Hard Drive Recommendations

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by 3282868, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. 3282868 macrumors 603

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    #1
    Two internal SATA drives in my Mac Pro5,1 6-Core system (which I will be selling this week) are suddenly experiencing failures (bad sectors mainly). I've run Apple diagnostic tests and others, no way to repair them. Of course this happened after I installed 10.9 and began a new Time Machine backup. This afternoon I noticed a Seagate drive in a NAS device is also experiencing the same issues.

    While trying to copy the data to other drives, I'm researching hard drive reviews. I need large volume disks, 2-4TB's. There is so much information online it's more confusing than beneficial.

    What are your reviews/experiences/recommendations (if any)? I would greatly appreciate any advice. Thanks! :)
     
  2. designs216 macrumors 65816

    designs216

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    #2
    My current favorite is Hitachi. I'm currently running one 3TB and two 1TB drives in my MP. They are quiet, fast and dependable. I've also had good performance and reliability from Western Digital drives.
     
  3. 3282868, Oct 7, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2013

    3282868 thread starter macrumors 603

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    #3
    Forgot about Hitachi. They have a "Deskstar" model, right? I recall something about those being great drives (?). It seems Western Digital and Seagate dominate the consumer market for me, thanks for that advice.

    Yeah, I've never had an issue with my Western Digital drives until recently. I had 1 Caviar Black fail earlier this year which they replaced in warranty. They're sending two replacements out for the 2 recent drives with bad sectors. Can't believe it happened after I erased my Time Machine backup to start fresh. Hoping my data can be read and copied, or in the least recovered.

    Thanks again for the recommendation.

    Ooops, I googled the Hitachi Deskstar and realized why I remember the name. Seems that model had issues for a while.
     
  4. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #4
    There's just no simple answer to the question "who makes the most reliable hard drives". Everyone has different experiences with different brands of drives. Personally, I've had drives from every manufacturer fail on me. Some of those companies are no longer even in the hard drive business.

    The fact is, all hard drives will eventually fail. It's just a matter of time and a question of luck. That's why it's so important to have backups of your important files. That being said, I just buy what happens to be cheap at the time I'm in need of more storage.
     
  5. 3282868 thread starter macrumors 603

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    #5
    So true. I should be thankful, my drives have lasted me a long time and Western Digital has a great RMA program. As in life, nothing lasts forever.

    Backups, lord, sometimes I wonder if I don't have enough. I have triple backups - a NAS device connected to my Mac Mini HTPC, a 4TB "Time Machine" volume in my Mac Pro, and annual Blu-Ray DL backups for some media. Yet, I still want more security lol.

    As "techie" as I am, I'm embarrassed to admit my lack of knowledge regarding RAID systems.
     
  6. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #6
    RAID systems are not hard to understand. There are many places on the internet that do a great job of explaining the different types of RAIDs. Some of them offer "redundancy" which helps protect against hard drive failures to a degree.
     
  7. 3282868 thread starter macrumors 603

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    #7
    It's embarrassing, I understand the concepts between various RAID types, but for some reason when numbers get involved (RAID 1 vs RAID 5), my brain shuts down. :eek:
     
  8. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #8
    The numbers have no real correlation to each other. It's just a naming scheme.
     
  9. 3282868 thread starter macrumors 603

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    #9
    WD is replacing both in warranty, but I spent a few hours reading up on the latest reviews for large storage based SATA 3.5" HDD's.

    The WD Black models seem to be the best in customer satisfaction, speed, reliability and cost while the red's are variable speed NAS oriented drives. Found a WD Black 4 TB 3.5" 7200 RPM SATA III 64MB Cache w/ 5 Year Warranty on Amazon Prime for $265.99, with 1,000+ reviews averaging 4.5/5. Ironically, one of the two WD drives that are failing is a 2TB Black model.

    I'm not holding it against WD, it happens to all types and they're replacing it at cost. I'm considering a 4TB model as I could use the space in one drive. Either this or a 4TB Red for one of my NAS devices.

    Thoughts?

    Thanks again guys for all the help.
     
  10. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

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    #10
    True, but that was a long, long time ago, around the turn of the century. It was before IBM sold their drive business to Hitachi. One series of Deskstar was (rightly) called "Deathstar." I had a couple in the 180 gb range and I didn't have trouble but plenty of people did.

    I've had very good luck with the Seagate 3 TB drives (I have 5 or 6 spread over two machines and an external, and haven't had a failure), but I recognize that it's just good luck. As another poster has said, they all fail eventually.

    The next time I need a drive, I'm going to try the new Hitachis, though. I've had 3 or 4 of the 2 TB Hitachis and they're all going strong.
     
  11. 3282868 thread starter macrumors 603

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    #11
    That's funny, I googled "Deathstar" from memory before realizing it's "Deskstar".

    I found a new site for me, "Tom's Hardware", that tests and reviews drives. Interestingly, the Hitachi Deskstar 7K3000/4000 (3 or 4 TB models) were ranked at the top, with the Seagate Barracuda 3TB next and the WD Black 4TB right behind or on par.

    Now I'm considering a Deskstar. I'm a bit weary on Seagate drives from personal and work experience, for me the Barracuda's are out. The Hitachi'a are pretty decent, no?

    "Tom's Hardware" reviews
     
  12. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #12
    You can have one WD Black 4TB @ $265 or two Seagate 4TB @ $300 if you buy from NewEgg and apply coupon code EMCYTZT4562 (ends 10-8-2013).

    You can even use the second drive to make yet another backup...
     
  13. 3282868, Oct 7, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2013

    3282868 thread starter macrumors 603

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    #13
    Wow! That's impressive. Have Seagate's quality improved? I recall "The Seagate Scandal" on many of their drives due to faulty firmware bricking. I wouldn't have minded if Seagate's support handled the matter instead of fighting customers. Initially Seagate fought customers hard on taking responsibility, forcing many to spend countless hours with support. Once they admitted the issue, they sent out prepaid boxes to ship the effected drives which were then returned, requiring 4-6 weeks of downtime.

    Reading recent reviews, seems companies buying into one another or cross production plus tech improvements have created a fairly even playing field in quality control and reliability. That being the case, WD has standard 5-10 year warranty coverage compared to Seagate's ~1-2 year support. That could be a deal breaker for me.

    I'll check it out though, $300 for two fast drives is incredible! Thanks so much man.

    Just checked Newegg, great prices! One thing:

    Spindle Speed(RPM): 5900

    Probably being picky, but would like to stick to 7200+, do a lot of video editing, etc.

    Sorry! Don't mean to be picky or anything, you've all given me a lot to consider and helped a great deal. Gotta weigh the pro's and con's now. Thanks again for all your help! :)
     
  14. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #14
    I think just about every one of these manufacturers have had bad series' of drives in the past. I don't think any of that has anything to do with the present.

    I don't even know what the warranties are anymore. I last time I checked, both Seagate and WD cut their warranties in 2012.

    Speeds are not always entirely dependent on spindle speed. But that's getting in to an entirely different and complex topic. If you want to compare speeds, try checking www.storagereview.com.
     
  15. 3282868 thread starter macrumors 603

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    #15
    Absolutely, speeds depend on many variables; platter size, drive capacity, cache, etc. I often compare hard drives to record players for less tech savvy clients - like a needle playing a record so to the speed of the "needle" accessing data (very simplistically stated).

    WD has some of the best warranties on the market. 5 years is standard issue. The two drives I've had replaced were going on 4 years old, one past 5 yet they replaced each and even replaced one with a better model. Seagate's model is 2 years limited.

    You informed me on a lot and made some excellent points. I'll think it over tonight while working on building my desk - some reason fine sanding clears my mind lol. :eek:
     
  16. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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  17. 3282868 thread starter macrumors 603

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    #17
    Thanks and thanks for the link, I missed it last I checked. :)
     
  18. padapada macrumors regular

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    #18
    I am using Hitachi in my NAS HDS5C3030ALA630. Choice is based on this recommendation on the Backblaze blog.
    A more recent entry from the same blog lists more drives.
    These guys store 50 petabytes of data, so they do have some experience.
     
  19. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

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    #19
    FWIW, I have used HDD's from every major mfgr out there since 1990's, and truth be told, ALL of them have eventually failed at one point or the other....some sooner than others, but in all that time, I can honestly say that I got more years of life from WD's than any others.....

    Right now, I have 6 WD's that are all well over 5 years old and still running strong nottaproblemo.....

    However, they don't get as much use nowadays as they used too, since I have switched all but 1 of my 9 computers to SSD's, for everything except large image file storage.....
     
  20. Larry-K macrumors 68000

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    #20
    Anything but Seagate.

    ----------

    Just spring for the Hitachi Enterprise versions, they have 5-year warranties, but I've never had one fail.
     
  21. Larry-K macrumors 68000

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    #21
    I'd go for the 7k4000 series "Ultrastar" 5-year Warranty Enterprise versions, they're a little more money, but unless you're buying them by the bushel it shouldn't be a problem (I'm sure server farms buy them by the truckload). Just don't let anybody sell you the new cheap Toshiba's that HGST is making, we've had several of those tank, got them in a package deal.

    Western Digital Owns HGST now, but they said HGST was still calling its own shots.

    We just sent yet another iMac in for it's Freebie Seagate replacement, but that's an Apples/Oranges thing.
     
  22. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #22
    I lived through the Deathstar era. 5 drives died on me within a two month period and they were all parts of RAID arrays. This led me to avoided IBM/Hitachi drives for a long time. By the way, Hitachi is now Toshiba.

    Also, contrary to yours and SmurfBoxMasta's experiences, I've had the most luck with Seagates and I've been through plenty of them. My first hard drive was a 5.25" MFM Conner that I saved up months for as a kid.

    So, as I said towards the beginning of the thread, "Everyone has different experiences with different brands of drives."
     
  23. Larry-K macrumors 68000

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    #23
    Well, let me know when Apple recalls thousands of iMacs for HGST drives, but I've never seen it happen.

    As for HGST being Toshiba, The Toshiba drives say "Made by HGST", but it's a moot point since A) Western Digital Owns HGST and B) The drives appear to be Junk, so I'd never recommend buying one.

    My first Drive was an 5.25" 110 MB CMS.

    I've bought Hitachi since they bought IBM. Always hated RAIDS, still do, most of my online storage is SSDs now, but you can't beat platters for huge amounts of storage.

    I have one 80Gig Seagate that still runs after eight years, so I just let it keep running. We've had four iMacs & two MacBook Pros replaced for failed Seagates, it's not an impressive record although I would only use the Enterprise stuff in any event.
     
  24. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    #24
    As far as I know, Apple doesn't use Hitachis, so the odds of them ever doing a recall are zero. Again, I went through the whole "Deathstar" fiasco, so they by no means have a flawless track record.
     
  25. Larry-K macrumors 68000

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    #25
    We've gotten machines from Apple with Drives other than Seagates, those are the ones that didn't go back. I'm pretty sure the two MacBook Pros came back with Hitachis. I have a drawer full of Seagate Laptop drives, I always pull them out upon purchase.

    Never had a "Deathstar" issue myself, and I bought plenty of drives during that period.

    No one has a flawless record, but you have to learn to spot the "Mitsubishis" of the world.
     

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