New Hitachi HDD Could Lead to 4TB and 5TB

Hitachi's new 2.5-inch HDD crams 500 GB onto one platter.

ZoomThursday Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (Hitachi GST) announced its new 2.5-inch, 5,400 RPM Travelstar Z-series family of hard drives. According to the company, the 500 GB version offers the industry's highest capacity for a single-platter, 7-mm thick hard drive. This is accomplished by using the sixth-generation perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR) platters which feature a higher areal density (636Gb/inch2) than current hard drives.

With that said, Hitachi's new drive could pave the way to 3.5-inch HDD capacities higher than the current 3 TB limit. This would require using 3.5-inch platters with 636Gb/inch2 areal density, providing around 1 TB each. It's quite possible that within the next twelve months, we could see a 4-platter HDD offering a massive 4 TB capacity whereas a 5-platter HDD could offer 5 TB. For 2.5-inch form factor drives, consumers could see future models with 1 TB or 1.5 TB capacities using two and three platters.

As for Hitachi's new line of Travelstar Z5K500 drives, the series offers 500 GB, 320 GB and 250 GB models. Other feature include the previously reported 5,400 RPM spindle speed, a Serial ATA-300 interface and an 8 MB cache buffer. The drives also feature 1.8 watts read/write power, 0.55 watts low power idle, 5.5-ms average latency and 13-ms average read seek time.

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