The laptop hard drives are about to have a significant increase in capacities without compromising the performance.
Toshiba announced Wednesday two new 2.5-inch (laptop) hard drive families that feature the largest amount of storage in their classes. The first drive is the standard 9.5 millimeter-thick, two-platter hard drive model MK7559GSXP with the maximum capacity of 750GB. This is a standard SATA 2 hard drive that can fit in any laptop computer.
The second drive is a three-platter drive that comes in the new 12.5 millimeter thick platform called the MKxx59GSM series, which offers 750GB and 1TB of storage. This new thickness make the drive only suitable for later models of laptop computers and devices that are designed to house thicker 2.5-inch hard drives.
Last year, Western Digital also introduced its first 1TB 12.5 millimeter thick hard drive, Scorpio Blue, which, however, spins at only 5200rpm. The two new hard drive from Toshiba spin at a faster 5400rpm speed. This is the spinning speed for most high performance consumer-grade laptop hard drives.
According to Toshiba, in order to deliver these next-generation storage capacities, it has implemented Advanced Sector Format technology in both families. This technology uses 4K byte-per-sector formatting and improved error-correcting code (ECC) functions, hence providing maximum data integrity and making efficient use of the storage surface area. Traditional hard drives use the legacy 512 byte-per-sector configuration, which leave "gaps" between sectors and therefore waste the storage space.
Other than that, both the MK7559GSXP and the MKxx59GSM HDDs incorporate Toshiba's "silent seek" technology, which's designed to make every seek operation as quiet as an idling drive. Toshiba also claims that these products also adhere to the company's environmental initiatives in their use of power efficiency techniques and components that reduce reliance on harmful chemicals, materials and compounds. The two share the same SATA 3Gbps standard, and come with 8MB of cache memory.
Toshiba's MKxx59GSM series and MK7559GSXP drives are scheduled to ship to PC manufacturers and distributors in the second and third quarters of 2010, respectively. It's now unclear how much they will cost.