Western Digital My Book Duo DAS Reviewby Ganesh T S on July 12, 2014 6:00 PM EST
Even as the consumer NAS market continues to experience rapid growth, it is impossible for consumers to have really fast access to data when the storage is bottlenecked by the speed of their network link. Single hard disks, by themselves, can hardly saturate today's high-speed direct-attached storage (DAS) interfaces such as eSATA, USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt. Users needing fast transfer rates (while maintaining the higher cost-effective capacities that hard disks provide) need to go in for RAID solutions. These tend to perform well for certain common workloads such as multimedia handling.
Earlier this week, we took a look at LaCie's high end 2-bay RAID DAS, the 2big Thunderbolt 2. It integrated both USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt 2 as connectivity options. At $800 for a 8 TB version, the pricing carries a premium for the Thunderbolt connectivity. USB 3.0 is, in a way, the poor man's Thunderbolt. With a focus on the average consumer, Western Digital launched the My Book Duo USB 3.0 DAS with hardware RAID capabilities a few weeks back. We got the 8 TB version in for review. The detailed specifications of the unit are provided below.
|Western Digital My Book Duo WDBLWE0080JCH|
|Internal Storage Media||2x 4 TB 3.5" WD40EFRX Red Hard Drives|
|Interface||1x USB 3.0 + 2x USB 3.0 (Downstream Hub)|
|RAID Modes||RAID 0 / RAID 1 / JBOD|
|Cooling||Fan behind the front face at the base of the unit|
|Power Supply||100-240V AC Switching Adapter (12V @ 3A DC)|
|Dimensions||165 x 157 x 99 mm | 6.5 x 6.2 x 3.9 in.|
|Weight||2.24 kg | 5.0 lbs.|
|Product Page||Western Digital My Book Duo|
Testbed Setup and Testing Methodology
Evaluation of DAS units on Windows is done with the testbed outlined in the table below. For devices with USB 3.0 connections (such as the My Book Duo that we are considering today), we utilize the USB 3.0 port directly hanging off the PCH.
|AnandTech DAS Testbed Configuration|
|Motherboard||Asus Z97-PRO Wi-Fi ac ATX|
|CPU||Intel Core i7-4790|
Corsair Vengeance Pro CMY32GX3M4A2133C11
32 GB (4x 8GB)
DDR3-2133 @ 11-11-11-27
|OS Drive||Seagate 600 Pro 400 GB|
|Optical Drive||Asus BW-16D1HT 16x Blu-ray Write (w/ M-Disc Support)|
|Add-on Card||Asus Thunderbolt EX II|
|Chassis||Corsair Air 540|
|PSU||Corsair AX760i 760 W|
|OS||Windows 8.1 Pro|
|Thanks to Asus and Corsair for the build components|
Full details of the reasons behind choosing the various components in the above build, as well as the details of our DAS test suite can be found here.