Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 500GB
- Massive storage space
- Price per gigabyte a little high
While two 250GB drives may be cheaper, having 500GB in a single drive is very convenient. The 7200.9 is quiet, fast and cool.
Price$ 578.00 (AUD)
Weighing in at a cool 500GB (465GB formatted capacity), Seagate's ninth generation Barracuda drive is ideal for those of us with huge storage needs who don't have the room in our PC case for multiple disk drives.
The Barracuda has a 3Gbps SATA interface and features native command queuing (NCQ) which organises data requests so the drive can perform optimally. The 3Gbps speed is the transfer speed of data between the motherboard chipset and the hard disk controller, not the actual speed of data flowing through the heads of the hard drive. The physical nature of hard disks makes the retrieval and storage of data a bottleneck in all computer systems today, but this new drive is actually very fast.
We manually copied 31GB of data from one folder on the drive to another folder to test the overall transfer rate of the drive. We achieved a transfer rate of 23.8MBps, which equates to over 1.4GB of data per minute. The 7200rpm spin speed and 16MB buffer contributed to this high performance.
This drive holds up to 125GB per disk platter, which means there are four disk platters and eight heads inside. The drive was quiet too, producing barely audible noises during seek, read and write operations. It was also fairly cool, running at no more that 42 degrees throughout our tests. This performance and its huge capacity make it an ideal drive for a media centre-style PC. Likewise, those wanting to keep the noise down will appreciate this quiet achiever.
Seagate provides a five-year warranty, but its price tag gives a high cost per formatted gigabyte .
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Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.
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I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
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