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Seagate Desktop SSHD 2TB Hard Drive Review

Author: AkG
Date: November 16, 2013
Product Name: SSHD 2TB
Part Number: ST2000DX001
Warranty: 3 Years
Purchase at NCIX: |
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Conclusion


The Desktop SSHD represents years of refinements to firmware, market research and design updates for products like the Momentus XT and Laptop SSHD lineups. In many ways, those previous drives served as accurate litmus tests for Seagate’s hybrid technology and the lessons learned have trickled down into the Desktop SSHD 2TB. The result is simply astonishing, allowing for the creation of a drive which will surely take the mainstream marketplace by storm.

These hybrid drives live and die by their ability to learn which programs you use the most, cache the necessary information in their limited amount of NAND and then utilize that information for enhanced load times. This means built-in software and its caching algorithms play a large part in the SSHD equation since Seagate has leveraged new cache-level enhancements that ensure optimal performance much sooner than in previous generations. Instead of taking eight or more instances before the controller understands that a task needs priority caching, it now takes less than four repetitions to react. In most situations it allows the drive to adapt itself to your usage patterns much quicker.

On the hardware side of things, Seagate has finally paired the NAND to 1TB spindles which spin at 7200RPM. This extreme aerial density and high rotational speed gives the Desktop SSHD 2TB a lot more power and flexibility than previous hybrid drives. It also ensures that rarely-used programs still get reasonably fast treatment.

When the cache and quick spindles are combined into the SSHD 2TB, we get one extremely fast hard drive in real world scenarios. This in itself is extremely important since the perceptual performance brought about by quicker application and OS boot sequences will make your system feel much, much faster than one using a traditional HDD. Granted, we aren’t talking about SSD levels of responsiveness here but the Desktop SSHD 2TB provides an excellent middle ground which combines high level capacity with the ability to drastically affect load times.

At just $125 and boasting some incredible performance numbers, the Desktop SSHD 2TB is the current thousand-pound gorilla of the hard drive market. It has made the already tenuously positioned VelociRaptor obsolete since there is simply no reason to choose that hotter, louder, smaller capacity - yet higher priced - drive over this quieter, faster, larger capacity andquickly.

With all that being said, the Desktop SSHD is a somewhat imperfect bulwark. By once again opting for a mere 8GB of NAND Seagate has left the door open for the competition. The amount of ultra-fast performance on tap is certainly enough, but if they had opted for 32GB, entry level / value orientated Solid State Drives would have become very difficult to justify even if that meant a slight price increase. As it stands true SSDs are getting less expensive with every generation and as the capacity increases while the price decreases the Desktop SSHD’s may quickly be overwhelmed. Seagate has bought themselves some time against the almost inevitable SSD takeover of the mainstream marketplace, but they do need to take full advantage of this breathing room the Desktop SSHD has bought them.

Simply put the Desktop SSHD has breathed new life in to the hard drive market and it will act as a bulwark against the ever-encroaching SSD onslaught. With excellent capacity, great performance and a great price many mainstream consumers will be better served by a SSHD rather than a 128GB SSD backstopping a standard hard drive. The difference in performance does not make up for the increase in price for most mainstream and even some enthusiast users.

 
 
 

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