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Reader Report: IBM's New 75GXP IDE Drive Performance
Published: 5/29/2000
(updated 6/13/2000)

Several readers have sent the results of tests with IBM's 75GXP series of IDE hard drives. These new high-density drives from IBM are just starting to appear at retail in May 2000. The first models to appear were the 30GB model, but now the larger models seem to be available. (The 75GXP series largest drive size is 75GB.) From time to time I'll also be adding IBM 75GXP drive reports here from our Mac Drive Compatibility Database.

If you've installed one of these IBM drives(or any HD/CD/DVD/DVD-RAM/Tape drive, or removable) in your Mac - please post an entry in the Mac Drive Compatibility Database. Include any performance comparison, compatibility info and system configuration details with your report.

IBM 75GXP Owner Comments: (for later updates/reports, scroll down the page)

Peter Hardie sent these ATTO Tools benchmark results with his 30GB 75GXP drive installed in a G4 400/AGP system with onboard ATA/66 controller:

ATTO Tools IBM 75GXP Performance

Sustained rates on the IBM 75GXP are much better than my Plus40 Maxtor drive tested in a ATA/33 onboard controller of my B&W G3/400. Peak rates with the Maxtor drive were lower of course since the ATA/33 controller of the B&W G3 is limited to 33MB/sec rates. I can't wait to get one of these new IBM drives for myself.

The above graph is from the first partition (always the fastest as it's on the outer tracks). The reader also sent a graph of the other partition's performance:

30GB GXP performance - 2nd partition

The other reader report using the 45GB version of the drive shows better performance. Following the graphs are his comments posted in the Drive Compatibility Database.

IBM 75GXP 45GB performance

Lars also sent scores from his original 10GB WD drive for comparison:

OEM Western Digital Performance

Here's Lar's comments from his Drive Compatibility Database entry. He includes some real world test comparisons to the OEM WD 10 GB drive:

"IBM 75GXP series 46GB IDE
Model# DTLA 307045
Apple G4/AGP system running OS 9

Didn't have anything other to benchmark than FWB's HDT 3.0.1, but this benchmarks seems quite impressive (if someone gives me directions to a better benchmark utility, I'll be glad to do tests again).

Sustained Read: 24810Kb/s
(Low:19002, Peak: 28095)

Sustained Write: 41791 KB/s
(Low: 41506, Peak: 42100)

Average Access Time: 8.3ms.

Both read/write and even access time are faster than my former 10k rpm UW SCSI IBM DGVS 9 GB drive. Plus, the disk is quieter than the stock WD 10 GB 5400rpm in the G4/350. Awesome disk. I bought it at K&M Elektronik in Berlin, Germany, for 699,99 DM, lowest price I am sure there is here in Germany.

The drive has a formatted capacity of 42.94 GB. I will play around with a friend's Sony PC100 DV camera tonight, so expect more reports if there are any dropped frames or problems.

Boot time under MacOS D-9.0.4 with WD 10 GB stock disk:

IBM DTLA: 1 min 21 sec
WD 102AA: 1 min 35 sec

Another benchmark:

Copying a folder with 690 MB in size (1135 objects, small and big files - my games folder)

IBM: 55 sec
WD: 1 min 31 seconds

Pretty big difference...
Lars van Schaik

IBM 75GXP vs Previous 34GXP Series:

A reader his G4/400 MacBench 5 scores comparing performance of an IBM 34GXP drive to the 75GXP model:

IBM 75GXP vs 34GXP

IBM 75GXP 60GB Hard Drive Performance: One of today's [6/8/2000] updates to the Mac Drive Compatibility Database was from an IBM 75GXP 60GB drive owner:

" Just got one of the new IBM 75GXP HDs and man are they fast, I went for the 60 GB model. Installation was extremely easy and no problems were found (set it as slave). I did find the pin-switches (slave vs master) label a bit confusing (16 vs 15 logical head) and the HD originally came set as a master.

I ran a couple of ATTO ExpressPro benchmarks (8 MBytes max transfer rate, 80 MB/s expected peak, sample size 2) and these are the results (for the 1st partition):

Peak Read: 53.96 MB/s Sust'd Read: 36.27 MB/s!
Peak Write: 46.34 MB/s
Sust'd Write: 31.88 MB/s

As a comparison I ran the same benchmark for the OEM Quantum Fireball 10 GB HD (set as master) and these are the results:

Peak Read: 54.84 MB/s
Sust'd Read: 21.59 MB/s
Peak Write: 45.39 MB/s
Sust'd Write: 21.48 MB/s

It's interesting to note that the peak read was slightly higher in the OEM Quantum HD, but not by much.

I've been testing the new HD on 'real-world' tasks (such as video capture and heavy-duty image processing (I work with microscopy in marine biology) and the performance I'm getting is amazing, well worth its price.

My setup is a G4 at 400 MHz with 256 MB of RAM.
Frank Linares

IBM 20GB 75GXP Performance in Beige G3 w/Turbomax ATA/33 PCI Card: For Beige G3 owners with a Turbomax ATA/33 card (see spring 1999 review), this entry from a 6/13/2000 update to the Mac Drive Compatibility Database should be of interest.

"IBM Deskstar 20.5MB 75GXP ATA/66 7200RPM Model DPTA-372050

Bare drive. Downloaded Quick Install Guide and Jumper Settings documentation from IBM web site. Drive came with jumper settings already set for installation on a Mac as a Master.

Installation was straightforward. Already had TurboMax ATA/33 card installed with an older IBM drive. Just removed the case, pulled the drive power and ribbon connectors, popped the new 75GXP onto the sled, connected the power and ribbon connectors, and replaced the case. Less than 10 minutes. Installed in upper bay (above ZIP bay).

Formatted into several partitions with Drive Setup 1.7.3 and ran Drive Setup's media test. Media tests took only 20 minutes. Fast for this size disk. Formatted capacity was 19.59 GB.


Beige G3/466/233/66 Rev C Desktop 256MB RAM TurboMax ATA/33 Card (1.7.4 firmware) Mac OS 8.6, VM off, 4.5MB Cache, Normal extensions Drive Setup 1.7.3 drivers

Norton SysInfo Disk Rating: 2496

MacBench 5 Disk: 2883
MacBench 5 Disk Publishing: 2002

ATTO Tools v2.3.2 Results:
(Rates in MB/sec)
Test Size
Peak Read/Write
Sust. Read/Write
31.73 / 28.07
30.27 / 27.98
31.88 / 27.12
29.21 / 26.86
31.03 / 24.96
30.39 / 24.34
25.48 / 18.51
25.16 / 17.19
23.05 / 13.12
22.53 / 12.30

Results are for the first partition of a newly formatted disk. However, tests of the second partition and tests with the volume restored (but not fragmented) produced almost identical results. Performance is impressive for an ATA/33 controller. I'd expect another 6-7MB/sec sustained with an ATA/66 controller Over twice the sustained rates of my IBM Deskstar14.4GXP 7200 and about three times the Quantum stock drive.

Unbelievably quiet drive. Hard to tell that it is even running in a desktop. Noticeable improvements in booting, opening large apps, decompressing, duplicating, copying... Very impressive price/performance. No problems at all.

Thanks Mike for hosting this database as well as your other reviews and information. It's a great time saver in selecting the right hardware and avoiding problems. You have a great site. "

If you've installed one of these drives (or any HD/CD/DVD/DVD-RAM/Tape drive, or removable) in your Mac - please post an entry in the Mac Drive Compatibility Database. Include any performance comparison or compatibility info with your report.

Related Articles:

For a list of other storage related articles, reviews and comparisons - see the Storage Topics page.


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