Brian

Seagate Momentus Hybrid Hard Drive Review

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hmmm.. off subject.. i thought i would come here and complain...

been waiting for one for a while now...

received my SECOND notification from Newegg stock was in. the sold out the first time before i could order. something again. email received at 1330. logged into to purchase at 1700 and they were sold out... again...

lame.

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I wonder whether it is selling like hotcakes or whether supply is limited?

BTW, a lot of user reviews on Newegg complain about noise and vibration yet none of the "pro" reviews mentioned this at all.

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There may be a shortage of supply...we've been waiting on a second for RAID testing for a while now.

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i FINALLY got one ordered. it will go into a media center PC so i'm not concerned with vibration. but i will put it through its paces on my test bench before committing it to its task. there i will see about this vibration people claim.

and brian. just go ahead and mail me YOURS and i will raid them for you. :P

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oh and also. i got mo notification at around 1100pm. when i found it in my in-box at around 0130 and was surprised to see it still in stock. i ordered it immediately. when i checked on the stock later that day it was sold out already. they seem to get new shipments in about ever 4 days or so.

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well, i dont know what they mean by vibration. maybe they have them in acoustically unforgiving mounting environments. i dont know. inadequate mounting may be a cause... i dont know. but hanging outside my test bed, flat on a wood table i couldnt detect anything like that.

post-3147-12767639632265_thumb.jpg

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Which is the same thing we found with our review XT. On a table, in an enclosure - nothing out of the ordinary.

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brian. this may sound a little strange, but did you have any issues trying to partition the XT? whenever i try, when it gets to the end of the format, whether its a quick or long, it will just jump to a full, single partition. for instance, if i tr to create a partition withe say 30GB, when it is done formatting it will just merge all the allocated and unallocated space into a single 465GB partition and present only a single partition of the entire drive.

any such strangeness out of your XT?

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Hah...that is odd. No, we didn't see that. With our tests we usually partition several times too. No such oddness with ours. We test within Windows 7 FYI.

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ok. this one is acting a little strange. when i try to boot from it with no OS installed, instead of getting the "BOOT NTFS LDR ERROR" (or whatever it is) or a "NO SYSTEM DISK OR DISK ERROR" message it just displays a line of crazy ASCI text. i decided to write zeroes to the hard drive, but when i did it said there was a partition containing data even though there wasn't.

right from the get-go i tried to use HD Clone. it reported write errors for the first 3k or so sectors. i'm just hopping HD Clone did something stupid my zero fill process can undo.

it acted like i have seen SSD's act when you try to clone a mechanical drive to an SSD. but worse...

i thought the SSD portion of this drive was transparent to anything but the drive and it was going to function exactly as a mechanical drive would. i guess i was wrong.

this is all very odd..

i hope its not DOA. as rare as supplies are on it, getting a replacement will be a pain.

i hope i will be able to sort this out.

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I saw this on an Engadget post and was wondering whether any XT users encountered the same problem:

I recently bought a Momentus XT for my Sony VAIO FW and promptly swapped my old 7200rpm Hitachi 320GB back in. Assuming you have your OS caching function enabled, the speed difference for me was pretty minimal, except boot speed.

The biggest killer for me was that the XT has an auto spin-down function that you can't disable. It's very aggressive and often spun down at inopportune times for me, causing a second delay or so when the platters had to spin back up. Kind of defeats the purpose of the drive at times. Wish I had read the reviews/benchmarks a bit more closely!

Not knocking the drive since it actually does what it's supposed to, but I wanted to emphasize a point that many others seem to gloss over. I personally think it's more of a casual use drive and might be a bit disappointing for power users.

pico1180.... that does not sound good. Were you able to clone your hard disk to the XT?

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I noticed the frequent spindowns during periods of inactivity during the review, but didnt spend the time to modify the power management settings on the drive. Download CrystalDiskInfo and adjust the APM setting on the drive. You should be able to disable the spindown using that. This is completely different from the windows drive spindown time.

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I saw this on an Engadget post and was wondering whether any XT users encountered the same problem:

pico1180.... that does not sound good. Were you able to clone your hard disk to the XT?

ya. everything is fine now. HD Clone just did bad, bad things to the XT. a zero fill cleared it. i removed the source drive and added it along with the XT to my test bed as secondaries. i then ran Seagates bundled (not with the XT) clone software within the windows environment. worked like a champ.

i honestly haven't noticed the spin down issue. however, my application is within a media center environment.

i did notice a dramatic and instant increase in speed upgrading from a WD Blue 320GB.

whoever made that post i would say is just a grumpy curmudgeon. i would commence flaming him had he posted that here.

i am so impressed with it i am thinking of delaying a widespread SSD role-out in favor of them.

however, before making that decision i need more info on the caching algorithms and if RAID 0 effectively increases the available cache as well.

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I noticed the frequent spindowns during periods of inactivity during the review, but didnt spend the time to modify the power management settings on the drive. Download CrystalDiskInfo and adjust the APM setting on the drive. You should be able to disable the spindown using that. This is completely different from the windows drive spindown time.

My question is this: How do I turn off APM on this drive if you have two of them in a RAID 0 configuration? CrystalDiskInfo does not support RAID disks. The spin down feature is truly driving me CRAZY! It's causing all kinds of lag in games, and I hate waiting the extra 3 seconds all the time when it access the array.

(Windows 7 64-bit is my OS... and turning off APM in windows is irrelevant to the drives spin down)

Edited by mccarlson

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I saw this on an Engadget post and was wondering whether any XT users encountered the same problem:

pico1180.... that does not sound good. Were you able to clone your hard disk to the XT?

ME ME ME! I absolutely HATE the constant spin down these drives are doing, and I can't stop it bec. I have 2 of them in a Raid 0 array and can't find a utility to turn off APM that works in a RAID array!

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ME ME ME! I absolutely HATE the constant spin down these drives are doing, and I can't stop it bec. I have 2 of them in a Raid 0 array and can't find a utility to turn off APM that works in a RAID array!

Solved! I just had to take the drives out of a RAID config. in the bios, load windows and run crystaldiskmark to turn off APM, reboot putting the drives back into a RAID... tada! Runs flawlessly now.

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How long does it retain that setting? Another new drive that seems to have an overactive power management system is the 750GB Scorpio Blue. CrystalDiskInfo settings seem to hold for maybe 3-4 power cycles.

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I had to double-check the platters with Seagate, here's the breakdown by capacity:

500GB - 2 platters (250GB each)

320GB - 2 platters (one 250GB platter, and just one side of the second platter)

250GB - 1 platter

So the smaller 250 GB must be the fastest drive of the 3 then ??

I'm looking for a small drive like this for fast loading of my docs, pics, spreadsheets and the files I use most often, would this drive be any good for that purpose ?

I have my Win 7 on an 80 Gb Intel X25-M 2. gen, my programs and most used games on my other 80 GB Intel X-25M 2. gen, my music and video files on a 2TB WD Eco green silent drive, so only need a drive for my most often used other small text and picture files, which SSD drives are not that good at (or so I think)...

Edited by dr.ralph

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How long does it retain that setting? Another new drive that seems to have an overactive power management system is the 750GB Scorpio Blue. CrystalDiskInfo settings seem to hold for maybe 3-4 power cycles.

I want to know that too

Edited by Ergobyt

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I speak from experience when I say I should have bought an SSD and skipped this 'hybrid' stage of drive development altogether:

I bought a drive in Nov 2010 and started having issues with my Gateway 6864 FX not waking from sleep mode in Win7-64bit after 2 weeks. As it was past the 30 day NCIX return limit, I finally dealt with Seagate for a warranty exchange. Replacement drive worked fine for a week, then did EXACT same thing... only NOW my laptop refuses to boot or save my BIOS settings. CMOS clearing, different SATA drives and tech support visits to no effect; I now have a dead drive AND a dead laptop. Thanks for nothing, Seagate... not to mention the 60+ hours I've spent scouring forums, calling tech support and swapping drives. Google 'Momentus XT problems' and see other links posted in this forum to see how extensive the issues are.

Bottom line: DO NOT BUY this hybrid drive unless you are prepared for the consequences. Cutting-edge tech sometimes means you bleed, as is my case. I'm out $$ for the drive, and $$ for my was-perfectly-fine laptop that's now a brick.

While it WAS working, the Momentus XT did indeed make things much snappier, with boot times cut almost in half and an almost instant wake from Sleep. If the tech was reliable, I'd recommend it... but as you can see, I was pretty thoroughly burned for deciding to try it out. Never again.

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The newest version of the drive's firmware, version SD26 is available on the web now.

Click on "Regular Download", the blue button, then click on the "Click here to start download from sendspace" hyperlink

Windows version (easiest):

http://www.sendspace.com/file/mhlkbf

Bootable iso version:

http://www.sendspace.com/file/rifiz5

5

Edited by danwat1234

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