IBM Deskstar 75GXP   
 

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IBM is a world-renowned leader and innovator in computer storage devices. Ever since just a few years ago when the Deskstar 5 and 8 reigned supreme IBM has been able to stay very competitive with the likes of Maxtor, Seagate, Quantum and Western Digital. By consistently boosting speed and storage capacity of their desktop hard drives IBM keeps their competitors on their feet.

The latest addition to the Deskstar series, the 75GXP has been a huge success sporting 7200RPM spindle speed, and Ultra ATA/100 transfer rates. The 75GXP also features a low 8.5ms average seek time, capacities of up to 75 Gigabytes and a 2MB cache. IBM does this all on 15GB platters.

The Drive

The 75GXP is by far one of the most advanced IDE HDDs on the market today. IBM incorporates a number of new disk technologies, which helped them to increase overall data densities. Utilizing fifth generation giant magneto resistive heads, a glass medium, and a nice fifth generation preamplifier, IBM was able to put no less than 15.3GBs per platter.

 

Of course it wouldn't be any fun having a huge HDD without a nice performance gain to go along with it now would it? An overall average access time of 12.7ms (4.17ms latency, and 8.5ms average seek time) combine with a 7200RPM spindle speed helps bring the 75GXP up to par with Maxtor and Western Digital's offerings. Finally the 75GXP is one of the first drives to support ATA/100 transfer rate, though most drives will fall short of their specified maximum transfer rate. Owners of one of the many mainboards that supports RAID configurations will be right at home with this drive as combining two ATA/100 drives on the same IDE channel can improve performance greatly.

The whole 75GXP line features capacities in the following flavors: 75, 60, 45, 30, 20, and 15 Gigabytes. Each drive in this family shares a number of common features:

Seek Time (Track to Track)

1.2 ms

Seek Time (Average)

8.5 ms

Average Latency

4.17 ms

Rotational Speed

7200 RPM

Controller Overhead

< 0.3 ms

Start Time

15 sec

Max Disk Transfer Rate

100 MB/sec

Disk Transfer (To and from media)

444 Mb/sec

Buffer Size

2 MB 

Data Zones per Surface

15

Bytes per Sector/Block

512

 

Power consumption, operating temperature and noise level are also very important factors when evaluating a HDD:

Seek 12.9 Watts
Read/Write 6.8 Watts
Idle 6.7 - 8.1 Watts
Standby 1.4 Watts
Operating Temp Range 5 – 55 C

Test Setup

We feel very strongly about testing a HDD in "real world" conditions. We loaded up our 45GB HDD with 10GBs of data using Windows ME as our operating platform. We also used our normal AMD Athlon KX133 test bed computer with ATA/100 support.

Test Bed

 

  • AMD Athlon Slot A 800MHz
  • 256MB PC133 SDRAM
  • Abit KA7-100 Mainboard
  • VisionTek GeForce2 GTS 32MB
  • Aureal SQ2500 (yes, still using this baby!)
  • Pioneer DVD-114 10x DVD/40x CD-ROM
  • Windows Millennium Edition Using FAT32 File System
  • Via IDE Busmaster Driver v2.1.50

Benchmark Programs Used

  • Winbench 99
  • HD Tach 2.61

Performance

HD Tach Read Test

Overall the IBM 75GXP did quite well in our HD Tach benchmark. Scoring a random access time of 12.6 ms, across the whole disk is good, and well within our margin of error. A maximum read burst speed of 76.8MBps, which is below the ATA/100 maximum read speed, but that is to be expected.

HD Tach reports an overall CPU utilization of about 12.8%, which is quite normal.

Winbench 99

We compared the IBM Deskstar 75GXP to the Western Digital 20.5GB 7200RPM ATA/100 Drive, model number WD200BB. We ran the High End Disk Winbench99 to compare both drives.

Overall the 75GXP beats out the Western Digital by a few points in both the tests.

Should I buy it?

The IBM 75GXP is a very solid performing series from what I could gather in my testing of the drive. In addition to the performance, the drive also runs noticeably quieter than that of the Western Digital, which is most welcome. Though most of us are running with heavily modified cases and huge 120mm fans, so I don't know how much that would matter anyway?

The drive does run slightly warm (about 51 degrees C under load) without any active cooling applied, though this is to be expected from a 7200RPM drive. Some have hailed this drive as some sort of messiah to the ATA HDD world, unfortunately a messiah it is not. What it may be is a fast, solid performing drive with an exceptional capacity ceiling of about 75GB. Not to mention IBM's legendary reliability.

Thanks go out to Advanced Design KY for supplying us with this drive, check them out as they have the drive featured in this review for under $170!

Price - 8.0 Performance - 9.5 Overall - 9.0/10

 

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Copyright © 2002 Øyvind Haugland
Sist endret:  25 mars 2017
 

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