Seagate releases third-generation hybrid drives for the mainstream

New 2.5in and 3.5in drives are set to offer better performance at an affordable cost for mainstream computers

Seagate has ushered in the third generation of its hybrid solid state hard drives at Computex, showing off a slim, 7mm notebook model, as well as a desktop-sized drive, both of which aim to bring faster performance to mainstream notebooks and desktop PCs without compromising on capacity and price. They do this by combining a hard drive and a solid state drive.

The 2.5in Laptop Thin SSHD notebook drive has a standard SATA interface (6Gbs) and comes with 8GB of NAND flash memory built in to it, which is of the MLC (multi-level cell) type, rather than the SLC (single-level cell) type. It features a spin speed of 5400rpm and it has a single platter inside that delivers a 500GB capacity. There is a 1TB SSD hard drive available, too, which is 9.5mm thick and has two platters, called simply Laptop SSHD.

One of the key selling points of the Laptop Thin SSHD hybrid drive is its 7mm thickness. Seagate says it can be implemented in slim notebooks for a more reasonable price than an SSD-only solution. Furthermore, it can offer similar performance to an SSD-only solution when it comes to loading frequently-used applications, while at the same time offering a much larger storage capacity.

Seagate's senior director for 2.5in product line management, David Seesdorf, said "the drive is essentially self-learning" and that it features more advanced algorithms that can better monitor and detect the most regularly used applications on your computer and cache them for almost immediate loading. The cache responds better the more you use your system and the more consistently you load your favourite applications. However, the cache will also include data that Seagate, throughout its development, has learned would be beneficial to the end user to keep in the flash memory.

The underside of Seagate's Laptop Thin SSHD.
The underside of Seagate's Laptop Thin SSHD.

Seagate also said that the performance of the drive on its own would be on par with dual-drive solutions that can be found in many laptops, which include a separate hard drive and an mSATA-based solid state drive for caching. In that type of solution, notebook manufacturers can choose their own capacity flash module (usually 32GB), while with the single-drive Seagate drive solution this is fixed at 8GB.

The boost from the 8GB of built-in flash memory is operating system agnostic and can work on any computer. All of the data detection and analysis is performed within the drive so that the drive simply boosts the most requested data, regardless of the operating system that it is running.

Compared to the previous generation hybrid drives, the new laptop drives have a slower spin speed of 5400rpm rather than 7200rpm. The reason for this is so that heat and power can be better managed. Seagate said that because of the use of on-board MLC flash, a high level of performance can still be delivered at the lower spin speed.

Desktop users haven't been forgotten either, and the Desktop SSHD that Seagate has released also features 8GB of MLC flash memory, but with a lot more capacity and a spin speed of 7200rpm. The Desktop SSHD will be available in capacities of 1TB, 2TB, and also 4TB. Again, the aim of this drive is to bring a higher level of performance to desktop users in an affordable and simple solution.

The author of this article was flown to Computex in Taipei as a guest of Seagate.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Storage Deviceshard drivesseagate

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Elias Plastiras

Elias Plastiras

Good Gear Guide

@pcworldau

Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?