Comparing the 7200.10 with the 7200.9, I found that the 7200.9 continued to be unimpressive and I’m still sure there is still some sort of problem with our test unit as the Windows installation routine couldn’t detect the drive properly so we couldn’t run PCMark05. In the other tests the 750GB 7200.10 was a significant improvement over the 7200.9 and it also compared well with a WD2500KS drive that I had to hand. On paper the Barracuda 7200.10 appears to perform as well as the WD Raptor 150 that we reviewed here.
I have no doubt that the latest test figures were helped by the fact that I used the 150GB Raptor in my test system as it raises system performance and reduces the chance that the hard drive is a bottleneck in performance.
My only criticism of the new Seagate was that it was relatively noisy in operation. Seagate states that the drive uses a ‘SoftSonic motor…(that)… enables whisper-quiet operation’ and while the drive is quiet as it spins it makes a fair amount of noise when the actuator kicks in during seek operations. It also runs fairly hot with a measured temperature of 47 degrees C on the outside of the casing as it sat on my test bench. Generally speaking a new monster drive carries a significant price premium but that just isn’t the case with the 750GB Seagate, which costs £275.
The 500GB version sells for £185, the 320GB costs £75, matching the WD Caviar, and the 250GB is £60. I’ve not yet seen the 400GB and 200GB on sale.
By any standards those prices are amazingly low and as far as we are concerned they drive a stake through the heart of RAID 0 as no-one can possibly need to stripe drives together to bump up their storage capacity to an acceptable level.
We had severe reservations about the Barracuda 7200.9 but the new 7200.10 impressed me deeply.
Perpendicular recording raises the capacity of the Barracuda 7200.10 to a monumental 750GB, yet pricing and performance are both very good. A sure-fire winner from the world’s largest hard drive manufacturer.
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