I know I'm very new to this forum (starting using my QNAP TS-639Pro only in late October) to I seek your indulgence if step on any toes. I just thought that I should share something. First, I don't think the problem with the Greens are limited to just them. Second, I think WD has taken note of the problems with its Greens and their low power behaviour with the introduction of the EARS series.
When I first bought the unit, I decided to populate it with 4xWD 1tb Blacks. This was partly driven by the problems reported by users of the Greens, which in my opinion, would have been better for my SOHO environment where low noise and power consumption are helpful. In any case the Blacks were not problem free too. One of the 1TB WD Blacks, HDD4, keeps reporting itself as ejected. This happens only during large file transfers and is believed to be related to the same problem other users have reported here. Anyway, my supplier in Singpaore replaced HDD4 with another WDC Black, with the same firmware WDC WD1001FALS-00J7B05.0 as the other three although it was made a month later. I did not have any more problems with HDD4 but I occassionally got short freezes (2-3minutes) where whole array goes unresponsive for only to come back to life as if nothing had happened. I think this behaviour has also been reported by others.
Anyway, 2 months into the NAS' operation, our NAS was already running out of space. We started out with using only 1/3 of the total approx 3tb capacity but have quickly reached the 2/3 mark. I decided to upgrade the drives rather than to add two new 1tbs, since the current price sweet spot is with the 1.5tbs. And 1.5tbs will buy more time for us, esp when I can add two more drives later. However, I wasn't able to find sufficient stocks of the hitachi/samsung drives at my usual IT suppliers in Singapore and could not wait (I was only there for a weekend) but I was alerted to a new WD Green version. Deciding to take some risk, I got myself 4 WD15EADS-00Z5B1 80.0 (as reported by QNAP admin). Interestingly, two of them were made in Malaysia while two were made in Thailand. All are from the 11 Dec batch and have the same firmware.
Main change was the introduction of an advanced low 4k block formating and a 64mb cache but I believe other changes have also been made. I was also told that the 1.5EARs have dual CPUs that the 1.0EARs didn't but I have no way to verify that (WDC site doesn't seem to say so). Another thing that my supplier said was that the intellispin of the new models was more generous with spin speeds, allowing the drive spend more time at 7200rpm than before (the Greens usually ran at 5400rpm if I'm not wrong). I was told to expect 5-7% performance increases but early benchmarks on other sites do not show this. Frankly, I'm not expecting any performance increases with these new versions, aside from those attributable to the larger cache but the lower noise and heat output would be appreciated.
The real reason why I decided to risk getting them was that the new greens appear to have done away with the deep idle mode of the previous incarnations. (All other brands have their own problems too) Check out the drive specification sheets from WDC at http://www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-701229.pdf
. The 1.5TB EARS specs are not listed yet but according to the 1.0EARS power consumption specs, the new versions do not consume much less power when idle, indicating that they do not enter into as deep a sleep state as before. What exactly that means is still not clear but I believe the heads no longer park when idle.
My array is currently being expanded and I've replaced the second of four drives. Already, based on the figures from our MGE UPS, each Black replaced netted around 11-12watts less in power consumption! And the clatter of the Blacks is noticeably less pronounced now. I'll keep everyone updated on the progress and try to duplicate some of the problems I had with the Blacks to see if there are there. This is promising.