Speed, space, and stability - The new 7200.11 Barracuda drive has it all.
The recent push for greater storage capacity due to HD media has left many of us wondering when we'd see 1TB (Terabyte or 1000 Gigabytes) drives. Finally, Hitachi broke the silence
with its offering, but we wondered who'd be next. Now, we know - Seagate has entered the building.
The press release was dropped on my desk earlier this morning from our friend at the company, and news has been floating around on the net since. The new 1TB drive is shipping from factories starting in the third quarter, 2007, so we should see them in stores well before the holiday season. You can expect it to be at an MSRP of $399.99 USD, which is well in line with other releases.
Seagate's new heavyweight is actually part of the latest eleventh generation of high-capacity Barracuda drives, dubbed 7200.11. The group is contains 500GB, 750GB and 1TB models, but it doesn't just stop at the size increase. A lot of technological improvements have gone into the drives, many of which will make it a top choice for those in need of some good storage.
The new drive does all of its storage on four platters instead of Hitachi's five platters. This may sound like no big deal, but is actually a very significant change. Less moving parts means less wear and tear on the drive, and thus a much better MTBF (mean time between failures). All of this is backed by a massive 32MB
cache on a 7200RPM spindle.
Of course, don't let that 7200 number fool you - this drive may be the fastest non-SCSI drive out there. By managing to increase the density on the platters, Seagate has given the drive a bandwidth increase to a whopping 105MB/s. In comparison, Western Digital's popular Raptor 10,000RPM drives have maximum sustained transfer rates of 84MB/s. Could we be seeing the performance crown change hands, finally?
We'll have to withhold judgement on the throughput until we get some in our hot little hands, but it could well de-throne the champion while absolutely crushing it in storage space. If so, long live the king...
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