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Seagate Halts Barracuda Pro HDDs: A Replacement Is Coming

Seagate
(Image credit: Seagate)

Seagate has discontinued its Barracuda Pro family of high-end hard drives for desktops. But a replacement is coming, according to Seagate. 

"Never, fear — we are in the middle of a little shuffle on that drive, but I'll let you know when we are ready to talk about the replacement model," a spokesman for Seagate said. "Stay tuned!"

Seagate says that it will replace its Barracuda Pro family sometime in the future and will therefore continue to address the market of high-performance desktops and workstations with its HDDs. Unfortunately, it is hard to say what exactly Seagate intends to offer. The company could certainly offer hybrid drives that use both rotating media and NAND flash, but such HDDs have never become popular. Also, Seagate could offer HDDs based on heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR) technology that will be cheaper to make due to lower number of platters. 

High-capacity high-performance hard drives for desktops is a niche market nowadays. The absence of Western Digital's offerings of 10TB+ capacities greatly accentuates this fact. Up until recently, Seagate offered its Barracuda Pro HDD line-up of 7200RPM class hard drives based on its latest technologies. Yet, it has discontinued the line-up altogether, which is a pretty much unprecedented move. Good news is, a replacement is coming, says Seagate. Yet we do not know what it is. 

Seagate's Barracuda Pro was a series of 3.5-inch hard drives based on the company's high-performance platforms featuring a 7200 RPM spindle speed, conventional magnetic recording technology (perpendicular magnetic recording or PMR with two-dimensional magnetic recording for high-capacity drives), helium filing, and so on. The line-up topped at 18TB and was designed primarily for higher-end desktops as well as workstations. 

By contrast, Seagate's Barracuda [non-Pro] HDDs are based on shingled magnetic recording (SMR), and feature a 5400 RPM spindle speed and top out at 8TB. While these drives are good enough to store media collections, their performance is considered too low by professionals.  

Without Seagate Barracuda Pro in the company's line-up, performance-demanding users who want 7200 RPM and CMR will have to opt for the company's IronWolf that tops at 12TB or IronWolf Pro that has a maximum capacity of 18TB. The IronWolf series is aimed primarily at NAS and feature appropriate firmware, so they may not be very optimal for desktop usage scenarios. 

It is noteworthy that without high-capacity desktop HDDs from Seagate and Western Digital, the only line-up of high-end high-capacity desktop drives that exists today is Toshiba's X300 series.  

  • alceryes
    Meh. This was/is inevitable.
    As motherboards with multiple M.2 sockets become more and more common, and performance NVMe drives, at capacities 2TBs and above, are going on sale for 10¢/GB, spindle hard drive production will continue to slow down. I know traditional HDD production won't go away for at least 10+ years but the shift is already starting.

    Just two days ago, I picked up a performance 2TB NVMe for $199!
    Reply
  • pixelpusher220
    alceryes said:
    Meh. This was/is inevitable.
    As motherboards with multiple M.2 sockets become more and more common, and performance NVMe drives, at capacities 2TBs and above, are going on sale for 10¢/GB, spindle hard drive production will continue to slow down. I know traditional HDD production won't go away for at least 10+ years but the shift is already starting.

    Just two days ago, I picked up a performance 2TB NVMe for $199!
    Much like car manual transmissions are going the way of the dodo. Maybe as a niche, but you'll pay more for that niche.

    Me thinks the mongo drive segment (12+ GB) should still maintain a healthy demand though
    Reply
  • mwestall
    alceryes said:
    Meh. This was/is inevitable.
    As motherboards with multiple M.2 sockets become more and more common, and performance NVMe drives, at capacities 2TBs and above, are going on sale for 10¢/GB, spindle hard drive production will continue to slow down. I know traditional HDD production won't go away for at least 10+ years but the shift is already starting.

    Just two days ago, I picked up a performance 2TB NVMe for $199!

    Hmm, I just picked up a 16TB Exos enterprise for £280. That's £17.50/TB, Vs $99/TB. Plus, I'd need 8 nvme slots, I have 8 of these 16TB inside my case along with a pair of nvme for boot and scratch. All flash would be utterly unaffordable and physically impossible. So. I guess a long path still for spinning rust.
    Reply
  • alceryes
    Yup. The bigger ones will be the last to go, along with the bigger SAS drives/NASs in the commercial market. Although, all-SSD commercial NASs are pretty commonplace now. Once those 8TB+ NVMe drives become readily available, at reasonable pricing, many home users that only need 3-6TBs of storage space will probably move to SSD-only.

    Over the next 5 years we'll see small traditional HDDs all but disappear, unless they can make the new HAMR drives something like 2¢/GB or less.
    Reply
  • salgado18
    alceryes said:
    Yup. The bigger ones will be the last to go, along with the bigger SAS drives/NASs in the commercial market. Although, all-SSD commercial NASs are pretty commonplace now. Once those 8TB+ NVMe drives become readily available, at reasonable pricing, many home users that only need 3-6TBs of storage space will probably move to SSD-only.

    Over the next 5 years we'll see small traditional HDDs all but disappear, unless they can make the new HAMR drives something like 2¢/GB or less.
    Maybe. But I still see a market for big HDDs in the future, even for home users. Smartphones can already record 4k videos, which take up a lot of space. Give a user one of those and some kids, and a drive can fill up really fast with all the party and travel videos. For this kind of storage, an SSD is a waste of money IMO.
    Reply
  • alceryes
    Segate's 30TB HAMR monster HDD.
    https://www.tomshardware.com/news/seagate-readies-30tb-hamr-hdds
    Reply