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Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB review


Unless you need the biggest, fastest internal hard disk available, there are better value alternatives available.

Review Date: 22 Jan 2010

Price when reviewed: £220


Reviewed By: Alan Lu

Our Rating 3 stars out of 5

Western Digital's Caviar Black isn't the first 2TB internal desktop hard disk we've seen – that honour goes to the company's 2TB Caviar Green. Unfortunately that model had a variable spindle speed between 5,400 and 7,200rpm which limited its file copying performance. The Caviar Black has a straightforward 7,200rpm spindle speed, and so proved to be noticeably faster in our tests.

In fact, the Caviar Black was one of the fastest internal 3.5in SATA hard disks we've seen. It wrote large files at 101.4MB/s and read them at 111.1MB/s. Small files were read at 92.2MB/s. It fell behind only when writing small files, where it managed just 77.8MB/s, but this is still faster than many other 3.5in disks.

You'll have to pay dearly if you want the Caviar Black's excellent performance and high capacity, though. At £220, it costs 11p per gigabyte, this is expensive even compared to the Caviar Green which costs £158 from Amazon, or 8p per gigabyte. If you can live with a slightly smaller hard disk, Seagate's 1.5TB Barracuda 7200.11 has a great balance of capacity, performance and price. It's not quite as fast as the Caviar Black, admittedly, but is far cheaper at just 6p per gigabyte.

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