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Seagate launches 2TB FireCuda mobile SSHD

by Mark Tyson on 11 October 2016, 13:31

Tags: Seagate (NASDAQ:STX)

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Seagate's 2.5-inch 2TB FireCuda

Seagate has launched a new SATA 6Gb/s hybrid mobile drive, the 2TB FireCuda. This is claimed to be the "fastest, thinnest and lightest 2TB hard drive on the market today". Those are all good things, and Seagate claims it comes at "a great price" too.

So the new 2TB FireCuda is a hybrid, or SSHD, drive that augments its large capacity with 8GB of speedy onboard flash. That's not a great percentage of flash but Seagate claims that its Multi-Tier Caching algorithms "continuously analyse how you use your system," to make sure the most commonly used files are stored in the flash portion of the drive. Beyond the performance perks, the new firmware is optimised to make sure the drive platters spin down when not needed and this feature is promised to "cut your power consumption without sacrificing any performance".

In Seagate's own testing the FireCuda achieved the following performance results:

Versus 2.5-inch 5400RPM/7200RPM HDD

  • Game Load Test: 140% Faster/50% faster using PCMark 7 system storage gaming test.
  • Application Load Test: 450% Faster/300% faster using PCMark 7 system storage starting applications test.
  • Windows 7 Boot Time: 35% Faster/25% faster on an i5 laptop with 8GB of RAM, tested using Microsoft's utility.

Buyers of the 2.5-inch 2TB FireCuda get a 5-year warranty. Seagate hasn't provided us with pricing and availability information.

Seagate's 5TB BarraCuda mobile drives

Seagate launched the 5TB BarraCuda SATA 6Gb/s mobile drives alongside the 2TB FireCuda today. These HDDs are available in either a super thin 7mm mobile or laptop upgrade design, and a 15mm design for external solutions. The 5TB BarraCuda mobile uses Multi-Tier Caching algorithms, like the FireCuda mentioned above. However, without a flash storage portion, caching is limited to utilising 128MB of onboard DRAM and Seagate's media cache technology.

The new 5TB drives join other mobile BarraCudas ranging from 500GB, to 1TB, 2TB, 3TB and 4TB. Seagate promises the best price point per terabyte and millimetre compared to competitive storage options. Unfortunately we didn't receive pricing and availability details from Seagate this morning. Buyers of the 2.5-inch 5TB BarraCuda get a 2-year warranty.

HEXUS Forums :: 14 Comments

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One of the cad guys, working here, purchased one of the older models. He does like the drive but it has had a whole load of issues so he's no longer using it as his system drive. Wait a little bit before buying these, check the support forum(s) and look for the firmware before deciding to place your critical data into the hands of a drive like this.
Sorry, I must have misread. A 5TB 7mm 2.5“ drive? What? That can't possibly be true. If so, where are the 20+TB 3,5” drives with the same platter tech?
Hybrid drives, are a waste of money imo, who on earth buys them?!

Its not as if SSDs are expensive anymore, with 500GB costing around Ā£100 upwards. Pointless!
Sadly it looks like they have hamstrung this with 8Gb flash - just like the old drives. Indeed, a cynic might say these *were* the old drives rebadged.

The thing is, the technology ought to be good - a 500Gb with 32-64Gb of flash, a 1tb with 64-128 or a 2tb with 128-256 would be really sweet, giving capacity and speed and allowing for large applications/games to take advantage of copious storage and the benefits of flash. If things are price sensitive, use 16-64gb, but 8 simply isn't enough.

They also seem unwilling to make really large hybrid drives - 4Tb-8Tb. I'd have thought that the real market for these drives was where storage capacity outweighed flash value - eg. 2Tb+, yet 2Tb seems to be the max size offered, even in 3.5" factor (there may be a 4Tb slow-rpm drive).

I'm using a 2Tb one that I won in a Hexus comp (three cheers for Hexus!) and it has worked well as a secondary data/game drive. It is 80% full, but seems nippier than ordinary hard drives. The tech has merit, but it seems like manufacturers aren't willing to move with the times spec-wise. 8Gb of flash was a big deal 4-5 years ago when the first hybrid drive launched. Now, it is probably the smallest size flash chip produced.
I know plenty of people who buy hybrids. They're good for people who want space, but don't want to spend the money on two drives. Even budding enthusiasts who don't have a good income.