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Performance in PCMark Vantage

Compared with the previous versions, the Vantage version of PCMark is more up-to-date and advanced in its selection of subtests as well as Windows Vista orientation. Each subtest is run ten times and the results of the ten runs are averaged.

Here is a brief description of each subtest:

  • Windows Defender is when the HDD is under multithreaded load, one thread scanning files for malicious software.
  • Gaming emulates the typical load on the disk subsystem when the user is playing a video game.
  • Photo Gallery emulates loading of images from a photo gallery.
  • Vista Start Up emulates the disk subsystem load when booting up Windows Vista.
  • Movie Maker emulates video editing load.
  • Media Center. This is the load on the hard disk when the user is running Windows Media Center.
  • Media Player emulates the loading of files into Windows Media Player.
  • Application Loading shows the drive’s speed when loading popular applications.

Basing on these subtests, the drive’s overall performance rating is calculated.

The performance ratings reflect the standings of the HDDs correctly. The 7200RPM models are superior if used as a system disk. The Hitachi 7K500 has a higher rating than its opponent due to better firmware.

As for the 5400RPM products, the transition to new platters added storage capacity for them but did not increase their performance. It is clear that firmware algorithms matter more than the slightly higher recording density here.

The Western Digital HDDs with Advanced Format take bottom positions in the results table. They are slightly worse than their predecessors as system disks.

 
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