While capacity is obviously the 7K1000's most attractive attribute, Hitachi is taking care to ensure that the drive is easy to live with, too. A three-stage idle mode has been developed to help lower the drive's power consumption, and that should also lower noise levels when the drive isn't seeking. Don't expect the 7K1000 to carry an obnoxious price premium, either. Hitachi expects the drive to sell for $399, which works out to only $0.40 per gigabyte—a lower cost per GB than Seagate's Barracuda 7200.10 750GB. A firm price hasn't been set for the 750GB Deskstar yet, but Hitachi says it will probably retail for $299.
Hitachi is targeting the Deskstar 7K1000 at high performance desktops and personal storage appliances, and is also working on a terabyte CinemaStar 7K1000 for set top box and DVR applications. The new CinemaStar is expected to ship in the second quarter of this year, although there are currently no plans to sell it in retail or as a bare drive. There is also an enterprise-class version of the 7K1000 in the works. That drive isn't being officially announced today, but it's expected to be released in the second quarter of this year. Hitachi says samples are already being tested by its OEM customers.