are expected to announce later today the release of the first 3.5-inch desktop hard drive employing Perpendicular Recording (PR), boosting both capacity and speed. The announcement follows the release of their 2.5" PR drive for laptops
earlier this year.
The Seagate Cheetah 15K.5, as the drive is to be known, dwarfs the current generation 15K.4 family. Perpendicular Recording technology has allowed Seagate to double areal density to 73GB per platter for up to 300GB per drive.
Both drives spin at a blistering 15,000rpm but as a result of stacking bits closer together, the sustained transfer rate on the Cheetah 15K.5 increases approximately 30%, reaching a blistering 125MB per second.
The drives are squarely aimed at the Enterprise market, as you will need Serial Attached SCSI (SAS), Ultra320 SCSI, or a Fibre Channel interface card to plug into. The Cheetah 15K.5 will ship in June, though no pricing has yet been announced. As a guide, the Ultra320 SCSI version of the current 146GB Seagate Cheetah 15K.4 costs around £500+vat.
Double the capacity to 300GB and it's fair to say that if you have to ask how much it is, you probably can't afford it.
While this news won't affect most readers, it's worth remembering that the relationship between the Enterprise and Desktop markets is akin to Formula 1 and your car in the driveway: what is bleeding edge will one day sit inside your home machine. We have seen this already with 7200rpm drives, and more recently with 10,000rpm Western Digital Raptors.
How long before we see 15,000rpm? Cast your predictions in the News Discussion forum