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TDK Develops Tech to "More Than Double" HDD Capacity

By - Source: TechCrunch | B 42 comments
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Will consumers see 8 GB hard drives in 2012? According to TDK, its new technology will more than double current capacities.

Japan's Nikkei Business Daily reports that TDK has developed a technology that can "more than double" the storage space of hard disk drives. Given that they're currently maxed out at 4 TB for the moment, that's a possible 8 TB or more per unit. This capacity can reportedly be achieved thanks to a special laser that heats up a platter's hard surface with a precision of a few dozen nanometers.

In addition to the laser, the Nikkei Business Daily reports that TDK has also changed the materials used in the magnetic head. It's also redesigned the structure of the head to expand the recording density. That said, the combination of a specialized laser and a redesigned magnetic head allows for more data to be stored on drives of the same size.

Oddly enough, TDK claims that this new technology will cram 1 TB of data onto one hard drive platter. But there are already physical drives out on the market today featuring platters with 1 TB. As reported in September, Hitachi's line of Deskstar 7K1000.D 3.5-inch drives features a single 7200RPM platter offering up to 1 TB of storage and a maximum areal density of 569 gigabits per square inch.

"As we ship our first 1 TB per platter drives, we know we’re delivering capacity, reliability and value to a broad customer base," said Brendan Collins, vice president of product marketing at Hitachi GST. "Not only are we shipping our 1 TB per platter drives to our own Branded Business, but we are shipping to our channel partners as well, enabling them to design affordable HDD-based solutions at attractive price points."

Still, TDK is reportedly pitching to HDD manufacturers that a drive with two platters produced by its new technology will have the capability of storing two weeks of HDTV content from five channels (aka 1,600 hours of HD video). With that in mind, these platters will likely hold 1 TB of data at the very least -- we might actually see 2 TB platters within the next twelve months, as TDK claims that its new tech should go commercial as early as next year.

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Top Comments
  • 22 Hide
    kuroimaho , October 5, 2011 1:19 PM
    "Will consumers see 8 GB hard drives in 2012?" I hope not, or only at Tom's Hardware.
  • 22 Hide
    magmcbride , October 5, 2011 1:06 PM
    Spelling mistake in the subtitle: You typed 8GB instead of 8TB. ;)  Great news for storage enthusiasts overall though!
  • 13 Hide
    bourgeoisdude , October 5, 2011 2:48 PM
    8GB.

    I would email the editor, but apparently Tom's doesn't have any. I usually give you guys a break on stuff like this, but this error is too ridiculously obvious.
Other Comments
  • 1 Hide
    Marthian , October 5, 2011 1:05 PM
    If Voxel rendering were ever to be mainstream, this would be one reason.
  • 22 Hide
    magmcbride , October 5, 2011 1:06 PM
    Spelling mistake in the subtitle: You typed 8GB instead of 8TB. ;)  Great news for storage enthusiasts overall though!
  • 22 Hide
    kuroimaho , October 5, 2011 1:19 PM
    "Will consumers see 8 GB hard drives in 2012?" I hope not, or only at Tom's Hardware.
  • 6 Hide
    Filiprino , October 5, 2011 1:27 PM
    8TB per disk. ZOMG.
  • 3 Hide
    billybobser , October 5, 2011 1:31 PM
    Bit underwhelming compared to the 1024GB ram sticks I see on ebay.
  • 1 Hide
    Haserath , October 5, 2011 1:34 PM
    A mistake in the subtitle and the first paragraph. All are GB instead of TB. I'll never go above single platter drives, so it's nice to have 1TB single platter. Always nice to see storage increases of double or more per year.
  • 7 Hide
    sonofhendrix , October 5, 2011 1:35 PM
    Time for Wide Quad High Definition (WQHD) (2560×1440) movies!
    And PCs with 2560x1440 display monitors will be the first platforms for it.
    And now we have the disc space to store or record them.
  • 7 Hide
    thrasher32 , October 5, 2011 1:39 PM
    Give us 100TB drives now.
  • 11 Hide
    gladlock , October 5, 2011 1:48 PM
    Yeah fix those typos - TB not GB.
  • 11 Hide
    cknobman , October 5, 2011 2:26 PM
    8GB!!!!

    Holy 2000 Batman!!!!!!!
  • 2 Hide
    dontknownotsure , October 5, 2011 2:31 PM
    I want to see a zettabyte in my lifetime. It is equal to a trillion gigabytes
  • 13 Hide
    bourgeoisdude , October 5, 2011 2:48 PM
    8GB.

    I would email the editor, but apparently Tom's doesn't have any. I usually give you guys a break on stuff like this, but this error is too ridiculously obvious.
  • 0 Hide
    drwho1 , October 5, 2011 3:15 PM
    I was planning on getting some 4TB drives probably next year... it looks that I will wait now for this 8TB to reach the consumer market.

    I bet that they will be a bit pricey at first but give it a year or so and they will be at a good price range -$100-$160- good price point for my movies and TV shows collection.
  • 0 Hide
    custodian-1 , October 5, 2011 3:19 PM
    I'd settle for 8 petabyte bytes
  • 7 Hide
    gokanis , October 5, 2011 3:23 PM
    dontknownotsureI want to see a zettabyte in my lifetime. It is equal to a trillion gigabytes


    I'm holding out for a Yottabyte holographic USB key.
  • 2 Hide
    rosen380 , October 5, 2011 3:51 PM
    "I want to see a zettabyte in my lifetime. It is equal to a trillion gigabytes"

    Why? Just picking out a really big number?? If a BluRay quality movie takes up around 50GB and a DVD around 4GB. Lets each movie storage type is a similar 12.5x jump and occur every 15 years.

    Right now a 4TB drive will hold about 80 bluRay movies; it'll take seven new generations of movie formats and over 100 years before a 1 "zettabyte" drive is required to store the same number of movies.

    Even for industrial and scientific uses, we're only up to like millions of gigabytes of necessary storage, so we're probably still a long ways off needing a million times more than that.

    I'm pretty sure that nearly every sensible computer user would trade a 1,000,000,000x increase in capacity for 100x increase in performance [IE 1TB that is faster than RAM rather than 1 zettabyte at current speeds...
  • 1 Hide
    CaedenV , October 5, 2011 4:06 PM
    rosen380"I want to see a zettabyte in my lifetime. It is equal to a trillion gigabytes"Why? Just picking out a really big number?? If a BluRay quality movie takes up around 50GB and a DVD around 4GB. Lets each movie storage type is a similar 12.5x jump and occur every 15 years.Right now a 4TB drive will hold about 80 bluRay movies; it'll take seven new generations of movie formats and over 100 years before a 1 "zettabyte" drive is required to store the same number of movies.Even for industrial and scientific uses, we're only up to like millions of gigabytes of necessary storage, so we're probably still a long ways off needing a million times more than that.I'm pretty sure that nearly every sensible computer user would trade a 1,000,000,000x increase in capacity for 100x increase in performance [IE 1TB that is faster than RAM rather than 1 zettabyte at current speeds...

    Welcome to technology where things move in logrithmic accelerating fassion. It took FOREVER to get to 1GB drives, and took much less time to get to 1TB. I would imagine it would take less time to get to 1PB/1ZB/1YB unless we run into hard physical limits, or the world economy tanks entirely and we all go back to the stone age. And by the time we get to the 1PB range we will have to move on to something more creative for storage (like holographic storage, or running away from binary and going to a base 3+ system where we can store much more dense amounts of information).
    Again, not saying that we will see it in our lifetimes, but our kids might. Then again if Kurzweil has his way then maybe we would see it :) 

    billybobserBit underwhelming compared to the 1024GB ram sticks I see on ebay.

    Oh man, I laughed so hard! You can find anything on e-Bay lol
  • 0 Hide
    alyoshka , October 5, 2011 4:06 PM
    Well, with everyone's views on wanting a zettabyte and yottabyte drives, I will settle with just a Single TB SSD..... at the price of an 8 GB pendrive :) 
  • -2 Hide
    rosen380 , October 5, 2011 4:38 PM
    "Welcome to technology where things move in logrithmic accelerating fassion."

    Since when?

    According to Wikipedia:
    2005 - First 500 GB hard drive shipping (Hitachi GST)
    2006 - First 750 GB hard drive (Seagate)
    2007 - First 1 terabyte hard drive[14] (Hitachi GST)
    2008 - First 1.5 terabyte hard drive[15] (Seagate)
    2009 - First 2.0 terabyte hard drive[16] (Western Digital)
    2010 - First 3.0 terabyte hard drive[17][18] (Seagate, Western Digital)
    2011 - First 4.0 terabyte hard drive[20] (Seagate)

    That is hardly 'logarithmic'.
    2005-2006 +50%
    2006-2007 +33%
    2007-2008 +50%
    2008-2009 +33%
    2009-2010 +50%
    2010-2011 +33%

    Pretty linear. Do it in two year batches instead:
    2005-2007 +100%
    2006-2008 +100%
    2007-2009 +100%
    2008-2010 +100%
    2009-2011 +100%
    Perfectly linear!

    So, given that:
    2013 8TB
    2015 16TB
    2017 32TB
    2019 64TB
    2021 128TB
    2023 250TB
    2025 500TB
    ... etc, decades until something like zettabytes.

    Not to mention that at some point in the relatively near future, people are probably going to be ditching spinning drives for SSD for performance. At that point, lets say in six years, the capacity will dial back a bit, since SSDs are way behind spinning drives, adding a number of cycles.




  • -1 Hide
    itzdanielp , October 5, 2011 5:21 PM
    I want an 8GB single volume drive! :)  ;) 
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