Consumer hard drive reviews include 2.5" HDDs with 5mm, 7mm or 9.5mm z-heights and 3.5" form factor hard drives. The consumer hard drive review category also includes solid state hybrid drive (SSHD) reviews which focus on hard drives united with flash storage for caching and better overall performance.
by Josh Linden

WD Scorpio Blue 7mm 2.5-inch Hard Drive Now Available

WD has its eyes on seizing some of the ultrabook storage market from SSDs with the new Scorpio Blue hard drive. At 7mm / 2.5 inches and engineered especially for mobile use, the Scorpio Blue makes a compelling case for why hard drives will remain relevant even with the slimming dimensions of 2012’s mobile market. Designed to be compatible with standard 9.5mm mobile drive slots, the Scorpio Blue will also have a market with manufacturers of larger notebooks.

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by Kevin OBrien

Hitachi Deskstar 5K4000 Review

The Hitachi Deskstar 5K4000 represents the first major leap in hard drive capacity we've seen in over a year. The 5K4000 provides 4TB of bulk storage coupled with Hitachi's CoolSpin technology to deliver quiet and power-friendly operation. Along with big capacity, the 5K4000 gets an updated SATA 6Gb/s interface, 32MB cache buffer and delivers media transfer rates up to 162MB/s.

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by Kevin OBrien

Hitachi Travelstar Z7K500 Released

Hitachi has announced their second-generation 7mm 7200RPM 2.5-inch hard drive, the Travelstar Z7K500, aimed at the UltraBook and thin computing categories. Offering single-platter capacities up to 500GB, the drive includes a SATA 6Gb/s interface that can push transfer speeds up to 171MB/s. Hitachi sees the emerging UltraBook market to be the greatest potential for this drive, which requires a high-capacity 7mm hard drive for bulk storage, combined with a low capacity SSD for caching purposes.

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by Kevin OBrien

Western Digital and Seagate Cut Hard Drive Warranty Lengths

In the past few days the hard drive market has seen a huge shift in warranty periods from Western Digital and Seagate. In some cases warranty lengths have been reduced from five years to just 12 months, with the biggest drop in budget or low-power drives. With many enthusiasts undoubtedly worried about this drastic restructuring of warranty terms, it's important to remember this is reflecting a business alignment in warranty lengths and not a reduction in drive quality.

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by Lyle Smith

Hitachi 4TB Deskstar 5K4000 and 4TB Touro Desk External Drives Announced

Hitachi Global Storage Technologies has announced the Deskstar 5K4000 Internal Hard Drive Kit and the Touro Desk External Hard Drive. The Deskstar 5K4000 is a 3.5" desktop hard drive with 5400RPM CoolSpin technology, 32MB drive cache and SATA 6 GB/s interface. The Touro Desk family of external hard drives are available in capacities up to 4TB and feature the Deskstar 5K4000 inside. 

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by Kevin OBrien

Seagate Momentus XT 750GB Review

Seagate has announced their second generation solid state hybrid drive (SSHD), the Momentus XT 750GB with FAST Factor. The new Momentus XT adds 250GB of total capacity over the first-generation XT as well as double the cache NAND, going from 4GB to 8GB of SLC NAND. Seagate is perhaps most enthusiastic though about what they're calling FAST Factor technology; a series of on-board software enhancements that give the new Momentus XT an extra performance kick. These new SSHDs boast fast speeds in single drive configuration, which gets really interesting when you pair two in RAID0 as we'll show in this review.

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by Kevin OBrien

Seagate Barracuda 3TB Review (1TB Platters - ST3000DM001)

This past spring Seagate started shipping the 3TB Barracuda XT (review) which was a pretty solid offering. Seagate quickly followed up that release with an announcement that a new 3TB Barracuda would feature three 1TB platters instead of the five 600GB platters seen in the first version. Seagate's about a quarter late in delivering the new 1TB platter technology, but sometimes new technology is better late than never...especially when top line sequential read and write speeds top 190 MB/s, an improvement thanks to the new platters of 30%.

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by Brian Beeler

Seagate 4TB Barracuda XT First Thoughts Review

4TB hard drives are the next step up from the 3TB top capacity that the market has been used to for the last year or so. The problem is, 4TB drives haven't quite officially hit the market yet and there's the hard drive shortage problem, so the timing of 4TB drives coming to market is a bit uncertain to say the least. Seagate generally releases hard drive capacity bumps in their branded products first, before releasing the bare drive. That's the process they went through when the 3TB Barracuda XT came to market and that's the same thing they're doing with the 4TB Barracuda XT. We recently reviewed the 4TB Go Flex Deskand couldn't resist cracking the case open to get access to the 4TB Barracuda XT hard drive inside. 

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by Brian Beeler

Who Stands to Gain From Hard Drive Shortage?

If we've learned anything after Western Digital and Seagate's quarterly conference calls this week, it's that the hard drive industry is going to be pretty "volatile," as both companies say - or layman's terms, a cluster$%@* - over the next 6-9 months. Flooding in Thailand has caused severe issues for both companies, but WD's heavy exposure to not only Thailand, but specifically the heavily flooded region, is causing them an extra level of pain. Regardless of which company hurts more, the industry at large is going to suffer, with forecasted drive supplies for the current quarter only reaching 62-76 million units from WD and Seagate out of projected demand of 170-180 million units. 

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by Charles Jefferies

Western Digital Scorpio Blue 1TB Review (WD10JPVT)

Wait, Western Digital already has a 1TB Scorpio Blue notebook hard drive - right? Yes and no; this new WD10JPVT model announced two weeks ago is different beast. Unlike the old drive, it has a standard 9.5mm height vs. 12.5mm. The standard drive height opens up entirely new markets for the 2.5" 1TB drive. Where the prior generation was limited to desktop replacement notebooks and specialized devices like the WD TV Live Hub; now just about any notebook can take advantage of the largest capacity hard drive available. 

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