Milan - Lacie today introduced a new series of external harddrives with SATA interface at the SMAU trade show in Milan, Italy. The drives are available in capacities up to 400 GByte. The manufacturer also announced a high-end 21" LCD targeted at graphics professionals.
The new 7200-rpm SATA drives extend the existing d2 family which so far has been available with USB 2.0, Firewire 400, and Firewire 800 interfaces. The SATA version will become available in winter and will increase data bandwidth to the SATA standard of 1.5 Gbit per second. To allow connectivity to older computers, Lacie includes a SATA PCI Card with two SATA ports.
Pricing for the drives will start at $270 for the 160 GByte model. The 250 GByte version rings in at $340, the 400 GByte SATA d2 at $550. Lacie also offers a 10,000 rpm 74 GByte drive for $450.
The company is not the first one to offer external SATA harddrives, but prices its drives at least at the high end slightly blow current market prices. Competing drives, such as Buslink's 400 GByte SATA drive is currently listed for $620, while 160 GByte can be purchased for $220 (both including PCI card).
Lacie also demonstrated a new high-end series of LCD monitors for graphics professionals at SMAU. The 21" model 321 achieves a color gamut equivalent to a CRT monitor through "SA-Superfine TFT technology", according to the company. The LCD offers a contrast ratio of 500:1 a brightness of 250 cd/m2, viewing angles of 176 degrees, 10-bit gamma correction and a resolution of up to 1600 x 1200 pixels. The 321 will be available in November for $1700.