When a company releases some great improvement to its previous offering, it usually creates a new line. This new line-up of products is almost always accompanied with some ridiculous amount of fanfare. Unless, that is, you are Seagate - then, you quietly refine
what are already some of the best drives on the shelves without some big marketing hooplah.
The very popular Seagate 7200.9 series of Barracuda drives has been slightly redesigned and will be hitting shelves soon. Most of the changes are in the smaller capacity drives, from 40GB to 160GB, which will feature considerable physical alterations. These lower-volume drives have had a bit of a tummy tuck from 26mm in height to 20mm. The drives have also gone on a bit of a diet, dropping from 580 grams down to 366 grams.
Changes like this are doubly beneficial for the end users, who are likely to use smaller capacity drives in some form of RAID array due to their price. The size reduction allows better airflow along the drives, which will help with cooling. At the same time, by condensing the size and weight of the unit, there is less material to vibrate, thus greatly assisting acoustic properties. Think it doesn't make a big difference? Try running four drives in a RAID 0+1 setup.
Along with these changes, Seagate is also flipping the control/connection PCB on the bottom of the drive. This should help shield it from EMI as well as prevent a little more damage from handling. The drives are already in shipment, though there is no word as to how you can distinguish a new one from an old one, since they bear no special marking or fanfare.
Got a thought on the alterations? Do you wish they would make them more identifiable, or do you think it's nice that they didn't make a big deal? Tell us your thoughts in our forums