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Potential applications
The Savvio's unique blend of proportion and performance potential makes it ideal for a number of applications, most notably high-density RAID storage. Seagate points to an example where a 3U rack-mount unit with 14 3.5" 147GB SCSI drives can be replaced by a 2U unit with 30 Savvios. Storage capacity is comparable between the two, and thanks to Savvio's lower per-drive wattage requirements, power consumption is about the same. This example doesn't take into account the existence of 300GB 3.5" SCSI drives, but saving 1U of rack space is still nothing to sneeze at.

Massive 2U arrays are probably the most appropriate Savvio application, but I'm almost more interested in what Savvio can bring to the 1U server space. 1U enclosures can generally accommodate four 3.5" hard drives, but it's a tight squeeze. With Savvio, enclosures should be able to handle more drives with improved air flow to aid cooling. With room for a greater number of drives, mixing multiple RAID arrays should be easier, as well. Savvio also has potential for the blade market where it would replace much slower notebook drives.

Speaking of notebook drives, there are a couple of intriguing niche markets that could benefit from a little Savvio as well. High-performance desktop replacement laptops and mobile workstations immediately come to mind. Both are stuck with relatively slow 7,200RPM ATA drives, so 10K-RPM SCSI would be a big upgrade. It certainly seems reasonable that a company like Alienware could squeeze a couple of Savvios into a desktop replacement chassis, perhaps even with RAID. Dell's Precision mobile workstation line could also benefit from a faster Savvio storage subsystem.


Three Savvios in a Shuttle XPC's hard drive bay with loads of room to spare

As a small form factor enthusiast, I can't help but gush over the Savvio's potential for toaster-sized workstations, too. Iwill's dual Opteron cube would be perfect for a couple of Savvios in RAID. Not only would the drives take up less space inside the case, their lower power requirements would also be easier on the system's power supply. I'd imagine that a couple of Savvios would run much cooler within the cramped confines of a small form factor enclosure than would a pair of 3.5" drives, too.

With a Serial Attached SCSI flavor on the way, Savvio will only become more suitable for high volume and small form factor applications. Of course, the drive has to hold up its end of the performance bargain, which brings us to our punishing gauntlet of benchmarks. But before we get into that, here are a few more nudies of the drive to drool over.


Savvio from above


And below


The drive's 80-pin SCA-2 connector