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Raid 0 Performance, HDTach, PCMark and SiSoft

Product: Western Digital WD1200JD
Provided By: Dallmann Computers


I have always been a big fan of RAID. I got started RAIDing hard drives a couple of years ago with a set of Maxtor 7200rpm 20GB drives, and I was hooked. At the time, a pair of 20GB drives cost about the same as a 40GB drive, so there was not a lot of price difference, but there was a huge performance difference. Striping a set of drives in RAID 0, was your best bet in performance, but sucked for data security. I found that out about a year and a half later when a drive crashed and I lost all my data. If you want security, you'll want to mirror your drives in a RAID 1 array, but I won't get into that today.

Not to be detered, I purchased a set of Western Digital 7200rpm drives with the 8MB cache and set out again. Twice the storage as my old set, and a bit more speed with the new drives as well.

Today, I'm doing away with the PATA interface and taking a look at a pair of SATA drives from Western Digital. These are the 120GB 7200rpm SATA drives with an 8MB cache. How much has performance in the storage area improved? Is a RAID array's performance worth the price? How much wood can a woodchuck actually chuck? Most of your questions will be answered as you read on. So, without further delay, let's take a look at the drives:
Test Setup:
  • ASUS A7N8X Deluxe Rev. 2 (1006 Bios)
  • AMD XP 2500+ Barton (166FSB)
  • 2x 512MB OCZ EL Rev 2. Cas 2 PC3200 in Dual Channel Mode
  • 60GB WD600JB - IDE 0 - Master (OS)
  • Plextor PX-504A DVD+R/+RW IDE 0 - Slave
  • Plextor PlexWriter 52/32/52 CDRW IDE 1 - Master
  • 2 - 120GB WD1200JD (8MB cache) 7200rpm Sil 1 & 2 in RAID 0
  • ATi Radeon 9800 Pro
  • Audigy 2
  • GVC Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000)
  • nForce 2 2.25 drivers.
  • On-Board Silicon Image 3112 Controller with Drivers v.
  • Windows XP Professional SP1 with all patches and updates.
For this review, I used the onboard Silicon Image controller as most people who are currently using a nForce 2 board will likely use the controller instead of buying an add-in card. Tests were ran multiple times to ensure accuracy.