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POWER OF ONE or WEAKNESS OF 0.67 - how to avoid getting the bad drive version...,
This review is from: Seagate Barracuda 2 TB HDD SATA 6 Gb/s NCQ 64MB Cache 3.5-Inch Internal Bare Drive ST2000DM001 (Personal Computers)ok, so this drive is listed as the "Seagate ST2000DM001" and guess what; other than that it sports 2 Terabytes, it tells you nothing whatever about what drive you'll end up with, because Seagate has chosen to obscure and omit relevant Data between different builds with vastly different performance.
The short advice: Only purchase versions xxExxxxx [and possibly x24xxxxx - x24 is unverified info so far, see notes below] of the 2TB model. This uses 2 platters and 4 heads.
It performs 30% better than the version with 3 platters, which has an xxFxxxxx [or possibly x36xxxxx] designation. Avoid those!
You'll need to contact the seller and ask them to check the code on the drive. If they can't verify, don't buy it, better to get a drive from a different company, where its hopefully not a surprise game of what's in the box.
S - SU - Suzhou China
W - WU - Wuxi China
Z - TK - Korat Thailand
F = 3 platters with either 5 or 6 heads (bad 2TB drive or good 3TB drive)
E = 2 platters with 4 heads. (good 2TB drive)
D = 1 platter with 2 heads. (good 1TB drive)
Weight info received in a comment here, suggests that the 'good' 2-platter drive weighs 534 grams, while the 'bad' 3-platter drive weighs 624 grams.
Seagate used to embed the information about their drives in the model number, but now they obscured it, so they can pawn off whatever they want. Send a WxE model to Publications who test drives, and then ship the crappy WxF model to unsuspecting customers who may never realize they're not getting what they thought they were buying. This should really be illegal.
NOTE 1: This was written for the 2TB drive. It turns out Amazon also shows this review for 3TB drives. This info does not apply to 3TB drives, the 3TB drives always have 3 1TB platters. (or not, there have been reports of 5 platter 3TB versions, if you know anything more, let us know)
NOTE 2: comparison test results - since links get killed in reviews, I'll upload an image to the product page.
NOTE 3: A relevant post on Seagate's forum stating that these Barracuda have been crippled through redesign [see the link in comment 143 below, page 15]
(Apparently, links are permitted in comments)
NOTE 4: Someone commented that Seagate removed any reference to the 2 platter version of this drive in the manual (something which is usually only read after the purchase)
NOTE 5: Someone explained that Seagate made this change due to the flooding of their plant in Thailand. This is not quite correct since chinese 2 platter 2TB drives are also in circulation.
NOTE 6: While the channel still has drives with the numbering scheme as described above, there appear to be at least some drives with a new numbering scheme like "Z240PJB3". Would be great if it read out like x24xxxxx, where 2 stands for 2 platters and 4 stands for 4 heads, then this would be one of the good drives while something like x35xxxxx would be the bad drives. (this is just a guess so far, its not verified)
NOTE 7: Someone added that 2 platter drives (based on other pictures) are 'thinner' with deeper indents on the bottom and top and have a dot matrix code on the bottom right third of the top next to the label. (note that labels are not safe indicators, as they could change an older factory to add barcodes or switch to their latest labeling system any time they wish)
NOTE 8: Seagate has reacted and added more drive info on this product page, advertising "POWER OF ONE" meaning 1 platter per terabyte. This is good news, but that doesn't mean you can relax and just hit the 'buy' button:
a) channel inventory of drives manufactured prior to this "Power of One" initiative will be around for some time to come, so you still need to verify.
b) the specifications sheet Seagate still links on this very page (as of June 28, 2013) shows 6 heads, 3 disks for the 2TB version. With conflicting information, its still a little hard to tell for consumers if they're getting "POWER OF ONE" or "WEAKNESS OF 0.67"
Once Seagate "fixes" their spec sheet info for the 2TB drive which directly conflicts with the "Power of One" advertising, I'd be happy to change my conclusion below. After all, it would mean they decided to be honest and transparent again, rather than hell bent on destroying the reputation of their 'Barracuda' brand.
But right now, what is the point of advertising "Power of One" while saying their 2TB drives have 3 platters with 0.67 TB at the same time.
Seagate's real reason to obscure drive information is being able to use lower bin or older tech platters that can only hold ~670 GB, so they use 3 platters. This is a fine business decision, but an honest company would give it a new Model number/name, as its a different product with lower speeds, lower reliability and higher weight.
But why be honest, if you can cheat and make a few dollars extra per drive, by selling it under the same name as the better drive, which has been reviewed extensively and lauded for its higher speeds?
Last Update: June 28, 2013 (in response to Seagate's new additions to this page and with thanks to Alex and J. Goodman)
Tracked by 25 customers
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Showing 1-10 of 222 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 22, 2012 2:53:22 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 22, 2012 2:56:09 AM PDT
Your faith in WD is misplaced.
For instance, the
Western Digital Caviar Green 2 TB SATA II 3.5-Inch Internal Desktop Hard Drive Retail Kit - WDBAAY0020HNC-NRSN
WD Green Desktop 2TB SATA 6.0 GB/s 3.5-Inch Internal Desktop Hard Drive Retail Kit
(I see that the actual link I copied from the browser's address bar got "translated" into the title I copied from the page)
has pictures that show the WD20EADS, a non-advanced format drive.
A couple of years ago, that might have been what you got when you opened the box.
Now it's probably a WD20EARX, which is apparently a newer version of the WD20EARS.
Unless they were out of those the week that box was filled and grabbed whichever 2TB Caviar Green they had on hand to put in there.
It's like Cracker Jacks, you don't know what the surprise is until you buy it and open the box.
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 22, 2012 3:01:53 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 22, 2012 3:10:54 AM PDT
@Unitron Sad to hear that.. But is the performance substantially worse as well on those? Do they also have a different number of platters?
I mean, I wouldn't mind so much if I get an alternate with equal performance and platter count. A two platter drive will always draw less power and be faster than a three platter drive of the same type. And the more platters, the more the statistical likelihood of an early failure rises.
If you just get a minor alteration a company made over the lifecycle of a product, I can understand it. But 30% performance difference and a different number of platters are unacceptable.
If they all do it, and there's really only 3 disk manufacturers now, I guess they can afford bait and switch methods, cause customers have nobody to turn to that doesn't do it?
What about Toshiba?
In reply to an earlier post on Oct 22, 2012 4:00:33 AM PDT
Actually, the EARX may have better performance numbers than the EADS in the right circumstances.
It's got twice the cache. (64 instead of 32)
But it's an AF drive, and if one were looking for an EADS to get a non-AF that can be jumpered down to 1.5Gb/s for use in a TiVo, one might not consider the substitution a bonus.
Also, I wonder if the warranty really is still 3 years.
You can be sure you're getting a 2TB Caviar Green in a retail box, but other than that you're getting a pig in a poke.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 3:55:48 PM PDT
R. Spies says:
After five years in my D-Link DNS-323 NAS box, one of the two 1.5TB Western Digital HDDs (RAID1) is reportedly cranky and I want to replace both. I'm happy with five years without any problems.
The problem is that WD is no longer selling 1.5TB nor 2TB "Blue" drives, forcing consumers to either opt for the low-performance "Green" drives or the more expensive "Black" drives. I've considered Seagate drives but the reviews on both Amazon and Newegg are, to put it nicely, very disappointing. I'm stuck in "analysis paralysis".
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 4:13:02 PM PDT
Suggest you post in the D-link forums and see what other owners suggest.
Just Google "D-Link DNS-323" and you'll find a link to the forum in the first few results.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 1, 2012 8:40:22 PM PDT
Seems better to spend a little bit extra for a five year investment meant to keep your data safe...
So, I wouldn't mind the extra cost for the black ones, if you want performance.
Or, if you prefer less hot running drives which will probably last longer than the fast ones, the green seems perfectly alright.
Posted on Nov 13, 2012 2:30:33 PM PST
Thanks for the review!
Is this an issue with the 1TB drives also?
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 13, 2012 5:24:34 PM PST
Is what an issue?
Not knowing exactly what you're going to get until you open the box?
Much shorter warranties than before?
Drives with the same model number on the sticker on the drive having different specs from previous ones with the same model number on the sticker on the drive?
Hard drives are a roll of the dice these days.
In reply to an earlier post on Nov 13, 2012 9:21:45 PM PST
I don't know specifically about the 1TB drives, but the way the SKU's got changed to prevent customers from being able to see what they will get is company wide.
Posted on Nov 15, 2012 7:20:21 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 15, 2012 7:22:16 PM PST
O. M. Anta says:
Thanks for the heads up. I have a ZxE drive which is "Made in TH", according to the label. Do you know if it's a good drive? I read elsewhere that Seagate drives from China were not very reliable and that Thailand drives were better. What do you think?