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Seagate announces first 3.5" hybrid hard drive

Seagate announces first 3.5" hybrid hard drive

Seagate's latest Solid State Hybrid Drive (SSHD) line-up includes, for the first time, a 3.5" model with up to 2TB of storage and an 8GB NAND flash cache area.

Storage specialist Seagate appears to be taking its focus on hybrid devices, which combine the mass-storage capabilities of spinning rust with the high-performance of NAND flash, very seriously indeed, announcing its first desktop-centric hybrid models.

Previous hybrid drives have focused on the laptop market, combining a fairly standard 2.5" SATA hard drive with a small chunk of high-speed NAND flash. Combined with a clever algorithm which puts the most frequently accessed data onto the flash, a hybrid drive can offer a serious performance boost while helping conserve battery life by spinning down the platters even during data access. Those who want the same best-of-both-worlds approach on their desktop, however, have been left mounting expensive and relatively low-capacity 2.5" hybrid drives in 3.5" adapters or opting for a roll-your-own software-based solution using a SATA or m-SATA SSD in addition to a spinning-platter drive.

Now, however, Seagate is looking to offer something a little more suitable in the form of its first 3.5" hybrid drive. Dubbed the Desktop SSHD (Solid State Hybrid Drive,) the company's first attempt to attack the desktop segment is to launch in capacities of up to 2TB - double that of the company's largest 2.5" hybrid drive - and with 8GB of NAND flash space for data caching. Using the same Seagate Adaptive Memory technology as its laptop equivalents - a trademarked name for what is, at heart, a relatively simple data caching algorithm - the disk promises to offer a serious speed boost to those who don't fancy juggling two or more drives in their system.

'Our customers want the highest storage capacity with the ability to access their data easily and quickly,' claimed Fredrik Hamberger, vice president of HP's consumer PC business, in support of Seagate's announcement. 'Integrating Seagate's SSHD solution into our rapidly growing portfolio of industry leading PCs will offer our customers a superior experience while running multiple applications.'

Sadly, neither Seagate nor HP were keen to share actual performance characteristics for the drives beyond a vague claim that the Adaptive Memory caching system will allow for a boost of up to four times on the PCMark Vantage benchmarking suite and provide an 'instant-on' fast-boot experience even on older hardware.

The desktop drives come as Seagate refreshes its laptop-centric 2.5" hybrid drive line, offering capacities of up to 1TB or an ultra-thin 7mm 500GB model for Ultrabook makers. Neither these nor the desktop models have been given a price as yet, with Seagate simply promising to launch the drives at competitive price points - something it will need to keep an eye on as the cost of pure-SSD storage devices drop ever lower.

7 Comments

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adam_bagpuss 7th March 2013, 13:00 Quote
i like the idea but 8GB of Flash isnt anywhere near enough even for a hybrid drive.

id say a 2TB drive with 32 or 64GB is whats needed.

Windows 8 is around 15GB isnt it ?
tigertop1 7th March 2013, 13:52 Quote
I have already tried a 45GB Accelerator SSD coupled to a 1Gb drive. 8GB is far too small and a minimum of 32 or 45 is really required to make the difference-but 64GB is best of all
XXAOSICXX 7th March 2013, 22:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by adam_bagpuss
Windows 8 is around 15GB isnt it ?

And how much of that is actually loaded into RAM when you boot your computer? about 1.5->2GB? Add onto that, say, MS office, your steam client, a couple of applications you use the most frequently....and you're STILL not hitting 8GB.

It's a hybrid. The SSD part doesn't have to hold ALL of Windows or ALL of your Steam library. It just needs the files that you request the most frequently.
alick 8th March 2013, 11:58 Quote
if all u need is 8gb catch would it be cheaper /better to by more ram and install fancy catch
http://www.romexsoftware.com/en-us/fancy-cache/index.html

i got a crucail ssd catch drive and dataplex and it works wonders
when people ask i have a 1tb ssd for only £50
adam_bagpuss 9th March 2013, 08:32 Quote
Quote:
And how much of that is actually loaded into RAM when you boot your computer? about 1.5->2GB? Add onto that, say, MS office, your steam client, a couple of applications you use the most frequently....and you're STILL not hitting 8GB.

It's a hybrid. The SSD part doesn't have to hold ALL of Windows or ALL of your Steam library. It just needs the files that you request the most frequently.

This has nothing to do with RAM, windows isnt pre-loaded in to RAM. Windows uses RAM but it doesnt reside there.

Its exactly as you said most frequently accessed files and guess what windows files are a lot of them as well as the most popular programs you use such as games, photoshop etc 8GB just doesnt cover it

I like the idea of a hybrid drive but in reality they are arent as good as SSD and command a premium over large storage drives. If i needed both speed and storage id rather have more speed and more storage for slightly more money rather than a compromise.

seagate hyrbid 750GB 8GB FLASH = £85-90

64GB SSD + 1TB drive = £90-100

the separate drives setup is much faster hold more quick storage for critical programs and provides more general storage for more or less the same money !

Only reason to buy hybrid is for a laptop where space is limited but storage is required. The 3.5" they are going to release needs to be aggressive on price if they are to compete with a separate SSD and HDD setup
LightningPete 10th March 2013, 01:12 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by adam_bagpuss
Quote:
And how much of that is actually loaded into RAM when you boot your computer? about 1.5->2GB? Add onto that, say, MS office, your steam client, a couple of applications you use the most frequently....and you're STILL not hitting 8GB.

It's a hybrid. The SSD part doesn't have to hold ALL of Windows or ALL of your Steam library. It just needs the files that you request the most frequently.

This has nothing to do with RAM, windows isnt pre-loaded in to RAM. Windows uses RAM but it doesnt reside there.

Its exactly as you said most frequently accessed files and guess what windows files are a lot of them as well as the most popular programs you use such as games, photoshop etc 8GB just doesnt cover it

I like the idea of a hybrid drive but in reality they are arent as good as SSD and command a premium over large storage drives. If i needed both speed and storage id rather have more speed and more storage for slightly more money rather than a compromise.

seagate hyrbid 750GB 8GB FLASH = £85-90

64GB SSD + 1TB drive = £90-100

the separate drives setup is much faster hold more quick storage for critical programs and provides more general storage for more or less the same money !

Only reason to buy hybrid is for a laptop where space is limited but storage is required. The 3.5" they are going to release needs to be aggressive on price if they are to compete with a separate SSD and HDD setup

Not meaning to shoot you in the foot for you, but the article is for a 3.5" 2tb drive and not a 750gb and by the sounds of it getting a 1.5Tb harddrive and 64 Gb ssd or 2tb hard drive and a 32gb/64gb ssd is not going to be the same price as a 2tb hybrid somehow ? I do see your point for the lesser capacities, however i havent check that your not just guestimating those figures.
Its also a space saver not having a 2.5 and 3.5 drives but just one 3.5 drive with no need to any conversion bays, or those using mini-itx cases where one 3.5 drive is suitable - so capacity and speed together are something hard to come by.
adam_bagpuss 10th March 2013, 08:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by LightningPete
Not meaning to shoot you in the foot for you, but the article is for a 3.5" 2tb drive and not a 750gb and by the sounds of it getting a 1.5Tb harddrive and 64 Gb ssd or 2tb hard drive and a 32gb/64gb ssd is not going to be the same price as a 2tb hybrid somehow ? I do see your point for the lesser capacities, however i havent check that your not just guestimating those figures.
Its also a space saver not having a 2.5 and 3.5 drives but just one 3.5 drive with no need to any conversion bays, or those using mini-itx cases where one 3.5 drive is suitable - so capacity and speed together are something hard to come by.

I used the hybrid drive that you can buy now as i dont have a value for the new 2TB one that the article mentions but hopefully it wont follow the trend of its predecessor and command a big premium over standard HDDs
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