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Seagate 7200.10 Review

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Guest 888
Anandtech has a review of the 7200.10 750GB beast up now.

http://www.anandtech.com/storage/showdoc.aspx?i=2760&p=1

Very impressive review!

Really looks like Seagate does not know how to optimize its firmware for single user! Although it shows a bit better results than 7200.9 500GB, this 7200.10 750GB monster performs much worse than WD5000YS (same as WD5000KS) in almost every real world benchmark! Sometimes even 2x750GB RAID0 performance is much worse than for 1xWD5000YS !!!

Also, the review indicates that the new 7200.10 750GB is noisier and runs much hotter than WD5000YS.

Although you could think it may be unfair to compare 750 vs 500 GB drives, they are both in fact 4-platter drives, so there could not be such a big difference (and traditionally just bigger capacity drives have been better...but not this time). Yes, now it looks like just WD has the real gem out in its 500GB current flagship!

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Just got 7200.10 320GB. It seems like Seagate now use even denser platters (short-stroked).

69 MB/s average transfer rate, well that is something.

Check it out:

hdtachseagate9ue.gif

The seek noise doesn't bother me at all, it is almost completely masked by the fans.

I read some comments here and I expected to be much worse.

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Guest 888
Just got 7200.10 320GB. It seems like Seagate now use even denser platters (short-stroked).

69 MB/s average transfer rate, well that is something.

Wow, now it's superb!

- STR at the end almost 60 MB/s!

- Random access 12.3 ms! This beats even current top Hitachis (7200rpm)!

However, from burst speed I see you tested the drive in SATA150 mode (jumper on) but this isn't essential...

Still, it's weird why there's individual drives of this series showing so different results. Also the seek noise differs..looks like. It's already something like Seagate's tradition, remember, the 7200.9 300GB individual drives also gave very different graphs and noise results.

But, yes, it's very possible that Seagate is implementing its higher capacity platters already. In example 200GB platters (which makes them possible to produce 400GB drives with 2 platters and 200GB drives with one platter) and even 240...250GB platters. It's still unclear (for me) which and how many platters they would use in their upcoming 960GB drive...

But, anyway, these synthetic benchmarks are one artifical thing, the real life benchmarking on the same fixed testbed would be the completely different and not so shining world (as we saw from testing of the 750GB model). It's the firmware optimization question. Unfortuantely, we (forum readers here) can't run real-life benchmarks because of our computer platforms are different. Only SR can do this if we want to get the results comparable with other drives.

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My SATA controller (i875 Chipset) doesn't support SATA300, but that shouldn't make a difference.

IMHO There is only one explanation why there are different results within the same series: economy. There are probably leftovers from different platter designs/components which they don't want to throw away. I experienced that with Maxtor as well, and probably just about any other manufacturer does that. There is a war out there...

Sure, synthetic benchmarks don't tell much, but I thought it would be interesting to post this graph. I think this is absolutely the best transfer rate for a 7200 RPM drive at the moment. I hope SR will be able to make some real tests anytime soon ...

Just got 7200.10 320GB. It seems like Seagate now use even denser platters (short-stroked).

69 MB/s average transfer rate, well that is something.

Wow, now it's superb!

- STR at the end almost 60 MB/s!

- Random access 12.3 ms! This beats even current top Hitachis (7200rpm)!

However, from burst speed I see you tested the drive in SATA150 mode (jumper on) but this isn't essential...

Still, it's weird why there's individual drives of this series showing so different results. Also the seek noise differs..looks like. It's already something like Seagate's tradition, remember, the 7200.9 300GB individual drives also gave very different graphs and noise results.

But, yes, it's very possible that Seagate is implementing its higher capacity platters already. In example 200GB platters (which makes them possible to produce 400GB drives with 2 platters and 200GB drives with one platter) and even 240...250GB platters. It's still unclear (for me) which and how many platters they would use in their upcoming 960GB drive...

But, anyway, these synthetic benchmarks are one artifical thing, the real life benchmarking on the same fixed testbed would be the completely different and not so shining world (as we saw from testing of the 750GB model). It's the firmware optimization question. Unfortuantely, we (forum readers here) can't run real-life benchmarks because of our computer platforms are different. Only SR can do this if we want to get the results comparable with other drives.

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Guest 888
Sure, synthetic benchmarks don't tell much, but I thought it would be interesting to post this graph. I think this is absolutely the best transfer rate for a 7200 RPM drive at the moment. I hope SR will be able to make some real tests anytime soon ...

You're right, this was really a top graph for 7200rpm drive! These HDtach graphs are useful to continue to post here because of just they can indicate the evolution of the drive's platters/construction.

I also hope SR will test these 7200.10 series at least 320GB and 750GB drives soon. I think if Eugene has not enough time to write the individual reviews and design the graphs and images then may-be just test the drives and only add the results into performance database? I still think that at least WD and Seagate are regularly sending out promotional/reviewer products to SR, too. I have seen many marginal websites/webmagazines with low-quality short reviews stating that they received the free promo drive for testing directly from these companies...

Or may-be...

...a hot 320GB roundup, containing WD3200KS(320), 7200.10(320), T7K500(320) plus also 7V300F0(300), HD300LJ(300) ?

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So in Seagate's 7200.10 series, the only drives that should concern me is the 320GB and 750GB version? The 750GB is too expensive for me, but why should I consider the 320GB version? Does it use two 188GB platters? If so it doesn't add up to 320GB though.

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Obviosly they use different platter sizes with 7200.10 320GB version (166 and 188GB or 200GB)

My drive's minimum transfer rate is close to 60GB so obviosly it has higher capacity short-stroked platters. The HDTach access time is lower as well, I guess because of the shorter head travel paths. Others have posted the graps of the same drive with only 40GB minumum transfer rate.

So in Seagate's 7200.10 series, the only drives that should concern me is the 320GB and 750GB version? The 750GB is too expensive for me, but why should I consider the 320GB version? Does it use two 188GB platters? If so it doesn't add up to 320GB though.

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Guest 888
So in Seagate's 7200.10 series, the only drives that should concern me is the 320GB and 750GB version? The 750GB is too expensive for me, but why should I consider the 320GB version? Does it use two 188GB platters? If so it doesn't add up to 320GB though.

The 750, 500 and 320 are the basic construction drives for Seagate's 7200.10 series now. They represent 4, 3 and 2 platter construction respectively. And as you see from distributor's listings, Seagate hasn't even started to widely market other capacities yet. There's bigger possibilities that 200, 250, 300 and 400 drives would be made from partially defective items got from the production of 320 and 500 (750 is produced in low volumes yet so there's probably not so much these items needed to re-format at lower capacity). Some of them may have one semi-crashed and disabled by-software head inside, it's dangerous thing still... And if even they make also some new runs of 200, 250, 300, 400 directly, these 200, 250, 400 drives still have unpaired head count then. It isn't so good for general balancing and stability of the drive mechanics. The drives which are primarily engineered and balanced are very probably just these 320, 500 and 750.

But this picture will change in future when Seagate gets at least 200GB platters ready for production. Remember, even the current model full code for 400GB 7200.10 indicates it to have 2 platters!

Yes, current 7200.10 320GB drives may use 160GB or 166GB or 188GB (or even 200GB) platters but in any case this must be 2-platter construction with 4 heads. The short-stroked (unused) end of the bigger platters isn't bad thing, it just arises the STR at the 320GB end area of the drive. It's relatively low possibility they use also failed 500GB drives in production of 320GB (which results in 3-platter 320GB units!) but it could be still so in some cases. May-be this high-performance sample recently tested here by qwe123 was that case..we don't know this exactly. There's always possibility to get some weird combined individual drive. But I still think the 320GB is less affected to these tricks...

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Hi all. I have read that the performance of a hard drive MAY vary by the size of the drive. So, I don't know if the different sizes of the 7200.10 can be expected to give the same performance.

Can anyone give any guidance on whether the different sizes of this drive are likely to differ in ability to handle large data sets (e.g. 40 gig SAS data sets)?

Thanks in advance. I am getting exhausted trying to understand this technology! srk

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My 7200.10 320GB has arrived from Komplett but I have not yet taken it out of its wrapper. If you really think I'm going to find it unacceptably loud, do you recommened I just return it before even opening it???

Thanks for this tip. I hate noise, and don't use Raptors because of it.

To one that hate noise like me, I can't recommend the hard disk. Sure it's fast, I guess, BUT the sound just drives me nuts. :wacko: It sounds like a geiger counter !! Of cause you could test it yourself. There is not any seal to be broken or anything (easy to return again)

I don't mind some hard drive noise. Actually, the 7200.9 160GB drive I have is SO quiet, I never hear any seeks (and there is little fan noise). Of course, that's good, but I like to hear SOME rattling.

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When talking about the noise Seagate drives output, the most important thing to mention about personal experiences is whether they are based on PATA or SATA variants, as that probably makes more difference than platter counts and generation numbers.

PATA = slow and quiet seeks.

SATA = fast and noisy seeks.

They don't support AAM (Automatic Acoustic Management) like all other recent ATA drives do, so one cannot change the acoustic setting from it's factory default. It never ceases to suprize me, why...

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I read somewhere that Seagate has disabled AAM due to patent issue and that some big OEMs have an option to preorder the drives in Quiet mode.

Every bit of performance counts so I'd disable AAM anyway :) So many times different PC noises used to annoy me, but after I got used it I don't even notice it.

I came to the conclusion that until PCs get literally 100% silent, it doesn't make any sense to bother with one noise source among many :)

They don't support AAM (Automatic Acoustic Management) like all other recent ATA drives do, so one cannot change the acoustic setting from it's factory default. It never ceases to suprize me, why...

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Patent issue? Yeah, I've heard that, but I find it silly that the biggest HDD manufacturer cannot afford to buy a licence to manufacture AAM capable drives.

And isn't AAM part of some bigger specification? Part of ATA/ATAPI? Wikipedia says AAM is part of ATA/ATAPI-6 (the standard that defines UltraATA 100), so probably my wild guess was correct.

I have my doubts about the AAM patent collision theory because there must be more than one way to actually implement AAM Feature Set as defined in the standard. If Seagate's way of implementing AAM did violate someone else's patent, then why don't they make their own implementation different? They're the biggest company in the business. Certainly they could. They simply don't care?

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Seagate data sheet very clearly states that 320 GB drive has 2 platters. I emailed them but they just said that seagate currently doesn't "publish how many platters they put". When I pointed them to their own data sheet they simply ignored me and closed the case.

So this coincide with your presumption. It seems that people receive drives with junk/reject platters or heads as they were new and up to specification. That explains why some drives are slower, some very noisy etc.

I expected that such drives could end up only as replacements, not sold as new.

They probably count on the fact that there are enough ignorant customers...

Yes, current 7200.10 320GB drives may use 160GB or 166GB or 188GB (or even 200GB) platters but in any case this must be 2-platter construction with 4 heads. The short-stroked (unused) end of the bigger platters isn't bad thing, it just arises the STR at the 320GB end area of the drive. It's relatively low possibility they use also failed 500GB drives in production of 320GB (which results in 3-platter 320GB units!) but it could be still so in some cases. May-be this high-performance sample recently tested here by qwe123 was that case..we don't know this exactly. There's always possibility to get some weird combined individual drive. But I still think the 320GB is less affected to these tricks...

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Loud louder loudest

I installed a 7200.10 320GB and it is loud. I do a lot of testing with computer stuff and Seagate claim that this quieter then the 7200.09 is nuts. If you like the WD74 noise you'll love this one.

HD Tech shows it fast but the noise is very loud.

I had planned on buying 2 more but now I'm thinking of returning this grinder

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I had planned on buying 2 more but now I'm thinking of returning this grinder

If you like the drive except for its noise than do yourself a favor: take it out of the PC, place it onto some soft ground and listen to its noise again. If you can still hear any seek noise, that's the real sound of the drive. Everything else comes from vibration amplification by your PCs case.

I got myself a decoupling rubber mount thing some 6 years or so ago. Since then I have never ever heard a seek noise from any of my drives again (2 old Maxtors, when they were still fast :D and several IBMs/Hitachis, of course all in max performance AAM mode).

MrS

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Roughly what I was talking about :)

Just not a long term solution yet. Even if you don't have a cat (or little kid or whatever), you can be sure that as soon as the 320GBs of data on the disk become precious, someone /-thing will appear and start to kick the disk around... ;)

MrS

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MrSpadge' date='May 28 2006, 03:56 PM' post='229443']

Roughly what I was talking about :)

Just not a long term solution yet. Even if you don't have a cat (or little kid or whatever), you can be sure that as soon as the 320GBs of data on the disk become precious, someone /-thing will appear and start to kick the disk around... ;)

MrS

Would it be possible to install 4 small rubber pieces near where you secure the disk, between the disk and the cage and then thight it up?

Mean kind of rubber found in bike's inner tyre?

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It depends on how tight the mounting is. I had this idea of el-cheapo decoupling some time ago and tried it with my sisters PC. I could attach 3 layers of thin self-adhesive paper to the side of the disk, but nor more. Even that was almost too thick when inserting the disk.

MrS

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7200.10 320GB RAID 0 Benchmarks

Just in case you guys are interested, I just got two of the 320GB models and striped them (64KB block size). Here's the HDTach. I must say, I'm quite impressed with the performance. It took a bit of fiddling to get it up to speed, but that seems to be a nuance of my system (water pump induces vibration I have to compensate for). As far as noise, they're inaudible over my current setup.

720010raid06ae.png

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7200.10 320GB RAID 0 Benchmarks

Just in case you guys are interested, I just got two of the 320GB models and striped them (64KB block size). Here's the HDTach. I must say, I'm quite impressed with the performance. It took a bit of fiddling to get it up to speed, but that seems to be a nuance of my system (water pump induces vibration I have to compensate for). As far as noise, they're inaudible over my current setup.

720010raid06ae.png

I guess I'm puzzled by these results. It seems that in RAID 0, the performance drops off much more sharply than with an individual physical drive. (I also wonder about that spike downward at around 120GB.) Am I missing something obvious?

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Well I just got the 320GB model. I guess its not short stroked =( kinda under my expectations after seeing your guys screenshots. Anyhow the thing is AMAZINGLY quiet...I cant hear it do ANYTHING.

720010320gb4vf.png

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Loud louder loudest

I installed a 7200.10 320GB and it is loud. I do a lot of testing with computer stuff and Seagate claim that this quieter then the 7200.09 is nuts. If you like the WD74 noise you'll love this one.

HD Tech shows it fast but the noise is very loud.

I had planned on buying 2 more but now I'm thinking of returning this grinder

Actually, I found it louder than even the Raptor - sort of an amplified Raptor. Question is: will the smaller 7200.10 models all roar like this, and will the newer 7200.9 ones as well....

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