Quake 4 Level Load Time Tests
Practical? Yes. Indicative of a complete end user experience? Probably not. But regardless we've included a gaming test where we simply measure the time it took to load up Quake 4's first level when starting a new game for the first time. In this test we re-booted the system each time since Quake 4's engine tends to cache levels a bit even though you have dropped out to the desktop. The scores below represent worst-case level load times based on a reboot of Windows XP and a few minutes of stabilization time, waiting for XP to load all its associated drivers, etc.
So there you have it, a RAID 0 array has very little impact on actual level load times in this particular game engine, versus a single drive array. Beyond that we see the prowess of the Raptor WD1500's 10K RPM spindle speed and it's 16MB cache buffer. A few seconds spared waiting for levels to load may afford you one more death-dealing exchange with the baddies but perhaps what may be more important would be potentially more responsive texture and map loads during live game-play.