Seagate NAS HDD 4TB

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These recordings were made with a high resolution, lab quality, digital recording system inside SPCR's own 11 dBA ambient anechoic chamber, then converted to LAME 128kbps encoded MP3s. We've listened long and hard to ensure there is no audible degradation from the original WAV files to these MP3s. They represent a quick snapshot of what we heard during the review.

These recordings are intended to give you an idea of how the product sounds in actual use — one meter is a reasonable typical distance between a computer or computer component and your ear. The recording contains stretches of ambient noise that you can use to judge the relative loudness of the subject. Be aware that very quiet subjects may not be audible — if we couldn't hear it from one meter, chances are we couldn't record it either!

The recordings start with 5 to 10 seconds of ambient noise, then 10 second segments of the drive in the following states: idle, seek with AAM enabled (if applicable), and seek with AAM disabled.

Desktop Hard Drive Comparatives:


The Seagate NAS HDD 4TB is another high capacity drive that puts performance on the back burner to achieve quiet, low vibration, and energy efficient operation. Its obvious competitor is the WD Red 4TB which offers many of the same features. The Red edges forward in a very close race. The Red scored 6% higher overall in our real world performance tests but again, it was an incredibly tight contest. Take away the NAS HDD's poor boot time (which is obviously not a factor in a NAS that's always on) or ExactFile result, and we're left with a virtual dead-heat. But if you judge which is the superior drive based on environmental characteristics, the Red has the advantage there as well. It performs slightly better in every category except for power consumption when seeking.

Still, the overall difference is so small that it would be hard to differentiate the two in a real-world setting. The biggest measurable difference is the NAS HDD's slightly higher noise output when seeking. You'd be hard pressed to discern this unless the drives were in very close proximity. NAS boxes and small servers are typically placed in closets or out-of-the-way corners so it's unlikely acoustics even come into the equation.

Seagate's solution has one important advantage: Lower price. The US$160 street price of the Seagate NAS HDD 4TB is quite a bit cheaper than the US$190 WD Red 4TB. You certainly don't lose much by going with the cheaper drive, and the price difference balloons as the number of drives increases. If you go with Seagate, filling a four-bay NAS will save you US$120. Bump it up to five and that last drive is practically free compared with five WD Reds. For most users, the WD Red 4TB's slight advantages are negligible compared to the cost advantage of the Seagate NAS HDD 4TB, making the latter the more pragmatic option.

Many thanks to Seagate for the NAS HDD 4TB hard drive samples.

Seagate NAS HDD 4TB is Recommended by SPCR

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SPCR Articles of Related Interest:

Western Digital Red 4TB & Se 4TB Hard Drives
Western Digital Red 3TB & 1TB Hard Drives
WD VelociRaptor 1TB and Scorpio Blue 500GB
Icy Dock 2.5"/3.5" Drive Accessories
Hitachi Deskstar 7K3000 2TB Hard Drive
Tiché PC HDD Vibration Killer

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