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HRDs Faster than SSDs and HDDs

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 49 comments

The new HRD could be the missing link between hard drives and SSDs.

British researchers may have created the evolutionary step between current hard drives and solid state disks. Called the Hard Rectangular Drive (HRD), this new device primarily consists of three components: a double-sided "platter" of magnetic material mounted between two laminate read-write "heads" like a thin sandwich. All three components--joined by additional sets of three above and below--are lubricated and housed within in a standard 3.5-inch drive casing.

According to Register Hardware, the read-write layers actually comprise of millions of read-write heads aligned into a grid; the layers use the same lithography process used to make silicon chips. A signal is passed along the corresponding column and row in order to control a specific head. However, it's the magnetic middle layer that actually moves horizontally--accomplished by using piezo-electrics--that allows the stationary head to read the designated sector.

DataSlide, the group behind the research, said that the current version features 64 heads that can read or write simultaneously. Eventually, the technology will be able to achieve 160,000 random read/write IOPs (Input/Output Operations Per Second) and a 500 MB/sec. transfer rate. The HRD only uses 4W of power, a third of the power consumed by HDD, half of the typical SSD.

DataSlide is currently working on the new technology for commercial use, with plans to license the technology to storage manufacturers and other companies. Currently DataSlide is unable to provide a street date.

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Top Comments
  • 34 Hide
    afrobacon , June 23, 2009 1:35 AM
    Yeah, but can it store Crysis?
  • 18 Hide
    fabolous , June 23, 2009 2:15 AM
    Quote:
    The HRD only uses 4W of power, a third of the power consumed by HDD, half of the typical SSD.


    What "typical" SSD uses 8W of power? My 64GB Samsung SLC draws 1W at load and a mere 0.3W at idle. The more consumer-centric, "typical", SSDs max out at around 2W at load. So...where is this silly number coming from?
  • 13 Hide
    eklipz330 , June 23, 2009 1:35 AM
    i call the bullshit card.

    this information sounds like its being pulled from someone's ass, and if this does go through anytime before ssd's manage to take over the market with insane GB read/write speeds, i doubt it'll last too long.

    and besides Hard Rectangular Drive (HRD) sounds a bit generic. Solid State Drive sounds the way of the foooooturee!!!
Other Comments
  • 5 Hide
    Ciuy , June 23, 2009 1:32 AM
    wow finally something better then SSD, i hate ssd.

    If this is atleast the same price as SSD , well bye bye ssd.
  • 34 Hide
    afrobacon , June 23, 2009 1:35 AM
    Yeah, but can it store Crysis?
  • 13 Hide
    eklipz330 , June 23, 2009 1:35 AM
    i call the bullshit card.

    this information sounds like its being pulled from someone's ass, and if this does go through anytime before ssd's manage to take over the market with insane GB read/write speeds, i doubt it'll last too long.

    and besides Hard Rectangular Drive (HRD) sounds a bit generic. Solid State Drive sounds the way of the foooooturee!!!
  • -5 Hide
    cl_spdhax1 , June 23, 2009 1:56 AM
    This is new news? I seen these drives around when I had my flux capacitor working..
  • 18 Hide
    fabolous , June 23, 2009 2:15 AM
    Quote:
    The HRD only uses 4W of power, a third of the power consumed by HDD, half of the typical SSD.


    What "typical" SSD uses 8W of power? My 64GB Samsung SLC draws 1W at load and a mere 0.3W at idle. The more consumer-centric, "typical", SSDs max out at around 2W at load. So...where is this silly number coming from?
  • 6 Hide
    Anonymous , June 23, 2009 2:17 AM
    I also call shenanigans. Apparently the HRD needs 4 watts, half of what an SSD needs. What kind of mainstream SSD consumes 8 watts? Eventually, an HRD will speed along at 500 MB/s. By the time this happens, SSDs will have saturated the SATA 6.0Gbps link.

    The only way this thing ever makes it to market is if it can offer MTBF's in the 100-million-hour range, and i seriously doubt that is possible given the mechanical nature of the middle medium in motion.

    This would be a great idea if there were no such thing as a solid-state disk.
  • 6 Hide
    matt87_50 , June 23, 2009 2:25 AM
    wow, they couldn't even say the obligatory 3 to 5 years, not a good sign
  • 10 Hide
    belardo , June 23, 2009 3:15 AM
    The concept of this drive is "good", but its timing is BAD. If it came out about 10 years ago, it would be amazing. But this HRD wouldn't hit the market for 3~5 years, at best considering its at the prototype stage.

    In 3 years, 512GB SSDs should be well under $100 if the capacity and price scales the same as Flash drives. Currently, the 64GB drive is $150~225. 128GB are $225~350. And then theres SATA3 to allow even faster drive.

    The grand-daddy SSD? The PCIe Drives which can transfer about 1500mb a second, these start at about $1500+ Imagine having such a drive for under $500, Windows7 (or 8) will boot in about 5 seconds on a bad day.
  • 6 Hide
    Tindytim , June 23, 2009 3:27 AM
    Quote:
    Eventually, the technology will be able to achieve 160,000 random read/write IOPs (Input/Output Operations Per Second) and a 500 MB/sec. transfer rate.

    SSDs can already do that, just look at the ioDrive. Eventually, they'll be consumer products.
  • -6 Hide
    Ciuy , June 23, 2009 4:21 AM
    the ioDrive is an SSD on steroids and btw that costs like what? 15000$ ? i forgot anyway something no1 will buy....

    theres always something better but its price is outrageous. You can get a 100$ CPU Beat a 500$ CPU with the liquid cooling and stuff but no1 wants that cause its outrageous expensive. io is crap
  • -7 Hide
    Ciuy , June 23, 2009 4:21 AM
    oh and btw that ioDrive cant boot Windows.
  • 2 Hide
    Gin Fushicho , June 23, 2009 4:42 AM
    If this si real , and has a 5 year warranty , and costs between that of the SSD's and HDD' I'll buy it.
  • 0 Hide
    Gin Fushicho , June 23, 2009 4:47 AM
    BTW here is where they got the whole SSD's use up twice as much power thing.

    http://www.dataslide.com/green.html
  • 4 Hide
    acecombat , June 23, 2009 5:16 AM
    I'll be more excited once they have a trial out in real production. There has been too many "Memory of the future" devices around for me to look forward to this one.
  • -4 Hide
    Anonymous , June 23, 2009 5:18 AM
    Of course something like this would come from Britain. Cool concept with a practical implication of 0 >.>
  • 9 Hide
    acecombat , June 23, 2009 5:18 AM
    Regectedare lubricated and housed within in a standard 3.5-inch drive casing.Proof read much Kevin? I love how the housing lubricates the drive!

    Think logically much? What Kevin has put makes perfect sense.
  • 3 Hide
    Tindytim , June 23, 2009 5:39 AM
    Ciuythe ioDrive is an SSD on steroids and btw that costs like what? 15000$ ?

    You missed the whole point of my post.

    This is a completely new technology, how much do you think it will cost starting out? SSDs can already do better than this technology claims it will be able to do Eventually (And when is that? 3 years? 5 years? 10 years?).

    With SSD prices and dropping and capacities rising, what do you think the state of the SSD market will be when this technology is actually marketable?

    Ciuyi forgot anyway something no1 will buy....theres always something better but its price is outrageous. You can get a 100$ CPU Beat a 500$ CPU with the liquid cooling and stuff but no1 wants that cause its outrageous expensive. io is crap

    Jesus Christ

    Your lack of comprehension of English is only trumped by your lack of comprehension of the subject at hand.

    There are still people that buy that $500 processor, some for the guarantee that it clocks that high (or for the guarantee of a specific stepping), some for the warranty while attaining higher clocks (such as businesses), and some out of ignorance and abundance of monetary wealth.

    And that doesn't even apply to hard drives. You can't overclock a Hard Drive, and SSDs offer the best performance, there is no other commercially available technology that provides better performance to the consumer. This article doesn't take price into account, and if it were a cheaper technology I'm sure Tom's would have mentioned that.
  • 0 Hide
    TheMan1214 , June 23, 2009 5:48 AM
    eklipz330i call the bullshit card.this information sounds like its being pulled from someone's ass, and if this does go through anytime before ssd's manage to take over the market with insane GB read/write speeds, i doubt it'll last too long.and besides Hard Rectangular Drive (HRD) sounds a bit generic. Solid State Drive sounds the way of the foooooturee!!!

    I doubt SSD's will ever be able to take over the market, there is always a cap to how good a certain technology will do.

    The introduction of multiple processing cores anyone?While not the best example it shows that up is the only way technology can go.

    If you cant' see anything similiar in the way the HRD is set up than you should review your knowledge of SSD's and HDD's.
  • 8 Hide
    wavetrex , June 23, 2009 6:04 AM
    What if they make a drive like this with 32 platters and 64 reading read/write layers? Considering it's all silicon based and no mechanical issues (like inertia force, which requires the current spinning platters to be thick so they don't break), it would theoretically be possible.

    Also, because of non-issue with the physics forces that currently affect harddisks, they might make these things BIG, not just 3.5", and it will have huge capacity.

    Also, with more advanced electronics thousands of "heads" could read and write simultaneously.

    The technology has potential, we might reach speeds of tenths of gigabytes per second in a short time...
    There's only so much parallel memory chips a SSD can have...
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