Seagate announces Barracuda 7200.9
Today Seagate formally announces its Barracuda 7200.9 family of hard drives. Unlike the 7200.7 and 7200.8 series, which focused low and high storage densities, respectively, the 7200.9 family covers capacities from 40GB to 500GB. Drives will be available with 2MB, 8MB, or 16MB of cache, with the largest cache available on 300, 400, and 500GB Serial ATA drives. Plenty of cache and a half-terabyte top capacity are nice, but the 7200.9's most impressive feature may be its ultra-dense 160GB platters, which have a much higher areal density than platters offered by other manufacturers.
In addition to new, denser platters, the 7200.9 sports all the features detailed in the recently drafted Serial ATA 2.5 spec. The Serial ATA 2.5 spec includes a number of required and optional features, and the 7200.9 supports them all, including 300MB/sec transfer rates, Native Command Queuing, hot plugging, and staggered spin-up. The 7200.9 series can also auto-negotiate a host transfer rate with a Serial ATA controller, so you don't have to worry about switching the drive between 150MB/sec and 300MB/sec modes manually.
120GB, 160GB, and 500GB Barracuda 7200.9 drives have been shipping for more than a week, and they've already arrived at Newegg. Seagate expects the rest of the 7200.9's available capacities to become available over the next two months.