Consumer hard drive density took another step forward this week with the announcement of a 2.5-inch 1.5TB drive from Western Digital subsidiary Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (HGST). The Travelstar 5K1500 is a 9.5mm high notebook drive with only two platters and a density of 694Gb per square inch.
Other features include 32MB of cache, SATA III support, and a 1.8 watt power draw. The drive spins at only 5,400 RPM, but with its high density will still outperform other notebook drives in terms of sequential reads and writes.
While SSDs hold the speed and random access crown over traditional mechanical drives, the price per gigabyte on high capacity drives like the 5K1500 is still significantly lower than solid state options. As a result, HGST plans to continue investing in traditional hard drives, even as SSDs increase in capacity and fall in price. Brendan Collins, VP of Product Marketing for HGST, explained the company’s strategy:
Contrary to popular belief, the mobile hard drive market is not being replaced by SSDs. We continue to invest in and serve both the traditional 9.5mm and 7mm thin and light HDD mobile markets as they offer the best cost-per-GB, performance and proven product reliability for high-capacity, mainstream, Ultrabook and A/V content creation notebook markets.
Pricing has not yet been announced, but HGST’s current capacity champion, the 1TB 5K1000, has a street price of $80 to $100. The Travelstar 5K1500 will launch in June.