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Hardware Thread, So, what were we paying for hard drives this time last year? in Technical; ...
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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    So, what were we paying for hard drives this time last year?

    I'm currently in the market for a new laptop hard drive in the 320GB range. Currently they are approx £50 but to justify waiting until the prices come down a bit more, can anyone remember what we were paying this time last year before the floods in Thailand struck?
    I don't want an SSD because to get one with a decent amount of storage is far beyond what I actually need (however the one I use as my boot drive in the office computer ROCKS!) and I have discovered that my current 160GB drive is SATA 1.5 on a SATA 2 interface and the term 'laggy' doesn't cover it!
    *I've also asked ICT Direct to see if they have any used drives in, which could be a hell of a saving!

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    Chris_'s Avatar
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    In August last year I paid £26.63 (ex vat) for a 750GB SATA III hard drive. Seems like a bargain compared to the prices now!

  3. Thanks to Chris_ from:

    Dos_Box (28th April 2012)

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    Here are a few prices for 320GB HDDs courtesy of CamelCamelCamel.

    Samsung SpinPoint M8 (P/N: HN-M320MBB)
    27/08/2011: £28.95
    28/04/2012: £49.95

    Western Digital Scorpio Blue (P/N: WD3200BPVT)
    02/02/2011: £28.99
    28/04/2012: £48.38

    Western Digital Scorpio Black (P/N: WD3200BEKT)
    08/07/2011: £39.73
    28/04/2012: £54.38

    IIRC, 500GB and 750GB HDDs were only a few pounds more than each other before the floods so it didn't make sense to buy anything smaller.
    Last edited by Arthur; 28th April 2012 at 07:21 PM.

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    Dos_Box (28th April 2012), kmount (28th April 2012)

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    Dos_Box's Avatar
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    I'll hang on then. It's not really urgent and now that production has resumed prices will fall by mid-summer anyway.
    And after seeing last years prices I'm really not keen on paying double for what will be silly cheap again soon.

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    tigerstar's Avatar
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    This article has links to an automated price tracker. It's for the US site Newegg, but it gives a good idea of what prices have been doing - things are recovering, but prices are still around 150-200% of what they were six months ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dos_Box View Post
    I have discovered that my current 160GB drive is SATA 1.5 on a SATA 2 interface and the term 'laggy' doesn't cover it!
    The interface your drive uses won't make any difference to the laptops performance, mechanical drives do no saturate the sata 1 (150MB/s) interface so even if your drive had a sata 2 interface (300MB/s) it wouldn't be any faster. New drives with very large caches might be able to saturate a sata 1 interface very briefly but even high end 10,000 rmp drives cant sustain these transfer rates.

    This is not to say mechanical drives havent improved because they have i.e. higher data density, bigger caches etc...

    Laptop drives usually have a low rpm to reduce power consumption when running from batteries if you buy a 7200 rmp laptop drive it should perform better but it will drain your battery quicker and run hotter which could be a problem if the laptops cooling isn't upto scratch.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ToyHeartsFan View Post
    but even high end 10,000 rpm drives can't sustain these transfer rates.
    The new WD VelociRaptor can...


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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur View Post
    The new WD VelociRaptor can...]
    Finally a mechanical drive that can saturate sata 1 unless you use more than 75% of its capacity that is! Aren’t we on sata 3 now?

    They do look like nice drives but don’t they ship pre fitted in the 3.5” adapter / heat sink to stop them overheating? I think putting one in a laptop would be a recipe for disaster.

    They are also comparing them to old gen ssd drives current gen ssd drives are very close to maxing out Sata 3 (600MB/s) this drive tops out at around 200MB/s. If you need the extra storage then they might be an option but the price of the 1 GB WD drive puts it up against 256GB SSDs which would be a lot faster. I don’t think we will ever see a mechanical drive that can max out sata3 so as prices come down on SSD the days of mechanical drives might be numbered.
    Last edited by ToyHeartsFan; 14th May 2012 at 02:52 PM. Reason: GB not MB

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    Quote Originally Posted by ToyHeartsFan View Post
    Arenít we on sata 3 now?
    Yeah. I think SATA Express is next after SATA 6Gb/s. Unless we get the SATA equivalent of 12Gb/s SAS?

    Quote Originally Posted by ToyHeartsFan View Post
    donít they ship pre fitted in the 3.5Ē adapter / heat sink to stop them overheating?
    They do come with a 3.5" adapter but it's not to stop them from overheating. The new Velociraptors use between 4.2 watts to 5.1 watts, which is less than a standard 7,200rpm HDD.

    I had a previous generation 300GB VelociRaptor and that didn't get hot either.

    Quote Originally Posted by ToyHeartsFan View Post
    I think putting one in a laptop would be a recipe for disaster.
    I think you would find it difficult to fit a VelociRaptor into a standard laptop. They are 15mm in height (the same as SFF SAS drives).

    Quote Originally Posted by ToyHeartsFan View Post
    If you need the extra storage then they might be an option but the price of the 1TB WD drive puts it up against 256GB SSDs which would be a lot faster.
    They would be perfect for games or in conjunction with a small SSD and caching software such as Intel's SRT or Nvelo Dataplex.



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