Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB review

23 Jul 2010

At this price, and with this performance, it's a great deal, though not quiet as some rivals

The Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB offers excellent performance, especially considering its low price
Price when reviewed: 
53(£53 inc VAT)
5

Samsung's Spinpoint F1 hard disks have been impressing us for more than two years, but the range is now showing its age. Happily, the F3 series is already here to take up its mantle. (The F2 designation is reserved for Samsung's low-power "EcoGreen" drives.)

This 1TB F3 model brings a major performance boost over its predecessor: in our recent group test it came first in both of our sequential tests, sustaining an average write speed of 208MB/sec writing and 138MB/sec reading within Windows.

It impressed in our small file tests too, with a read speed of 86MB/sec and a stunning 111MB/sec writing - faster than any other mechanical drive we've seen. That’s some impressive engineering, especially since HDTach’s synthetic tests indicate native read and write speeds slower than the old F1.

Power consumption isn't bad either: with a peak draw of 7.2W the F3 is only a little thirstier than the average drive.

The one area where Samsung hasn't raised the bar is acoustics: in use the F3 sounds basically identical to the F1. At its noisiest it’s a drive you’ll notice, but for typical desktop use its muffled clicking won’t spoil your day.

The best bit is the price. At 4.8p per gigabyte (when reviewed) it’s one of the cheapest 1TB drives we've seen. If one terabyte is enough space for you, and noise isn’t a deal-breaker, the Spinpoint F3 is a brilliant buy.

Details

Price ex VAT £45
Price inc VAT £53
Overall rating 6
Performance 6
Features & Design 4
Value for Money 6

Specifications

Capacity 1.00TB
Hard disk usable capacity 931GB
Hard disk type Mechanical
Cache size 32MB
Spindle speed 7,200RPM
Seek time (ms) 13.5ms
Cost per gigabyte 4.8p

Noise and power

Idle power consumption 6W
Peak power consumption 7W

Performance tests

Write speed small files 111.0MB/sec
Write speed large files 208.0MB/sec
HD Tach average sequential read speed 91.0MB/sec