Liberate your Western Digital 8TB drive from its MyBook external enclosure to pay just $250, much cheaper than internal

Posted by Paul Braren on Mar 30 2016 (updated on Aug 23 2017) in
  • Storage
  • Backstory

    There have been some fun and interesting stories lately, about how absurd the mark-up sometimes is for internal 3.5" drives. Yeah, you'll get full warranty and normal stickers. But going with a similar drive that's inside an external is sometimes cheaper. Way cheaper.

    Amazon - WD 8TB My Book Desktop External Hard Drive - USB 3.0 - WDBFJK0080HBK-NESN

    Shop - WD 8TB My Book

    • Amazon  - $249.99 as of 04/06/2016
    • Newegg  - $249.99 as of 04/06/2016
    • Best Buy - $249.99 as of 04/06/2016

    Imagine the nice surprise folks experienced who happened to live near a Best Buy, bringing back their $249.99 8TB MyBook to pry it open, peeled back the sticker, and reveal that the HDD within is really...get HGST (Hitachi) Enterprise He8 7200rpm 8TB drive that currently goes for $425.50 on Amazon! Just such a story is told so very nicely here:

    and in podcast form here:

    My story

    I didn't quite have that good of luck myself, with no 8TB My Books in stock at any Best Buy anywhere near me. Check for yourself at Best Buy online:

    There's certainly no guarantee that you'll also get the HGST variant, even if you do find the drive locally. Not sure if folks are getting the Hitachi helium enterprise drive when going with Best Buy online orders either.

    Here's the thing. As I threw down my $250 at Amazon this past Monday, March 28th, I realized I was essentially rolling the dice, not really knowing what would be inside. But even if I got the 5400 drive WD variant, if it tested reasonably fast and was also very quiet, that's fine by me for my home lab!

    On Tuesday March 29th, my My Book arrived. Opened it up, and the sticker shows it's a WD WD80EZZX. Better-than-expected benchmark scores seen below, and very quiet operation. I'm happy!

    Western Digital Red 8TB - $343.92

    The equivalent spec'd WD Red 8TB NAS Hard Disk Drive - 5400 RPM Class SATA 6 Gb/s 128MB Cache 3.5 Inch - WD80EFZX goes for $343.92 on Amazon.

    Western Digital WD80EZZX 8TB - $249.99 (not intended for NAS)

    Arrives inside the same My Book that's sold at Amazon, Newegg, or Best Buy, for the same exact price. I realize it's not labeled as a WD Red drive for NAS. But I'm not particularly worried about a likely lack of TLER set for NAS use, given mine won't be used in a NAS. Instead, it's in my SuperServer, used for daily backups, just in time for World Backup Day.

    Warranty for WD80EZZX

    I thought that I was totally breaking any chances at warranty. Then again, WD Support's Check your Warranty Status page where I simply key in my serial number off the drive itself (pictured above) looks promising. Date of manufacture of the drive is January 2016, model strangely shows as WDBFJK0080HBK, and the warranty expiration date is April 23 2016, about 2 years:


    Benchmarks for WD80EZZX

    Doing some quick and easy benchmarks with this brand new drive revealed my performance looks a bit better than expected actually, with this Intel Xeon D SoC's six integrated SATA3/6Gbps controllers in my SuperServer continuing to serve my home virtualization lab quite nicely.

    ATTO Benchmark run at defaults, subsequent tests gave very nearly identical results. Windows 10 on Supermicro X10SDV-TLN4F motherboard.
    HD Tune Pro 5.60 run at defaults, subsequent tests gave very nearly identical results. Windows 10 on Supermicro X10SDV-TLN4F motherboard.

    Closing thoughts

    So I have saved $93.93 versus a Red, and got to have a little "fun" breaking in, as some unimportant bits of internal plastic retainers snapped off inside the enclosure, in exactly the same manner that others have experienced, detailed at:

    This enclosure can totally still be used for other drives if needed, but no, I wouldn't say my My Drive is in a returnable condition, especially since I peeled the sticker partially back, to find nothing but bare metal below it.

    What if you really want to get two WD Reds for a less costly per drive price? Then break open this 2 bay enclosure, and it's said they will be WD Red NAS drives within!


    Opening up the enclosure is as simple as prying with a dull knife, if you don't worry about keeping the enclosure in pristine condition. Then a Philips head to remove the SATA to USB daughtercard. I recorded as I went, and hope be able to produce a video of that unboxing and minor surgery soon.

    Shop - WD 8TB My Book

    • Amazon  - $249.99 as of 04/06/2016
    • Newegg  - $249.99 as of 04/06/2016
    • Best Buy - $249.99 as of 04/06/2016

    Apr 06 2016 Update

    For days, no Best Buy locations anywhere near me seemed to have these available for in-store pickup. So I went and placed a web order, only to find the same January 2016 manufacture date on the drive label. Yep, no HGTS, just another WD80EZZX.

    Not sure what this means to you, other than to say the odds are likely high that any Amazon or Best Buy online order will get you a WD80EZZX inside. Would also seem that only place you'll possibly still score a HGST Enterprise He8 7200 rpm drive is a local Best Buy that hasn't sold their stock out quite yet.

    Good luck, and let us know how you fare out there by dropping a comment below.

    Aug 23 2017 Update

    The practice of removing a drive enclosure to save $ has apparently been dubbed drive shucking.

    See also at TinkerTry


    See also