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Solid-state drives Reviews
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Samsung SpinPoint MT2 1TB review

£71.52 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Samsung

Our Rating: We rate this 3.5 out of 5

If you're looking for a high-capacity laptop hard drive, consider the Samsung SpinPoint MT2.

If you're looking for a high-capacity laptop hard drive, consider the Samsung SpinPoint MT2.

If you're a laptop user, a terabyte (1TB) is the best you can currently get in a single hard drive. The Samsung SpinPoint MT2 1TB (model HM100UI) is among the options available.

Being a laptop drive, the SpinPoint MT2 can't compete with desktop HDDs for performance. This is a small quibble, though, if you think 500GB drives are puny, and need more storage capacity.

Samsung SpinPoint MT2 1TB: Design and specifications

This drive uses three platters (with a density of 334GB per platter) and six heads - quite a busy specification. The number of platters force it to a full-drive height of 12.5mm, which won't fit most mainstream laptops, leaving high-performance laptops as the target audience.

The rest of the specs resemble those of any laptop HDD, with a 2.5in form factor and SATA 3Gbps data interface. It spins at 5,400rpm and has an 8MB buffer. Power usage is claimed at 0.7W idle and 2.4W during read/write operation.

While in use under normal conditions, the SpinPoint MT2 wasn't audible, although it did heat up more than the average laptop HDD. The product's specs page lists a few acronyms and "technologies" claimed to keep the drive's noise level down, but the human ear doesn't notice a difference compared to similar drives.

This 1TB Samsung drive provides 931.5GB of usable space after formatting, as expected. Samsung offers a three-year warranty on this product.

Samsung SpinPoint MT2 1TB: Performance

Our colleagues at PC World India run synthetic benchmarks and real world tests using the fastest PC components at hand, to remove most bottlenecks that hold back performance.

The test-bed consisted of an Intel Core i7 965 processor, Intel DX58SO motherboard, AMD Radeon 5970 graphics card, Intel X25-M 80GB SSD, WD VelociRaptor 300GB HDD, 12GB of Silicon Power DDR3 RAM in triple channel, Tagan BZ-1300W PSU and Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64bit edition.

We used the latest WHQL signed drivers available at the time of testing. A RAMdisk drive was used for real-world file transfer tests.

Samsung SpinPoint MT2 HD Tach testing

The HD Tach RW graph above represents one of our synthetic benchmark tests

Real-world file read/write speeds stood at 68.4MBps (megabytes per second) and 46.8MBps respectively, for a single large file (6.42GB). When copying multiple smaller files (1,287 files totalling 2.33GB), read/write speeds fell (as expected) to 68.4MBps and 36.23MBps respectively. Transferring small files from the first partition to a second on the same drive was at a speed of 17MBps.

On average, we measured a synthetic read speed of 71.8MBps, and write speed of 70.7MBps. Read and write access times averaged 16.76ms and 16.8ms respectively. The drive racked up an HDD Score of 5548 in PC Mark 05.

These speeds are right in line with what is expected from a laptop hard disk such as the Samsung HM100UI.

Samsung SpinPoint MT2 1TB Expert Verdict »

Internal 2.5in laptop hard drive
1TB capacity
8MB buffer
3 platters and 6 heads
power usage 0.7W (idle), 2.4W (during operation)
SATA 3Gbps data interface
  • Overall: We give this item 7 of 10 overall

Getting the Samsung SpinPoint MT2 1TB hard drive is worth it, provided the following two conditions are met. One, your laptop's HDD bay can accommodate this (12.5mm high) drive. Two, you know that your need for storage capacity outweighs the need for raw performance speeds that a 7,200rpm drive can offer.

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