The Seagate FireCuda is a mechanical hard drive done right, providing expected performance and being backed by Seagate’s excellent warranty. Seagate didn't compromise with this design, using high-performance CMR technology paired with a 7200 RPM spindle speed. It also offers the sweet spot of 8TB of capacity at a reasonable price per TB, making it perfect for general desktop use. There are reasons to drop down to 5400/5640 RPM if you have concerns about cost, heat, and noise, and that’s where the 8TB WD Blue would come in. However, the FireCuda offers the best all-around package available at this time.
Seagate hasn't had the best reputation for HDD reliability in the past, but it’s difficult to find fault with its warranty. The Seagate FireCuda has the standard five-year warranty that includes Seagate’s three-year Rescue Data Recovery Services, which guarantees one attempt at data recovery (Seagate claims a relatively good 90% track record for recoveries). Seagate also provides software to cover the most common storage processes, which makes the FireCuda a drop-in solution. It’s not the fastest drive on the market, but its performance is more than adequate for use as general storage. Its biggest shortcoming is perhaps that it’s not offered in larger capacities.
|Seagate FireCuda HDD
|Cost per TB
|SATA 6 Gb/s
|Sustained Transfer Rate
|Up to 260 MB/s
|Workload Rate Limit
|5-Year (3-Year Data Recovery)
The 8TB Seagate FireCuda is currently on sale for $145.99, or $18.25 per TB, which keeps it competitive. The 8TB Seagate IronWolf and the Toshiba X300 both carry a similar price tag. The FireCuda has a better warranty than both, at five years with three years of Rescue Data Recovery Services, and also performs better than the IronWolf with a sustained transfer rate of up to 260 MB/s. All three drives have a 256MB cache which is adequate for this capacity.
The 8TB Seagate BarraCuda HDD is somewhat less expensive but is not a direct competitor as it uses the slower and less versatile SMR technology and runs at 5400 RPM. The 8TB WD Blue is the real budget alternative, but it only has a two-year warranty and weaker performance due to its lower 5640-RPM spindle speed.
Software and Accessories
Seagate’s FireCuda HDD includes the Seagate DiscWizard software for cloning, partition management, data backup, and more. You can also download the SeaTools software to monitor drive health, update firmware, and more. These are basic functions, but having a full suite of support is nice.
A Closer Look
The FireCuda has an attractive label design but is otherwise what you’d expect from a standard 3.5" 6Gb/s SATA hard drive. Seagate does not use any sort of flash technology in this drive as WD does in its Red Pro, so internally, it has the typical spindle and drive controllers along with a 256MB DRAM cache.
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