Home » WD Gold vs WD Black: Which Hard Drives are Better?

WD Gold vs WD Black: Which Hard Drives are Better?

Western Digital has such a large range of internal hard drives it’s hard to know where to start. Luckily, each series has a particular color to help differentiate the HDDs. When you look at the WD Gold and the WD Black, even the names tell you they are something special.

We are going to take a look at these two higher-end hard drives. We will compare all of the features of the WD Gold vs WD Black including speed, technology, and value for money. You will be able to find a comparison chart for quick viewing and some pros and cons.

WD Gold vs WD Black

Let’s start with what the WD Gold and the WD Black have in common.

WD Gold vs WD Black – Similarities

Hard Drive Type

The WD Gold and the WD Black are advanced-format hard drives with a 3.5-inch form factor. They are of the fastest hard drives being SATA III (6.0GB/s).

Appearance

Because the WD Gold and the WD Black have a 3.5-inch form factor, they are also the same size. They measure 5.79 x 4 x 1.03 inches. The WD Gold weighs 1.58 pounds and the WD Black weighs 1.66 pounds—nothing that would influence our decision.

Revolutions per Minute

The revolutions per minute, or RPM, indicate the speed at which the disk inside the hard drive spins. The WD Gold and the WD Black have 7,200RPM.

Value for Money

You might be looking at a $10-15 dollar difference but that could vary from seller to seller. The WD Gold and the WD Black both come with an industry-leading 5-year limited warranty.

Side by Side Comparison

The comparison chart below gives you a quick recap.

 

WD Gold

WD Black

Image WD Gold WD Black
Size 5.79 x 4 x 1.03 inches 5.79 x 4 x 1.03 inches
Weight 1.58lbs 1.66lbs
Storage Capacity 4TB 4TB
Other Capacities 1TB, 2TB, 6TB, 8TB, 10TB 500GB, 1TB, 2TB, 6TB, 8TB, 10TB
Form Factor 3.5 inches 3.5 inches
Compatibility Windows, Mac and Linux Windows, Mac
Uses Enterprise servers, storage systems, NAS, surveillance systems, data warehousing/centers PC enthusiasts, gaming, creative professionals, system builders
Technology Enhanced RAFF, RAID-specific time-limited error recovery StableTrac and Acronis True Image WD Edition
Cache 128MB X2 DRAM 256MB
Revolutions per minute 7,200RPM 7,200RPM
Transfer Rate Up to 201MB/s Up to 256MB/s
SATA 6.0 GB/s Yes Yes
Workload 2 million hours/ 550TB/year Not stated
Warranty 5-year limited warranty 5-year limited warranty
Price

Now, we will go over what the WD Gold and the WD Black don’t have in common.

Differences Between WD Gold and WD Black

Storage Capacities

We have paid specific attention to the 4TB hard drives, but there are other capacities available for both.

Western Digital 6TB WD Black

WD Gold

You can also find this with 1TB, 2TB, 6TB, 8TB, and 10TB.

WD Black

You have the same options as the WD Gold but with an additional capacity of 500GB.

The Winner Is- The WD Black

Read next – WD Purple vs WD Black: Which Hard Drives are Better?

Compatibility

The hard drives are compatible with a range of devices that have a spare 3.5-inch bay available.

WD Gold Comparison

WD Gold

This will run with Windows, Mac, and Linux though it may need formatting.

WD Black

It is compatible with Windows and Mac, again, there is a possibility of formatting.

The Winner Is- The WD Gold

Read next – WD Red vs WD Gold: Which Hard Drives are Better?

Uses

It’s true that these two hard drives are interchangeable, but they have been designed with different uses in mind.

WD Gold Review

WD Gold

These are enterprise-level hard drives. They have been created to handle servers and storage systems of large companies, even data warehousing and data centers. They can be used in NAS systems as well as surveillance systems.

WD Black

The WD Black series is better suited to PC enthusiasts and creative professionals like video and photo editors. It’s also a good choice for gamers and system builders.

The Winner Is- A Tie

Read next – Seagate Firecuda vs WD Black: Which Gaming Hard Drives are Better?

Technology

The technology a hard drive comes with is closely linked to its ideal uses.

WD Black Comparison

WD Gold

Enhanced RAFF technology monitors and corrects the drives rotational vibration in real-time, making it better for high vibration environments. RAID- specific time-limited error recovery for reduced drive fallout.

WD Black

StableTrac Technology increases the relatability of the hard drive and optimizes performance. Acronis True Image WD Edition is WDs cloning software, which is free to download.

The Winner Is- A Tie

Cache and Transfer Speeds

Aside from the 6GB/s transfer speeds, you also want to think about the transfer speeds between the host and drive

WD Black Review

WD Gold

The cache is 128MB with transfer speeds of up to 201MB/s.

WD Black

The cache is 2 DRAM 256MB which helps to allow for transfer speeds of up to 256MB/s.

The Winner Is- The WD Black

Read next – WD Black vs Seagate Barracuda: Which Hard Drives are Better?

Workload

One of these hard drives is designed to handle greater workloads.

Western Digital 6TB WD Black Review

WD Gold

This has a mean time before failure of 2 million hours and an equally impressive workload of 550TB per year.

WD Black

There is no information on the workload.

The Winner Is- The WD Gold

Pros and Cons

Before our final verdict, we have some pros and cons of the WD Gold and the WD Black.

WD Gold

Pros:

  • Generally faster read and write speeds
  • A great choice for professionals
  • Will handle heavier workloads, up to 550TB per year

Cons:

  • Louder than other hard drives

WD Black

Pros:

  • It’s ideal for gaming
  • It’s quieter than the WD Gold
  • Installation is easy, as an upgrade it’s even easier

Cons:

  • There may be a slight clicking which can be annoying

The Final Verdict

For both of these hard drives, we got transfer speeds of at least what we were expecting, which was perfect. The setup was simple and with a little tech knowledge, formatting was easy enough too. The price was fairly similar, and the warranty was the same. While the WD Black may have been a little bit faster, the WD Gold could certainly handle the additional workload.

Today, we have a very rare occasion— two winners. For small offices and personal use, the WD Black is the essential choice because it is quieter. The WD Gold has had a few complaints about the noise but that’s expected with a hard drive designed for enterprise-level storage and performance—it’s not designed to be used in your living room PC. However, for large businesses, the WD Gold is an excellent choice for durability and reliability.


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