Seagate releases a duo of thin, high-density mobile hard drives

Seagate has announced tiny new mobile hard disk drives that boast high density in a seven-millimeter-thick form factor. The company expects the new drives will make high-capacity drives a good option for more classes of mobile PCs like thin laptops. 

Seagate claims it has achieved an industry-best areal density of 1TB per platter in the 2.5" form factor, which it's used to create 1TB and 2TB drives. Each model weighs in at 0.198 pounds. In keeping with the diminuitive theme, the 2TB model consumes 0.5 W at idle and 1.7 W during seeks. The 1TB model consumes marginally less. Both drives come with 128MB of cache.

Seagate will offer versions of these drives with self-encrypting drive and FIPS 140-2 support, including a built-in random number generator. Some will also include what Seagate calls "Instant Secure Erase" technology to quickly wipe data.

There's no word yet on pricing, but the drives' product page suggests we can expect competitive cost-per-gigabyte ratios. Each model comes with a two-year limited warranty.

 

Comments closed
    • AJSB
    • 4 years ago

    IMPORTANT INFO:

    Apparently, these new HDDs are using SMR.

    Its going to be interesting to see what happens if anyone try to use them with a OS installed.

    STOP looking to me, i’m not a Guinea pig :”)

    PS: I knew that there was something wrong with that 100MB/s max sustained speed no matter using 128MB of RAM cache.

      • BIF
      • 4 years ago

      I didn’t understand any of your post because you didn’t explain SMR or even tell us what the acronym means.

    • ronch
    • 4 years ago

    Been wanting to upgrade my 1TB hard drive for a while now. I’d like to go with Seagate again. Is it safe to buy Seagate again these days for 2TB or 3TB drives? I’d consider WD if their drives north of 1TB didn’t always spin at IntelliPowerâ„¢.

    Spindle Speed: IntelliPowerâ„¢.

    Alrighty then.

    Edit – Oh wait, saw that [url=https://www.backblaze.com/blog/hard-drive-reliability-q4-2015/<]Backblaze[/url<] article just now. So um, Seagate, yeah.

      • AJSB
      • 4 years ago

      Blackblaze article is interesting but can never represent the quality of a brand overall, AT BEST, it might represent quality of *specific models*.
      It’s known that some specific models of Seagate HDDs that were problematic.
      This wasn’t exclusive to Seagate, other brands, i.e. WD, also had their lemons.
      It’s like in everything, from cars to CPUs, from assault rifles to motorcycles, etc.

      *Personally* , i never had a problem with a Seagate HDD…just i never had a problem with a WD HDD.

      • tipoo
      • 4 years ago

      I saw another chart showing Seagates reliability going up in the last few years after their string of buyouts.

        • AJSB
        • 4 years ago

        There was indeed a period of time where Seagate made a series of HDD models that were utter c**p, hopefully things are better now.

          • ronch
          • 4 years ago

          [quote<]hopefully things are better now[/quote<] Well, I'm not about to buy a Seagate any time soon to confirm that for myself.

            • Chrispy_
            • 4 years ago

            If it helps, the drives that come to me for data recovery are a fairly even mix of brands and a broad spectrum of ages. If you drop a laptop or drive enclosure whilst it’s running, your choice of drive brand is unlikely to make a difference as long as it’s still a mechanical drive.

            Statistically, the reliability difference between drive brands is minimal (averaged across their entire product lines, rather than singling out specific models with issues like in the Backblaze reports) and no matter which brand you choose 2.5″ drive failures outweigh everything else because their typical usage subjects them to more bumps and impacts in a day than a desktop drive would get in a year.

            The thing is to just buy from whichever vendor pleases you for whatever reason you feel like. In the grand scheme of computing hardware they’re all very similar in performance/cost/reliability (which is to say low/low/low!)

    • Chrispy_
    • 4 years ago

    OMG!!1

    FRAGILE SPINNING RUST!

    Anyone still toting a mechanical in their laptop is doing it wrong.

    /thread.

      • ronch
      • 4 years ago

      Well, not everyone is as rich as you. What if I want as big drive in my laptop? Big SSDs aren’t exactly cheap

        • Chrispy_
        • 4 years ago

        If you can afford a laptop you can afford an SSD.

        My negativity towards mechanicals is that I get asked at least two or three times a month if I can help with data recovery from a dropped 2.5″ drive, be it in a laptop or portable enclosure.

        My personal (though probably unpopular opinion) is that online services have reduced the need for local storage; If your mobile device can only last 8 hours away from power and internet, then you’re unlikely to really need 2TB. Hell, I barely use the 500GB drive in my laptop and I fill it with a week of TV shows and dozens of Steam games. I’m also ignoring the (massive) performance and battery-saving benefits of SSD.

        For the laptop boutiques that allow you spec your own drives, changing a 500GB mechanical to a 500GB SSD usually adds £50-75 extra to the cost, but that’s only something like 5-10% of the overall cost of a laptop. If you truly need 2TB of storage, then surely a laptop isn’t the tool for you in the first place…

          • ronch
          • 4 years ago

          Yes many people can afford bigger SSDs. Point is, they still seem too expensive for most folks.

            • Chrispy_
            • 4 years ago

            This is one of those circumstances where I believe mechanicals to be a false economy. They will end up costing you more despite their lower entry price.

          • AJSB
          • 4 years ago

          “If you can afford a laptop you can afford an SSD.”

          LOL, really ?
          It depends of the size of that SSD…how much costs a 2TB SSD anyway ?

          …and 2.5″ HDDs are not only for laptops…they also work very nicely in (SFF) desktops, i know, i use them precisely for that.

        • BIF
        • 4 years ago

        Ronch is right; not every single laptop use case warrants an SSD. They’re becoming more affordable, but a 2TB SSD still goes for over $600 pelts.

        I know, because I have to consider the next step for my old laptop, now that I have over 3TB just in sound samples. eek!

    • cygnus1
    • 4 years ago

    I don’t know how comfortable I am with these instant secure erase mechanisms. We all know they don’t actually erase any data, as that’s not physically possible to do instantly or even close to instantly on a platter disk. What it’s really doing is erasing it’s encryption keys and generating new ones. Essentially making the content of the drive into garbage. But that’s only really secure wiping as much as you trust their encryption not to have faults or back doors which would make that data recoverable without the original keys the drive held.

      • AJSB
      • 4 years ago

      It should be possible disable feature…also, hope Seagate makes versions w/o encryption…i care less about it.

      • blastdoor
      • 4 years ago

      Yeah…. I think the old Mission Impossible show had the right idea when it came to secure erase. Maybe Seagate should include a Lithium Ion battery in the package, and it can catch fire on command (heck, it took a long time for companies to prevent those batteries from blowing up on their own — surely it can’t be hard to get them to self-destruct on command).

        • AJSB
        • 4 years ago

        LOL, Yeah, MI got the right way to Secure Erase !
        As for encryption goes, the good news is that they have versions of these HDD w/o it.

        As for my more modest form of secure erase, i have always a big hammer at close range :))

        Here its another method if you have the time ( i still think a hammer is a better cheap way, this however, it’s fun :”)

        [url<]https://youtu.be/LJIUE2ABfGU[/url<]

    • bittermann
    • 4 years ago

    Awesome….and the 5400rpm mobile slowness continues. Cache means diddly unless you slap some flash on it.

      • Star Brood
      • 4 years ago

      It’s not the worst thing in the world if your primary concern is $/GB.

        • AJSB
        • 4 years ago

        Not to mention that a 5400 RPM HDD spends less energy and makes less noise.

    • tipoo
    • 4 years ago

    What I’m really wondering is if they’ll keep going with the hybrid line? I’d love that 2TB drive above, with 16GB NAND cache slapped on, for consoles in particular. Currently a hybrid limits you to 1TB for 2.5 inch drives. And it sits halfway between full mechanical and full solid state drives on console load times, so a full SSD isn’t really worth the extra dough.

    Especially as both the XBO/PS4 weirdly use SATA II, but the load time improvements are even lower than you’d expect, on PC SATA II doesn’t hugely impact real world load times even on SSDs too much, only synthetic benchmarks.

    On PC with no such limits, I’d go for full on SSDs at this point of course, or a SSD and a mechanical drive for desktop.

    Heck, when the first hybrids came out, I figured by this point in time, most mechanical drives would come with some NAND with how cheap it is now. With how dramatically it changes the experience over a full mechanical it surprises me it has not happened.

      • Airmantharp
      • 4 years ago

      It is kind of surprising; though perhaps the issue is that the Hybrid drives just don’t have the market demand to keep the prices where margins are protected versus straight spinners.

      And given that the PCIe SSDs are taking off (or at least are the obvious future), it doesn’t make sense to sacrifice margins to try and compete with that.

      Still, it would certainly be nice to see Hybrid drives that have enough solid-state cache (i.e. 64GB-128GB) to really provide a ‘best of both worlds’ experience as Apple does in their setups.

        • tipoo
        • 4 years ago

        I saw WD released their own 2.5 inch SSHD (Blue, not the black SSD + HDD combo), but it’s the same 8GB cache and 1TB upper limit as the Momentus XT, and is frequently slower than it.

        [url<]http://www.storagereview.com/wd_blue_sshd_1tb_review[/url<] Really hoping either will jump them to 2TB, and hopefully double the NAND to go with it.

          • Airmantharp
          • 4 years ago

          We can only hope.

      • AJSB
      • 4 years ago

      I understand your POV but i prefer pure HDD to Hybrids.
      I can’t wait for this 2TB drive be available to buy two of them….Samsung M9T were utter crap.

        • brucethemoose
        • 4 years ago

        Just curious… aside from the small cost increase, why would you want a normal drive over a hybrid? What’s the advantage?

        • tipoo
        • 4 years ago

        I’m curious why you wouldn’t want to see some NAND strapped to more drives for a pretty small Bill of Materials hit?

      • setzer
      • 4 years ago

      Well the low returns of ssds in consoles (or for that matter in pc games) is because the OS stores game installations in sequential blocks. Games are made having in account access to large sequential files (hence the common use of pak files with several gbs).
      Mechanical hdd’s in sequential access offer good speeds, in the same order of sata ssd’s.

      The ssd only shines in games that don’t use this access pattern and instead access lots of random files (i.e. Gran Turismo for the PlayStation).

      As for hybrids they work best if your most accessed files fit on the small read ssd cache (which probably won’t exist for multi-gb files).

      Some speed gains can be observed if the game supports multiple device streaming, i.e. Fetching data from the disk and the blu-ray.

      In a nutshell, some gains may happen but most of the time you won’t notice them.

        • tipoo
        • 4 years ago

        There’s been a lot of testing on this and they all show the Momentus XT does pretty well despite only 8GB of cache for 50GB games. Look at Bloodborne, I’d call going from a 54 second reload to 39 significant, with an SSD only shaving two seconds off the XT

        [url<]http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/digitalfoundry-2015-bloodborne-performance-analysis[/url<] Now what's harder to test is more scattered gaming switching between different titles daily, I'd be interested in that, but I think even within each play session the caching should work well after something is frequently accessed.

          • AJSB
          • 4 years ago

          1st of all, that is a very limited test specific for a SINGLE game where they are comparing a stock HDD SATA2 w/ 8MB RAM cache w/ a SSHD SATA3 that besides 8GB flash, it also have a RAM cache of 64MB (not to mention 1 platter vs 2, 2 heads vs 4).
          I believe that many of the results you see there is precisely because of the 64MB vs 8MB of RAM.

          2nd , that 54 vs 39s result, was the worst case scenario, in many of other levels, the results were much closer, not to mention the 7200 RPM HDD that sometimes was FASTER than SSHD.

          3rd, like i previously said, that test was specific for a game that was having load issues…let’s see other tests:

          [url<]http://www.ign.com/wikis/playstation-4/PlayStation_4_Hard_Drive_Speed_Test_Comparison[/url<] BF4 Install: HDD 1:03.39 SSHD 1:13.12 SSD 1:02.77 BF4 Boot: HDD 0:10.30 SSHD 0:10.88 SSD 0:10.50 BF4 Level Load: HDD 0:31.48 SSHD 0:33.58 SSD 0:31.33 CoD Ghosts Install: HDD 0:51.93 SSHD 1:09.60 SSD 0:54.42 CoD Ghosts Boot: HDD 0:14.74 SSHD 0:17.40 SSD 0:11.66 CoD Ghosts Level Load: HDD 0:53.68 SSHD 0:31.67 SSD 0:40.30 AC4BF Install: HDD 0:36.85 SSHD 0:34.02 SSD 0:35.15 AC4BF Boot: HDD 0:10.03 SSHD 0:47.55 SSD 0:57.27 AC4BF Level Load: HDD 1:00.93 SSHD 0:29.27 SSD 0:25.31 NFS rivals Install: HDD 0:29.60 SSHD 0:40.72 SSD 0:26.33 NFS Rivals Boot: HDD 0:19.06 SSHD 0:20.70 SSD 0:19.38 NFS Rivals Level Load: HDD 0:22.66 SSHD 0:15.88 SSD 0:19.01 The 1st thing you might notice is that each game is a case. In some of these games, like BF4 or NFS, there is no reason to have a SSHD or even a SSD over a HDD. AC4BF numbers are kinda of weird, its like game decided to install a minimum of files in the HDD and installed much more with SSHD and SSD and then we pay the price when playing game almost completely from the ODD when using a HDD. Remember, HDD tested here is the STOCK PS4 HDD, that is only SATA 2 instead of SATA 3, only have 8MB of RAM cache and only have 1 platter and 2 heads. The above games tested were the versions distributed in ODD format, lets see other results for a game in digital download distribution format: Resogun Boot: HDD 0:11.55 SSHD 0:11.66 SSD 0:09.75 Resogun Level Load: HDD 0:07.06 SSHD 0:07.15 SSD 0:06.90 SSHD actually was worse than HDD and SSD gave minimal advantage.

            • tipoo
            • 4 years ago

            I’m curious about IGNs testing methodology though. It sounds like they just install and boot and test that, rather than something like testing the second or third boot which is where the hybrid would pull in hot sectors. Like I said, I expect hybrids will benefit those who play one game for a while then move on, rather than switching between 4 games a day.

            “Remember, HDD tested here is the STOCK PS4 HDD, that is only SATA 2 instead of SATA 3”

            Every drive on the PS4/XBO is limited by SATA 2 on the system side. The PS4 even goes further by having a weird SATA II to USB internal bridge, which may add a CPU limit.

            If its the added RAM that’s helping rather than the cache, it’s still helping in the end, and there’s really no way for us to differentiate what it is that changes the results.

            And yes, Bloodborne is an extreme case with particularly problematic loading times, but I brought it up because reducing something with a particularly painful 1 minute reload time is somewhere someone buying the drive may find particularly appealing.

            • AJSB
            • 4 years ago

            Talking about myself, i have several games installed (plus mods, ) and i jump frequently from game/mod to game/mod per day when i game.
            This is to avoid game saturation, its also why i play some games for 8+ years and have no desire to quit from them.

            Anyway, with the new wave of game reaching 50GB+ of storage, you actually don’t need many to saturate that small amount of Flash in a SSHD, so, the benefits of a SSHD are kinda denied by these new huge games.

            The fact that a PS4 is locked in SATA2 mode is news to me, i really didn’t knew that, however, RAM cache continues to be, maybe even more so, important for HDD performance.
            The cache is there mainly to try absorb that latency when heads have to move from track to track with is quite slow even by SATA2 bandwidth limits.

            I don’t think a single game can justify difference of price between a 2TB HDD and a 2TB SSD.

            It could compared with a SSHD but real world benefits of a SSHD in gaming doesn’t seem clear cut in all games, if any (even in your example, that 15 *seconds* of difference was in a specific level load, in other, was MUCH smaller), and the extra Flash is also a extra hardware part that can go wrong. I can do without it.

    • chlamchowder
    • 4 years ago

    I wish they would make 4 TB 2.5″ drives. That would be great for laptops and small form factor systems.

      • pyro_
      • 4 years ago

      They are out there. Seagate has an external sub drive that uses a 4tb 2.5″ drive however it is 15mm thick and is not offered as a standalone drive right now as far as I know

        • AJSB
        • 4 years ago

        There is a planed 3TB, 9.5mm Z-height , 3 platter, 2.5″ HDD from Seagate but wasn’t yet launched. It uses same platters than these two HDD now launched.

        Still, i would wait for reports of possible problems with any HDD w/ 3 platters in a drive w/ only 9.5 z-height after the chirping noises-plagued Samsung M9T.

      • AJSB
      • 4 years ago

      4TB 2.5″ HDDs with a z-weight of 9.5mm max, that i believe what you are interested, its still a bit far away, even if it uses 3 platters, possibly, in 2017 with a bit of luck.

      If you prefer a two platter, you will need wait for 2018 at best.

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