Samsung SP2504C is a 250 GB hard disk drive using the new SATA-300 interface, which allows a maximum theoretical transfer rate of 300 MB/s. Its main specs also include an 8 MB buffer, 7,200 rpm rotation speed and support to NCQ (Native Command Queuing). In this review we checked the performance of Samsung SP2504C installed on a motherboard using a regular SATA-150 port and also on a motherboard using the new SATA-300 port.

This very same hard disk drive is also available with a 200 GB capacity, being called SP2004C. Both belong to SpinPoint P120 series from Samsung.

Samsung SP2504CFigure 1: Samsung SP2504C, 250 GB, SATA-300, 7,200 rpm and 8 MB buffer.

Samsung SP2504CFigure 2: The other side of Samsung SP2504C.

As you can see in Figure 2, it requires a SATA power connector.

Samsung SP2504C is based on the Marvell 88i6525 controller (also called SOC, System On a Chip). This chip is not only one of the smallest Serial ATA HDD controllers available on the market, but also is natively SATA-300, supporting NCQ.

Its 8 MB buffer is made by Samsung K4S641632H-UC60 SDRAM memory chip (it holds 64 Mbits, which equals to 8 MB).

As motor driver Samsung SP2504C uses HA13645 chip from Hitachi.

Samsung SP2504CFigure 3: Controller chip (Marvell 88i6525) and buffer chip (Samsung K4S641632H-UC60).

The real capacity of this hard disk drive is of 232.88 GB, since all manufacturers assume that 1 GB is 1 billion bytes, while 1 GB is in fact 1,073,741,824 bytes (2^30).

This hard disk drive also has a SATA-150/SATA-300 jumper, which should be installed in case you find some incompatibility between your SATA-150 motherboard and your hard disk drive. We installed this hard disk drive on a SATA-150 motherboard and we found no compatibility problems at all and we hadn’t to install this jumper.

Gabriel Torres is a Brazilian best-selling ICT expert, with 24 books published. He started his online career in 1996, when he launched Clube do Hardware, which is one of the oldest and largest websites about technology in Brazil. He created Hardware Secrets in 1999 to expand his knowledge outside his home country.