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Western Digital Announces 1TB Mobile HD 252

Western Digital has announced a couple of new 2.5-inch mobile hard drives weighing in at 750GB and 1TB. The drives feature a 3 GB/s transfer rate and Western Digital's "WhisperDrive" tech along with specialized shock tolerance and head parking to ensure durability. "Both models are shipping now through various channels; the 1TB model is currently available in My Passport Essential SE USB drives. The Scorpio Blue 750GB model has a suggested sticker price of $190 while the Scorpio Blue 1TB is a mere $250. The My Passport Essential SE 1 TB portable drive is $299.99 USD and the 750 GB model is $199.99 USD."
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Western Digital Announces 1TB Mobile HD

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  • by Ralph Spoilsport ( 673134 ) on Monday July 27, 2009 @05:31PM (#28844003) Journal
    The plan: Get one of these TB drives and stuff it full of FLAC rips from my massive CD collection. Then USB it to a WD TV box [wdc.com] and my cheapy $80 15in flat panel monitor, routing the audio to my insane audio system.

    Finally: Done.

  • by bemymonkey ( 1244086 ) on Monday July 27, 2009 @06:15PM (#28844591)

    Hmmm... let's see. I've got about a terabyte of stuff that I've accumulated over the years. Every CD/DVD/Video cassette I've ever bought or borrowed from a friend has been digitized, reencoded and written to a hard drive. That's 100-300 MB per CD and somewhere between 700 and 8000MB per movie. Over the years, I'm up to a 120GB music collection and 800+GB of video... _without_ downloading a single one. If you're a pack rat, you'll fill a terabyte pretty easily, even with legal means :)

    If I'd downloaded and kept everything that would remotely interest me, I'm sure I'd be sitting on dozens of terabytes of data by now...

  • Highest quality 1080p is said to consume 1GB/minute.

    Is that right? I thought completely uncompressed 1080p was supposed to be something like 3Gbps. Looking at the wikipedia [wikipedia.org]:

    The movie industry has embraced 1080p24 as a digital mastering format in both native 24p form and in 24PsF form.... For live broadcast applications, a high-definition progressive scan format operating at 1080p at 50 or 60 frames per second is currently being evaluated... as it has doubled the data rate of current 50 or 60 fields interlaced 1920 Ã-- 1080 from 1.485 Gbit/s to nominally 3 Gbit/s.

    Ok, so it looks like that's a future standard. But 1920x1080 * 3 channels * 8 bits per channel * 24 frames per second = about 1.2Gbps, right? I don't know if the cameras have good compression built in, but 1GB/minute still sounds low to me. Is my math wrong?

    Anyway, point taken. There's a use for compact large-capacity hard drives.

  • by willy_me ( 212994 ) on Monday July 27, 2009 @08:57PM (#28846071)

    Larger drives generally do have more throughput for a few reasons. First, there are likely to be more platters / read + write heads that can work in parallel. Second, as the drive spins the rate at which the head traverses over sectors does increase - as you assumed.

    But there are plenty of reasons why the actual increase will be reduced. First, the time taken to traverse an entire platter at a given RPM increases with denser platters. So if a platter can hold X bits and takes Y seconds to traverse, then a platter containing 2X bits will take a time T where Y -> T -> 2Y. (Just imagine that those are 'less then' signs.) Double the size != double the performance. Second, the seek time will be greater with a higher density platter. The head needs to be more accurate when placed above the platter - this accuracy costs time.

    The performance of this drive will likely be better then any other 2.5" 5200 RPM drive on the market - specifically for large sequential transfers. However, the real world performance of this drive will likely be on par with a standard 7200 RPM drive - possibly even a bit slower.

    There are plenty of other factors that effect performance - I just provided a couple of examples to give you something to think about. Only those at WD who are involved in the design of the drive and development of the firmware really know what is going on - and I believe they keep that info locked up real tight.

  • by Kjella ( 173770 ) on Monday July 27, 2009 @09:52PM (#28846545) Homepage

    fun fact about movie standards (and I know this because I used to be an art house movie theater projectionist) is that most digital transfers (to "film") are 4096x2048 already. 1080p as a standard is a huge step back in quality to what you're already seeing as "digital".

    I don't have the sources now but it was a study on resolution in theaters. Basically a good master negative of a film can have 1500-2000 lines of resolution, but even the best analog cinema prints had only 800-1000 lines of resolution. So digital 1080p movies on digital screens are no worse than before. However, analog film directly scanned to digital is very impressive and probably needs a 4096x2048 (4K) camera to match. Fortunately things are progressing fast and the RED Scarlet coming this year should bring 3K to the 3000$ mark and 4K below 10000$. Compared to all the other costs, that's not much. Hell, even 9K IMAX should drop below 50000$ this year. Personally I'm most impressed with the prosonsumer cams though, it's amazing what they pack in a small HD camera and it gets better every year.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 28, 2009 @01:37AM (#28848051)
    50GB 1080p Blu-Ray films can be compressed down to 8GB with very little visual degradation.

"This is lemma 1.1. We start a new chapter so the numbers all go back to one." -- Prof. Seager, C&O 351