Hitachi 7K250 120GB Performance - Test Setup, HDTach and SiSoft

Article Index
Hitachi 7K250 120GB Performance
Test Setup, HDTach and SiSoft
HDD Performance in Real-World Applications
Performance Recap and Conclusion

Test Setup & Info:

We are introducing a whole new test rig for this review.  We've had some very generous sponsors drop us some gear and I no longer have to rip apart my main system to test hardware.  Please note the specs below:

For the most part, these will be the new test rig specs here at BCCHardware.  Also note that every review will come with a fresh install of Windows XP Professional or Windows XP x64 Professional.  We will be doing this to help elimate performance degradation that is not the fault of the product.  That being said, let's take a look at a couple of synthetic performance tests before we jump into some real world tests on the next page.

Synthetic Performance Analysis - HDTach:

For these two tests we are going to be using a couple of the more popular synthetic benchmarks available - HDTach, and SiSoft Sandra 2005.  These programs show the performance on an artificial scale and are useful for cross-platform comparisons.  They should by no means be taken as literal reflection of the Hard Drives true performance.  We'll get into that on the next page.



In testing these two Hitachi 7K250 drives, we ran tests using them in single drive situations as well as RAID 1 and RAID 0 configurations.  For single drive comparison we threw in a Western Digital WDJD1200 SATA drive for good measure.  All of these drives have 7,200rpm spindle speeds as well as an 8MB cache.  Hitachi claims to have a bit faster seek times which is always nice, but we'll see if it's true or not.

As you can see by clicking the thumbnail below, the Western Digital drive edges out the Hitachi drives in average MB/sec transfer.  However, the Hitachi drive shows slightly higher burst speed and marginally lower random access times.  These drives are so close to each other that you could never notice the difference in real world performance.

It came as a surprise to me to see that the RAID 1 array peformed as good as it did.  I was previously under the assumption that RAID 1 performs slower because each operation has to performed on each individual drive simultaneously.  The numbers below show a burst speed that is 0.4MB/sec slower than a single drive, but at 0.3% difference you're not going to notice.  In any benchmark of this nature I allows for a 3-5% difference 1/3 of 1% is nothing.

As expected RAID 0 performance on these drives is quite good.  This brings the average read up to 96.4MB/sec and we see the burst speed climb up over 200MB/sec landing at a whopping 212.5MB/sec.  With synthetic performance like that we'd hope to see some noticeable performance improvement on loading applications, games and file transfers.

HDTach Performance
HDTach Performance

Synthetic Performance Analysis - SiSoft Sandra 2005:

The next test was ran using the Filesystem Benchmark of SiSoft Sandra 2005.  This test generates a single performance number that equates to the average read speed of the drive.  Again it is useful for comparing performance among drives, but should not be used as a solid guide of raw performance.

The numbers shown by the SiSoft scores show a slightly different picture to the one painted with HDTach.  In this round of tests the Single Hitachi drive out performs the Western Digital drive by 3MB/sec, and I suppose we could attribute that to faster seek times, and higher burst speed.  Either way the margin is very close.  Again, we see very respectable RAID 1 performance and excellent RAID 0 performance.


SiSoft Performance
SiSoft Performance

With numbers like these, it should be very beneficial to your system in real world tests right?  Head on over to the next page as we break out a stopwatch and load up some of todays popular game titles.