Energy consumption Here is the data for energy consumption for each of the drives that we were able to read with a clip-on ammeter, by reading voltages used on the 5V and 12V lines.
In rotation the most economical drive is the 5900 rpm Barracuda LP. It is followed by the WD10EAVS, the EcoGreen F3 and the WD10EADS. The WD10EARS models aren’t very well placed and the 7K1000.C does better. The highest energy consumption models are the Caviar Blacks, first place going to the WD1001FALS.
We then measured the temperature of the drive after 1 hour of intensive use in IOMeter. These measurements were taken with the HDD outside of the casing, with room temperature at 25°C without the fan, each of the drives slightly raised. The temperature was measured in two places using an infrared thermometrer, above the middle of the drive and at the hottest point on the left side. We also read the temperature on the internal drive sensor (SMART).
The drive that stays coolest is the Seagate Barracuda LP, followed by the EcoGreen F3 and – more surprising – by the 7200.12. The WD1001FALS is the hottest drive among those tested, a full 9°C hotter than the Barracuda LP.
To take this we placed each drive so as to avoid all vibrations (seeing as they were placed on the desk). A sonometer was placed 10 cm above the drive so as to measure noise pollution, the PC used being without any fan so as to isolate the sound of the drive.
The Barracuda LP is the quiest 1 TB drive, whether in rotation or during random accesses. The EcoGreen F3 is in second place when in rotation but accesses are noisier than with the Western Digital Caviar Green models. Among the 7200 rpm drives, the 7K1000.C is quietest in rotation with the SpinPoint F3 second and these positions are reversed during accesses. Next comes the 7200.12, followed by the Caviar Blue and finally the two Caviar Blacks, which are very audible in rotation and downright noisy during accesses. Remember, however, that they are also fastest when it comes to random accesses.