1TB optical media coming in 2015

How much would an optical disc need to store for you care? Would a terabyte be enough? Fujifilm has developed a new recording method reportedly capable of cramming up to 1TB on a single optical disc. The technology packs 25GB per layer, the same amount of data as a Blu-ray disc, but can stack as many as 20 layers. Record data on both sides, and you’ve got an even terabyte.

The new recording method combines a “two-photon absorption material” with “heat-mode recording.” TechOn has a good summary of the official Fujifilm whitepaper (PDF) if you want more details on how it works. The recording process involves making “irreversible” changes to the media, suggesting that rewriting may not be possible. Reading the data is apparently a little complicated, as well; the reflectance of playback signals is only 0.5%, substantially lower than Blu-ray’s 20%.

Fortunately, the media doesn’t appear to be difficult to produce. Fujifilm says an eight-layer sample can be manufactured in less than half the time it takes to make four-layer Blu-ray disc. The material purportedly has the potential to store multiple bits, as well, raising the theoretical capacity ceiling to 15TB per disc.

While there’s no timeline for the multi-bit recording capabilities, Fujifilm expects to bring the single-bit, 1TB disc to market by 2015. Pricing should be comparable to magnetic tape, the company says, which makes me think the technology will be targeted at enterprise customers rather than mainstream consumers.

Comments closed
    • beck2448
    • 7 years ago

    As a musician, mp3s make my flesh crawl. Its like trying to eat a turkey sandwich still wrapped in plastic.
    Itunes is the worst offender, absolutely disgraceful sound quality. would love to see high speed optical storage become a standard option on notebooks.

      • cynan
      • 7 years ago

      I think the biggest problem is the marketing involved in hyping popular music (or the bulk of music that currently sells). Like most consumables, and even art forms, there are just too many consumers that are willing to be told what they like instead of putting the requisite time effort into developing a discerning appreciation. And many more who simply couldn’t care less. Then there is the music studios that strive to exploit this…

      A piece of music composed to have minimal complexity and nuance and mastered to have minimal dynamic range (so that it can be as loud as possible when it plays on the radio or in the club,etc) is never going to sound the best regardless of media format.

      Dress a dog in a suit and it’s still a dog.

      • Krogoth
      • 7 years ago

      You are barking up the wrong tree. The problem with current batch of digital music is mastering itself not the “lossy” encoding. If anything the lossless versions of the content just make it easier to point out the flaws in mastering/engineering.

    • panthal01
    • 7 years ago

    For anyone worried about ECC on optical discs is this is a pretty good option

    [url<]http://www.ice-graphics.com/ICEECC/IndexE.html[/url<]

    • gmskking
    • 7 years ago

    Optical drives are on the way out. This isn’t really news to get excited about. My car plays music from an SD card anyway. No need for me to burn discs anymore.

      • cynan
      • 7 years ago

      Volatile/mechanical memory options well never touch the archival longevity of a quality optical format. Quality DVDs are rated to last decades if the stored properly. Due to the substrates used in Blu-Rays (vs CD/DVDs) I think their shelf-life is about 2 to 3x longer – something like 100+ years… Obviously no one’s been able to verify that.

      Otherwise, yeah, they generally aren’t as convenient.

        • cynan
        • 7 years ago

        The first word should obviously have been “non-volatile”

          • MadManOriginal
          • 7 years ago

          There is an edit option.

            • standingmammoth
            • 7 years ago

            Maybe he didn’t realize he was replying to his own post.

            • cynan
            • 7 years ago

            Thanks for the great tip!

            MMO: Curbing webpage comment system ineptness one post at a time. Now that’s dedication. Keep up the good work!

            • MadManOriginal
            • 7 years ago

            You’re welcome (but you still didn’t edit your post haha.)

        • travbrad
        • 7 years ago

        How many people need 100 year archiving though? For the vast majority of people simply making copies of their data on multiple drives/devices/locations makes a lot more sense for backups, because those types of backups can stay current with very little effort after the initial setup. I still have data from my very first PC, and it didn’t take discs with 100 year longevity, just a sensible backup plan.

        A 1TB disc would be a nice extra little backup to throw in a safe deposit box every couple years though. If you have a lot of data it’s much faster than retrieving it from “the cloud”. You could retrieve most of your data from the disc, then grab the newer stuff from your cloud backup if the worst happens and you lose your local backup somehow.

        • rrr
        • 7 years ago

        Except consumer grade DVDs may have very hard time lasting a year or two, as their quality is hit or miss.

    • holophrastic
    • 7 years ago

    How many of my text files can fit into that? I own a web development and business software company. All of the projects that I’m currently running for all of my clients total a whopping 100GB. With 2 years of rolling degenerating backups, all of the databases, and weeks of e-mail for a couple thousand mailboxes, and the server OS’s themselves, the grand total is 400GB. Include all of the source materials, and every project for the last 15 years, and I’m hard-pressed to reach 2TB.

    I guess I’ll take two discs please. Oh, and I’d be willing to pay about $5’000 per disc.

    • wizpig64
    • 7 years ago

    Just in time for the hotly anticipated Jaws 19! [url<]http://i.imgur.com/YeSp3.jpg[/url<]

    • MadManOriginal
    • 7 years ago

    I hope optical never dies! I never have bought inferior products (mp3’s instead of CDs, digital downloads instead of DVD/BR) and since I’m an audio lover being able to rip CDs in any way that I want is important. I understand the convenience but it also makes me sad that there is a whole generation for whom compressed formats are an acceptable norm rather than a compromise.

      • kvndoom
      • 7 years ago

      The quality and fidelity of the music that generation listens to dictates the acceptability of compression and lower quality. Even the best equipment in the world won’t help music that is recorded with clipping, autotune, and bass distortion.

        • Wirko
        • 7 years ago

        Exactly. It’s dynamic range compression that destroys music, not mp3 compression. I have no trouble enjoying acoustic jazz at 192k. Or other genres that are not made to sound as loud as possible.

        • travbrad
        • 7 years ago

        To be fair there is still a lot of music being made with decent mastering, it’s just not the crap you will hear on the radio/MTV. To find good music nowadays you have to dig a lot deeper (which not everyone has the time/passion for)

        A lot of people listen to music on terrible quality speakers/headphones too which doesn’t help matters.

        When you listen to horribly mastered music on bad speakers then the mp3 compression is the least of your problems.

      • cynan
      • 7 years ago

      The view that a CD (and by extension a lossless format – ie, FLAC – based on a CD) is always superior to a higher bitrate mp3 (ie, 256kbps+) is perhaps becoming an antiquated perspective.

      First, compression algorithms (ie, LAME) are continually getting better and better. Second is the question of the source for said high-bitrate compression. For example, at least some sources create their mp3s directly from digital master copies that contain more information (higher bitrate/depth) than the 1411kbps/44 kHz CD standard. For such cases, it is highly debatable whether a 256+ kbps mp3 made with a modern encoding algorithm will give you systematically worse results than even the CD itself – and particularly a lossless rip of said CD. This is quite likely dependent on the music itself (ie, how much dynamic range the music in question possesses – modern recordings tend to compress this range in the interest of biassing everything to be loud so that when it plays on the radio you will notice it more relative to the other music, etc – and how complex it is).

      The one thing that optical media does provide is flexibility and serves for archival purposes and with a CD, you usually know what you are getting. The point is that the sacrifice in quality between a high bitrate mp3 from a reliable source (ie, itunes) and a CD or lossless formats encoded off said CD is likely, on average, diminishing, particularly with much of the popular music that is being produced today.

      Edit: What I would like to see is places like iTunes offer lossless encoding of these more informatically-dense masters and, better yet, at bit depths higher than the aging 44 kHz. It’s not like bandwidth is a limiting factor for most customers any longer..

      • OneArmedScissor
      • 7 years ago

      I would gladly buy “compressed” FLAC or maybe even high VBR MP3 files of the alternate mastering often done for vinyl releases.

      When I buy a CD just to rip, tag the files, and put on a shelf forever, making me work for something functionally equivalent to what I should have been able to instantly download, with pre-destroyed audio that typically ends up being worth a fraction of the price I stupidly paid, I feel…stupid.

      The music industry of today seems to have the end goal of insulting the customer, CDs included. They still made sense when they often cost less than 128kbps iTunes and there was no other choice, but that was over 10 years ago.

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        I’m with OAS on this 100%

      • Flying Fox
      • 7 years ago

      You can argue that once digitized, even on DVD-Audio/SACD, you have already sampled the analog waveform and “something” is lost.

      I thought I remember reading somewhere that the late Jobs listened to vinyl.

        • Meadows
        • 7 years ago

        He was an idiot then. Sampling, when done with sufficient frequency (above human hearing limits, normally) will produce a speaker diaphragm trajectory that is virtually (and often physically) indistinguishable from the source waveform.

        Anyone who tries to argue that sampling “loses something” of the original information must go back to school and study maths some more.

          • destroy.all.monsters
          • 7 years ago

          16 bit 44.1 is a definite loss. Converters have gotten better (more in the pro audio realm than in the consumer space) which has made digital come across better but “digital fatigue” still exists. Conversion always loses something. We can talk about DSD levels of samping or 24 96 but there are no formats where that is available to the average consumer.

          There’s a reason why vinyl is seeing an upsurge – and it isn’t the same reason people people drew green rings in marker on their cds back in the day. For that matter there are subscription based audiophile tape versions of older albums that have come out – and I can tell you those sound magnificent and far better than their commercially available digital counterparts.

            • Meadows
            • 7 years ago

            [url<]http://people.xiph.org/~xiphmont/demo/neil-young.html[/url<] Read this whole page, and never have the audacity to reply to me again.

            • bitcat70
            • 7 years ago

            That’s admirable but you can’t fight belief.

            • destroy.all.monsters
            • 7 years ago

            Try posting this message on gearslutz and get eaten alive.

            Just let me know so I can get the popcorn.

            • Meadows
            • 7 years ago

            They can get wound up all they like, that has never made anyone right before. You’re wrong for much the same reason.

            • destroy.all.monsters
            • 7 years ago

            Reproduction is a lot more than an ideal state mathematically. Dithering algorithms and filtering have much to do with how close to the original the digital copy is. To state that it is not a loss and that there is no difference is to ignore how it functions.

            Is 16 bit 44.1 “good enough”? Many people seem to think so. That doesn’t mean that things are recorded at that level (which is something that Chris gets right). What it doesn’t do is say that it is _the same_.

            The reason I mentioned gearslutz is that if things were that black and white big name mastering engineers and designers wouldn’t feel there would be anything to make better – and all those guys post there from the Bobs (Ohlsson, Katz, Ludwig) to Dan Lavry. All of whom have more hands on experience and knowledge with how things work in the real world.

            Furthermore anyone that’s tracked cymbals on tape vs. digital (at 44.1,48 or 96) can hear a clear difference. The way that analog handles transients is generally better – and sometimes remarkably so.

            • OneArmedScissor
            • 7 years ago

            This comment makes it appear that you are jumbling up the final playback format with processing that is sensitive to the sample rate at the mixing and mastering level.

            That’s apples and oranges. So is the transient response of tape…also unrelated to the playback format. You are all over the place here.

            For the record, vinyl is making a “comeback” because you don’t go shopping for CDs at Best Buy / Wherehouse / Tower Records anymore.

            If you’re the type of person to bother ordering a physical copy on the internet, you’re also the type of person likely to choose the more collectible version of the album when confronted with a choice.

            That’s almost always limited and first pressings in vinyl.

            For people who buy vinyl because they care how it sounds on good speakers, the frequency response would be a silly reason. There isn’t much extra to begin with and it degrades.

            The big reason is that the vinyl version may be mastered differently, and probably with considerably more dynamic range.

            • Meadows
            • 7 years ago

            Nobody cares what’s used for recording. I’m talking about playback.

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            nobodies reading that. it’s like a million words. plus, it’s about nerd stuff.

            • Meadows
            • 7 years ago

            Nonsense, sweatshopking!

            • NeelyCam
            • 7 years ago

            [quote<]and I can tell you those sound magnificent and far better than their commercially available digital counterparts.[/quote<] That's not because of 16bit 44.1kHz. That's because "commercially available digital counterparts" are bad.

            • destroy.all.monsters
            • 7 years ago

            That’s certainly a piece of it. Of course mastering techniques have changed for digital as well.

            • LastQuestion
            • 7 years ago

            Ya. This discussion has been a bit amusing. I’m not an audio guy, not even an audiophile, just researching into video encoding and maintaining high fidelity throughout my workflow I came across information about how dynamic compression and the ever increasing DB levels mastering music today has led to most all commercially available music sounding like crap compared to their vinyl counterparts. Properly mastered content will always sound better no matter the medium. To see ‘audiophile’ dudes demonstrate such ignorance through the pretense of understanding…popcorn, lots of popcorn.

            Monsta, bought any oxygen-free ultra-super-awesome-extreme-speed interconnects lately? I have a few I made from coathangers you could get a deal on if you’re in the market.

        • gigafinger
        • 7 years ago

        You could also argue that transistor amplification ruins the vinyl medium’s fidelity. Go tube amps!

        Edit: I guess the sarcasm wasn’t obvious.

          • cynan
          • 7 years ago

          I thought this was a great point.

          It’s ironic how some audiophiles complain that digital robs recordings of original nuances and subtleties (transients, freq range, dynamics, etc) and then turn around and purposefully seek out “warm” sounding speakers or amplifiers and roll their own vacuum tubes, etc. If looking for the purest sound, the best bet today is probably a well implemented class D switching amplifier and a set high-end studio monitors in a sound treated room. But practically nobody uses this for auditioning at home and instead will opt to spent thousands on equipment that distorts the sounds ever so slightly to their taste (or what they’ve convinced themselves their taste is).

          I guess the real issue is most people, even the dedicated audiophile, just can’t always be sure exactly what the original recording sounded like and how it was “enhanced” during the mastering.

          Or maybe, as with visual art mediums, fidelity is truly in the ear of the beholder.

        • NeelyCam
        • 7 years ago

        Something may be lost, but only in mathematical sense. In practice, nothing [i<]necessary[/i<] is lost.

        • Geistbar
        • 7 years ago

        You lose something when sampling analog as well. No format has infinite resolution — the difference between analog and digital (in a rough sense) is that digital requires specific values (e.g. 0 or 1 for binary), while analog does not. If you sample with enough precision, then you’ll be able to make the “rounding” nearly impossible to notice while retaining the other advantages of digital. You might be able to tell the difference between 0 and 0.3, but can you tell the difference between 0.1045343 and 0.10453429* ? If you can, then the resolution can just be increased until you can’t. Generally, it’s accepted that once you start to approach 96 kHz, you’ve used sufficient overkill that the human ear can not tell the difference — 48 kHz should be enough, but 96 is the “let’s play it safe” choice.

        Incidentally, when people say they like the sound of a vinyl record more, it’s not because of the format, it’s because of the mastering. Music released for digital download or on CD tends to have horrific compression of the dynamic range ([url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loudness_war<]this is intentional[/url<]). When they release it on formats frequented by audiophiles, the music is usually mastered properly. * Numbers chosen at random, I don't feel like trying to recall enough to use numbers with the right precision (or similar).

          • NeelyCam
          • 7 years ago

          [quote<]You lose something when sampling analog as well.[/quote<] That was pretty much his point.. Analog isn't perfect either, as it suffers from noise. Even if there was no conversion from analog to digital, the analog signal path itself adds noise. The question is, how much... Cheap digital equipment can compete with rather expensive analog equipment in signal-to-noise ratios these days, and they are getting better/cheaper. The problem is, music produced for digital mass consumption is just so severely damaged for other reasons. It doesn't [i<]have[/i<] to be that way - digital equipment is capable of very clean reproduction of music.

            • Geistbar
            • 7 years ago

            Sorry, I used sampling there when I shouldn’t have. I meant you lose something even when you are storing the data in analog.

    • PrincipalSkinner
    • 7 years ago

    And it will be as popular as dual layer DVDs were.

      • OneArmedScissor
      • 7 years ago

      So it will end up used by hundreds of millions of next generation consoles for the next 10 years? :p

    • LocalCitizen
    • 7 years ago

    optical disks needs to be fast and reliable. able to survive more than a few scratches and still be readable quickly and quietly by a generic drive. and it needs to be DRM infestation free. storage capacity comes secondary to those.

    • albundy
    • 7 years ago

    “Pricing should be comparable to magnetic tape”

    considering what pricing will be like for a 1tb hdd or ssd in 2015, this optical disc probably wont be a cheap solution at $100+ a coaster, errr…i mean disc. 100gb BDXL blanks still sell for $70+ a disc, so the target audience will not be the consumer for a very very long time.

    • bjm
    • 7 years ago

    [quote<]1TB optical media coming in 2015[/quote<] No, it isn't. [url=https://techreport.com/news/15063/pioneer-develops-400gb-blu-ray-disc<]Pioneer develops 400GB Blu-ray disc[/url<] [url=https://techreport.com/news/13081/mempile-preps-terabyte-optical-disc<]Mempile preps terabyte optical disc[/url<] [url=https://techreport.com/news/10341/engineered-microbes-pave-way-for-50-tb-dvds<]Engineered microbes pave way for 50 TB DVDs[/url<] [url=https://techreport.com/news/10487/holographic-storage-media-due-out-by-christmas<]Holographic storage media due out by Christmas[/url<]

      • Deanjo
      • 7 years ago

      Lol, exactly what I was thinking. Our hover cars will be produced in mass before this catches on.

      • delsydsoftware
      • 7 years ago

      I used to have a copy of a SoftTalk magazine (Circa 1982) that claimed that laser-based holographic crystal storage was “right around the corner”, and that you could store the entire contents of the library of congress on a 1 cubic inch crystal.

        • Deanjo
        • 7 years ago

        You didn’t have one? My Tandy Model 4 had one. 😛

          • willmore
          • 7 years ago

          Which one? Not the P, please, that one sucked.

            • Deanjo
            • 7 years ago

            The 4D of course. That’s one more D then most products being marketed now days. 3D……pfffft…..BORING!!!

      • Grigory
      • 7 years ago

      Meh, twentieth time’s the charm.

      • Arclight
      • 7 years ago

      Wow……you’re probably right given the precedents.

    • Chrispy_
    • 7 years ago

    Each successive increase in optical storage technology has resulted in two things:

    [list<][*<]an increased complexity in the technology, meaning more expensive drives and media [/*<][*<]a reduction in the media reliability, longevity and compatibility[/*<][/list<] What happened with Blu-Ray is that the two factors above drove the desirability of optical media to the point where a hard disk made more sense. What's worse is that BD media is still expensive ($5 a disc for the reliable stuff, ~$1.50 media is basically horrific beyond 12 months of storage) so it hurts even more when you waste space on one, or get a failed burn. If the technology can provide sub $100 drives and [b<]reliable[/b<] media that is less than half the cost of a SATA drive, then this has a [u<]slim[/u<] chance of succeeding.

    • Arclight
    • 7 years ago

    The capacities sound awesome, if price is cheap why wouldn’t anyone want them?

      • sweatshopking
      • 7 years ago

      bandwidth is cheap and available most places? idk about you guys, but i haven’t used ANY discs in years. even flash drives are rare (once or twice a year)

        • Arclight
        • 7 years ago

        MEGAUPLOAD

          • sweatshopking
          • 7 years ago

          I usually just use my skydrive and dropbox accounts. i haven’t ever uploaded anything to mega upload.

            • Arclight
            • 7 years ago

            Haven’t you heard about the whole debacle and how they are handling the servers after they seized them? I thought that everyone ……….anyways what i was insinuating was that you can never truelly trust your data to be kept safely by a third party. Case in point people uploading stuff to megaupload got cut-off from their accounts after the government seized the servers…..

            • sweatshopking
            • 7 years ago

            yeah, i can appreciate that. i have backups of my stuff, and i don’t upload anything i can’t lose. i don’t really have any real things. just junk i can always get again. makes the cloud ideal.

        • just brew it!
        • 7 years ago

        Putting all of your data “in the cloud” means you’re not in control of your data any more.

          • Beelzebubba9
          • 7 years ago

          …unless you build the cloud yourself!

          • sweatshopking
          • 7 years ago

          i dont have anything i’m worried about. what’s my data? some ripped mp3’s?

      • MadManOriginal
      • 7 years ago

      ‘cheap’ being the key, and that means it has to be really cheap for home users. HDDs are cheap enough, even at current post-flood prices that haven’t quite gotten back to pre-flood prices, that they are still the best backup options from a number of metrics ($/GB, speed, portability, media longevity.)

      • flip-mode
      • 7 years ago

      I cannot speak for others, but as for me, and as for consumer use rather than business/enterprise use – an external hard drive seems like a much better option. It’s re-writable, probably much faster to write to, not susceptible to scratching, I can carry it around to any computer, comes in 2.5″ form factor … and by the time 2015 rolls around you might be able to get a 4 TB 2.5″ drive or an 8 TB external drive.

      For archival purposes for businesses, though, I can see the usefulness, even if it will have to compete with traditional hard drives and NAS-type systems in that space too.

    • Sargent Duck
    • 7 years ago

    Just in time for the new 4k resolution tv’s?

      • Game_boy
      • 7 years ago

      That assumes that everyone has 20/20 vision and living rooms with 20ft between you and the TV. The latter one is certainly not true in Europe or Japan.

        • cynan
        • 7 years ago

        You have the 20ft viewing distance thing backwards. The whole point of higher resolution is being able to enjoy a larger screen from closer. Resolution-wise, 4k TV offers about 4x the pixel density of 1080p. Therefore, if, say, you think your 50″ 1080p TV looks best at around 12ft, you could theoretically sit only 3-4 ft away from a 50″ 4k TV to experience the same visual acuity. Eye strain from sitting that close might be another matter…

          • Deanjo
          • 7 years ago

          Bingo!

    • Elsoze
    • 7 years ago

    Another year another vaporware announcement

    Give me a viable consumer tape backup solution that holds 1TB+ and costs something reasonable

      • brute
      • 7 years ago

      UNIMPRESSED.

      MAKE SOMETHING TO MY EXACT SPECIFICATIONS AND MAKE SURE IT COSTS THE SAME AS A 5-PACK OF DOUBLEMINT GUM.

      • GTVic
      • 7 years ago

      A copy of the Encyclopedia Britannica might be better for you in terms of reading material. Most everything in there is historical in nature.

      • sjl
      • 7 years ago

      Well, there are tape technologies that will do 1+ TB on a cartridge, uncompressed. One’s called LTO5, the others, T10000B and T10000C. (LTO6 is due out Any Moment Now(tm).) Trouble is, to get that much data on tape, you need some pretty damn fine tolerances. That means, amongst other things, you need to keep it as clear of dust as possible, which makes it completely unsuited for the home environment.

      That’s before you get into the transfer speeds; LTO5 has a native throughput of 140 MB/s, uncompressed. You won’t sustain that sort of speed in a typical home computer (although they’re getting better, the big bottleneck is still the hard drive, especially if there’s any sort of random I/O in there.) T10000C is even worse, at, if I remember rightly, 250 MB/s. T10000B is around 120 MB/s. but the T10k technology is StorageTek (aka Oracle, aka “pay the gross domestic product of a small African nation”.)

      Short answer: keep dreaming, will never happen. (disclosure: I do backup for a living; I am far more intimately familiar with current tape technology than most.)

        • Buzzard44
        • 7 years ago

        Right on, sjl.

        Almost 2 years ago T10kC was released, hitting 5TB native capacity, far beyond what this optical technology promises to offer in 2-3 years.

        Plus, the new LTO drives (5 and 6) have some really neat features. Single drive LTFS (Linear Tape File System) is free, and using it you’ve got a file system on your tape, so you can copy to it as easily as you can a jump drive, if you’re patient enough to wait for the seek times.

        But heed sjl’s warning – if you can’t feed it fast enough, it’ll suck pretty hard as the tape shoeshines waiting for you to put more in the buffer.

          • sjl
          • 7 years ago

          … and shoe shining is the surest way to absolutely, utterly ruin your cartridges in no time flat, never mind what it’s liable to do to the drives. No, I’d have to say that tape at home is no longer a viable option. Hasn’t been for a considerable time – the last LTO cycle that was realistic (ignoring the dust issue) was LTO3 (400 GB native capacity, 80 MB/s native throughput – and even that is pushing the limits of your typical home PC’s storage; I’d hesitate to recommend anything newer than LTO2, which is half all those figures.)

          If you need that sort of storage, get a decent sized NAS. If you need to backup that data, $DEITY help you, because the sure as heck isn’t any decent solution out there for the home user. (I count myself lucky, in that although I have large storage needs – playing around with backup packages and multiple VMs at home doesn’t come cheap – a lot of it, I can get away with not backing up because it’s easily recreated, needing only time and some modest effort by me.)

        • Elsoze
        • 7 years ago

        Thanks, and though I don’t do only backups for a living I do interact with them on a weekly basis. I use LTO3 & LTO5 tapes for work. I understand that there will be a decently high cost involved with equipment used in production environments, but you can get away with a few more things here and there on the consumer level.

        With SSD’s and 3TB+ HDD’s it’s actually not hard to sustain a 140MB/s transfer rate these days, even at the consumer level.

        I’ll keep dreaming.

          • sjl
          • 7 years ago

          SSDs, yes, you can sustain that sort of throughput easily (but bear in mind: that transfer rate is for data that won’t compress easily; the more it compresses, the faster the throughput the tape drive needs in order to sustain streaming, without shoeshining.) With a HDD, though, it’s frequently the case that that sort of throughput will only come about with sequential reads and writes, which is why I put in the caveat about random I/O. To add to the fun, you’ll typically only get the high throughput these tape drives need on the outermost parts of the platters; as you move inwards, throughput can, and does, drop very noticeably. So yeah, you can do it – but only if you half fill (at best) that massive hard drive, and are careful to keep everything laid out sequentially on disk. “Yeah, right” is my usual reaction to those sorts of requirements, especially in the home. (and since the typical home user is likely to have a fair number of smaller files, expect speed to drop noticeably there as well; peak throughput is obtained with a single, sequential, large file, not thousands of tiny files.)

          And let’s not forget: if you have an SSD, you’re almost certainly talking about sub-TB capacities, unless you’re absolutely made of money.

          And just how good is the I/O on that cheap home system, anyway? Can it really sustain the throughput? SATA is up to 6 Gbps, or around 750 MB/s (from a hard drive? Seriously?); PCIe is 250 MB/s/lane (for version one, higher for later revisions) … how fast can the motherboard shuffle the data between those two busses? It [i<]should[/i<] be able to do it - but can it? I'm dubious, I really am. That's before you get into the tiny market for tape at home, given the way people are liable to balk at the drive (and interface - these things don't run on SATA) cost, even if the media is sufficiently cheap ...

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This