The 1.5TB Caviar Green is one of Western Digital’s new “advanced format” drives, using 4KB sectors instead of the older 512-byte standard. It lets the manufacturer squeeze more capacity out of each disk, but from the user’s perspective it works like any other hard disk (unless you’re using XP, in which case you’ll need to set a jumper).
Unfortunately, it doesn’t perform like any other hard disk. The 1TB Caviar Green had already set expectations low, but in our small-file write test it fell to a catastrophic 4.4MB/sec – below one-tenth of the group average. We saw similar results from the 2TB model. Clearly, it’s a teething problem with the new format – the old-style 1TB model has no such trouble – but for now it makes this one a definite no-no for the desktop.
Still, it’s a very quiet drive and draws only 3.7W when idle, so it could find a role in a home server or media PC.