Western Digital’s VelociRaptor ® Page 2

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Test System Details

The test bed used for testing the VelociRaptor was installed with Windows Vista Ultimate Edition x64 SP1 and consisted of the following components:

  • Intel E8500 Core 2 Duo (3.16GHz)
  • ASUS Maximus Formula X38-based motherboard
  • 4GB of OCZ Reaper 1066 DDR2 memory

Each drive tested was connected to a SATA port on the motherboard (Intel ICH9R) and the OS and application installs copied between drives using Symantec Ghost 11. Because certain synthetic applications for testing drive performance, such as HDTach and IOMeter, do not work with Vista, we decided to make heavy use of Futuremark’s new Vista-only PCMark Vantage, which includes an excellent suite of hard drive tests. The Vantage drive suite is synthetic but uses Intel’s RankDisk, which records a trace of disk activity during usage of real-world applications. This suite runs eight separate tests, ranging from streaming data to OS start-up.

We follow this with a quick look at FSX free flight load times between the three tested drives.

Test Results

PCMark Vantage’s drive suite, as mentioned above, contains eight separate tests. We broke the results down since each test simulates the use of real-world applications. Worth noting is that each test was run twice per drive to verify that consistent results were obtained.

Test 1: Windows Defender
Maxtor 16.54 MB/sec
Raptor 20.53 MB/sec
VelociRaptor 27.88 MB/sec

The Raptor 150 GB drive outperforms the older Maxtor unit by a solid 25% in this test, but is only roughly 60% of the speed of the VelociRaptor.

Test 2: Streaming Game Data
Maxtor 10.63 MB/sec
Raptor 15.74 MB/sec
VelociRaptor 19.75 MB/sec

Futuremark cites Alan Wake as an example of a game engine that, large and free roaming in nature, will require constant data streamed from the system’s hard drive. The new VelociRaptor is almost 1/3rd faster than the previous generation, and is almost twice as fast as the Maxtor.

Test 3: Windows Photo Gallery
Maxtor 31.94 MB/sec
Raptor 40.48 MB/sec
VelociRaptor 59.93 MB/sec

If your family is as big into importing digital photos as my wife, the new Raptor certainly shines in this test, coming close to again doubling the score of the 7200 RPM Maxtor and outperforming the older Raptor by almost 50%.

Test 4: Windows Vista Start-up
Maxtor 12.74 MB/sec
Raptor 18.13 MB/sec
VelociRaptor 22.46 MB/sec

The test results for OS start-up show the VelociRaptor again dominating the other two drives, and this was certainly reflected in the actual usage of the drives. Vista was noticeably more responsive with either of the two Raptors installed.

Test 5: Windows Movie Maker
Maxtor 11.71 MB/sec
Raptor 31.63 MB/sec
VelociRaptor 52.51 MB/sec

This particular test and its results reflect drive performance during video editing using Windows Movie Maker and here again the VelociRaptor absolutely trounced the other two drives. WD’s new Raptor outperformed the Maxtor by roughly 450% and scored over 50% higher than the older Raptor.

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