Specifications and Feature Set Comparison

Prior to getting into the performance evaluation, we will take a look at the specifications of the WD Red Pro 6 TB and see how it compares against the other NAS-specific hard drives that we have looked at before.

The WD Red Pro 6 TB sports a SATA III (6 Gbps) interface. As is customary for the high capacity drives in this market segment, it can only emulate 512-byte sectors (natively 4K). The interesting aspect is the presence of a 128 MB cache similar to the Seagate and HGST drives, and unlike the WD Red. The obvious selling point for its price target is the 7200 RPM speed, which should easily give it the lead in most benchmarks over the WD Red. The other aspects (such as the URE ratings, MTBF, warranty etc.) are as expected for a drive targeting SMBs and SMEs. The table below presents the data for the drive against the others in our evaluation database.

Comparative HDD Specifications
Model Number WD6001FFWX WD6001FFWX
Interface SATA 6 Gbps SATA 6 Gbps
Sector Size / AF 512E 512E
Rotational Speed 7200 RPM 7200 RPM
Cache 128 MB 128 MB
Rated Load / Unload Cycles 600 K 600 K
Non-Recoverable Read Errors / Bits Read < 1 in 1014 < 1 in 1014
MTBF 1 M 1 M
Rated Workload ~ 180 TB/yr ~ 180 TB/yr
Operating Temperature Range 5 to 60 C 5 to 60 C
Acoustics (Seek Average - dBA) 34 dBA 34 dBA
Physical Parameters 14.7 x 10.16 x 2.61 cm; 750 g 14.7 x 10.16 x 2.61 cm; 750 g
Warranty 5 years 5 years
Price (in USD, as-on-date) $299 $299

A high level overview of the various supported SATA features is provided by HD Tune Pro.

We get a better idea of the supported features using FinalWire's AIDA64 system report. The table below summarizes the extra information generated by AIDA64 (that is not already provided by HD Tune Pro).

Comparative HDD Features
DMA Setup Auto-Activate Supported; Disabled Supported; Disabled
Extended Power Conditions Supported; Disabled Supported; Disabled
Free-Fall Control Not Supported Not Supported
General Purpose Logging Supported; Enabled Supported; Enabled
In-Order Data Delivery Not Supported Not Supported
NCQ Priority Information Supported Supported
Phy Event Counters Supported Supported
Release Interrupt Not Supported Not Supported
Sense Data Reporting Not Supported Not Supported
Software Settings Preservation Supported; Enabled Supported; Enabled
Streaming Not Supported Not Supported
Tagged Command Queuing Not Supported Not Supported
Introduction and Testbed Setup Performance - Raw Drives
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  • jragonsoul - Monday, September 7, 2015 - link

    I have used a few Red as storage drives before. Liking the 6TB bump.
  • Samus - Monday, September 7, 2015 - link

    It's all I use for server storage drives. Haven't had one fail. All the models I've ever deployed are 1TB and 2TB drives. It's amazing how these modern hard disks are somewhat competitive with low-end SSD's (aside from access time)
  • leexgx - Wednesday, October 21, 2015 - link

    funny as i did not realize i had a backblaze HDD it is i accuity have the ST31500341AS drive in my system right now (1300 days power on time 7500 stop start count due to HDD power save spin down)
    and its failing slowly bad sectors are racking up and "reported uncorrectable errors" are now starting to happen (not gone up from when i started copying the data to a WD RED 4TB same 1607) don't think i lost any data itself as "read error rate" and "hardware ECC recovered" are still the same (not that the stuff on it is that important to lose any way) just 70 extra relocations in last day meant it was time to copy data to another drive
  • imaheadcase - Monday, September 7, 2015 - link

    Streaming Not Supported Not Supported

    What does that even mean?
  • ganeshts - Monday, September 7, 2015 - link

    We covered the meanings of those table entries in a previous review: http://www.anandtech.com/show/7258/battle-of-the-4...

    ... NCQ streaming feature which enables isochronous data transfers for multimedia streams while also improving performance of lower priority transfers. This feature could be very useful for media server and video editing use-cases....
  • A55A551N 11B2P - Thursday, September 10, 2015 - link

    so you're saying that the WD Red PRO's wouldn't be good for a central media server with up to 6 clients?
  • ddriver - Monday, September 7, 2015 - link

    Judging by consumer reviews, HGST Deskstar seems to have the upper hand when it comes to reliability.
  • Souka - Monday, September 7, 2015 - link

    I've got a pair of WD 1TB Re drives in my NAS... full, so been wanting to put a pair of 4TB or 6TB drives in.... the WD Reds would be great, except I'm also seeing a lot of issues.

    Granted, not bad as the Seagate drives!
    Source: https://www.backblaze.com/blog/best-hard-drive/
  • Samus - Monday, September 7, 2015 - link

    I really don't recommend you follow backblaze statistics. They are collected under one use-case: cold storage. It's also important to note that all of their drives are consumer drives that lack firmware to change the harmonic vibration in cases with that many (72!!) drives. Most consumer drives are rated for installation in cases for 2-8 drives, with enterprise drives rated for up to 16 drives per chassis. Real data centers don't use pods like backblaze (who make their own) because no matter how you dampen the vibrations, these drives are not engineered to work in a large chassis together.

    All their data shows is Seagate drives suck as vibration resistance, with WD being slightly better and Hitachi cleaning the show. You know why? WD Red models and ALL Hitachi drives have the platter shaft locked at the TOP of the drive case; Seagate drives just have the shaft locked at the motor (bottom axis) which is for the most part adequate as long as vibration isn't an issue. This makes the drives cheaper, quieter, cooler and more efficient, and entirely adequate for consumer applications.
  • Souka - Tuesday, September 8, 2015 - link

    Cool info, thanks!

    I'm not too worried though since my NAS is running Raid-1 Drive fails, RMA it. In 3-5years I'll likely either upgrade/replace the drives and/or get a new NAS+drives

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