by March 9, 2006 0 comments
Price: Rs 20,000 (5 yrs warranty)
Key Specs:
NCQ, 500 GB, 16 MB cache, SATA 3 Gbps, 7200 rpm 
Contact: eSys Distribution, Delhi. Tel: 51811694.E-Mail id: 
RQS# E30 or SMS 130330 to 9811800601

This half terabyte hard disk by Seagate is meant for those
who need to store large amounts of data, like graphic designers. Compared to the 400 GB version of the same
Barracuda drive (reviewed in the January 2006), this one is up by 100 GB and has
an increased cache of 8 MB. It’s also Rs 3000 cheaper as compared to its older
cousin. But performance wise, it has taken a dip compared to its predecessor.

The hard disk functions very quietly and like the 400 GB
one, it also supports the 3 Gbps SATA interface. In any office
environment, the quiet operation is important and this hard drive keeps with
that rule. The 400 GB version was tested in an NCQ enabled ASUS A8N-E
motherboard with an nForce4 motherboard.

To maximize benefit from the NCQ technology, that is one of
the unique features of this disk, we require an NCQ compatible motherboard and
programs that are optimized for multi-threaded input-output operations. We used
the NCQ supporting MSI Diamond Plus with Athlon X2 4200+ processor, 1 GB RAM,
loaded with Win XP Pro SP1 OS to test this hard drive. We also used the WinBench
99 and Winstone ’02 benchmarks to  evaluate its performance. For business
disk Winmark and high-end disk Winmark it scored 12 and 26 respectively as
opposed to 20 and 45 for the 400 GB version. With the Winstone ’02 benchmark
we got a score of 46.

Bottom Line: With a price of
Rs 20,000, a warranty of five years and half a terabyte disk space, this hard
drive is a good buy for those who need to store multi-GB files and other
application files that can’t be put on server storage. This can also be put
into versatile use as entry-level server storage in small office environments.
Abe Kurian

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