With the technical specifications out of the way, it’s time to put each of these drives to the test and see where how they perform in respect to each other to see if the cost and technical specification variables play a factor.
With the ATTO benchmark baseline, the drives performed almost as you would have expected after reviewing the advertised technical specifications. Really no surprises here, maybe aside from the fact that the Se performs pretty close to the Re, considering the almost $100 delta between the two in current prices on the web.
In CrystalDiskMark, with Sequential and 512k benchmarking, the trend continues, as the drives continue to perform to their advertise specs. It was interesting to see the Se top the Re in one test. With 4K testing, albeit we’re talking about small numbers here, it’s interesting to see the trend doesn’t quite continue as the Se refuses to conform.
With HD Tune, the trend continues where the Re and Se are near identical in their performance, with the Red lagging behind. When it comes to access times, there is clear differentiation, which is surprising and not at the same time. The Re and Se have the same spindle speed, yet the access times are noticeably different. Additionally the “intellipower” slower spindle speed of the Red shows it’s limitations. It is also interesting that the clear gap in access times doesn’t quite translate over to the throughput benchmarking.
Some folks don’t put to much trust in synthetic benchmark suites, but in the absence of any “standard” of measuring real world usage, it has some value when evaluating drive performance. With that said, there isn’t as much desperation between the performance of the three WD models tested. Considering the cost delta, if you’re not hung up on some of the non-performance related specification differentiators, this graph makes a compelling argument for the WD Red.