SCOTTS VALLEY, CALIF. With the introduction of the Cheetah X15, Seagate Technology Inc. claims to be the first to market with a 15,000-RPM-class disk drive, said to deliver 26 percent faster access to data and 33 more I/O operations per second than 10,000-RPM-class drives.
The Cheetah X15 will start sampling to major OEMs early in the second quarter, with volume production planned for early in the third quarter, Seagate said. The street price is expected to be less than $1,000 per unit.
A 3.5-inch, low-profile drive with a capacity of 18.4 Gbytes, the Cheetah X15 boasts latency of 2 milliseconds and an average seek time of 3.9 ms. It comes with a choice of interfaces-Ultra160 SCSI or 2-Gbit/second Fibre Channel-and provides an average data-transfer rate of 42.5 Mbytes/s. That's "25 percent faster than anything available today," said Shawn Hook, product marketing manager. The drive's power and audible-noise figures are the same as those for 10,000-rpm drives, he said.
The new drive has a mean time between failures of 1.2 million hours and it's well-equipped to handle shock and vibration, Hook said. Its operating shock spec is 15 g's; nonoperating, 250 g's. "And because of the work we've done on the motor, head suspension and head-disk assembly, we've ensured that if it's put in a multidrive environment, the rotational vibration of one drive won't affect the performance of another."
The Cheetah X15 will ship in a new shock-ribbed, transparent enclosure that "limits exposure to ESD and also protects against external shocks and stress," said Hook. Dubbed SeaShell, it "reduces the force of a 12-inch drop by a factor of 10 over standard ESD packaging." The drive has a 4-Mbyte cache (16 Mbytes optional) and the company's 3D Defense System-hardware and software that protect drive components and data, plus diagnostic utilities.
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EETInfo No. 645