Sea­gate FireCuda 2TB

SCORE ✪✪✪✪✪ PRICE £76 (£86 inc VAT) from

PC Pro - - News -

Sea­gate’s FireCuda is the last hur­rah for hy­brid desk­top drives that com­bine a tra­di­tional hard disk with a small SSD. With so much space in­side most PCs for a ded­i­cated SSD, they’ve failed to take off.

2TB is the high­est-ca­pac­ity FireCuda you can buy, and it costs a rea­son­able £90 inc VAT. How­ever, that price is re­flected in the miserly 8GB por­tion of NAND flash mem­ory for its SSD buf­fer.

The drive keeps tabs on which files are ac­cessed most often and stores them on the SSD por­tion. While that sounds promis­ing, in prac­tice it leaves lit­tle room for Win­dows files and your favourite apps. What’s more, the NAND is only of the multi-level cell (MLC) va­ri­ety, so it isn’t par­tic­u­larly speedy or long-last­ing. At least Sea­gate pro­vides a re­as­sur­ing five-year war­ranty, which should last this disk’s ac­tive life.

In prac­tice, de­spite the small help­ing of mem­ory, the FireCuda per­formed quite well in our tests. Although this drive doesn’t get along with AS SSD, where it re­turned an ap­palling se­quen­tial read fig­ure of 60.9MB/ sec and the slow­est ac­cess time on test, it matched the other cheaper drives for se­quen­tial work­loads in Crys­talDiskMark – and topped the ta­ble for ran­dom writes.

In PCMark 8, it came top in nearly all the tests and had a huge lead in over­all band­width. This re­flects the fact that PCMark is the clos­est to a real-world test, as it fo­cuses on app-load­ing times and re­peats each test three times, giv­ing the drive a chance to learn what data is be­ing ac­cessed fre­quently.

If you’re plan­ning to build a tiny sys­tem in which per­for­mance isn’t the big­gest con­cern, but want a de­cent amount of stor­age space, the FireCuda is worth con­sid­er­ing.

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