Western Digital has released a new 10,000 rpm hard drive called the VelociRaptor, which aced the battery of performance tests that PC World's Test Center threw at it. With a MTBF (mean time between failure) of 1.2 million hours, this drive is entirely suited for the enterprise, though WD is setting its sight on gamers and enthusiasts as well.
Unlike many hard drives, which show strengths and weaknesses in our tests, the $300 VelociRaptor actually demonstrated its strength across the PC World Test Center's entire suite of hard drive tests. In one of its most impressive feats, the VelociRaptor required just 89 seconds to write 3.06GB of files and folders, besting the next-best drive in our chart, the Western Digital Caviar SE16 750GB, by 32 seconds—a 26 percent improvement.
What I find interesting about this drive is the fact that, though it is a drive designed to fit into a 3.5-inch drive bay, it essentially sports a 2.5-inch chassis. The reason for this design approach was to squeeze out as much performance as possible.
You can forget about sneaking one of these into your laptop though. Due to concerns over excessive heat generation, WD mounted the 2.5-inch VelociRaptor drive into a heat sink sled, which doubles as a mounting adapter for 3.5-inch bays. WD says this reduces the temperature by about five degrees.
The VelociRaptor will enter mass distribution in mid-May.
If you purchased a rackmount HP server recently, you will likely have noticed that the company appears to have standardized on 2.5-inch SAS drives. Do you make any distinction between 2.5-inch or 3.5-inch hard drives when purchasing new servers?
Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.