Western Digital 250 GB WD Black SATA III 7200 RPM 16 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Notebook Hard Drive WD2500BEKX Reviews

  • Sophisticated performance enhancing features deliver the speed you need for demanding applications like photo and video editing and Internet gaming.
  • High performance, high capacity, high reliability, and cutting-edge technology make up WD Black, the ideal drive for those who demand only the best.
  • Dual processor provides twice the processing power to maximize performance.
  • 250 GB capacity holds up to 50,000 digital photos, 62,000 MP3 files, and up to 30 hours of HD video.
  • 5 year limited warranty.
  • Package includes a hard drive only – no screws, cables, manuals included. Please purchase mounting hardware and cables separately if necessary.

Product Reviews

“Fast” – Kamran
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

I’ve replaced the original HDD of my notebook, which was Seagate ST750LM022, with this one, and I’ve been using it for two weeks. For me, the following changes were tangible:
1. Increased performance: Of course not as much as using an SSD drive, but in comparison to my previous HDD this drive is much faster. While the Windows 8’s score remain the same for two HDDs (5.9), the increased performance is clear. Just don’t expect a huge enhancement.
2. Increase power consumption: The battery life time of my notebook has been decreased from 7 hours to less than 4.5 hours! It seems awful, but I don’t have any complain about this, since this is a black edition product of Western Digital and is specifically designed for performance.
3. HDD noise is a little bit higher, but it is still in an acceptable level and can be neglected.
4. Vibration of this HDD is more than the previous one, which should be natural for 7200 rpm drives.
Hope this information help you find your right HDD.
“Drive’s Good, Packing-Shipping Much Improved” – bentsnake
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

The drive itself is a Western Digital Black. There are millions of them running right now all over the world. Given half a chance (mostly meaning no shipping damage, and not overheated) these drives will run happily for years.

As for it being an “Advanced Format” drive (AFD), I’m running Windows XP on two such drives. Western Digital provides a program that makes the needed adjustments (if any) to the drive, though oddly, you can only download the program after you register your warranty. The program itself is simple to run.

The important thing here is that Amazon seems to have cleaned up the way it ships hard drives. I’ve posted pictures of the shipment I received. The drive was contained in what appears to be a factory box, and that box was contained in another.

Sadly, there was no packing material at all between the two boxes. All shipped boxes are thrown around by carriers (if not by human handlers, then by the sorting machinery) and the lack of packing material here can actually amplify shock loads when the small box slides inside the larger. Even a small amount of brown paper wadding here would make all the difference. But still this is a huge improvement over Amazon’s previous near-useless packing methods, so credit where it’s due.

Again sadly, it’s not certain that every shipment is packed this way (or perhaps better, with packing materials between the two boxes). In the past different Amazon shipping points have used different packing methods, so unless Amazon makes an announcement we can only hope for the best.

There are some general things to know about hard drives. None of this is my personal opinion, it’s all information I’ve gotten from the Western Digital and Seagate web sites:

All hard drives are essentially silent. Any intrusive noises, including loud clicks, and especially including any grinding noises, are guarantees of imminent failure.

Hard drives have no noticeable vibration. Put your hand on the metal casing (not the circuit board) and you can barely feel the disks spinning, and that’s all be vibration there should ever be. Anything more means, again, imminent failure.

An occasional exception to the no-noise-no-vibration rule happens when the metal parts of the computer case vibrate, which can amplify sound the way a guitar top does. But this is not common, and the general rule about hard drives is: you should never know it’s running.

Overheating is death to all electronics. If you’re at all geeky do a web search for a free program named Speccy, by piriform dot com. Speccy requires no installation. Just 2click to run it, and it reports various internal temperatures. Anything over 50 degrees Celsius is bad, and lower is better. Check your fan(s), make sure air vents are clear, always ensure that there’s a cooling airflow.

As a matter of information, these are laptop drives but I have two and run them in my two desktops. The data (small) and power (large) cable connectors are the same, they plug in with no alterations or adapters of any kind. The connectors themselves automatically make the right connections.

And finally, my opinion is don’t hesitate to use Amazon’s 30-day warranty. Shipping damage seems to be the #1 cause of hard drive failures, so if you have any suspicion at all that you received a damaged drive, then I say back she goes.

“Very fast & RELIABLE mechanical drive” – Stephanie Sullivan
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

When I upgraded one of my laptop hard drives for more space last summer I selected the WD Black 750GB because it was at a “sweet spot” in the value/performance curve at that time. This is a very fast 2.5″ drive within its class and I found a noticeable performance advantage over my older 7200 RPM Toshiba laptop drive.

I can hear this WD Black drive a little bit when it’s busy. While any drive noise may bother some people, I find it useful feedback that the drive is busy.

Power consumption specs are higher than the older Toshiba. That makes sense with a mechanical drive: high performance takes higher power. However, I’ve not noticed my usable time on battery has changed for the worse so I don’t think it’s a power hog. Power is a place where modern and more expensive SSD drives shine over mechanical drives, but since I normally have power plugged in this isn’t an issue for me.

Alternatives I considered include a Seagate 1TB Solid State Hybrid Drive. Because of bad experiences (documented in my review of that drive) I did not feel I could trust it. The Seagate Hybrid drive is very fast for frequently used files and the OS, but the failure mode I’d experienced was total loss of access – no recovery possible. OUCH!

I also considered the WD Black2 Dual Drive: 120GB SSD + 1TB HDD that I installed for a client. He is doing video editing on a laptop. It can be a good solution for certain specific kind of use. The dual drive (NOT Hybrid) solution has shortcomings and a price that take it way off the price/performance curve for general use. My review of that drive covers that thoroughly.

The price of SSD drives has been decreasing pretty quickly and their reliability is improving. I expect if I were to consider this sort of upgrade a year or so from now I’d be selecting a SSD. Perhaps one like a Samsung 840 EVO 500GB or the Crucial M500 480GB which I just bought for a client at $260 and has been reported to have a longer expected lifetime.

This WD Black drive was selected in part because of a long personal history of reliable drives from WD and when there has been a problem, hassle-free service.

If you need plenty of space for a very low cost and the top performance available from a mechanical drive is satisfying, this WD 750GB black drive is a very good choice. For outstanding economy, reliability and performance at the top of its class I think this drive has earned 5 stars.

Hope this is helpful

“Operates as expected” – adugas
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

Installed into a macbook pro 2010 model. Nothing out the ordinary during setup and operation is as expected. I expect this drive to last for the lifetime of my macbook. One thing to note when changing a laptop drive. Make sure you have a torque drive set otherwise you will not be able to attach mounting screws.
“Very fast 2.5 hard disk I’ve owned” – Ka Na
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

This is the fastest 2.5″ hard drive I’ve owned so far.

Write/Read (average) using a very fast USB3 (goes up to 435 MB/s for SSDs) enclosure on Macbook Pro:
127/128 MB/s

(WD’s spec sheet ([…] says the max internal transfer rate is 160 MB/s)

For comparison, the previous model WD7500BPKT, performs at 80/80 MB/s;
fastest 3.5″ disks I own perform around 180 MB/s.

Noise is audible when running, but it is acceptable for my ears.

This is still brand new – I’ll update this review if I find any issues.

“Great HDD even better customer support!” – Joshua Taylor
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

I have had this drive for about 2 years in my laptop and it eventually started to fail. I am still able to get my data off just fine but it fails diagnostics. Contacted western digital and got an advance replacement. Needless to say I am thrilled with what they sent me. I received a drive that is larger and newer than the original. This is exactly why I have bought Western Digital for years and why I will continue. They did the same thing years ago with my Raptor that went bad. I absolutely love this company.
“AWESOME!! — A rock-solid storage solution with exceptional versatility: it’s fast, reliable, affordable, & has a great warranty” – ZapNZs
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

This is, in my opinion, THE product of choice when you need a reliable, affordable, and fast 2.5-inch drive. While the solid state drive is arguably the pinnacle of fast, this is the pinnacle of reasonably fast but much more affordable.

It’s high-speed makes it a good choice if a solid state drive is not a possibility for your main disk, and its reliability and durability makes it great for desktop computing even though it is marketed as a mobile drive. It may also be a good choice for upgradable gaming consoles when a SSD or hybrid drive isn’t an option. It runs circles around most other mobile HDDs, and at a price that is surprisingly affordable.

Whether you are using a Mac or a PC, this is the perfect drive to use as a high-speed clone (there are good programs for both OS’.) You use this WD Black in an external enclosure as a self-powered backup drive to make a clone of your hard disk. If you local disk fails, you literally drop this into the laptop and you can boot from it. It is equally great for a progressive point-in-time backup such as OS X’s Time Machine, or just as a self-powered external to give you extra data storage for your computer.

I am sorry to say that many Sellers are either intentionally or unintentionally misleading customers when it comes to hard drives. Western Digital is aware of this, and they have implemented an online tool called the “WD Warranty Checker” in which you can enter the serial number of your drive and confirm it is authentic with a valid warranty (you can with HGST as well, and Seagate has their own authentication system.) I do not recommend purchasing used hard drives from any third party Sellers because there is no way to know how that hard drive was used (and possibly used so much that the service life is almost over.)

Because the plain OEM cardboard boxes that Western Digital bare drives are packaged in are easy to replicate (as is the sticker on the outside that says the model and serial number), they are moving in the direction of shipping their OEM/Bare drives in a tamper-free type of packaging inside of the box. The hard drive is SEALED in a magnetic bag with a yellow Western Digital watermark on the bottom, and this bag cannot be opened without being physically torn or cut open. If you get a Western Digital product in a bag sealed only with a sticker or tape, I would be sure to use the WD Warranty Checker to verify it is just in an older packaging rather than a repackaging used by a Seller to make a hard drive appear brand new when it is not. I have attached a picture showing this. If the hard drive you get has had this packaging torn open previously and taped up, reject the shipment as that drive is NOT new.

Many used hard drives on Amazon are also sold as “refurbished” but in reality they are simply used drives marketed in a fashion to make it sound as if you aren’t taking a gamble on inheriting someone else’s old problems. Some Sellers seem to feel that making a few extra pennies at the price of their integrity is worth it, and it’s put a lot of good people into very stressful situations that they didn’t deserve. There are too many sellers engaging in this practice to even start listing names, but I strongly caution reviewing Seller credentials and buying a hard drive from a Seller with a solid return policy in the event you pay for a new drive and a 5 year old used drive shows up on your doorstep. This happens a lot more than you might expect…some of the Sellers who do this are even part of Amazon’s Fulfillment Program. Amazon needs to step up here and take action as this isn’t fair to you and it isn’t fair to me.

I’ve been in a position in which I have worked with a lot of drives over the years and have developed my own beliefs and mindset. This is to summarize how I look at Hard Disk Drives and my advice for storing data. The two biggest assumptions I operate under are:
1) ALL HARD DRIVES WILL FAIL. What differs is the run time the drive gives before it fails, and this is neither consistent nor predictable to a degree of good accuracy.

Because of that, I stress that one should NEVER STORE IMPORTANT DATA IN A SINGLE LOCATION THAT YOU WOULD NOT BE OK WITH LOSING FOREVER. While a home user may not need a RAID 5, setup using a Thunderbolt interface, they should always keep data in more than one location. That could be as simple as an external hard drive backing up data from Win 8 or OS X’s built-in backup systems so that the data is on the local disk of a computer as well as an external hard drive. Cloud services also have some backup advantages. Whatever method, just be sure to keep it in multiple locations. If one of those locations are damaged/lost, replace what was lost to ensure the data stays stored across more than one source. If the data is very important, store it in two different geographic locations (or inside a fireproof safe) in the event of fire or water damage.

I do not give brand loyalty to any single brand and the reason is because most major hard drive makers offer both some great and some terrible products. I occasionally have had hard drives fail on me that were some of the finest made. This happens and it is not avoidable. When you are putting coatings on the disk platter that are under 1 nanometer thick, there is an incredibly narrow acceptable margin of error. Such unpredictability means a consumer must take defensive action or else they are setting themselves up for an expensive, stressful, and costly incident of data loss.

My advice with any new hard drive is to spend the time to stress test it, and not to rely on it fully until it has been used at least for a few weeks if not tested extensively.

Google’s study of hard drives showed us some very interesting observations. Most specifically, it showed how failure rates of new hard drives are really unpredictable. While after the 4-year mark shows a progressive trend of higher probability of failure, that isn’t the case when new. The first month of ownership can be one of uncertainty, but the trend suggests that a drive with a defect will generally fail in this time period. Failure rates in the short 0-1 month period are often higher than the period of years 1-3.

My solution to this has been to “stress test” ALL new drives heavily. I run a secure delete that takes multiple passes over the entire drive more than once. Then I will transfer an ungodly amount of data on and then off the drive, if possible, filling most of the drive. I will use a benchtest program that runs a multi-hour stress test. It makes the drive work hard, get hot, use the entire surface area, and work for a sustained period. Simultaneously, I also use an advanced disk management program that can take a very detailed look at the drive’s health. This simulates the real-world usage a drive will see if used intensely, which most of the drives I oversee are. My findings are that in many cases this is enough to get a drive with an issue to display symptoms of compromised reliability or have a catastrophic failure. Drives that have no issues generally go on to work reliably for years without a hiccup. It’s not perfect, but this has helped weed out many of the drives that would wind up failing shortly after they were put into service.

Why would someone want to spend the time pushing a drive specifically to see if it will fail? My logic is that I prefer it happen when doing a test rather than after I have set everything up and put important data on it. Especially given 1) the cost of data recovery is high, and 2) I prefer not to send a drive that may have partially recoverable confidential data that can’t be securely deleted. If one of my drives fails during the testing, I feel a lot better sending it back to a vendor with 10 copies of Shrek on it than I do business materials intended for internal usage or personal documents/files.

Not too long ago, the older version of this product was called the WD Scorpio Black. WD’s 2.5-inch laptop drives had the Scorpio name, and their 3.5-inch desktop drives had the Caviar name. Their two common home-use grades were Blue and Black: Blue noted general-purpose usage, Black noted high-performance usage with often a longer warranty. Generally Blue was 5400 RPM and Black 7200 RPM (that has since changed as many Blue desktop lines are now 7200 RPM as well.)

The track records of these products are exceptional: always good speeds for their era, excellent GB-to-dollar value, great reliability, great durability, and very good warranty service. I am still using older Scorpio Black & Blue drives, and a few Caviar Black drives. Some of these are OLD for HDDs. They have long passed what is a reasonable expectation of service life. They have given consistent performance over many years, with extremely low failure rates. The quality that has characterized the lineage that this drive comes from shows how well this product is designed, and why this is a good choice today, and will still be a good choice years down the road when it is still working flawlessly.

This current WD Black mobile drive is great. In a USB 3 enclosure, I am getting sustained read and write speeds of around 110 megabytes a second, which for a 2.5-inch hard drive is fantastic and an improvement over my older Scorpio Blacks (the upgraded processor certainly plays a role.) Like the older WD Scorpio Black, the energy consumption is reasonably low for a 7200-RPM hard drive and so if you use this in a laptop to replace a 5400-RPM drive, it should not have a majorly negative impact on battery life. It is also quieter than my Scorpio Blacks, and while some noise with a faster speed drive cannot be avoided, this is reasonably silent for a high-performance HDD. Like previous generations, the drive does a good job dissipating heat and inside of an aluminum external it rapidly dissipates the heat generated.

Like many other drives, this drive moves from SATA 2 (3.0 Gbps) to SATA 3 (6.0 Gbps), doubling the theoretical peak transfer of 3.0 Gbps to 6.0 Gbps. However, a single drive is not nearly fast enough to max out the older SATA 2, so if you are using this drive in a standalone fashion, the change from SATA 2 to SATA 3 really won’t affect you one way or another, and it’s more of a marketing aspect than a functional improvement for users of single drive systems. Like virtually all SATA 3 drives, it is backwards compatible with SATA 2 and SATA 1 enclosures and computers.

Also of note is the warranty on this drive: a 5-year warranty for a home-use drive is unusual. Generally, that kind of warranty comes with enterprise class drives. Western Digital’s willingness to offer a 5-year warranty on a home use product only further speaks to how confident they are of the long-term reliability of this drive (otherwise, offering an unusually long warranty for such an inexpensive hard drive would cost them a fortune.) The User Reviews here also demonstrate this.

You may also notice that Western Digital now has two versions of the 500, 320, and 250 GB versions of this drive. The slightly more expensive versions have a larger cache, slightly improved shock resistance, and are slightly thinner. They likely have slightly faster read and write speeds. I have not used these models, but the thinner profile and doubled cache may be beneficial to some users (neither are critical for my own applications.)

The speed of this drive is almost double the theoretical maximum speed that USB 2 supports. If you want to utilize the full read & write capability of this drive and you are using it as an external hard drive, you will need to use a high/super-speed port such as USB 3.0, Thunderbolt, or eSATA (ideally the 3.0 Gbps revision, which is common.)

Using a slower port like USB 2 or FireWire 800/400 will result in the connection throttling back the drive speed to only run as fast at the max speed of the connection will allow. Therefore you will need an enclosure, a cable, and a computer that are all capable of using one of these faster interfaces. (USB 3.0 is generally the least expensive and most universal of the above-noted possibilities.)

Overall, this is an extremely versatile hard disk drive. Even with the advantages of SSDs and their recent price decreases, HDDs like this WD Black will continue to have a role in computing. This drive is affordable, fast, and reliable. It’s a rock-solid storage solution that will give you years of usage for an affordable price; therefore, I highly recommend this product.

Pretty fast” – BigWill3
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

I needed to upgrade the hard-drive in my old Alienware m15x laptop and after some research opted for the WD Black drive. I was looking for a fast and affordable hard-drive with plenty of space. This hard-drive definitely fits my criteria. I would have preferred to go with a SSD but for 750GB of space the prices were just way out of my price range. If you’re in the same situation as me with a slightly older laptop with only one available drive slot (with no option for mSATA) then this is about the largest/fastest drive that you can get. The reasonable price makes it a slam dunk.

Also worth noting, I was concerned initially with some reviews stating that the packaging used during shipping was sub par. This would be a concern for me because any excessive jarring about could affect the long term longevity of the drive. In my case I found the drive was well secured and suitably padded during shipping.

“Great HDD!!” – Anthony
Score: 5/5 Source: Amazon.com

I bought this HDD knowing what I was buying and definitely got what I wanted. The only SSD/HDD I buy are from WD or Kingston. I have had great experiences with both brands and have no complaints.

SO HERE IS THE SCOOP!!! As always, I’m big a the packaging especially when it comes to pc hardware. Amazon, as always, packaged it well and it arrived on time with Amazon Prime. Most people aren’t really up to speed with the difference between HDD, SSD, and hybrid drives. The SSD is self explanatory, so I’ll move on. I have 3 laptops…. HP Envy, HP tx2, and a HP g7. All are running SSD and 2 laptops are running dual drives, one a SSD and one a HHD. I started to buy hybrid drives first and quickly realized that at this point in time, hybrids are a waste of money….. A big waste of money!! This WD drive is in both laptops and they ARE as fast, or faster, than a hybrid. Why? the reason is that hybrid drives learn your habits when you do the same thing(s) over and over, and stores the info to make the software load and run a lot faster. The problem? If you tend to do different things like myself, the hybrid drive is always learning, and because of this, it will not work like a SSD. It will work like a 5400 rpm HHD that isn’t a hybrid. You money is better spent buying a WD 7200 rpm or another brand that your partial to that is also a 7200 rpm. This WD drive is fast and the load time from power on to windows is a lot quicker as opposed to a 5400 rpm. I have an old Dell tester laptop that took almost 2 minutes to fully load windows, with this drive it loads in well under 1 minute. I test and help create software as part time employment, and I’m always looking for quality, innovation, and reliability. And yes I’m very partial to WD drives because they work and they just keep going year after year.

I almost failed to mention something very very important that most people may not be aware of…. These drives do not like to install Windows 8.1 when your doing a fresh install when you receive the drive. My 2 newest WD HDD 7200 drives have an advanced format and would not read as an external drive in Windows 8.1 or as an internal drive when trying to install Windows 8.1. Because I got a bit lazy, I installed Window 7 Ultimate and then Windows 8 read it as an external drive. I then wiped the drive and the Windows 8 install was flawless. I’m assuming I may have had an issue because the drive was used, but never really USED. The prior owner most likely got confused on how to handle a drive with advanced formatting, as they work a little bit different and seem to be pretty specific to windows 7 until you reformat them. This drive would not align with the Acronis cloning software the WD gives you for free when you buy their drives…. Any drive!! That it in itself is nice perk, as long as you can get the drive to align.

“Good drive, just not for the PS4” – Scott Kreger
Score: 2/5 Source: Amazon.com

To start, my reviews always get negative votes when I am just trying to help. Please, if you do not agree, just move along. What I post are facts and when I get so many negative votes buyers overlook my comments. Now on to the review.

This drive is very, very fast. It is also very loud but that should not be a concern of yours when looking for a HDD. Drives these days just make more noise. A loud drive minus any very unusual sounds does not mean something is wrong with it or it will die soon. This is by far the fastest 7200rpm laptop hdd I have ever used. The problem is the PS4 and this drive running too hot. If I were to use this in a PC, it would get 5 stars. You will not have a heat problem using this drive in a laptop. I tested it on three different laptops. I gave this HDD two stars to get the attention of buyers looking for a HDD for their PS4. I am sorry I had to do this but no one reads 5 star reviews. Once again, if you just use this in a laptop this is best HDD you will find by a mile.

Now, on to what to expect with this drive in your PS4

– Very, very unstable performance. One minute it’s breezing through the UI and the next moment it takes 15 or so seconds to load the settings menu. The HDD stalls left and right on the UI and it is just not usable after a certain point.

– Game performance is great. To the point where I did not get one single stutter in Warframe or DC Online. No joke, no stutters. Not one single stutter. I have tried 3 different HDD’s (that includes the stock HDD the PS4 came with) and they all stutter like crazy in those games but this ran those games flawless. However, I should mention I did get stutters in Killzone when the HDD was getting too hot.

– Heat. After about 10-15 minutes into any game the PS4 fans kick in so loud you’d think it’s about to take off. Killzone and Resogun are known to make the fan louder on the PS4. However, games like Warframe and DC Online are pretty quite with the stock HDD and other drives. They are not quite with this HDD. The hotter the HDD gets the worse it performs as well. It got to the point where while I was playing a game and I paused it to go to the UI and clicked storage management it took over 1 minute to load to see my games. The whole UI was sluggish. On a cold boot with the PS4 being off awhile it runs great for the first 10-15 minutes. Yes, it gets that hot that quick.

So, let’s scratch this off the list sadly of PS4 HDDs that work well. Here is what I have tried so far:


Seagate Laptop Thin 500 GB Solid State Hybrid Drive SATA 6Gb/s 64 MB Cache 2.5 Inch ST500LM000

This drive does everything perfectly minus one major flaw: games that require heavy streaming from the HDD are slow. DC Online and Warframe are a chopfest. This drive while it boots everything very quick has the worst read speeds in games I have ever seen. I made a review of this one that got down voted. Go read that one for more detailed info.

So, what’s next?


HGST Travelstar 2.5 Inch 500GB 7200 RPM SATA II 16 MB Cache Internal Hard Drive (0S02858)

I got this drive as this is the closest HDD to the stock PS4 HDD I could find with better performance (i hope). Sata 2 just like the stock HDD etc.

Look for my review on this drive soon as I have not received it yet.

Please note I go with the 500GB versions of these drives as it is a single platter and that means faster read times. I have spent over 220.00 alone on testing HDDs for the PS4. I tell the truth and I am very picky. I want it all to run perfect. This is why my reviews get down voted I assume. However, if you are like me and demand top performance and stability I would suggest you take my reviews seriously. I do not hold back.

I will be happy to answer any questions about my review and this HDD as long as you are polite. Sorry for my grammar.