By Chris Scott Barr
Technology is always being improved upon, usually meaning faster speeds and more storage coming in smaller packages. One of the latest technological milestones comes to us from Western Digital. The hard drive manufacturer has announced that they have crafted the highest capacity 2.5-inch drives. Utilizing 333GB platter technology, they were able to birth 750GB and 1TB drives. There’s only one small problem. Specifically a 3mm problem.
When you hear about a 2.5-inch hard drive, you’ll probably think that its primary function is to sit inside a laptop. Well if you were to crack open most laptops, you’ll find a drive that measures 2.5-inches long, and 9.5mm thick. Unfortunately these new drives from Western Digital are 12.5mm thick. This means that there are going to be a lot of notebooks that don’t accept these new larger drives.
Since these aren’t going to work in a lot of laptops, Western Digital says that they will be perfect for portable storage solutions. Unfortunately, I’m not thinking that they’ll perform all that well in this area either. First, the drive only spins at a paltry 5200RPM, meaning it will be slow as molasses. The cache is also a measly 8MB. Frankly, $190 for the 750GB and $250 for the 1TB drive are too expensive for that speed. I can get a 3.5-inch 1TB drive that spins at 7200RPM with a 32MB cache for around $80. It’s a little bigger, sure, but if you’re actually storing files large enough to require that much space, you’ll really notice the difference in speed.