Seagate announces 6TB hard drive

Summary:HGST/WD has been shipping their 6TB helium drive for several months, but Seagate is joining the party with their own 6TB non-helium drive.

Seagate is staying in the capacity race without resorting to helium. A 3.5" six-platter drive — 1TB per platter — is available in both 6Gb/s SATA and 12Gb/s SAS. It is 4k formatted but also has a feature to emulate 512B sectors.

Not sure how that works — one of the reasons for 4k sectors was to improve ECC efficiency — and the folks who briefed me couldn't explain it either. So take it on faith, or not.

Seagate positions the drive for nearline bulk storage and claims it is 25 percent faster than HGST in sequential read/writes. The drive is available in 6-, 5-, 4-, and 2TB capacities.

It is a self-encrypting drive — a standard and, by default, off feature these days — and is FIPS certified. 

The Storage Bits take

I like HGST's helium technology, but its value is the time-to-market advantage it wins over the competition. Now it looks like six months, which is good but not overwhelming.

It may also be that the Seagate drive will run hotter and use more power, but that remains to be seen.

Bottom line: High-capacity HDDs are still a horse race. Good to see.

Comments welcome, as always. Do you need a 6TB drive? Why?

Topics: Storage, Hardware


Robin Harris is Chief Analyst at TechnoQWAN LLC, a storage research and consulting firm he founded in 2005. Based in Sedona, Arizona, TechnoQWAN focuses on emerging technologies, products, companies and markets. Robin has over 35 years experience in the IT industry and earned degrees from Yale and the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton... Full Bio

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