WD confirms bigger, faster Raptors

— 4:20 AM on September 16, 2003

We reported that Western Digital was preparing to release a 74GB version of its Raptor Serial ATA hard drive almost two weeks ago, and now it's official. While the larger capacity was expected, the new 74GB Raptor will apparently offer new command queuing technology and have a faster access time than its predecessor.

WD Raptor drives are designed to deliver enterprise-class specifications with 1.2 million hours MTBF (Mean Time Between Failure), 10,000 RPM, 4.5 milliseconds (ms) average seek time, and a five-year warranty. Combined with a SATA interface, the enterprise-class mechanical and electronics platform of WD Raptor hard drives is designed to meet the 24x7 demands of the enterprise environment.
Western Digital's 36GB Raptor, which we reviewed in our 10K-RPM hard drive comparison, has an advertised seek time of 5.2 milliseconds.

Shipments of the new 74GB Raptors aren't expected until November, but given the impressive performance of the first Raptor, the new drives will probably be well worth the wait.

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