Although SSDs and high-capacity 12.5-mm hard drives may be getting most of the attention among 2.5" disks, traditional 7,200-RPM hard drives may offer the best value for notebook users seeking both performance and capacity. Way back in May, Seagate announced the world's first 9.5-mm mobile drive to offer 750GB with a 7,200 RPM spindle speed. The 750GB Momentus has been conspicuously missing in action since, and it's not even listed on Seagate's website.
Hitachi isn't nearly as shy about showing off its new Travelstar 7K750, which as you've no doubt guessed, has a 2.5" form factor, 7,200-RPM spindle speed, and 750GB capacity. The Travelstar uses two 375GB platters to hit the 750GB mark, although 640GB and 500GB models will also be available. Interestingly, all three versions are equipped with Advanced Format, a new industry standard that changes the default sector size from 512 bytes to 4KB. This larger sector size is much more efficient and can offer increases in usable storage capacity of 7-11%.
Despite its next-gen formatting, the new Travelstar has a 3Gbps SATA interface. The drive also packs 16MB of cache and consumes a claimed 1.8W when reading and writing. Unfortunately, you can't get your hands on one just yet. The 7K750 family won't be available until the first quarter of next year, and we may not have information on pricing until then.
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