Seagate 3.5-inch drive achieves 1.5 TB capacity

Seagate's 1.5 TB 3.5-inch Barracuda hard drive marks the largest jump in hard drive capacity in the history of hard drives, representing a half-terabyte increase from the previous highest capacity of 1 TB for a 3.5-inch drive.

Seagate today unveiled the first 1.5 TB 3.5-inch desktop hard drive, which it said marks the largest jump in hard drive capacity in the more than 50-year history of hard disk drives.

The Barracuda 7200.11 1.5TB, the eleventh generation of Seagate's flagship drive for desktop PCs, represents a half-terabyte increase from the previous highest capacity of 1TB. The increase in capacity stems from perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR) technology, according to Seagate. The 1.5 TB drive is aimed at mainstream desktop computers, workstations, desktop RAID, gaming and high-end PCs, and USB/FireWire/eSATA external storage.

The Barracuda drive packs its 1.5T B on four platters and its SATA 3Gb/sec interface delivers a sustained data rate of up to 120MB/sec for fast boot, application startup and file access. The 3.5-inch drive is also offered in capacities of 1TB, 750 GB, 640 GB, 500 GB, 320 GB and 160 GB, with cache options of 32MB and 16MB.

Seagate also announced today two 2.5-inch notebook hard drives with capacities of a half terabyte. The Momentus 5400.6 and Momentus 7200.4 drives are designed for mainstream and high-performance notebook computers, external storage solutions, PCs and industrial applications requiring small form factor.

The Momentus hard drives are the fourth generation of Seagate's laptop drive family to use PMR technology. The Momentus 5400.6, a 5400-rpm drive, combines a SATA 3Gb/sec interface and capacities ranging from 120GB to 500GB with an 8MB cache. The Momentus 7200.4 hard drive, with its 7200-rpm spin speed and a SATA interface, is offered in capacities ranging from 250GB to 500GB with a 16MB cache.

Seagate's rollout of its new drives comes one day after Hitachi Global Storage Technologies launched its second-generation 3.5-inch drive the 1TB Deskstar 7K1000 B, which it bills as "the world's most energy-efficient" 1 TB 7200 rpm drive. Hitachi claims its new Desktsar drive for consumer and commercial PCs improves idle power consumption up to 43 percent from its first-generation 1 TB drives. It also includes a Bulk Data Encryption (BD) option, which is Hitachi's answer to Seagate's Full Disk Encryption (FDE). Hitachi said its Deskstar 7K1000 B drives will be available to its PC customers this month.

Both of Seagate's Momentus drives can withstand up to 1,000 Gs of non-operating shock and 350 Gs of operating shock to protect drive data, making the drives suitable for systems that are subject to rough handling or high levels of vibration. The drives are also offered with G-Force Protection, a free-fall sensor technology that helps prevent drive damage and data loss if a laptop PC is dropped. The sensor works by detecting any changes in acceleration equal to the force of gravity and parks the heads off the disc to prevent contact with the platter in a free fall of as little as 8 inches and within 3/10ths of a second.

Shipments of the Barracuda 7200.11 1.5TB are set to begin in August. Momentus 5400.6 and 7200.4 hard drives are to begin shipping in the fourth quarter.

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