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Thread: Hard drive questions

  1. #1
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    Hard drive questions

    I have always used Western Digital drives. They seem to have gone down hill over the last several years.

    When I built my PVR barely a year ago (ordered the parts on 9/25/17), I put two WDC drives in it, a 500 gig black for the OS and a 6 TB purple for recordings, both brand new. Both drives have already failed twice. I just received the second replacement for the 6 TB today. I was hoping that maybe they had a bad batch the first time around, but now I am wondering if I shouldn't switch brands. I used black drives in every computer I have built because they are performance drives and purple because the are built for surveillance systems (security cameras) and are supposed to be able to better handle the constant writing of large files.

    The question is which brand. What brands does everybody else use? I was thinking Seagate.
    Kevin

    AMD FX-8320E 8 core
    16 gig RAM
    Gigabyte MoBo GA-970 DS3P
    GIGABYTE Ultra Durable 2 Series GeForce GT 730 video card
    500 GB System drive, 1TB DVD's, 6 TB record videos
    Hauppauge WinTV-quadHD tuner card

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by tesla1886 View Post
    I have always used Western Digital drives. They seem to have gone down hill over the last several years.

    When I built my PVR barely a year ago (ordered the parts on 9/25/17), I put two WDC drives in it, a 500 gig black for the OS and a 6 TB purple for recordings, both brand new. Both drives have already failed twice. I just received the second replacement for the 6 TB today. I was hoping that maybe they had a bad batch the first time around, but now I am wondering if I shouldn't switch brands. I used black drives in every computer I have built because they are performance drives and purple because the are built for surveillance systems (security cameras) and are supposed to be able to better handle the constant writing of large files.

    The question is which brand. What brands does everybody else use? I was thinking Seagate.
    I sort of agree WD isn't quite as reliable as they used to be, but I still think they are better than their competitors. I have replaced a LOT of HDD over the years both professionally and for family and friends and but only very a few were WD drives. I won't put a non-WD drive in anything I build. I will also say that I have never used a Black or Purple, I have only used the old pre-color coded drives, Reds, and Blues. In fact my media server runs a Blue for the OS and a Red for the storage. In 24 years of using WD exclusively I have only personally ever had 2 go bad before I had to retire the whole machine b/c it was too old. Of course no company makes any product with zero defects so your mileage may vary.

    All that said, if you have killed 4 drives in a year (of any brand) you are either very unlucky, or you may have a power supply issue. You might consider getting a new power supply just to be safe. I can't guarantee that is the problem but if it were my system, I would probably do it just be safe. A bad PS can blow more than just HDD.

    If you don't already have one I also strongly suggest using a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) instead of just a surge protector. Power dips (which a surge protector does NOT protect against) can be just as deadly to a spinning disk as a spike. A UPS can help prevent that.

  3. #3
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    I also use WD drives when I need to new ones. Blues do the job for me, from 500GB to 4TB, and they wear like iron. I will never buy Seagates. I've had very bad luck with them.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
    I sort of agree WD isn't quite as reliable as they used to be, but I still think they are better than their competitors. I have replaced a LOT of HDD over the years both professionally and for family and friends and but only very a few were WD drives. I won't put a non-WD drive in anything I build. I will also say that I have never used a Black or Purple, I have only used the old pre-color coded drives, Reds, and Blues. In fact my media server runs a Blue for the OS and a Red for the storage. In 24 years of using WD exclusively I have only personally ever had 2 go bad before I had to retire the whole machine b/c it was too old. Of course no company makes any product with zero defects so your mileage may vary.
    Not trying to jinks you but I quit using blues because I had a high rate of failures with them. Red may not be a good idea to use as well because they are supposed to be designed for NAS environments and will also most likely be designed for high rates of read and write sequences.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
    All that said, if you have killed 4 drives in a year (of any brand) you are either very unlucky, or you may have a power supply issue. You might consider getting a new power supply just to be safe. I can't guarantee that is the problem but if it were my system, I would probably do it just be safe. A bad PS can blow more than just HDD.
    The whole system is only a year old. I built this system specifically to be a PVR last September and everything was brand new. I have seen some crazy things because of a bad PS.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maverick View Post
    If you don't already have one I also strongly suggest using a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) instead of just a surge protector. Power dips (which a surge protector does NOT protect against) can be just as deadly to a spinning disk as a spike. A UPS can help prevent that.
    I do already have a UPS and bought it the same time I built the computer
    Kevin

    AMD FX-8320E 8 core
    16 gig RAM
    Gigabyte MoBo GA-970 DS3P
    GIGABYTE Ultra Durable 2 Series GeForce GT 730 video card
    500 GB System drive, 1TB DVD's, 6 TB record videos
    Hauppauge WinTV-quadHD tuner card

  5. #5
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    The problem with this approach is that most people have had a drive of brand X fail at some point in time.
    If you want some meaningful reliability stats, take a look at the Lifetime Hard Drive Reliability Statistics from Backblaze who use most brands of disk, and have 98,000 of them running for a total of 77m days...

    https://www.backblaze.com/blog/hard-...s-for-q1-2018/


    Looks like the 4GB Hitachi's come out of top with several WD drives having the worst reliability, with one 6GB model having the worst reliability.
    “If this is the way Queen Victoria treats her prisoners, she doesn't deserve to have any.”

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by tesla1886 View Post
    I do already have a UPS and bought it the same time I built the computer
    What kind of UPS did you buy? If your build has a temperamental PSU, you have to be sure to get one that can create a perfectly smooth sine wave. Unfortunately, most UPS models often cheap out on the inverter and only generate stepped sine waves, which is fine for most things but not for Power Supply Units with their own internal power regulation features (Active PFC). Those PSUs will freak out and malfunction if not fed a perfectly smooth sine wave. When I built my PVR system, I was careful, and made sure to get a model of UPS that can generate perfectly smooth sine waves, and I even managed to get it on sale. This is the one I purchased: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00429N19W/

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosMageX View Post
    What kind of UPS did you buy? If your build has a temperamental PSU, you have to be sure to get one that can create a perfectly smooth sine wave. Unfortunately, most UPS models often cheap out on the inverter and only generate stepped sine waves, which is fine for most things but not for Power Supply Units with their own internal power regulation features (Active PFC). Those PSUs will freak out and malfunction if not fed a perfectly smooth sine wave. When I built my PVR system, I was careful, and made sure to get a model of UPS that can generate perfectly smooth sine waves, and I even managed to get it on sale. This is the one I purchased: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00429N19W/
    I have an APC Back-UPS XS 1000.

    I don't think it is PS issue. I have a third hard drive that I have copied my small collection of DVD's too. Ninety-nine percent of the television I have watched over the passed view months have been these files from my DVDs on this hard drive, and I have had no issues with this drive.
    Kevin

    AMD FX-8320E 8 core
    16 gig RAM
    Gigabyte MoBo GA-970 DS3P
    GIGABYTE Ultra Durable 2 Series GeForce GT 730 video card
    500 GB System drive, 1TB DVD's, 6 TB record videos
    Hauppauge WinTV-quadHD tuner card

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