Seagate announces 1TB-per-platter drive

Fresh from its watershed deal with Samsung, Seagate has announced another rather significant milestone. The company is gearing up to release what it says is the world’s first 3.5" hard drive with 1TB of storage capacity per platter.

The drive, which will debut as part of Seagate’s GoFlex Desk lineup of external solutions, has a whopping 625 Gb/in² areal density and crams 3TB of capacity inside just three platters. Naturally, Seagate plans to ship a Barracuda drive featuring 1TB platters, as well, though that item won’t hit the distribution channel until the middle of the year. The 1TB-per-platter Barracuda will also roll out in 2TB, 1.5TB, and 1TB variants.

Seagate doesn’t go into much more detail beyond pimping its GoFlex Desk series—perhaps a sensible choice to premiere the new high-density platters, since internal 3TB drives (like the existing Barracuda XT 3TB) are subject to BIOS limitations that make the use of their full capacity problematic. The company’s very first 3TB drive also came out in a GoFlex Desk enclosure last year. Reducing the platter count may lead to a price drop, but the performance, power-efficiency, and noise advantages might be moot in an external product that will likely be used chiefly via USB 2.0.

Comments closed
    • ronch
    • 8 years ago

    Mid year availability almost surely means you have to wait a few more months after that to be able to find one of these puppies.

    • axeman
    • 8 years ago

    Now you can lose even more “items” when ye (not so) olde drive bites the dust. I’m leary of anything bigger than 1TB.

    • Chrispy_
    • 8 years ago

    Higher areal densities = harder to keep seek times (and 4K random performance) respectable.

    If no progress is made by spinning disks and file sizes continue to grow, mechanical disks will become unusable for an OS or application drive.

    Where are the successors to the Momentus XT hybrids?

      • BobbinThreadbare
      • 8 years ago

      I’m pretty sure that’s not true at all.

      • UberGerbil
      • 8 years ago

      SSDs are rapidly moving to take over the OS / application drive role anyway. As prices fall, that’s the first to go, and it makes sense for the mfrs to concentrate on the parts of the market that will last the longest — media storage and data center applications.

      I don’t know if Seagate or any of the (few remaining) HD mfrs have plans for further hybrid drives, but that may be moot anyway: the “successor” is using flash to cache any HD, not just those that happen to have cache stuffed inside the drive case. Intel’s first attempt at this (“Braidwood”) went MIA, but a form of it is coming in the “Smart Response” tech in the Z68 (and future) chipsets. That requires a separate (small) SSD, so it’s not ideal for every situation (especially laptops), but now that the intelligence to control the cache has moved into the driver, other configurations are possible. (There are going to be a lot of small early-generation SSDs floating around in the next few years, though, and this will be a good way to reuse them when they are still a long way from wearing out)

    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 8 years ago

    good to see, wonder how this will effect HDD performance.

    • JMccovery
    • 8 years ago

    Where are my 4 or 5TB drives? I wouldn’t mind a Barracuda LP/Constellation ES with either 4 or 5 of those 1TB platters for ‘media’. Think of a file server with 24 4TB Constellation ES drives…

      • jensend
      • 8 years ago

      Don’t know how you managed to forget where you put them- they’re right where you put your flying car, your pony, and your solid gold toilet.

      • bthylafh
      • 8 years ago

      Imagine a RAID array of your mom.

        • indeego
        • 8 years ago

        Perfect start to my Internetting this a.m. Thanks!

        • JMccovery
        • 8 years ago

        What does that have to do with anything? Besides, my mom died about two months ago, so…

        Do you know what would be really cool? A re-emergence of the BigFoot TX 5.25″ drives! Five or six 2 or 3TB platters?

          • bthylafh
          • 8 years ago

          So she’s the failed disk, eh?

          /trollface

            • JMccovery
            • 8 years ago

            You know, that was funny. A bit morbid, but funny.

            [quote=”equivicus”<]Full height 5.25" with five 2 TB platters? That would be hilarious! I would be tempted to purchase just for the nostalgia. :)[/quote<] Exactly, it isn't like we're actually using the bazillion 5.25" bays on even the smallest cases, or better yet, a 5.25" SSD! Ok, I suck at BBCode.

          • equivicus
          • 8 years ago

          Full height 5.25″ with five 2 TB platters? That would be hilarious! I would be tempted to purchase just for the nostalgia. 🙂

      • ronch
      • 8 years ago

      You’re the only one who has those and you’ve lost them?

      • continuum
      • 8 years ago

      Hell, IIRC the Barracuda XT 3TB’s and Constellation ES.2 3TB’s are both 5x600GB platter … I’d love to see a Constellation ES.2 3TB with 3x1TB disks or a 4TB with 4x1TB disks…

      What would REALLY make my day is if I could get them before, say end of the year. End of fall quarter would be better. =P But how greedy can I be?

    • Frith
    • 8 years ago

    This is hardly surprising, given Samsung were on their way to 1TB per platter drives:

    [url<]http://www.engadget.com/2011/03/08/samsung-hdd-manages-1tb-per-platter-areal-density-enthusiasts-r/[/url<] Quit why they're not using this to make a 4TB drive I'm not sure. That would be rather desirable.

    • ub3r
    • 8 years ago

    reply fail..

    • ub3r
    • 8 years ago

    I fail to see how they can bring out a 1.5TB drive using 1TB platters??

      • mmmmmdonuts21
      • 8 years ago

      Magic apparently.

        • Duck
        • 8 years ago

        Or just not make them so big. Same density, smaller diameter.

      • bthylafh
      • 8 years ago

      Three surfaces to work with, plus the remaining surface for servo information, maybe.

      • cygnus1
      • 8 years ago

      500GB per side, which would mean they’d have a drive with 2 platters but only use 3 of the 4 sides.

        • Duck
        • 8 years ago

        Is that like a yield thing where they get platters with defects on one side?

          • Firestarter
          • 8 years ago

          purely marketing afaik. Sometimes they shortstroke them instead

            • [TR]
            • 8 years ago

            That sounds dirty!

      • jensend
      • 8 years ago

      The drive will have one and a half platters, duh. You’ll have to have extra vibration protection when you mount it in your computer though (think of an unbalanced top-loading washing machine, except instead of spinning at <2000 rpm this will spin at 7200 rpm).

      • Squeazle
      • 8 years ago

      Maybe they sell them in packs of two… and then ship you one 3 TB drive.

      • UberGerbil
      • 8 years ago

      One normal platter and one Möbius platter

      • ronch
      • 8 years ago

      Simple. Two platters. Two sides of the first platter are used, while the second platter has only one side used for storage.

        • ub3r
        • 8 years ago

        Why wouldn’t they just use the other side too?

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