Since replacing the main OS drive in my machine with an m4 SSD, the second hard disk, with my home directory which I work on is now really starting to feel like a bit of a boat anchor.
The drive in question is a 500GB WD Caviar SE16 from about 2007. In the TR review in 2006 it is shown to have 3 125GB platters. The drive still works great and I've only half filled it, so capacity isn't a problem, it's performance.
I really don't need anything bigger than 1TB so I was wondering, what is the fastest 7200RPM 1TB drive on the market and what has the best areal density. Would I even notice that much of a difference between this old drive and the modern ones?
From what I've seen, the choices are between the 1TB versions of the:
WD Caviar Black
Seagate Baracuda 3TB
Samsung Spinpoint F3.
I've not had great luck with seagates and I've noticed that since seagate took over samsung the newegg reviews seem to have taken a turn for the worse.
What I do to stress the drive is either code compiling (especially when compiling GCC) and running virtual machines from the drive. The drive will mainly be handling lots of small files rather than a few large ones, so maybe access time is more important? I'd love to go VelociRaptor, but I can't afford one, so a 7200RPM drive would do.