PCMark 7 Performance

If our earlier application based results were the best case scenario for the Momentus XT and our trace based Storage Bench results were the worst case, PCMark 7 is somewhere in between. Its tests are lighter than our Storage Bench but they still show a distinct difference between the Momentus XT and an SSD.

PCMark 7 - Overall

PCMark 7 - Lightweight

PCMark 7 - Productivity

PCMark 7 - Creativity

PCMark 7 - Entertainment

PCMark 7 - Computation

PCMark 7 - System Storage

Overall performance is pretty much where you'd expect it for a light client workload. The new drive is faster than its predecessor and faster than any other mechanical hard drive we've compared it to. There's still a noticeable advantage in moving to an SSD however, which remains my preference if you can manage it.

AnandTech Storage Bench 2011 Desktop Iometer Performance
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  • kyuu - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    RAID0 does not "break" these drives. They work just fine, and you see the usual advantages of RAID0 and essentially will have a 1.5TB drive with 16GB of NAND cache.

    If you google, you will see plenty of reviews of the previous gen drive in RAID0.
  • Springfield45 - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    Are these drives capable of supporting RAID arrays?
    If so, could an array of four of them in RAID 5 have an effective 24GB cache?
    How would that effect performance?
  • kyuu - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    1) Yes.
    2) Yes.
    3) Google for reviews of the previous model in RAID0.
  • wharris1 - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    I'm currently using the first XT in my laptop and have been very happy. Much snappier resumes and loading of chrome/email. Couldn't rationalize spending ~$4-500 for a decent sized SSD that might still get tight with all my pictures/media and the 500GB size for I believe around $150 was great. I do have a 240 GB OCZ vertex 3 in my desktop with a 2 GB WD black for storage but couldn't do that with my laptop, thus the XT was perfect. I also liked the prior poster's idea of using the new 750 GB XT as a desktop storage disk paired with a SSD, but at $245 seems a little expensive, but then, every HDD looks ridiculously expensive right now. Great review and I really like the overall price/GB/performance of these drives.
  • RP94805 - Tuesday, December 18, 2012 - link

    I agree with Current Owner...

    I actually have two of the 500 gig XTs - the first in my 6 year old duo-core notebook that I purchased when the XTs first came out (and yes that made a huge difference in keeping the computer usable for the last couple of years) and the second I just added to a brand new 14" i7 QM Notebook that I bought that had a regular 500 gig 5400 rpm drive as standard.

    I bought the i7 and one of the few things I thought was limiting was the 5400 rpm drive - so since I needed the storage space and was happy with my first XT i looked to the 500 gig XT as it was only $50 on sale (timing was just right, at purchase there was mention of an additional $30 savings if purchased by 11.21.12.) This was by far the best $50 upgrade I could make to the system.

    As to reliability, I have never encountered anything at all wrong about my first XT drive and it is still running strong - don't know if the very first batch were ok, then a bad batch, then "fixed" and that is what I bought now.

    I definitely could not justify the additional $75-100 (on sale) for the additional size and slight increase in performance (and yes my i7 could make use of the Sata 6gb/sec speed of the newer model). Maybe in a year or two when prices drop the 750gig XT would then be a possible upgrade to my i7 notebook. But right now, I am a firm believer in the XTs over any 5400 rpm notebook drive and even to me the 7200 rpm notebook drives - the boot and shut down times are very SSD like (in my desktops I have the SSD + Large HDD setups) and for a business notebook where I frequently launch exactly the same applications (Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Chrome, etc) the application launch times are very fast.
  • beginner99 - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    it costs 239. here in local currency.

    An intel 310 80 GB mSata costs 179.

    A laptop usually already ships with a HDD and if it has an mSATA slot, buying the momentus xt makes no sense price and performance wise.
  • sheh - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    What happens when the flash starts failing? Will the drive turn into a standard HDD, or become unusable? What's its life expectancy?
  • Denithor - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    It's SLC so with even a mediocre controller it's going to have a very long lifespan. Plus the fact that you aren't writing directly to the drive - it's writing only your most commonly used files and then reading them back multiple times - so as long as you're repetitive with your usage pattern there will be minimal writes and therefore wearing out shouldn't be an issue.
  • kyuu - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    The drive will essentially be a normal Momentus 2.5" 7200 RPM drive if the NAND ever fails for some reason. Everything in the cache is still on the hard drive.

    Keep in mind it's SLC NAND and you have a 5-year warranty, so, it's not really something to worry to much about.
  • sheh - Tuesday, December 13, 2011 - link

    Did Seagate officially say anything on the matter?

    Yes, it's SLC (I tend to use drives more than 5 years), for reads only (for now), all the data remains also on the platters. But the drive will fail if the firmware wasn't coded to disable the caching mechanism when the flash starts failing. Doesn't seem likely it was ignored, but who knows.

    It's not that I plan on getting one of these, but I'm curious nonetheless.

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