Fujitsu has set high goals for itself: back in January, we tested a 10,000 rpm drive (MAN3367MP ) that impressed with its performance and acceptable noise level. Now, Fujitsu has upped the stakes once more - the MAM series at 15,000 rpm is supposed to conquer the high-end sector. Just one word in advance: Fujitsu is a master of its trade.
According to Fujitsu's website, this drive offers seek times of only 3.5 ms, a speed that had been considered almost impossible only a few years ago. The tradeoff for such high performance is a low data density: 17,716 bit/mm (450,000 bpi), a figure which is anything but record-breaking. However, low data density is a neccessity at such high rotation speeds. Fujitsu offers two models, the MAM3184 at 18.4 GB and the MAM3367 at 36.7 GB. These drives use two and four platters respectively, which amounts to approximately 9.2 GB per platter, and here you can see that this is hardly comparable with the latest IDE drives (WD1200JB: 40 GB per platter).
The first drive to run at 15,000 rpm was Seagate's Cheetah X15 (read the review ). On the one hand, we were a bit disappointed by the fact that it was not able to set new records in data transfer speeds. On the other hand, the seek times of 3.9 ms were unmatched at the time of the review. In the end, this drive offered extremely high application performance, making it suitable for workstations and servers.
Fujitsu launched their latest series in order to combine all of the important qualities such as high data transfer rates and quick access times, as well as acceptable temperatures and tolerable noise levels. The result is the MAM series; we received the 18 GB model for review.