Western Digital is testing the SSD waters with new midrange and budget drives

The Western Digital brand has long been the answer to the question of which hard drive to buy when building a system. The rapid proliferation of solid state drives has relegated WD’s Black and Red drives to data storage duty, but it hasn’t slowed down the company’s ambitious plans at all. The recent acquisition of Sandisk brings a wealth of new properties to WD’s arsenal, and the newest to find its way to market are the Green and Blue solid state drives, in both 2.5-inch and M.2 form factors.

Those familiar with WD’s existing color-coded structure will recognize blue and green as the more budget-friendly tiers. The Blue SSDs, available in 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB volumes, are the more performance-oriented of the two new families. With quoted sequential reads up to 545 megabytes per second and writes up to 525MBps, these drives fall in line with others in their price range, like the perennial favorite Samsung 850 EVO.

Where they really excel is endurance. The smaller 250GB is rated for 100 terabytes written, while the 500GB version is rated for up to 200 TBW, and the 1TB reaches a whopping 400TBW. The Samsung option doesn’t come close, with a 75TBW rating for the smaller drives, and 150 for the larger volumes. These Western Digital drives should last a good, long while.

The 250GB version of the Blue will run you $80, and the 500GB version will sell for $140, with the 1TB reaching $300. These drives are likely to take a place in DIY builds and modest gaming machines when the price is right, compared to the Samsung.

If performance isn’t as important as price and power usage, the WD Green SSDs may be more your speed. Available in more modest 120GB and 240GB configurations, the drives are slightly slower, with a quoted sequential read of up to 540Mbps and write at up to 405Mbps.

Endurance suffers a bit as well. The Green SSDs are rated at just 80 TBW for the 240GB drive, and half that for the 120GB version. No word on pricing yet, but Western Digital says the Green SSDs will roll out later this quarter.

No matter which drive you choose, you’ll have access to the Western Digital Dashboard, a software suite that allows you to manage performance and capacity on the fly.

We have the 2.5-inch version of the Western Digital Blue SSD in-house, and hope to have our testing for a full review complete soon. We’ll update this post as more pricing and performance info becomes available.

Smart Home

No strings attached: This levitating lamp uses science to defy gravity

Now on Kickstarter, the Levia lamp is a cool industrial-looking lamp which boasts a levitating bulb. Looking for a table light that will dazzle visitors? You've come to the right place.
Gaming

Learn to uninstall a Steam game and clear some space on your PC

Looking to learn how to uninstall Steam games? You've come to the right place. In this guide, we walk you through the process step by step, whether you want Steam to do it for you or handle the process manually.
Smart Home

Your office is a mess, and it’s making Marie Kondo cry. Here’s how to tidy it up

Here's how to "Marie Kondo" your office. If you've been inspired to remove clutter and create a minimalistic workspace that makes you happy and helps you focus on what matters, then we have ideas that you'll want to try.
Mobile

Flip from portrait to landscape as we reveal how to rotate a video on iPhone

If you've accidentally shot a video in portrait orientation and you want to flip to landscape, then this is the guide for you. We'll explain how to use iMovie to rotate a video on your iPhone or iPad for free and suggest alternative apps.
Computing

Intel expects Apple to transition Macs to ARM processors in 2020, report says

It has been rumored for some time that Apple could transition away from Intel to ARM processors, but a new report now claims that Intel is aware of the decision and that it could happen in 2020.
Computing

Still miss Windows 7? Here's how to make Windows 10 look more like it

There's no simple way of switching on a Windows 7 mode in Windows 10. Instead, you can install third-party software, manually tweak settings, and edit the registry. We provide instructions for using these tweaks and tools.
Computing

The rumors were true. Nvidia’s 1660 Ti GPU, a $280 powerhouse, has arrived

Nvidia has officially launched the GTX 1660 Ti, its next-generation, Turing-based GPU. It promises to deliver all the performance and efficiency for all modern games, but without stepping into the high price range of the RTX series. 
Computing

Dodge the biggest laptop-buying mistakes with these handy tips

Buying a new laptop is exciting, but you need to watch your footing. There are a number of pitfalls you need to avoid and we're here to help. Check out these top-10 laptop buying mistakes and how to avoid them.
Computing

Great PC speakers don't need to break the bank. These are our favorites

Not sure which PC speakers work best with your computer? Here are the best computer speakers on the market, whether you're working with a tight budget or looking to rattle your workstation with top-of-the-line audio components.
Computing

Confused about RSS? Don't be. Here's what it is and how to use it

What is an RSS feed, anyway? This traditional method of following online news is still plenty useful. Let's take a look at what RSS means, and what advantages it has in today's busy world.
Computing

Everything you need to know about routers, modems, combos, and mesh networks

Modem vs. router: what's the difference? We explain their functions so you can better diagnose any issues prior to contacting technical support. We also talk about a few variants you'll see offered by ISPs and retailers.
Computing

Metro Exodus update brings DLSS improvements to Nvidia RTX 20-series PCs

Having issues in Metro Exodus? A February 21 update for the title recently delivered enhancements to Nvidia’s deep learning supersampling feature and other fixes for low-specced PCs. 
Computing

Limited-time sale knocks $500 off the price of the Razer Blade Pro 17

Looking for an ultra-powerful laptop for yourself or someone else? You're in for some luck. Razer is running a sale on some of its best gaming laptops, cutting down pricing on the Razer Blade 15 and the Razer Blade Pro 17. 
Emerging Tech

Engineer turns his old Apple lle into an wheeled robot, and even gives it a sword

How do you give new life to a 30-year-old computer? Software engineer Mike Kohn found a way by transforming his old Apple IIe into a wheeled robot. Check it out in all its 1980s glory.