While SSDs are all the rage these days, Western Digital is still making headway on their 10,000RPM VelociRaptors. The drives come in 150GB, 300GB, 450GB and 600GB capacities in both 2.5” and 3.5” form factors. However, until recently only the 450GB and 600GB variants were available with SATA 6 Gbps and a larger 32MB cache.

But it seems Western Digital has showered some love on the 150GB and 300GB variants, bringing them up to speed with their larger capacity siblings. The new models are now listed on WD’s website here. No word on Stateside pricing or availability yet, but it might be reasonable to expect a slight price bump.

A quick look at some online retailers still shows the older SKUs (WD1500HLFS, WD3000HLFS) with SATA II and 16MB cache going for about $119.99 and $149.99 respectively. Although SSDs have become more affordable over the years, from a pure performance per dollar standpoint, these Velociraptors are still hard to beat.

Here are the new SKUs.



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  • jordanclock - Thursday, July 28, 2011 - link

    SATA6Gbps also has a few other features besides bandwidth, like improved NCQ and power management. The NCQ improvement will likely help with latency, a worthwhile improvement on its own.
  • cbass64 - Friday, July 29, 2011 - link

    Plug a Gen3 HDD into a Gen2 port and run some benchmarks. Then plug that same drive into a Gen3 port. The Gen3 port scores will be higher. Gen3 is more efficient. There's more to it than bandwidth. With PCMark Vantage, I see about 10% higher scores when a Gen3 HDD is used with a Gen3 controller.

    Some people argue that benchmarks aren't true indicators of real world performance and that might be true for typical users, but the point is that the benchmarks do show an increase in performance when you utilize the newer technology.
  • tipoo - Friday, July 29, 2011 - link

    Of the Momentus XT. Seriously, why haven't those drives caught on more when it got such favorable reviews? A drive like the Velociraptor with a flash cache would be awesome.
  • DanNeely - Friday, July 29, 2011 - link

    Because it was enough more expensive almost noone bought it.
  • tipoo - Saturday, July 30, 2011 - link

    I can't claim to know the sales figures, but it seemed rather popular among enthusiasts who couldn't afford an all out SSD (or only had one drive bay so they couldn't use a smaller SSD+bigger HDD, a la laptop).
  • DanNeely - Saturday, July 30, 2011 - link

    Enthusiasts are a small fraction of the market. The fact that increased platter densities would have allowed 640 and 750GB models to be released, but they haven't been speaks for itself.
  • Camacho - Sunday, July 31, 2011 - link

    Cause they under performed. A WD scorpio with no flash beat it in throughput, response time and IO. I saw it as the ONLY way Seagate could even continue to compete with Samsung and WD in the 2.5" form factor at the time.
  • vision33r - Sunday, July 31, 2011 - link

    Show me a spindle drive setup that can break 400MB/s.

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