Articles: Storage

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Notebooks-oriented hard disk drives have to be constantly improving in storage capacity and speed parameters to be real competitive against their desktop counterparts of the ordinary 3.5” form-factor. We already know how the manufacturers are going to increase the capacity (for details see our recent review called Seagate Momentus 5400.3 160GB Hard Disk Drive with Perpendicular Recording Technology), but what about the speed?

It’s now over two years since Hitachi suggested a simple but effective way to improve the performance of a 2.5” HDD – by increasing the spindle rotation speed to 7200rpm (for details see our review called Hitachi Travelstar 7K60 HDD: 7,200rpm Achieved!). Yes, this may seem a rather rude solution, but why not, especially if the drive’s power consumption and heat dissipation remain low as dictated by the notebook market?

Seagate has also released its 7200rpm 2.5” Momentus 7200.1 drive since then (for details see our article called 2.5” Momentus Hard Drives from Seagate: Two New Members of the Family Arrived), and Hitachi itself hasn’t stopped, either. After a long while, the Travelstar 7K60 series has got a replacement, Travelstar 7K100. As the name suggests, the maximum storage capacity in the new series is 100GB and it includes 6 hard disk drive models in total. The capacities available are 60, 80 and 100GB; the buffer is 8MB big in every model of the series. The declared average seek time is 10 milliseconds at reading and 11 milliseconds at writing; the latency is 4.2 milliseconds.

Hard disk drives of this family feature low power consumption and a number of exclusive technologies that have proved their efficiency in other HDD series from Hitachi. They are TrueTrack, Ramp Load/Unload, Femto Slider, Enhanced ABLE, FDB spindle motors, PRML, Adaptive Formatting, GMR head, Hitachi GST and HDD Reliability.

In our today’s review we include a couple of earlier tested products, drives from the Travelstar 7K100 family and a SATA-interfaced model from Seagate’s Momentus 7200.1 series. So, we will be comparing the speed of the following hard disk drives today:

  • 60GB Hitachi Travelstar 7K60 (ATA)
  • 60GB Hitachi Travelstar 7K100 (ATA)
  • 100GB Hitachi Travelstar 7K100 (SATA)
  • 100GB Seagate Momentus 7200.1 (ATA)
  • 100GB Seagate Momentus 7200.1 (SATA)

We will see how the two generations of Hitachi drives differ in performance (by the example of the 60GB models) and will also compare the newest 2.5” hard drives from Hitachi and Seagate.

Let’s have a closer view at the new models now.

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