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We want to say a few words about the Samsung SpinPoint F4 first. The company decided to introduce new platters into small-capacity products and this solution seems to be right. The SpinPoint F4 is fast, inexpensive (at least, inexpensive to make) and highly appealing in terms of performance/power consumption. It is going to be an excellent choice as a system disk for computers that don’t require a lot of storage space.

The EcoGreen F4EG series from Samsung is quite good, too. The new 2-terabyte model has become faster at linear operations due to its transition to three higher-density platters. The tradeoff for the highest-density platters is its 4KB sectors. And we must note that, as opposed to Samsung, Western Digital transitioned to 4KBs sectors in a user-friendly way. They announced the introduction of that technology and spent some effort to explain its implications. Samsung’s new HDDs, on the contrary, may be an unpleasant surprise for users of old OSes who will have to look for special utilities to align disk partitions with.

The new Western Digital Caviar Green with 667GB platters is expectedly better than its predecessor. The developer has improved the firmware and reduced the performance hit from the 4KB sectors when working with small files. On the other hand, the Samsung drive with 4KB sectors is even faster. And one more thing we have seen in this test session: the WD Caviar Green without deferred writing has proved how important that technology is for today’s HDDs. The lack of deferred writing made that HDD absolutely uncompetitive.

As for the high-speed models from WD, the 1.5-terabyte Caviar Black and RE4 series products deliver excellent performance under most types of loads. The only downside is that they need a lot of power. The new 1-terabyte Caviar Black with the Y6 index doesn’t bring anything new and is similar to its predecessor. The Caviar Blue is similar to them in all parameters, too.

And finally, the Deskstar 7K1000.C drive from Hitachi. Our impressions from this HDD with its original firmware were rather gloomy, but now we can recommend it as an HDD that offers a good balance between performance and power consumption.

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