Introduction

The 7200.7 line brought us drives with capacities between 40GB to 200GB in PATA version as well as the native SATA (as opposed to bridged SATA solutions) versions with 1.5Gb/sec transfer rates and optional Native Command Queuing, and as you can guess from the name, 7200RPM spindle speeds throughout the entire line. After the 7200.7 series, Seagate decided to split the 7200.x family into two separate lines when introducing the 7200.8 series. The new model carried capacities in the 250GB to 400GB range, again, with both PATA and SATA interfaces, so the 7200.8 was a continuation to higher capacities.


Click to enlarge.

Today, Seagate officially announces the joining of the 7200.7 and 7200.8 drives with its 7200.9 line of hard disk drives. The new line ranges from 40GB to 500GB and has models with 2MB, 8MB, or a whopping 16MB buffer. The release of the 7200.9 product line announces the 9th generation of Seagate's 7200RPM desktop hard drives and they conform to the latest in SATA standards ("SATA 2.5"), including the 3Gb/sec transfer rates.

The 7200.9 line of hard disk drives brings an end to the separation of powers and is aimed at mid to high end desktop and gaming PCs, media PCs, and low end servers. This classification gives us a bit of insight at the pricing of these new drives, but we will look into the costs of Seagate's new line of mid-performance hard drives a bit later. Right now, we'd like to cover some information that we received during a technical briefing with Seagate's 7200.9 product marketing manager.

The 7200.9 Series
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  • JarredWalton - Monday, October 10, 2005 - link

    The tech to run 160GB platters is new. Right now, they 160GB platter is only being used in the 80GB and 160GB drives, which is telling. I would have thought a 240GB and 320GB would also use the new platters, but that's probably a future product. Reply
  • coldpower27 - Tuesday, October 11, 2005 - link

    Also you got to not that Seagate may not want to dilute thier product line with intermidates such as 240GB & 320GB drives. Since noe one has made 240GB drives and only WD to my knowledge has 320GB drives.

    With 200GB to 250GB, & 300 to 400GB.
    Reply
  • Marlin1975 - Monday, October 10, 2005 - link

    but what about performance? The slowwest part of a system is the hard drive. I need speed, not 500gigs that only a few will really use daily. I have a pile of shows and movies but that is what DVD's are for. I need speed to make my system run faster. I guess I will stick with my 15K 36gig master boot drive and another one for backup.

    Maybe hard drive makers will get it one day. Seems WD is the only one to address that for desktops so far?
    Reply
  • xsilver - Monday, October 10, 2005 - link

    is there some kind of raid array that will allow 3,5,10 drives to be merged as one?
    seek times wouldnt improve but transfer rates might if the drives could intelligently split up singular file transfers into chunks for each drive... or is that some crazy idea i just dreamed up? ;) (4x 200gb drives stiped would be relativly cost effective compared to 4x or more raptors)


    also 16mb buffers seem a bit low for the latest gen drives, 32/64 would be nice for the 300-500gb models.

    and I think large cheap drives is where the moneys at now, cant blame seagate for attacking that front.
    Reply
  • joex444 - Tuesday, October 11, 2005 - link

    it's a dream. you can't merge RAID arrays.

    However, RAID50 exists. Now, this might be backwards, but: 6 drives. Make RAID5 array w/ 3 drives; make another RAID5 array w/ other 3 drives; make a RAID0 array with 2 RAID5 arrays. So, if you wrote 4 blocks of data, 2 go to RAID5-A, 2 go to RAID5-B.
    As far as fault protection, if one drive goes, it's ok. If two drives go it matters from which RAID5 array. From the same array, the whole thing is gone, from different arrays, it's no problem. 3 drives is certain doom, though.
    Reply
  • ceefka - Monday, October 10, 2005 - link

    quote:

    also 16mb buffers seem a bit low for the latest gen drives, 32/64 would be nice for the 300-500gb models


    More seems tempting. The test with tha 250GB Maxtor showed that streaming likes big buffers.

    What kind of RAM is that buffer anyway? Is it ordinairy SDRAM? What would a buffersize > 16MB do? Is there a theoretical maximum and/or sweet spot in relation to the read/write capacity?
    Reply
  • xsilver - Tuesday, October 11, 2005 - link

    I think hdd's use a one chip ram solution, around 5ns is common
    the thing you have to note is that a normal ram is an 8 chip solution for single sided ram

    that's why 64mb is probably the highest they could go economically

    and isnt the problem with using flash ram in a hybid the problem of lifespan? nand flash rates at 1 million writes/reads as mtbf? thats probably not enough for a hdd?
    Reply
  • Xenoterranos - Monday, October 10, 2005 - link

    If you have a ton of HUMONGO filed, say, the complete season of everything volumes 1-100, in Divx, partition the drive in NTFS with a 16mb allocation size, and your data will FLY, especially if the allocation size matches the buffer (or am I spouting off crackpot science?)
    Reply
  • geoff2k - Monday, October 10, 2005 - link

    Googling ST3300622AS already gets a few hits, but no one appears to have any in stock -- when can we expect these at retailers?

    (Prices so far for the 300 GB SATA are 243 CAD$, 211 US$, 203 US$).
    Reply
  • cryptonomicon - Monday, October 10, 2005 - link

    "as you cab guess from the name, "

    first paragraph
    Reply

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