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Western Digital ships 6TB WD Red NAS hard drive and all-new WD Red Pro lineup

The 5TB and 6TB WD Red hard drives are designed for home NAS servers, while a new WD Red Pro drive, available in 2TB, 3TB and 4TB, is for serious business.

A 4TB WD Red hard drive. Dong Ngo/CNET

Western Digital has given its WD Red a major upgrade. The Red is a standard internal hard drive designed specifically for network attached storage devices, generally known as NAS servers.

The upgrade includes two new capacities, 5TB and 6TB, for the Red drive and an all-new WD Red Pro drive that's available in 2TB, 3TB, and 4TB.

The new Red and Red Pro drives share the same NAS-optimized firmware with NASware 3.0 technology. WD says NASware 3.0 enables supported hard drives to work reliably around the clock, while at the same time offering RAID support, compatibility, and better data protection against power failure.

Both the the WD Red and the WD Red Pro support SATA 3 (6Gbps) and come with 64MB of cache memory. The WD Red Pro, however, spins at 7,200rpm and features hardware vibration compensation, making it work better in applications where many hard drives are used side by side at the same time.

WD says the WD Red Pro is best used in NAS servers that have from 8 to 16 drives bays, whereas the WD Red is more suited for those with 1 to 8 bays.

WD Red vs. WD Red Pro

WD Red WD Red Pro
Capacity 3.5 inch: 1TB, 2TB, 3TB, 4TB, 5TB, 6TB; 2.5 inch: 750GB, 1TB 3.5 inch: 2TB, 3TB 4TB
Designed for Home, Workgroup, SOHO NAS Prosumer, SMB, SME NAS
Interface SATA 3 (6Gbps) SATA 3 (6Gbps)
Spinning speed IntelliPower (5,400-7,200rpm) 7,200rpm
Cache 64MB 64MB
Recommended usage 1-8 Bay NAS systems 8-16 Bay NAS systems
Warranty 3-year 5-year
Multi-Drive Features StableTrac (5 & 6TB), 3D Active Balance+ StableTrac+C39, 3D Active Balance+, hardware vibration compensation
Firmware NAS Optimized firmware with NASware 3.0 NAS Optimized firmware with NASware 3.0
Suggested US price $249 (5TB), $299 (6TB) $159 (2TB), $199 (3TB), $259 (4TB)

The new 5TB and 6TB of the WD Red and the new WD Red Pro lineup are available now. The suggested retail price for the 5TB WD Red (model WD50EFRX) is $249, and for the 6TB (model WD60EFRX) is $299.

The WD Red Pro costs $159, $199, and $259 for the 2TB (WD2001FFSX), 3TB (WD3001FFSX), and 4TB (WD4001FFSX) respectively.

Pricing for the UK and Australia is not yet available, but the base prices of $249 and $159 convert to around £145 and AU$265, and £93 and AU$169 respectively.