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Seagate Desktop HDD review

Richard Easton
20 Mar 2015
Our Rating 
118

The Seagate Desktop HDD isn’t particularly quick but is good value for the largest capacities

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Specifications

Capacity: 4TB/3TB/2TB, Cost per gigabyte: £0.04 (2TB), £0.03 (3TB), £0.02 (4TB), Interface: SATA3

The Seagate Desktop HDD range goes all the way up to 4TB, which should be ample space for the most enormous film and music collections. The drive is also available in 2TB and 3TB capacities. The 4TB model is the best value at just 2p per GB, while opting for the smaller 3TB drive will add an extra penny per GB and 2TB will add tuppence.

It should be noted that these prices are for the OEM versions. Full retail kits are available, which are slightly more expensive but include mounting screws, a SATA cable and Molex to SATA power adaptor. Seagate does also offer its Desktop HDD in smaller capacities, but we've excluded those as they're poor value compared to the 2TB and above models.

This range of drives was formerly part of Seagate’s Barracuda range, but has since been simply rebranded as the Desktop HDD range. The drives are a standard Desktop 3.5in form factor and have 64MB of cache and a SATA3 controller, although plugging a mechanical hard disk into a SATA2 port is unlikely to affect its speed. The drive's spindle speed is 5,900RPM, which is relatively slow, but Seagate claims this means the drive can run cooler than faster models.

Seagate sent us the 4TB disk to review. The drive’s performance in our file transfer benchmark tests wasn't the best we’ve seen. We were never expecting this disk to rival the speeds of an SSD or SSHD hybrid drive, but its performance was even so short of other mechanical disks we’ve tested. In our large-file benchmark, the Desktop HDD wrote files at 168MB/s and read them back at 157MB/s for an average score of 162MB/s, making this one of the slower mechanical hard disks we've seen. Small files were written at 73.9MB/s and read at 75.7MB/s for an average of 77.5MB/s, which still isn’t amazing but is closer to the competition.

The drive is still more than quick enough as a secondary disk to store your documents and media files, but you'll likely notice its slow performance if you use it as a main disk for your operating system and programs.

The Seagate Desktop HDD was a below-average performer in our speed tests, which wasn’t entirely surprising considering its relatively slow spindle speed. It's an inexpensive drive if you need a vast amount of space, so would be a good choice as a secondary drive for storing your documents and media. However, Western Digital’s Green 3.5in drive is a similar price and has significantly better small and large file performance. Also check out our Best hard drive 2015 buying guide for all the best drives available.

Hardware
Capacity4TB/3TB/2TB
Formatted capacity (NTFS)3,726GB
Cost per gigabyte£0.04 (2TB), £0.03 (3TB), £0.02 (4TB)
InterfaceSATA3
Power connectorN/A
Spindle speed5,900RPM (4TB), 7,200RPM (other capacities)
Cache64MB
Quoted seek time12ms
Buying Information
WarrantyTwo-year RTB
Price£59 (2TB), £84 (3TB), £118 (4TB)
Supplierwww.ebuyer.com
Detailswww.seagate.com
Part codeST2000DM001, ST3000DM001, ST4000DM000

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