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As explained in Reader Question: Drive Speed of 6TB vs 8TB Hard Drives, real world hard drive speed is primarly a function of capacity utilization.

In fact, capacity utilization dominates the performance equation and is thus the only realistic metric for transfer speed when real-world peformance considerations come into play. Other benchmarks are largely context-dropping irrelevancies.

Moreover, if a drive is partitioned to use a volume on the fast part of the hard drive, seek time across that volume also drops (because the physical distance is tighter, the drive heads have less distance to travel).

Read more:

HGST Ultrastar He8 Performance: Speed vs Capacity Utilization

Hard drive performance vs capacity utilization over 4TB partition (4/5/6TB hard drives)
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