WD Red 6TB HDD RAID 0 Performance Review

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Conclusion

It’s pretty obvious that RAID arrays have been around for a long time, but technology has obviously improved and reliability ever so much; RAID 0 however offers absolutely no redundancy so once a drive fails or data is lost, it can’t be recovered. That being said, it’s still the choice for squeezing extra performance from older tech and what a difference it makes; it can effectively double performance when using 2 drives over a singular one, which is effectively SLI or CrossFire for storage.

Zoning back on the focal point of the review itself (WD Red 6TB), the Red 6TB feature a 64MB cache with a platter speed of 5400RPM. The performance shown for a 5400RPM drive is phenomenal and shows true WD grit in benchmarks. Although the Red’s aren’t classed as the WD performance drive (WD Black anyone?), they do provide a very nice alternative to those power conscientious among us. Not to mention these drives are aimed at 24/7 NAS use, which does require an element of quality and reliability; the quality is there, but we can’t really comment on the reliability for obvious reasons.

WD Red 6TB HDD 2

The diminishing returns of going from RAID 0 with 2 drives, to 4 is present and is common ground when it comes to striped volumes. The same goes for multi graphics cards set ups with going from 1 to 2 offering the largest gains. If it were up to me and I had 4 large storage drives available, I would run a RAID 10 or otherwise known as RAID 1+0. This offers the performance of RAID 0 across 2 drives, with a further element of data redundancy across the other 2 drives; in this case, it would equal 12TB of storage in RAID10 as opposed to 24TB in RAID 0, but without the risk of data loss.

It’s obvious that the WD 6TB Red drive is an absolutely cracking hard drive, but 6TB drives are very expensive and in the case of the WD Red, they cost around £200 or $240; this is still better value for money than SSD’s offer per GB and mechanical drives still have a solid footing on the market. If we had to purchase hard drives for a NAS or even a file server, WD Reds would certainly be top of our list. This is in no short way due to their 3 year warranty, NASware 3.0 firmware which offers superior support for NAS setups and of course, their 24/7 scenario design which obviously needs to be reliable for countless amounts of data.

Huge thanks to WD for sending in the Red samples and we look forward to seeing more in the future.

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  • Performance
  • Design
  • Value
4.2

Summary

Pros:

– Fantastic design; I personally love the WD colour schemes
– Great performance for a 5400RPM drive
– Low power
– Designed for 24/7 use in a file server, NAS or for even home use
– Available in capacities up to 6TB
– 3-year warranty on retail samples (non-OEM)
– Fantastic RAID 0 performance

Cons:

– Can be very expensive compared to other brands

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2 COMMENTS

  1. I believe WD’s “Red” series HDDs have a dynamic balancing feature in the main bearings.
    Also, when one of the drives in a RAID-0 array fails, it must be replaced and the
    entire array re-built: this is not much different from the steps that must be taken
    when a single “JBOD” HDD fails. We use a lot of RAID-0 arrays, for speed, and
    we LUV them! Lastly, in future reviews, you might want to mention the ratio
    of (price) / (warranty years). Most often, the 5-year warranties excel on this metric.

  2. Why? Why only synthetic, worthless benchmarks? Of course 2 disks in RAID0 are going to have 2 times everything! We don’t need benchmarks to prove it, logic proves it!

    Why can’t there be one benchmark on the whole Internet, of HDD RAID0 vs no RAID testing real-world scenarios, with a RAID controller (and comparing hardware and software controllers)? And by real-world I don’t mean copying speed as that’s as obvious as synthetic benchmark results.

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