DiamondMax 4320 17.2G - HotHardware

DiamondMax 4320 17.2G

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The Maxtor DiamondMax 4320 - 17.2G EIDE/UDMA Hard Drive

 
 

A JUMBO Drive For The Hungriest Of Users

 
         
  Are you feeling a little thin on space these days with the ol' workhorse 2 Gig drive you are running? Time to put that poor thing out to pasture... Have we got some room for you! I'm talking "fit a small tribe of Gypsies" size room here! 17.2 Gig ! Holy Mackerel! Do you remember being excited about your new shiny Mode 3 drive, a whole 540 Meg? Guess what? Drive Technology just leap frogged you and it doesn't show any signs of ending anytime soon. The DiamondMax 4320 - 17.2G may not be the largest drive on the planet but it is up there in the top 5% of all drives in the marketplace. Here are the specs...  
 

 

 
 

DiamondMax 4320 Model # 91728D8

17.2GB, 5400 RPM

Average Seek 9.0 ms Read and Write

PIO 4 and UDMA/33 Data Transfer Modes

512KB SDRAM Buffer

On Board Digital Signal Processor

On Board Flash EPROM For Firmware Updates

S.M.A.R.T. Function Support

 
         
 

Features

There are a number of things that set this drive apart from the rest. First, this is a 9.0 Millisecond Drive. Compared to the IBM drive we reviewed here, this is only .5ms faster. That seems trivial but it is not when you are transferring data at up to 33MB/sec. Every tenth of a millisecond adds up. Next is the drive's DSP supported design. Maxtor uses Texas Instrument DSPs in their drives which I feel really help the drive process data. A lot of drive vendors use custom ASICs (Application Specific I.C.s) and I am not familiar with their effectiveness but the Maxtor/T.I. approach works well. Another interesting feature is the drives on board ST Micro 1Mbit Flash EPROM for holding the drives firmware. If there are ever compatibility problems in the future ( we didn't find any during our tests ), you'll most likely be able to fix it with a Flash Update. Last but not the least, this drive uses fast SDRAM for its data buffer.

 
     
  So let's fire this Big Boy up, shall we?  
         
 

Test System

Full Tower ATX Case w/ 300W PS, Pentium 2 -333 Overclocked to 515, Abit BX6 Rev. 2 Motherboard, 128 MB of PC100 CAS2 RAM, IBM Deskstar 14GXP 10GB 7200 RPM EIDE UDMA Hard Drive, STB Velocity 4400 TNT AGP Video Card, Metabyte Wicked 3D 12MB Voodoo 2 PCI Card, Monster Sound MX300 PCI Audio Card, Toshiba SDM1202 3rd. Gen. 4.8X DVD/32X CDROM

 
     
  Notice, for this drive review, we ran our tests at 515 Mhz. This drive was as stable as the IBM drive in all tests. This drive should serve you well if you intend to overclock. OK, here's how she ran vrs. our IBM Rocket...  
     
 

 

Higher scores represent better performance.

  BX6-2.0 Maxtor BX6-2.0 IBM
WinBench 99/Business Disk WinMark 99 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 3000 2840
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/Bus:Overall (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 3000 2840
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/HE:AVS/Express 3.4 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 4500 6430
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/HE:FrontPage 98 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 45100 36900
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/HE:MicroStation SE (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 7940 8950
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/HE:Overall (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 8710 9310
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/HE:Photoshop 4.0 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 6430 5380
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/HE:Premiere 4.2 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 8290 8440
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/HE:Sound Forge 4.0 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 14100 15200
WinBench 99/Disk Playback/HE:Visual C++ 5.0 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 11600 11500
WinBench 99/High-End Disk WinMark 99 (Thousand Bytes/Sec) 8710 9310
System Info/CPU Clock Speed Reported 517 517
 
     
  Surprisingly, this was a very close race. The IBM disk is a little slower on the Business side of things primarily because of its slightly slower access speed of 9.5ms. However, the IBM disk beat out the Maxtor on the High End Disk WinMark because of its faster spindle speed at 7,200 RPM which translates to higher data transfer rates. Regardless, this Maxtor 17 Gig is no slouch and will probably give other inferior 7200 RPM drives a run for their money! Let's reconfirm our findings. On to Wintune...  
     
 

WinTune 98 Offline Test Results

 

CPU (1) Intel Pentium II with MMX@502 MHz
Video Board NVidia RIVA TNT
Video Mode 1024x768@16bits/pixel
RAM 128 MB
OS Windows 98 4.10.1998

Area Tested

IBM Drive Values

Maxtor Drive Values

CPU Integer 1494.634 MIPS 1494.469 MIPS
CPU Floating Point 599.4976 MFLOPS 595.6667 MFLOPS
Video(2D) 97.69372 MPixels/s 97.66038 MPixels/s
Direct3D 106.9294 MPixels/s 106.8499 MPixels/s
OpenGL 87.59 MPixels/s 87.3135 MPixels/s
Memory 885.0853 MB/s 893.4647 MB/s
Cached Disk 110.2826 MB/s 103.8133 MB/s
Uncached Disk 3.346395 MB/s 3.727367 MB/s
 
         
  Once again, very comparable performance from the Maxtor unit. This is a solid fast drive and a great value!  
     
  In summary, I found this drive to be a fast and stable performer. The drive is also somewhat quieter than the IBM drive and runs slightly cooler to the touch as well. This drive would make a fine addition in space to your system and would accomodate your needs for months maybe even years to come. That is saying alot in a market where technology outdates itself every 6 months. Where can you get this drive? Funny you should ask! The good folks at TJT International have it for just $289 !!! Such a deal!! TJT is a great place for drives! They have good service and great prices. They are one of the largest drive distributors in the U.S. Tell Mike M. that Dave at Hot Hardware sent you!  
     
 

We give this bad boy a "Temp-O-Meter" rating of...

90 !! Damn! dats hot!

 
  (Temp-O-Meter scores are rated on a number of key metrics including performance, stability, ease of installation, compatibility, feature set, "overclockability" and component quality. A perfect score is 100 )
 

 

 
         
  C-Ya!

-Davo
 
 

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