After losing data, our customers tend be very dissatisfied with their present hard drive and they want to know what we think is the most reliable hard drive. As we diagnose every type of hard drive failure that exists and on a regular basis, we get to know the problem drives on a much deeper level then your average computer user. This month we give you our opinion on 3.5″ desktop internal hard drives. So what would we buy?
The Most Reliable Desktop Hard Drive
There was a time when there were over a hundred hard drive manufactures. These days, the herd has been thinned considerably and there remains only 3 desktop hard drive manufactures. Seagate, Toshiba and Western Digital. All three manufactures have made some very good hard drives during their history. And all three have also made some pretty terrible drives at times as well.
Back in 2012 Western Digital bought Hitachi’s hard drive business. This would have left only WD and Seagate selling desktop drives, as Toshiba at the time was strictly a laptop drive manufacture. The global anti-competition rules would not allow the resulting two company monopoly. Consequently, WD was forced to sell the Hitachi desktop hard drive division to Toshiba in order to have a 3rd competitor. WD retained the Hitachi name. Toshiba used the forced sale to jump into the desktop HDD market and began selling Hitachi desktop drives re-labelled as Toshiba drives. Toshiba has now weened itself off Hitachi’s technologies and makes it’s own unique desktop drives. WD continues to sell both Hitachi branded drives as well as WD branded drives. The two drive brands are quite different in design and it appears the Hitachi drives are continuing to use the original Hitachi designs.
#1 HITACHI – In our opinion WD’s Hitachi brand hard drives are the most reliable desktop hard drive at this time. Hitachi was the 1st manufacture to introduce helium filled drives and the reliability of these drives continues their tradition of making quality long lasting storage devices.
#2 WESTERN DIGITAL – In our opinion, the Western Digital brand makes the 2nd most reliable desktop hard drives. So in fact, WD makes the top two hard drive brands. Additionally, when it come to “recoverabilty”, we feel WD makes the most recoverable hard drives at this time. This is due to the drive’s high level of acceptance of “donor” head assemblies, and the layout of the drive’s own internal operating system.
#3 TOSHIBA – In our opinion third place would go to the new Toshiba desktop drives. We have seen a lot of these but what we have seen appear rock solid. Toshiba’s ranking may climb as we see more of them. Our opinion may also be influenced by our positive experiences with their laptop drives.
#4 SEAGATE – And in our opinion, stumbling along in last place is Seagate. Seagate has had some exceptionally bad hard drives in the last few years. 1.5TB Seagates of any model are very prone to failing. Additionally there have been high failure rates reported for the 3TB Seagate ST3000DM001 and the 4TB Seagate ST4000DX000. On the positive side, the latest Seagate 6TB and larger drives appear to be very reliable!
Please don’t place to much trust in our opinions. We tend to mostly see the bad apples, while the good drives continue to hum along, almost unnoticed by folks like us.
In our next blog post we’ll offer our opinion on laptop hard drives and who we think makes the most reliable hard drive for this purpose. In the meantime, don’t forget to backup you data to a second hard drive as nothing beats having a backup. A backup a day keeps the DR away. ( Data Recovery)