back to article WD speeds up a Caviar Black interface

Western Digital has a faster Caviar Black available, a 6Gbit/s SATA 1TB model. WD's Caviar Black drives come in 2TB, 1TB, 750GB, 640GB and 500GB models and all use the standard 3Gbit/s SATA drive interface.The new 3.5-inch model's name is the WD1002FAEX, and it comes with a double speed 6Gbit/s SATA interface, along with the …

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FAIL

I probably won't be the first...

..to point out how irrelevant a 6gbs interface is, when the platers & heads are chugging along in the slow lane at 7200rpm.

FAIL - because it's a pointless addition until SSD's get their act together. Like attaching F1 downforce aids to a milk float.

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Cache size

"along with the same 64MB cache and 7,200rpm spin speed as the other Caviar Blacks."

I have two 640 GB Caviar Blacks and I remember the cache being advertised as 32 MB. It looks like the only Caviar Black SATA 3 GB/s model that has 64 MB is the 2 TB model. I notice that on the page of general info about the Caviar Black line they generously provide the following though:

"Colossal cache - Bigger, faster cache of up to 64 MB means faster performance."

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Flame

Now for the obvious question

Can the new WD1002FAEX drive actually transfer data at 6Gbit/s SATA speed? No. This "improvement" is more marketing trash than reality.

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Coat

Well

Yes, a 6Gbps interface is about as pointless as a USB3 floppy drive. Even SSDs will have a hard time saturating SATA3 currently. For platter-based storage, probably the only effective means of using such a link would be for hybrid disks. Many high-performance storage systems have tiered storage: RAM-based --> SSDs --> HDDs (---> Tape). As data ages and is accessed less frequently, it's moved to a slower (but cheaper) storage location. A hybrid 3.5" drive that has 1GB of RAM, 32GB of flash AND 2TB of platter storage would be something that could be very nice to stick on SATA3. Perhaps using some semi-intelligent data location algorithm to stick (a interm copy of) your database/dlls/etc high-frequency stuff in the RAM for super-fast access, quick-to-access info in the flash (such as boot-required windows stuff, perhaps your favorite game), then store your MP3s, DVD rips, and your photo gallery, etc on the platters....

Of course, anyone that has the money and a bit of know-how has probably already set up a RAM Drive, an SSD, and mass storage in their computer anyway. It would just be convenient to offload all that hassle and headache into a "black box" of a hard drive.

Mine's with the patent application in the pocket, so I can troll on it later.

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Thumb Down

6Gbps does not matter.

According to their spec sheet (http://www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-701276.pdf) the 6Gbps 1GB drive has a 19% higher throughput than the 3Gbps drive. On the same sheet, the 3Gbps 2GB drive has a 10% higher throughput.

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