Today, we had the extremely well-known Western Digital VelociRaptor series hard drive land on our doorstep. We will be looking at the WD VelociRaptor 300GB GLFS version. There are 3 versions of this drive, BLFS, GLFS, and HLFS. The HLFS and GLFS models are designed to fit into 3.5″ drive bays. However, the BLFS is a compact form of the VelociRaptor, designed to fit 2.5″ mounts. Do not try to install this into a notebook, because it will not fit due to its thickness.
Rotational Speed 10,000 RPM (nominal)
Buffer Size 16 MB
Average Latency 3.00 ms (nominal)
Load/unload Cycles 50,000 minimum
Read Seek Time 4.2 ms
Write Seek Time 4.7 ms (average)
Track-To-Track Seek Time 0.7 ms (average)
Buffer To Host (Serial ATA) 3 Gb/s (Max)
Formatted Capacity 300,069 MB
Capacity 300 GB
Interface SATA 3 Gb/s
User Sectors Per Drive 586,072,368
Height 1.028 Inches
Length 5.787 Inches
Width 4.00 Inches
Weight 1.08 Pounds
Idle Mode 29 dBA (average)
Seek Mode 0 36 dBA (average)
Operating 32° F to 140° F
Non-operating -40° F to 158° F
Killer speed - Built on the performance bloodlines of WD Raptor, these 10,000 RPM drives, with SATA 3 Gb/s interface, and 16 MB cache deliver mind-bending performance. Not only are they 35 percent faster than the previous generation WD Raptor drives, but they also beat out all other competitors in the field.
Rock-solid reliability – Designed and manufactured to mission-critical enterprise-class standards to provide enterprise reliability in high duty cycle environments. With 1.4 million hours MTBF, these drives have the highest available reliability rating on a high capacity SATA drive.
Double the capacity – State-of-the-art technology packs twice the capacity per disk compared to its older brother WD Raptor resulting in 300 GB of high-performance storage space in this enterprise-class 2.5-inch drive. (Not compatible with notebook computers)
IcePack mounting frame – The 2.5-inch WD VelociRaptor is enclosed in a 3.5-inch enterprise-class mounting frame with a built-in heat sink that keeps this powerful little drive extra cool when installed in high-performance desktop chassis. (This drive is not backplane compatible.)
Rotary Acceleration Feed Forward (RAFF) - Optimizes operation and performance when the drives are used in vibration-prone, multi-drive chassis.
NoTouch ramp load technology - The recording head never touches the disk media ensuring significantly less wear to the recording head and media as well as better drive protection in transit.
5-year limited warranty
SATA interface connector on motherboard or SATA host controller*
Available 3.5-inch internal drive bay
You may be wondering what all the black is around the drive. It is a large heatsink, called IcePack mounting frame, designed to give the drive better heat dissipation. When running at the speeds that this drive does, it can heat up quite quickly. The heatsink also double’s as a 3.5″ adapter and is designed to fit perfectly into your current 3.5″ drive bays. Included in this package, you will also get the standard SATA connections.
You have seen the stylish new look of the VelociRaptor and all its features and specifications. Let’s get into the real reason that we are all here… performance tests.
SiSoftware Sandra Lite:
SiSoftware Sandra (the System ANalyser, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) is an information & diagnostic utility. It should provide most of the information (including undocumented) you need to know about your hardware, software and other devices.
From these tests performed with SiSoftware, we can start to see just exactly what these drives can dish out with a very nice drive index of 98.5MB and a 7ms random access time. One thing to point out is that the green line is the WD Raptor 150GB hard drive. When you compare it to the red line, which is our VelociRaptor 300gb, you can see an extremely nice improvement in speeds with a 30.53mb increase on the drive index, roughly 50% improvement, and a 1ms gain in random access time.
With the write performance tests finished, we see another impressive display put on by the VelociRaptor. With the 96.68mb drive index, and a very nice 1.84ms random access time, this drive is not letting us down. With Western Digital’s great track record, would you expect anything less from them?
HD Tune is a hard disk utility with many functions. It can be used to measure the drive’s performance, scan for errors, check the health status (S.M.A.R.T.), securely erase all data and much more.
HD Tune Benchmark:
Random Access Read Times:
64mb File Benchmark:
The VelociRaptor, once again, left us with our jaws on the floor with its amazing performance in this series of tests. The incredible burst speed of 221.9mb is just amazing, for the simple fact that it can beat out some of the lower end SSD’s on the market. I am thinking the SSD providers do not want to hear this news. It still came through with a solid 99mb average read rate, 7.1ms access time, and a 117.7mb and 73.6mb maximum/minimum transfer rates, respectively. With the 64mb file benchmark you can, once again, see the VelociRaptor blow through the tests in both read and write categories.
Datamarck is an application to measure performance of storage devices, like hard disks, flash memory and external drives on various platforms. The collected performance data can be shared and compared with the online stored benchmark database. Check if your storage device performs OK and get advice on which devices perform best on your platform.
Again, with the Datamarck benchmark we see more of the same performance. Is anyone starting to see a common theme? If you were thinking, “Yes, the VelociRaptor is F***in’ fast!”, then we are on the same page! Here is another solid performance from our drive with 95.237mb/s read average and 7.104ms random seek time average.
Do you remember reading, “Check if your storage device performs OK and get advice on which devices perform best on your platform.” from a few sentences ago? Well, below you will find a screen shot of the database they keep. Look closely at numbers 10,11,12 on the list. Notice anything? Yes, all the versions of this VelociRaptor 300gb have made it. Now, if you examine the rest of the list, you will find a common theme to the hard drives above them: SSD’s. There is no shame for the VelociRaptor to say that they are at the bottom of this list. With this strong list of hard drives, even making the 10,11,12 spots, is an impressive feat in its own right!
After putting our socks back on from being blown off, we have all just been witness to one of the fastest hard drives on the market that does not have solid state in its name. With burst speeds of 221.9mb and very nice read/write averages in the upper 90mb’s; this drive can certainly hold its own. Western Digital lives up to their name, yet again, with another extremely solid piece of hardware. We can only hope they keep this amazing technology flowing for computer users, because the price/performance ratio is about as good as you will find in today’s market.
One other important thing to point out is that in the past, these raptor drives got quite warm while under load and we are happy to report that while doing all of our tests we never saw a temperature above 32.1C. The IcePack mounting frame seems to be holding up its end of the bargain. Overall, the VelociRaptor 300gb was an amazing hard drive with outstanding performance, which any user would enjoy having in their system!