Personally, i entrust my data to Western Digital, i have had a seagate, it sucked, and maxtor which i have also owned is slower, but as you say, dependable. you say that you have sata, if that is what your running, what i am about to type doesnt apply. but if you put a 5400 rpm 2mb buffer HD on the same bus as a 7200rpm, 8mb buffer, you will cause the better and faster drive to slow down in its times. if anything. just keep them on oppisite busses. but your running sata, so ide wont matter.
I've had good luck with Western Digital drives and Maxtor's though I think the WD are a little quieter compared to the Maxtor's based on what I've heard in my own use of them. To be honest as is the case with AMD or Intel no matter who you go with you should get a good drive as most of the answers are what people have dealt with while thats good to know about the issues not always the best way to make your decision on
Some like Seagate (me being one of them), while others like Western Digital and Maxtor, and I don't know if anyone likes Hitachi, but I've seen them around.
It's all personal choice as everyone else has been saying. Choose the drives brands you like and trust. If you still don't know what to choose... randomly pick.
Ep, glad to see you come back and tidy up...did want to ask a one day favor, I want to enhance my resume , was hoping you could make me administrator for a day, if so, take me right off since I won't be here to do anything, and don't know the slightest about the board, but it would be nice putting "served administrator osnn", if can do, THANKS