Seagate is showing that SSDs aren’t the only game in town by being the first release a new hard drive that follows the next-generation SATA3 standard. While the new drive may not saturate the whopping 6 gigabit maximum throughput, the new standard brings with it a host of other features that the drive can use.
Seagate: so fast, we sparkle.
The new drive is part of Seagate’s Barracuda XT line, their response to Western Digital’s Caviar Black. Like the newest Caviar Black, the new drive offers 2TB of storage at a full-on 7200RPM. Seagate was probably somewhat miffed that WD managed to put out a 7200RPM 2TB drive first (the long available 2TB Caviar Green does not run at 7200RPM), but the Barracuda’s big claim to fame is that it will be the first drive available — from any manufacturer — that uses the new SATA3 standard that was ratified back in the spring. The new drive sounds competitive on paper, offering up a claimed sustained data rate of 138MB/s, 64MB of cache and a 4.16ms latency. Much of that throughput is thanks to the whopping 368 Gb/in areal density the XT offers.
The new drive is shipping to distributors now, and will be available for a competitive $299. Mind you, while the drive is certainly backwards compatitble with the 3Gbps SATA2 standard, you’ll need a SATA3-compatible motherboard or at least an add-on controller to take advantage of the new features. Seagate is partnering up with ASUS and Gigabyte to market the drive, as both OEMs offer motherboards with native SATA3 interfaces. We’ll be bringing you guys a review of the new drive just as soon as we get them in. Check out a more detailed list of the new specs below: