RMA procedure is likely to be a PITA, at least Excelstor does not offer any end user facilities and thus everything has to be done via the distributor. The track record at least of older Excelstor models wasn't all that good, so thanks for playing guinea pig for us. :P

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Actually, Seagate's official policy(atleast here in the States) is from the date of manufacture.

The law is what counts. If the law says that date of purchase counts, the manufacturer can stand on it's head but they'll have to replace the product.

I think many manufacturers will be getting into trouble next year. A new EU law concerning protection of the consumer states that any electronic device (and perhaps other stuff as well) purchased 1 januari 2005 or later has a warranty period of AT LEAST TWO YEARS. Very few manufacturers mention this on their website for all their products. Last time I checked at HP, IBM and Acer (looking for a laptop) they had models with only one year warranty with options of upgrading warranty - which violates the law.

Excelstor drives may be licensed Hitachi designs, but are not made by Hitachi. Additionally, any RMA procedure is likely to be a PITA

Hitachi also sells these drives under it's own brand name so they provide warranty service. Personally I think those drives stink though. Wouldn't touch them or any Hitachi for that matter if I run the risk of buying an Excelstor instead.

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Not only Seagate, I think Hitachi and soon Maxtor is going to be made in China as well. From what I heard the labor is much lower there and everyone have to make their drive there or else they can't compete in a pricewar.

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My Seagates are a mix of made in Singapore and China drives, one of them is from Thailand. There are no more "Made in Malaysia" ones anymore since they have closed their factory here years ago. ;)

Most of the Maxtors I've come across are made in Singapore. Anyway, Maxtor is gonna shutdown that one and move their manufacturing factory to China soon. :(

I guess labor costs are much cheaper in China... :ph34r:

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maxtor factory in china is up and running. so you will see lots of made in china especially the slim hddsand later the higher capacity.

as for seagate, you can check the datecode year week date. seagate fiscal year begins at july 1st or first week.

for seagate if you see seashell case, then it is singapore. if you see esd bag , then its thailand or china.

its sucks when they use the manufacturing date as wty start date.

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no hdd manufacturing company will totally move to china. they will still have to keep one or two manufacturng plants outside china as china has restriction on export quota.

moving to china base on low labour cost is not ideal for long term because china wages are also catching up.

its the large pool of young and energetic workforce that can be employ without restrictions and most customers are there and component suppliers are in china. it makes manufacturing time to ship to OEM customers and distr customers so much faster.

hitachi is constructing a massive giant plant to match seagate maxtor combine in china to gain mkt shr.

Edited by AforceII

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date of manufacture might have one advantage - they wouldnt need a receipt to prove it. If its been more than a couple monthes most people i know dont have the receipt for something anymore.

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date of manufacture might have one advantage - they wouldnt need a receipt to prove it.  If its been more than a couple monthes most people i know dont have the receipt for something anymore.

201995[/snapback]

At least some manufacturers use date of manufacture and add a few months to allow for time in stock somewhere.

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maxtor factory in china is up and running.  so you will see lots of made in china especially the slim hddsand later the higher capacity.

as for seagate, you can check the datecode year week date.  seagate fiscal year begins at july 1st or first week.

for seagate  if you see seashell case, then it is singapore.  if you see esd bag , then its thailand or china.

its sucks when they use the manufacturing date as wty start date.

201993[/snapback]

On Seagate's you used to be able to use the ESD bag/Seashell trick (Seashell = Made in Singapore, ESD bag = Made in China). This is no longer the case. Seagate personal storage drives that are made in Singapore can now come in ESD bags. A more reliable indicator is the serial number. If the serial number starts with 3 the drive was made in Singapore. If the serial number starts with 5 it was made in China.

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maxtor factory in china is up and running.  so you will see lots of made in china especially the slim hddsand later the higher capacity.

as for seagate, you can check the datecode year week date.  seagate fiscal year begins at july 1st or first week.

for seagate  if you see seashell case, then it is singapore.  if you see esd bag , then its thailand or china.

its sucks when they use the manufacturing date as wty start date.

201993[/snapback]

On Seagate's you used to be able to use the ESD bag/Seashell trick (Seashell = Made in Singapore, ESD bag = Made in China). This is no longer the case. Seagate personal storage drives that are made in Singapore can now come in ESD bags. A more reliable indicator is the serial number. If the serial number starts with 3 the drive was made in Singapore. If the serial number starts with 5 it was made in China.

202020[/snapback]

Hi All,

Just a quick update. I went back to Frys and told them my concerns about Chinese made drives, given that China is releatively new in this area. The customer service guy offered to refund my money. I asked him if we could open another box or two to see if they are all made in China and he said he would (Fry's has the capability to reshrink the packaging!). We opened a couple of boxes and to my surprise found these were made in Singapore :) Sold!

Checked the date codes in the store (via the Seagate support website) and yes still have the 7 month difference :( I'm going to call up Seagate on this again. One of the Fry's managers came by and I explained the problem to him. He agreed the 5 yr should start from date of purchase. He said Fry's would stand by the product and not to worry - I should have got this in writing!

Anyway, kudos to Fry's for wanting to help out and going the extra mile. You have earned a repeat customer :)

AforceII is correct with the beginning letter of the serial #'s

3xxxxxxx - means made in Singapore (only a few 200GB's in store)

4xxxxxxx - means made in Thailand (mainly 200GB and a few 300GB)

5xxxxxxx - means made in China (mainly 160GB and a few 200GB)

If anyone is interested Fry's has a pretty good sale ending 4/12/2005 (April 12th).

200GB for $75 after mail in rebates (excluding sales taxes)

300GB for $129 after MIR (excluding sales tax) - actually I had a friend with me and he managed to talk the sales guys down $20/drive and picked 2x300GB (made in Singapore mfg date code march 2005) so final price will be $109!

btw the 200GB /300GB (made in singapore) are in a clam shell with no ESD bag? The 200GB is labled as OEM drives manufactured by Seagate weird? Hopefully this wont affect the 5 year wty situation.

Also the 200GB made in China came in a esd and in a clam shell package - double protection!

Fry's also have some good deals on Hitachi/Maxtor and WD (also ending 4/12/2005), but I don't have any pricing information.

Thanks for everyone who wrote back. I guess in a few years, pretty much everything electronic is going to be made in China. I agree the drive makers won't make 100% of the drives there, but the majority will probably be made there. I heard Intel is setting up shop there also, so expect to see future CPU's with a made in China sticker - globalization gotta love it ;)

Regards,

Kara

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the info

beginning letter of the serial #'s

3xxxxxxx - means made in Singapore (only a few 200GB's in store)

4xxxxxxx - means made in Thailand (mainly 200GB and a few 300GB)

5xxxxxxx - means made in China (mainly 160GB and a few 200GB)

is contributed by harrell99 and not me.

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My Seagates are a mix of made in Singapore and China drives, one of them is from Thailand. There are no more "Made in Malaysia" ones anymore since they have closed their factory here years ago. ;)

Most of the Maxtors I've come across are made in Singapore. Anyway, Maxtor is gonna shutdown that one and move their manufacturing factory to China soon. :(

I guess labor costs are much cheaper in China...  :ph34r:

201985[/snapback]

and then those ex-maxtor bunch will join seagate and screw up seagate quality and reliability. seagate better not hire them.

maxtor will mostly be left with scsi hdd in singapore and very high end desktop manufacturing. actually scsi is bleeding maxtor badly unless its orders goes above from 563000 to 800 000 a qtr.

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and then those ex-maxtor bunch will join seagate and screw up seagate quality and reliability.  seagate better not hire them.

maxtor will mostly be left with scsi hdd in singapore and very high end desktop manufacturing.  actually scsi is bleeding maxtor badly unless its orders goes above from 563000 to 800 000 a qtr.

202091[/snapback]

What are you talking about? From what I heard WD is the one that has the worst workforce (from some ex WD employees who quit).

Maxtor still make their Maxline in Singapore from what I heard, only the DM9 is in China now (DM8 is cancelled). Actually, SCSI is what keeps Maxtor alive right now, from what I heard they make good $ at the moment and is carrying the company. I don't know where you get your info from (or when).

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As per the topic "Is Made in China Stuff Good", I would usually say what I always have, you get what you pay for, some "Yes", some "No". It just depends on the product, even the best manufacturers can make crap, and WD can make Raptors, that says a lot.

BTW I have used loads of Excelstor drives and they are way more reliable than the Maxtor DM 8-9's I sold during the same time period.

One more thing Lexwalker, it's nothing personal, but your an American are you not.??? Please do not insult the "English language by missing out letters. "Labour" has a "U" in it, "Colour" has a "U" in it etc. etc. Honestly it's nothing personal, it's just that there are millions of people over here who are constantly putting the missing letters into words. lease spread the word about the missing letters, and if need be find an "English Dictionary", not an "American-English Dictionary".

Regards Andy

PS: Rant over (for now).

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and then those ex-maxtor bunch will join seagate and screw up seagate quality and reliability.  seagate better not hire them.

maxtor will mostly be left with scsi hdd in singapore and very high end desktop manufacturing.  actually scsi is bleeding maxtor badly unless its orders goes above from 563000 to 800 000 a qtr.

202091[/snapback]

What are you talking about? From what I heard WD is the one that has the worst workforce (from some ex WD employees who quit).

Maxtor still make their Maxline in Singapore from what I heard, only the DM9 is in China now (DM8 is cancelled). Actually, SCSI is what keeps Maxtor alive right now, from what I heard they make good $ at the moment and is carrying the company. I don't know where you get your info from (or when).

202096[/snapback]

if WD only produces desktop and yet can be very profitable, then maxtor operation must be at least profitable.

maybe you are right, old WD has the worst workforce. many have joined maxtor since they shut down singapore operation years back. well , that may have contribute to maxtor situation now.

seagate sold 3.2 million scsi hdd last reported fin qtr, maxtor sold only 563 000 scsi hdd. The demand worldwide per qtr is only 5.2 mil. its takes 5 days to test a scsi hdd. running a scsi operation is damn expensive. The precision and tolerances of components used in 10krpm and 15krpm are most expensive and likely have to be scrapped if cannot reuse or purge. hitachi and seagate are the only two benefiting from very high profit margin Fiber channel mkt. WD used to bleed so bad in their scsi hdd operation for those that remember until they shut it down and move to malaysia and say bye bye to singapore workforce. Now their desktop and raptors from malaysia and thailand are most profitable for so many qtrs, even after eating up loss making readrite, and even have Notebook hdd.

scsi is seagate bread and butter and last stable profitable stronghold. they will knock down any competitor by price war and promotions if threatened, infact their sales has gone up from 2.8 million few qtr back to 3.2 million last fin reported qtr.

maxtor scsi and quantum used to be build by MKE of japan. robotics automation maker. it used to carry the japanese icon of Matsushita KE. thats why ex quantum used be a favourite of japan customers. now replaced by hitachi. japanese customers like to buy japanese brand name related products, so hitachi has gain mkt shr in the japanese mkt, not to mention hitachi servers are using hitachi scsi hdd, and hot selling hitachi desktops and Notebook hdds. fujitsu is also japanese favourite brand. japan is a big mkt spender for expensive scsi high end products. and hitachi is also loaded with cash to play around and debts due to japanese banks for japanese companies can be easily writeoff.

truelly no doubt maxtor scsi is best in nearly all benchmarks and advancement, but its the real money from operation that has to keep it alive. if it hit 800 000 a qtr, then its good money. the breakeven point for scis is very high unlike desktop. but huge return if it sell in volume. maybe jan to march qtr if their latest platter yields are stable and with improve distribution channel, they can hit 800 000 and that will trigger seagate knock down competitors war path.

All my comments here which may have offended anyone or maxtor supporters will be retracted and apologise if maxtor next financial or future financials, shows it breaks the 800 000 units per qtr.

I too hope that maxtor scsi especially the latest serial scsi ,will be successful and profitable as that will prevent seagate monopoly of the scsi segment.

Edited by AforceII

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You're right. From what i heard MKE based maxtor scsi is pretty good and very popular. From some info I heard since hitachi bought ibm a lot of customer switch to seagate (mostly) and maxtor because hitachi is also in the array business and they don't want to buy from competitors. seagate gain the most because they have fiber, while maxtor gain less it is still a significant gain.

Also from what I heard maxtor is lossing money because they had 2 platform (DM8 and DM9) that have different assembly line that cannot be shared, so they always make too much of one kind but not enough of the other and miss out on the market. Then they ran into reliability problem in DM8 and causes dell to drop their account for one quarter. After that they were cancelling DM8 and their soon to be released 2.5" laptop drive, so all add together they lost a lot of money.

You know, to be honest all drives will be made in china soon since labor is cheaper and it is an industry that every 1% margin count. From what I know everyone is going to build their own head now that both seagate and WD are making their own or bough a head vendor. I think maxtor will be forced to do so sooner or later.

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I bought some Hitachi 80 gig ATA100 drives for use at work that are rebranded "Excel Store."  These are made by Hitachi with Hitachi parts and from Hitachi designs just made in China.

201953[/snapback]

:rolleyes: Notorious cheapskate, eh? Excelstor drives may be licensed Hitachi designs, but are not made by Hitachi. Additionally, any RMA procedure is likely to be a PITA, at least Excelstor does not offer any end user facilities and thus everything has to be done via the distributor. The track record at least of older Excelstor models wasn't all that good, so thanks for playing guinea pig for us. :P

201965[/snapback]

Well I played guinea pig and im happy about it. These drives are running great and havent given me any problems. For the price I recommend tem highly. :D

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Well I played guinea pig and im happy about it.  These drives are running great and havent given me any problems.  For the price I recommend tem highly. :D

202244[/snapback]

in china these hdd are not guinea pigs. these hdd are made for the no 1 pc maker and seller in china. even MR dell cannot get a decent pie 15% in china mkt.

if they last and work well there then it is good. you don;t put guinea pigs into millions of pc for china users. if there are problems , just imagine hundreds thousands losing their data becasue of the guinea pig hdd.

these unhappy buyers will demostrated and thrash the factory with their the hdds.

its just that warranty and distribution support is bad outside china. their intent was to supply its biggest owner great wall company, which makes no1 pc in china.

more than a billion people in china, you can imagine how big the maket is and how many hdd to fulfil that mkt. of course intel and AMD will be the biggest winner there.

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Seagate's 5 Year Warranty in Hong Kong blows

1st year is free

2nd and 3rd years, we gotta bear the transportation costs

4th and 5th ... dunno but cant be good

and the drives cost 35% more than you guys (with your rebates ...)

as for drives being made in China, it was bound to happen

LCD monitors, DVD writers are mostly made in China, and for that, Reliability has plummeted (esp for Writers)

Our motherboards are made in China now, even though at one time they were all from Taiwan

We do not choose where they are made, and there is no difference in price, but the manufacturer sure is laughing at us,

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In the EU the law says:

Warranty is since the day you buy the drive, if you do not have the receipt, it will be form manufacturing date. Most companies (i.e. BenQ, Plextor) allow at least one month after manufacturing as start date for warranty.

andybroadbridge: There's no need to use phrases like 'insulting the English language'. I usually speak and write american-english. It's an official language, just like British-English. If someone needs a American-English dictionary, let it be so.

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