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Reviewed by: Norman Tan [03.03.06]
Manufactured by: Hitachi, Seagate



Given the rate of advancement in other areas of computing such as video cards, cpus and ram, it is pretty surprising that we still rely on the venerable hard drive for our storage needs. One would think that by now, the storage manufacturers would have discovered a way to reliably store information in something that doesn't have so many moving parts. It is because of this reliance on mechanical parts that harddrives have been, and for the foreseeable future are, the bottleneck in the system.

While it is true that we've seen minor bumps in speed, much of the advancement in hard drives has come in the form of capacity. With these hard drives, it is now possible to cram in 4 terabytes of storage into a high-end desktop computer as motherboards now will typically come with 4+4 SATA ports. Yes, 4 terabytes.  While this might be overkill for most people's desktop systems, there are definitely those (think video) who can and will make use of all that space.

At the time of this article, only two manufacturers have 500gb hard drives in market channels right now, Hitachi and Seagate. Maxtor recently announced theirs, but as of yet, they are not available to the end consumers.

With only two companies in the running, we decided to mix things up a little and show both single drive and RAID 0 performance just to be a little different. In the picture above is a "measly" two terabytes of hard drives. From Hitachi, we recieved a pair of 7K500 drives and from Seagate, we recieved a pair of their 7200.9 500gb drives.

We'll do a quick run through of each drives specs and then dive in to the benchmarks.

Next Page: (The Drives)