Disk Response Time and IOMark: Average Positioning Speed
For 10 minutes IOMeter is sending a stream of requests to read and write 512-byte data blocks with a request queue of 1. The total of requests processed by the HDD is much larger than its cache, so we get a sustained response time that doesn’t depend on the HDD’s buffer size.
Save for two models the HDDs all fit into a range of 0.5 milliseconds that lies a little below 6 milliseconds. The NS.2 features the highest response time as its lower spindle rotation speed does not allow to compete with the other HDDs in this test. The venerable Maxtor Atlas 15KII turns out the winner. Small-diameter platters and high-speed heads ensure first place for this very old product. As for the others, you can see somewhat better results from the Fujitsu MAX3 RC (funnily, the next series, MBA, is worse) and Seagate’s newest 15K.6 and 15K.7 series. The youngest Cheetahs claim to be the fastest indeed.
When it comes to writing, the HDDs from Seagate’s two newest generations stand out again. The 146GB 15K.6 model has odd problems that result in an indecently high response time. The 73GB Seagate 15K.5 and the Hitachi 15K147 have very poor results, too (their write response is comparable to their read response, which is not good).