Western Digital Caviar Black (WD2001FASS) 2TB hard drive

Western Digital's latest 2TB internal hard drive emphasises performance, not power efficiency

Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB (WD2001FASS)
  • Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB (WD2001FASS)
  • Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB (WD2001FASS)
  • Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB (WD2001FASS)
  • Expert Rating

    4.00 / 5

Pros

  • Fast, 64MB cache, reasonable asking price

Cons

  • High power consumption

Bottom Line

Western Digital's Caviar Black internal hard drive offers a massive two terabytes of storage capacity and speedy performance at a reasonable cost.

Would you buy this?

If you need 2TB of storage but don't want to sacrifice performance, Western Digital's Caviar Black (WD2001FASS) might be for you. This SATA II 3.5in internal hard drive lacks the power-saving features of the company's GreenPower drives but provides a faster spin speed and better overall performance.

The 2TB of storage offered by the Caviar Black (WD2001FASS) is spread over four 500GB platters. Like the enterprise-targeted RE4 (WD2003FYYS), these platters spin at 7200 revolutions per minute (rpm), which is significantly faster than both the Seagate Barracuda LP and the Western Digital Caviar Green.

The Caviar Black (WD2001FASS) has a 64MB drive cache and features two processors on the drive's circuit board to improve performance when conducting multiple tasks involving with large files. The hard drive had an average access time of 9.8 milliseconds and a burst transfer speed of 130MB per second.

The company's StableTrac technology helps reduce drive vibration. While it won't shake your computer case, the Caviar Black's faster spin speed means it is still audible during operation.

We tested the Caviar Black's performance by transferring files between it and a PC equipped with Western Digital's high performance Velociraptor hard drive. The first test comprises 20GB of large files (about 3 or 4GB each) while the second test involved 3GB worth of 1MB files.

Small File (3GB) Transfer Test Results
Model Price Storage Capacity Read
speed (MBps)
Write
speed (MBps)
Read/write
speed (MBps)
Western Digital Caviar Black (WD2001FASS) $389 2TB 49.2 66.5 53.8
Western Digital RE4 (WD2003FYYS) $429 2TB 34.5 31.3 49.2
Seagate Barracuda LP $450 2TB 76.5 50 30.6
Apacer A7 Turbo (A7202) SSD $309 64GB 50 36.1 37.5

Large File (20GB) Transfer Test Results
Model Price Storage Capacity Read
speed (MBps)
Write
speed (MBps)
Read/write
speed (MBps)
Western Digital Caviar Black (WD2001FASS) $389 2TB 79.5 77.9 47.3
Western Digital RE4 (WD2003FYYS) $429 2TB 113.5 76.4 58.8
Seagate Barracuda LP $450 2TB 79.5 73.8 29.6
Western Digital Caviar Green (WD20EADS) $389 2TB 50 61.66 72.91
Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 $189 1TB 83.77 78.49 32.75

The WD Caviar Black (WD2001FASS) wasn't the fastest 2TB hard drive during all of our benchmarks, but it did manage to outpace the more expensive RE4 in the small file transfer tests. When dealing with large files, performance is significantly faster than the energy-saving 2TB drives, and it is acceptable compared to other 7200rpm hard drives.

Our own tests indicate that the internal hard drive consumes 6.91-9.73 Watts of power during operation. This is slightly higher than the RE4 (WD2003FYYS) internal hard drive, which offers some power-saving features missing on the Caviar Black. Power consumption is also significantly higher than the 2TB Caviar Green, which consumes 3.7-6W according to Western Digital.

Western Digital's Caviar Black has a cost per formatted gigabyte of 20.8c, which is reasonable considering the drive's storage capacity. The Caviar Black is a good compromise between storage capacity and performance.

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