WD Red vs Black: Which Western Digital is Better?

Digital storage is crucial in today’s world. Whether you are a professional who saves music or videos, a business saving documents, or an everyday person who doesn’t want to risk losing their precious memories, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you won’t have enough storage place.

Western Digital has a solid reputation for providing storage solutions, in particular, hard drives. We will be talking about the WD Red vs Black. While there is a range of different storage sizes, we are going to focus on the 4TB hard drives. We will talk about their similarities and differences, their pros and cons, and we will include a comparison chart for quick viewing.

WD Red vs Black

Let’s begin with what the WD Red and the WD Black have in common.

WD Red vs Black – Similarities

Quick Glance

Name
WD Red Pro 4TB NAS Internal Hard Drive - 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, CMR, 256 MB Cache, 3.5" - WD4003FFBX
Our Pick
WD Black 4TB Performance Internal Hard Drive - 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, 256 MB Cache, 3.5" - WD4005FZBX
Image
WD Red Pro 4TB NAS Internal Hard Drive - 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, CMR, 256 MB Cache, 3.5" - WD4003FFBX
WD Black 4TB Performance Internal Hard Drive - 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, 256 MB Cache, 3.5" - WD4005FZBX
Size
5.79 x 4 x 1.03 inches
5.79 x 4 x 1.03 inches
Weight
1.50lbs
1.66lbs
Storage Capacity
4TB
4TB
Form Factor
3.5 inches
3.5 inches
Compatibility
Windows and Mac with reformatting
Windows and Mac with reformatting
Uses
Single PC or NAS system up to 8 bays
PC enthusiasts, gamers, system builders
Cache
64MB
2X DRAM 256MB
Revolutions per minute
5,400RPM
7,200RPM
SATA 6.0 GB/s
Warranty
3-year limited warranty
5-year limited warranty
Prime status
Name
WD Red Pro 4TB NAS Internal Hard Drive - 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, CMR, 256 MB Cache, 3.5" - WD4003FFBX
Image
WD Red Pro 4TB NAS Internal Hard Drive - 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, CMR, 256 MB Cache, 3.5" - WD4003FFBX
Size
5.79 x 4 x 1.03 inches
Weight
1.50lbs
Storage Capacity
4TB
Form Factor
3.5 inches
Compatibility
Windows and Mac with reformatting
Uses
Single PC or NAS system up to 8 bays
Cache
64MB
Revolutions per minute
5,400RPM
SATA 6.0 GB/s
Warranty
3-year limited warranty
Prime status
Our Pick
Name
WD Black 4TB Performance Internal Hard Drive - 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, 256 MB Cache, 3.5" - WD4005FZBX
Image
WD Black 4TB Performance Internal Hard Drive - 7200 RPM Class, SATA 6 Gb/s, 256 MB Cache, 3.5" - WD4005FZBX
Size
5.79 x 4 x 1.03 inches
Weight
1.66lbs
Storage Capacity
4TB
Form Factor
3.5 inches
Compatibility
Windows and Mac with reformatting
Uses
PC enthusiasts, gamers, system builders
Cache
2X DRAM 256MB
Revolutions per minute
7,200RPM
SATA 6.0 GB/s
Warranty
5-year limited warranty
Prime status

Size

The WD Red and the WD Black are exactly the same size at 5.79 x 4 x 1.03 inches. They have a hard disk form factor of 3.5 inches. The WD Black weighs 1.66 pounds and the WD Red weighs 1.50 pounds.

Compatibility

Both the WD Red and the WD Black are compatible with Windows and with Mac. You may have to reformat the hard drive if you a running a Mac. The SATA 6.0GB/s has a bandwidth of up to 600MB/s. The SATA cable is not included with either the WD Red or The WD Black.

Now that we have seen how they are similar, let’s take a closer look at how they are different.

Differences Between WD Red and WD Black

The Uses

WD Red Comparison

It’s surprising that two hard drives, both with a 4TB storage capacity, have such a difference in their uses.

WD Red

While it is suitable for a single PC use, the WD Red comes with NASware firmware, so it will support NAS systems with up to 8 bays. NASware 3.0 technology allows you to stream, backup, share, and organize all of your digital content and connect your devices at home and in the office.

WD Black

This is a hard drive for PCs. It is great for people who have creative jobs, musicians, photographers, etc. It also a great solution for gamers and for those who build systems.

The Winner Is- A Tie

Read next – WD Blue vs Black: Which Western Digital is Better?

The Cache

WD Black Review

The cache is like the middleman of digital storage. This is where data is stored while it is being saved on the permanent location- the new hard drive. The larger the cache, the faster the loading time.

 WD Red

The cache here is 64MB. This is ok but it would be nice to see a modern hard drive like this with a bigger cache.

WD Black

It has a 2X DRAM 256MB cache, so the loading time will be much faster than the WD Red.

The Winner Is- The WD Black

Revolutions per Minute

WD Red Review

The RPM is the number of revolutions (or spins) the disk inside the hard drive makes per minute.

WD Red

The 5,400 RPM is fairly standard in hard drives.

WD Black

With a 7,200 RPM, the additional revolutions make this hard drive faster at reading data.

The Winner Is- The WD Black

Read next – WD My Passport vs Easystore: Which Western Digital is Better?

Reliability

WD Black no.1

WD Black Awards

WD has included technology in the WD Red and the WD Black that will help makes them both more reliable.

WD Red

With the 3D Active Balance Plus, the hard drive is protected from the noise and vibrations that come with a NAS system. The dual-plane balance control lowers the amount of degradation, making it last for years.

WD Black

This card drive has StableTrac which keeps the motor shaft in place and reduces the impact of vibrating components.

The Winner Is- A Tie

Read next – WD Elements vs My Passport: Which Western Digital is Better?

Value for Money

WD Black Comparison

These are both high performing hard drives that look like an SSD card, but they have the storage capacity of a hard drive. This type of product can be from $70 up to $180.

WD Red

It comes at a good price considering it will support up to 8 bays. The value really comes with the MTBF (mean time between failures) of up to one million hours, designed to be used 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There is also a 3-year limited warranty.

WD Black

It is more expensive than the WD Red but then the warranty is longer at 5 years. The mean time between failures is advertised as high.

The Winner Is- The WD Red

Pros and Cons

The last thing we will include before our final verdict is some pros and cons for the WD Red and the WD Black.

WD Red

WD Red

Pros:

  • It works perfectly in RAID 1 configuration
  • Excellent balance between price and performance
  • It’s a very popular choice to set up as a media server

Cons:

  • Reliability seems to be a big concern

WD Black

WD Black

Pros:

  • It has dual-core processing making it is even faster
  • Installation is easy is you know your way around the inside of a PC
  • It’s a great hard drive for gamers

Cons:

  • It’s quite noisy compared with other hard drives

The Final Verdict

First of all, if you looking to connect multiple devices for easy sharing and storing, the WD Red is definitely the hard drive for you. On the other hand, if you need a fast solution for data storage, then you are better off with the WD Black.

Our preferred hard drive today was the WD Black. The extra money was worth it because the hard drive is far more reliable, and we appreciated the extended warranty. The best thing about the WD Black was the speed. It was much faster than the WD Red and if you aren’t looking for the NAS technology, the WD Black is a great combination of performance, quality, and reliability.


Last update on 2020-06-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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