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Need HDD recommendation for games... (re: upgrading Raptor-X drive)

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Right now I have two drives in my system:

Intel X25-M 80GB SSD (Operating System plus maybe one game)
and
WD Raptor-X 150GB (10k RPM) (Games)

I have a bajillion games on Steam and a lot of them are fairly large so the 150 GB gets filled up quickly.

What is my best option for something around 300 GB total strictly for games. (ie. I want fast load times, etc)

I could purchase another Raptor-X and run them in RAID-0, but the hybrid drives seem interesting as well but how much faster/slower would they be for gaming versus my raptor?

I'd love to buy a large SSD but I'm not sure they even make them that large and even if they did it would probably be _expensive_.
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post #2 of 16
What drive IDK biggrin.gif
But in my sig is a link to Steam Mover smile.gif
Well worth a look thumb.gif

bump
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post #3 of 16
Grab a large drive. Huge. Bigger than you need.

Raptors gain some of their speed by having smaller platters, which cuts down the seek times. They're also higher RPM. But if you take a large 7200RPM drive with a high platter density (and thus high sequential speeds), the data is packed closer together, and often seeks are far faster than you'd expect.

Here's my 2TB Hitachi drive. I use it exclusively for Steam games. It's fairly fast, but the graphs aren't that impressive. That said, testing the whole drive doesn't tell the whole story.

hdtuneproahcibenchmarkv.png

Your Raptor is 150GB, so lets see how it stacks up when I only test the first 150GB.

hdtuneproahcibenchmarks.png

That's a lot better than the top graph. Have you ever tested your Raptor with HDTune? If not, grab the free version and run it. Soon after you'll find out which is faster. thumb.gif

http://www.hdtune.com/

Here's 300GB, so that if you find a 300GB Raptor benchmark, you can compare:

hdtuneproahcibenchmarks.png


How do you feel about Seagate drives? A 300GB Raptor is pretty expensive. You might be able to get one of the new 2TB Seagates for less. (Be warned - you have to flash the firmware to CC4C or they disappear from the BIOS randomly, causing all sorts of issues.)

I haven't had very good luck with Seagate drives, but that won't stop me from drooling over the performance of their new ones:

900x900px-LL-31145ee7_14-April-2012_22-44.png
     
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post #4 of 16
wow kramy... thats close to what i get with 2x 500gb wd blacks.. i get like 200mb/s..
post #5 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Fryer View Post

wow kramy... thats close to what i get with 2x 500gb wd blacks.. i get like 200mb/s..
Yeah, the new Seagate drives have 1TB platters. That makes them pretty quick!

Sequential speeds are great. Access times are okay. Firmware isn't too smart yet when it comes to multitasking/NCQ, so as OS drives your Blacks may still be faster. But as a dedicated games drive...? Wow, those Seagates found their niche.

Too bad the warranty is so low. If I hadn't had such rotten luck with other Seagate products, I'd be jumping on them. But since I have, I'm waiting. Someone else can be the guinea pig. tongue.gif
     
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post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kramy View Post

Yeah, the new Seagate drives have 1TB platters. That makes them pretty quick!
Sequential speeds are great. Access times are okay. Firmware isn't too smart yet when it comes to multitasking/NCQ, so as OS drives your Blacks may still be faster. But as a dedicated games drive...? Wow, those Seagates found their niche.
Too bad the warranty is so low. If I hadn't had such rotten luck with other Seagate products, I'd be jumping on them. But since I have, I'm waiting. Someone else can be the guinea pig. tongue.gif

Send one my way, and I would test it out for ya! rolleyes.gif

Also, ya MaximumPC done a review on them, these new Seagate Barracudas are actually the "Best of the Best" "Capacity Hard Drive" due to the performance provided by such large areal density.
http://www.maximumpc.com/best-of-the-best
Edited by ./Cy4n1d3\. - 4/26/12 at 7:52pm
post #7 of 16
ouch... i did a good testing in hd tune set to accurate test settings... not getting the same results as the med test settings...

full 1tb test
HD Tune Pro: AMD 2+0 Stripe/RAID0 Benchmark

Test capacity: full

Read transfer rate
Transfer Rate Minimum : 64.6 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum : 160.2 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average : 123.6 MB/s
Access Time : 12.7 ms
Burst Rate : 205.7 MB/s
CPU Usage : 3.9%


150gb test
HD Tune Pro: AMD 2+0 Stripe/RAID0 Benchmark

Test capacity: 150 gB

Read transfer rate
Transfer Rate Minimum : 107.7 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum : 161.9 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average : 144.6 MB/s
Access Time : 8.76 ms
Burst Rate : 206.0 MB/s
CPU Usage : 4.2%


300gb test
HD Tune Pro: AMD 2+0 Stripe/RAID0 Benchmark

Test capacity: 300 gB

Read transfer rate
Transfer Rate Minimum : 70.5 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum : 161.4 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average : 141.6 MB/s
Access Time : 9.57 ms
Burst Rate : 205.7 MB/s
CPU Usage : 5.2%


i think i need a new controler other than on board.
@op. the 2TB Hitachi's seem to be really good hard drives, but i as well do not trust seagate much. i have had 4 of them die on me within a year, and always seems it is about the time i get them finally set up the way i want them and my op system tweaked in good.
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Fryer View Post

@op. the 2TB Hitachi's seem to be really good hard drives
That's why I chose it. biggrin.gif Its one weakpoint is long seeks; short seeks are fine, but the full HDTune test reveals 16.2ms avg access times, which are not great. WD's EARX Green drives are actually lower than that...

hdtuneproahcibenchmarkv.png

That's why I dedicated it to being my Steam games drive. Generally I only play one game at once, so nothing is going to pull the head out of position. The game gets the full attention of the drive. thumb.gif If I were running my OS + Games off the same drive, seek times would be a lot more important, because tons of background software would be pulling the head away all the time.

Generally games try to preload things before they need them, but with seek times that equal a whole frame (@ 60fps) my HDD can only load about one texture or model per frame. That's why Green drives feel more stuttery when they have to multitask, why WD Blacks and Raptors feel less stuttery, and also why most SSDs have almost no stutters at all. smile.gif Still, dedicated to whatever game I'm playing, it does alright. wink.gif Since most game data ends up right next to other data from the same game, most file reads are going to be under 9ms. I suppose technically it can read two textures or models per frame.

Edit: Odd, my direct image link got swallowed. Well, fixed.
Edited by Kramy - 4/27/12 at 2:50pm
     
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post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
Hmmm, since reliability isn't TOO important for a games drive (ie. I can always just re-download from Steam if needed), I'm definitely considering those Seagate drives.

Is there any advantage to the 3 TB versus 1 TB drives? I'm thinking that 1 TB is plenty of space for my games, but that drive only has one platter, so I'm not sure if the 3 TB having three platters makes any difference...

EDIT: Wait, it's only $10 more for the 2 TB drive...
Edited by sofakng - 4/27/12 at 4:21am
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post #10 of 16
All other things being equal, larger drives are faster. That's the only advantage.

Drives from the same generation usually have the same performance arc - same min/max/avg sequential speeds, and roughly the same access times. That means the 1TB Seagate will fall to about 75MB/sec roughly 1TB in, while the 3TB Seagate will fall to that about 3TB in. Or in other words, 33% into the 1TB drive should match the performance 33% into the 3TB drive, 99% into the 1TB = 99% into the 3TB, etc.

However, you've only got so many Steam games. It's more fair to compare a given capacity. If we examine HDTune benchmarks, it seems that the 1TB will drop to about 75MB/sec near the end, but the 3TB drive will still have 175MB/sec sequential speeds at that point. (2.3x higher 1TB into the drive) The extra unused capacity is an investment in performance. If you have hundreds of gigabytes of Steam games, that's worth considering. thumb.gif
     
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Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Hitachi 2TB - HDS723020BLA64 Crucial M500 960GB - CT960M500SSD1 WD 4TB Black - WD4001FAEX WD 4TB Black - WD4001FAEX 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Seagate 2TB - ST2000DM001 WD 640GB Black - WD6401AALS Seagate 6TB - ST6000DM001 Micron M500 - MTFDDAK480MAV 
Optical DriveOptical DriveOptical DriveOptical Drive
Pioneer DVR-115DBK Samsung SH-S243D/BEBE LG GH22NS90 Lite-On EBAU108 External DVD 
CoolingCoolingCoolingOS
Noctua NH-D15 Fractal Design 140mm Fan - FD-FAN-140 Fractal Design 120mm Fan - FD-FAN-120 Windows 7 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Ubuntu 14.04 LTS Samsung 2343BWX 23" (2048x1152) BenQ GW2765HT 27" IPS LCD Monitor (2560x1440) Genius Keyboard KB-G235 PA 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Seasonic Platinum 1000w PSU - SS-1000XP Fractal Design Define R5 Steelseries Rival 6500 dcpi Mousepad + Desk 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Onboard Realtek® ALC 892 Cyber Acoustics CA-2992 2.0 Speakers Razer Krait 1600 DPI nGear G-C1601 Card Reader 
OtherOther
Pisen Card Reader Gigabyte M7 Thor 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
VIA Eden C7 1200mhz Jetway J7F4K1G2ES-LF VIA Onboard 512MB PC2-4200 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
A-Data FlashDrive None Fanless Linux 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Headless None 65w Power Brick Antec ISK300-65 
MouseAudio
None Onboard VIA 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Barton XP-M 2400+ FJQ4C Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe 256MB BFG 7800GS OC 2x512MB Samsung PC3200 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
Raptor 74GB/Seagate 120GB Windows 2000 Pro 60hz 17" CRT Brandless PS2 Keyboard 
PowerMouse
Antec Neo HE 550w Logitech G5 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
FX-8350 @ 4.6ghz 1.425v Sabertooth 990FX Zotac GTX 1070 Amp! 32GB (4x8GB) Kingston Fury 1866mhz CL10 1T 1.5v 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Hitachi 2TB - HDS723020BLA64 Crucial M500 960GB - CT960M500SSD1 WD 4TB Black - WD4001FAEX WD 4TB Black - WD4001FAEX 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Seagate 2TB - ST2000DM001 WD 640GB Black - WD6401AALS Seagate 6TB - ST6000DM001 Micron M500 - MTFDDAK480MAV 
Optical DriveOptical DriveOptical DriveOptical Drive
Pioneer DVR-115DBK Samsung SH-S243D/BEBE LG GH22NS90 Lite-On EBAU108 External DVD 
CoolingCoolingCoolingOS
Noctua NH-D15 Fractal Design 140mm Fan - FD-FAN-140 Fractal Design 120mm Fan - FD-FAN-120 Windows 7 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Ubuntu 14.04 LTS Samsung 2343BWX 23" (2048x1152) BenQ GW2765HT 27" IPS LCD Monitor (2560x1440) Genius Keyboard KB-G235 PA 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Seasonic Platinum 1000w PSU - SS-1000XP Fractal Design Define R5 Steelseries Rival 6500 dcpi Mousepad + Desk 
AudioAudioOtherOther
Onboard Realtek® ALC 892 Cyber Acoustics CA-2992 2.0 Speakers Razer Krait 1600 DPI nGear G-C1601 Card Reader 
OtherOther
Pisen Card Reader Gigabyte M7 Thor 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
VIA Eden C7 1200mhz Jetway J7F4K1G2ES-LF VIA Onboard 512MB PC2-4200 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
A-Data FlashDrive None Fanless Linux 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
Headless None 65w Power Brick Antec ISK300-65 
MouseAudio
None Onboard VIA 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Barton XP-M 2400+ FJQ4C Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe 256MB BFG 7800GS OC 2x512MB Samsung PC3200 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
Raptor 74GB/Seagate 120GB Windows 2000 Pro 60hz 17" CRT Brandless PS2 Keyboard 
PowerMouse
Antec Neo HE 550w Logitech G5 
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Overclock.net › Forums › Components › Hard Drives & Storage › Need HDD recommendation for games... (re: upgrading Raptor-X drive)