2-TB Hard Drives: Seagate Intros, Western Digital Ships

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Seagate on Monday unveiled its Constellation family of enterprise hard drives that features 2.5-inch and 3.5-inch drives with capacities of up to 2.0 TB.

The company follows by only a couple of days the shipment of the latest in Western Digital's WD Caviar Green hard-drive family featuring 2.0-TB capacities.

Seagate's Constellation family includes the line of tier-two enterprise nearline storage drives previously called Barracuda ES. This segment of the company's product line was renamed Constellation to reduce confusion with the company's Barracuda 7200 desktop drive line, said Barbara Craig, senior product marketing manager for Seagate's tier-two storage line.

The newest member of the line is the Constellation ES line of high-capacity 3.5-inch drives. The drive, expected to ship next quarter, features either 1.0 TB or 2.0 TB of capacity, and either SATA or SAS interfaces, Craig said. The SAS drives are also slated to be available with a native data encryption option for security, she said.

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The Constellation line of 2.5-inch hard drives, which includes a 160-GB SATA drive and 500-GB SAS and SATA models, should ship next month, Craig said. A version of the 500-GB SAS drive with native encryption is expected to be available in July, she said.

Seagate's new Constellation drives currently offer the lowest power consumption in the industry, Craig said. The SATA versions consume 2.4 watts of power in idle mode, while the SAS versions consume 2.8 watts while idle.

The drives feature four levels of power efficiency users can set via new host controllers, which may be ready by the time the drives ship, she said. "But it is a low-power drive coming out of the gate," she said.

Western Digital beat Seagate to market last week by releasing its 2.0-TB WD Caviar Green hard drive.

The WD Caviar Green family is a series of 3.5-inch drives with 32 MB of cache and available in 1.0-TB, 1.5-TB and 2.0-TB capacities.

Unlike Seagate's new Enterprise Constellation drives, the WD Caviar Green family targets desktop PCs, workstations, desktop RAID systems, and USB, FireWire or eSATA external hard drives, Western Digital said.

The 2.0-TB WD Caviar Green drive is currently shipping with a list price of $299.