This is just a word of caution.
Warning! This post includes Boring Info..but that's because in addition to simply bringing up the caution, I try to explain why it makes a difference.
If you haven't noticed this, it appears that newegg.com
is now intentionally grouping
together "related" device reviews and review statistics, even when the devices are fundamentally different in design and manufacture.
This type of data massaging is unfortunate and potentially costly to the consumer (in both money and time). It is particularly worrisome as they don't make it clear that it is what they are now doing in the statistics summary "1 thru 5 stars rating chart". (e.g. you look at the summary thinking
it is for the actual device you are looking at, but it now also includes statistics from the customer reviews of different
It is important to understand that it can be still possible
to make an informed decision about a specific device based on its customer reviews (but only when individual "This review is from" data are available), it's just that Newegg
has taken this mis-step (temporary, I hope) and made it MUCH more difficult for us to do so.
Personally, even though I have a very long history with Newegg (only as a customer), and have had overwhelmingly very positive experiences with the products they offer and newegg's RMA process (when needed...very infrequently)
, I think this is important enough to bring it to your attention so one can make a more informed purchase decision.
Manipulation of statistics in this way can muddy the perception of a product's quality. In my personal opinion, it may even have a major impact on business operating costs (e.g. you buy what seem
to be highly customer-rated drive "X" thinking it is well reviewed by a lot of users, only to find out the stats included
more positive review ratings from models "Y" and "Z" devices as well). Later, you may experience that the installed "X" devices start failing faster and in greater numbers than you anticipated.
For example, when I looked at an nTB Western Digital Red "Intellipower" Hard Drive, Newegg
had smushed together all the reviews and review statistics for the 1TB, 2TB, 3TB and 4TB "Red" hard drives. You are NOT provided the individualized review rating summary for the 3TB Red HDD as a single device, and these drives may differ quite a bit in design, manufacture, and firmware. They also operate with different temperature and power profiles...all of which affect reliability.
History shows us that the reliability of a given, single hard drive can vary significantly depending on capacity, often decreasing as capacity increases. The simple fact that they must add more components (platters, electronics, and more R/W assemblies) to an HDD to increase capacity inherently decreases reliability of an individual
For one example, I've seen 1TB HDDs of one manufacturer's "family" of HDDs with 70% 1-star top-rated reviews...but the 3TB 1-star rated reviews in the same family fell WAY down to nearly 50%. Thus, when they intermingle the stats from different drives the 3TB appears to get artificially boosted positive review ratings, while the 1TB positive ratings fall. However, it's always possible they will intermingle rating stats for the 3TB drives just to make the 3TB HDDs appear
to get much better reviews than in reality, but then NOT intermingle the rating stats for the 1TB drives...thus letting those drives keep their superior rating for marketing purposes.
Thus, when you make a merely cursory examination of the "review" statistics for a 3TB HDD inextricably mixed in with the stats for the 1TB, 2TB, and 4TB HDDs, you can NOT be assured that the stats are meaningful for the 3TB HDD.
However, for the time being, the individual reviews are still visible on newegg, and you may be able to determine whether a particular review and rating is for a given 1TB or 3TB HDD. But...you personally and manually
have to go through perhaps hundreds or thousands of reviews in the review section, and manually separate the data and compile the results yourself. That's a LOT of work.
It is my hope that Newegg
will change this back to provide a more accurate device-specific review summary for customers. (Or even better, perhaps Newegg
would give customers the option to view the review section that applies ONLY
to the specific individual device (the way it used to be), but then also
lets the customer view an "overall" grouped review section that applies to the "family" of devices.)
*Note: to address one possible argument folks might bring up...while it is generally true that if you use 3 of device "X" instead of a single device "X", the combined reliability of those those 3 device X's as a group is lower than the reliability of a single device X (for example, 3x1TB drives v. 1x1TB drive). But, that's not what we're talking about here. The same can't be inferred when the 3 "X" devices are different in design and manufacture from the single device "Y" (for example, 3x1TB drives v. 1x3TB drive). There are factors which can make device "Y" much less reliable than even all 3 of the "X" devices. Then again, there's the possibility one didn't really need device "Y", and a single device "X" would have met requirements, but there may have been a marketing factor one might consider to purchase "Y" instead...e.g. $/GB can be compelling. In such instances, one might think "Y" is a better deal in terms of initial cost, but later find it was a false savings as "Y" fails more frequently or has higher maintenance requirements.
Changed subject line so all of it shows on the "latest" web page index
This doesn't affect just hard drives, for example, as of 20140110 this customer review summary chart on the TUH-300 model USB 3.0 4-Port USB Hub product page co-mingles all 5 (and perhaps more) of these completely different
devices, including some USB2.0 ONLY Hubs, which makes the summary virtually useless to a customer when considering the purchase of the TUH-300:
...Tek Republic TUH-300 USB 3.0 4-Port Hub
...Tek Republic TUH-2700 USB 2.0 ONLY
7 Port Hub
...Tek Republic TUH-3400 Aluminum USB 3.0 4 Port Hub
...Tek Republic TUH-200 USB 3.0 + USB 2.0 4-Port Hub
...Tek Republic UH-CBC7-US USB 2.0 ONLY