I swapped the original 80 GB hard drive for a new 640 GB Samsung HM64JI hard drive. It is not recognized after booting from the 10.5 Installation DVD on Macbook 2.1 with recent EFI updates installed.
The problem was related to difference in sata ver. The hdd is sata2 whereas the macbook (mid 2007) supports only sata1 (1.5G). Normally, these should work since autonegotiation should set it to sata1. Unfortunatelly, it didn't.
I had to use Patch to flash the hdd's firmware and set it hard to sata1. After burning cd, rebooting (hold c to boot from cd), you execute run.bat which does the job.
Then I had changed the cd to dvd installation disk with 10.5. The disk was visible under the diskutil. I created partition and rebooted again. Afterwards the hdd was visible when restoring time machine backups.
Wikipedia shows MacBook 2,1 as either a late 2006 or mid 2007 pre unibody MacBook (white or black) and RamJet notes that 2.5" drives greater than 500GB do not work with pre-unibody macs.
You might have luck visiting http://support.apple.com/manuals/YourSerialNumber to confirm the marketing name and the manual might list the SATA requirements for replacement drives.
If you have reset the NVRAM, reseated the HDD and tried resetting the NVRAM after the reseat, then it's looking like something hardware has failed or the drive won't work with your hardware.
Since Apple wants and only supports you when you install Apple approved drives (since they make sure the fit and firmware are all compatible), your best bet is to contact Samsung to see if that drive is tested or needs certain pin settings / firmware for use with Leopard and your mac. Also, the place you bought that drive might be willing to help you.
I'm hoping the information I found is wrong and you have success, but it doesn't look good for that drive in your mac.
I just tried three new hard drives and a 2006 Macbook wouldn't recognize any of them making them impossible to format with the OS X 10.4.6 Install discs. (The installer thought they were 7.26 TB disks, which wasn't correct, and it would give an Input/Output error when trying to format.)
Tried a 10.6 (Snow Leopard) Install disc and it recognized the drive right away. Currently running a 1TB Hitachi HD. Hope this helps you and people with similar issues.