I'm looking for a HD for the HTPC I'm building my brother. I'm aiming to only install one HD (for now at least), so I want to get a 7200RPM drive so that he doesn't get fed up waiting for it to boot when he wants to watch something (no, I can't afford an SSD!), as is the case with my Samsung HD103UJ F1 1TB.
The Samsung F1 750GB or 1TB were great as far as noise goes and the WD Blue 1TB probably was as well I think, as well as being a bit faster, but neither are readily available any more.
So I think I'm just going to have to accept that I have to get a smaller drive. The 500GB Western Digital WD5000AAKX Caviar Blue is available for around £30, and if I look really hard I can find some places still selling the WD6400AAKS, for about £40. I can get the 1TB Western Digital WD10EALX Caviar Blue for about £46, but apparently AAM has been disabled on that for some reason and it might have an annoying hum.
I recall there was some problem with WD drives causing Win7 to BSOD as well. The Samsung HD204UI 2TB F4 is only 5400RPM but is only £54, so that's a possibility (as are any 5400RPM drives) if it won't be noticeably slower than a 7200RPM drive in this PC (see below), although if I'm spending that much I might be better off getting him two 500GB drives for £60 (maybe two Samsung F2 or F3s, or one of each), which, although 1TB less than the F4, might speed things up by allowing me to put the temp/swap files on the second drive, and having two drives will certainly speed up compressing video files, extracting large RARs, etc.
Just to complicate matters, whichever drive I get has to be able to be set to SATA 1.5 (either by jumper or software overlay) as the HTPC motherboard only supports that speed (yes, I'm building my brother's HTPC with my castoffs!)