Best bang for buck hard drives

Consumers who are in the market for hard disk drive (HDD) storage have a variety of capacity options to consider, all of which provide different cost per GB ratios.

Current hard drive pricing is still higher than it was towards the beginning of Q3 last year, as the industry is feeling the effects of the flood that hit Thailand and crippled hard drive production.

That said, hard drive pricing is steadily reducing towards pre-flood levels, and HDDs provide a much cheaper storage alternative to using Solid State Drives (SSDs).

Another consideration to bear in mind is that 3TB HDDs are no longer the highest capacity drives available. 4TB drives were announced earlier this year by Hitachi, and have started appearing on local distributor price lists.

Prices for the comparison below were sourced from a range of retailers, including: PC International, a Johannesburg-based retailer with countrywide shipping; and online retailers Prophecy and Sybaritic.

Prices are for either Seagate or Western digital hard drives include VAT, and were the lowest price offered per drive size from that retailer at the time of publication.

500GB 1TB 1.5TB 2TB 3TB
PC International price R760 R987 R967 R1,214 R1,717
PC International cost per GB R1.52 R0.99 R0.65 R0.61 R0.57
Prophecy price R820.28 R1,008.22 R1,117.31 R1,233.94 R1,819.55
Prophecy cost per GB R1.64 R1.01 R0.75 R0.62 R0.61
Sybaritic price R773 R990 R1,099 R1,178 R2,787
Sybaritic cost per GB R1.55 R0.99 R0.73 R0.59 R0.93

Understandably, the cost per GB decreases as the capacity of the hard drive increases, with 3TB drives offering the best cost per GB on average across a range of South African retailers.

There is also a 33 percent decrease in the cost per GB between 1TB and 1.5TB drives, going from 99c per GB to 65c per GB using PC International pricing.

Beyond this decline, the decrease in price per GB between 1.5TB and 2TB drives is 6.1 percent. 3TB drives save a further 6.5 percent per GB over the price of 2TB drives.

3TB drives offer the best price per GB out of current hard drive offerings in South Africa. If consumers are uneasy about storing such a large amount of information on a single drive, 1.5TB and 2TB drives still offer a significantly better pricing per GB than 500GB and 1TB drives.

Cost per GB comparison
Cost per GB comparison

Related articles:

South African SSD prices compared

Hard drive pricing still high in SA

PC shipments decline in Q4 – Gartner

Thailand floods spur SSD demand

Hard drive prices in SA spike

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Best bang for buck hard drives