Originally Posted by Blameless
I liked IBM, I liked Hitachi, and now they are part of WD, who I never had undue problems with. I say "undue" because when you've had as many drives as I have (a few hundred over about 20 years), you will have some sort of problems with every brand.
I used to be a fan of Seagate, as they held on to the value crown for quite a while. However, their 7200.11 and later drives seem to be a bit iffy, especially the China made ones, and their RMA policy has changed for the worse.
Only have a small amount of experience with Toshiba, and these three companies are the last drive makers still around.
If I were to buy a new drive, I wouldn't have much of a bias between WD (including WD brands like HGST) and Toshiba, but I'd hesitate to buy most Seagate desktop drives.
This brings up another point: more than brand, drive type is an issue. I am gradually migrating all of my drives to 2.5" (laptop) drives, simply because they are so much more durable and reliable. Every time I move, some of my 3.5" drives die, but my 2.5" drives carry on. Yes, they are slightly slower and moderately more expensive, but the durability is more than worth it.
I only have two 3.5" drives left in my main system, the remaining seven are are 2.5".
Imteresting anecdotes. I don't doubt that 2.5" drives are more durable. When I'm carrying my laptop around, it's in a bag by my hip and isn't exactly the smoothest ride. Typically it's turned off because SSDs are slightly slower than hibernate, but still, that's more shaking than most desktop drives experience outside of transit. I've managed to drop my laptop, still running using the three-year-old stock HDD, and nothing happened. I just picked it back up, chipped off some newly cracked plastic (oops!) and continue where I left off.
I personally would love to see 1.5TB drives, and you can fit a trio of 500GB platters in a 9.5mm form factor. I've come up with an idea for a 3x 3.5" bay to (many)x 2.5" drive adapters, and I think I figured it could fit 8x 9.5mm drives. That's efficient data storage right there.
Your point about Seagate going down the toilet is no longer true. They've gotten a lot better in the past couple years, but they're the OCZ of HDDs and nobody will let that go.