The Terabyte Landmark: Hitachi Deskstar 7K1000

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January 19, 2008 by Devon Cooke

Hitachi Global Storage Deskstar 7K1000 HDS721010KLA330
1TB, 7,200 RPM Desktop Hard Drive
Market Price

The terabyte mark was reached almost exactly a year ago, when Hitachi announced their 7K1000 at the CES 2007 conference. At the time, it was not only the largest drive available, but by many accounts, it was also the fastest, giving Western Digital's previously-untouchable 10,000 RPM Raptor a run for its money.

In the year since, the other major manufacturers have introduced new models that match the 7K1000's capacity, but none has managed to pass it. In terms of performance, the 7K1000 is still at or near the top; so far, Samsung seems to be the toughest competitor, but Samsung's drive hasn't been widely reviewed enough to draw any conclusions yet.

So, even though the 7K1000 is now a year old, it's still well worth looking at — it's size and performance won't be obsolete any time soon. But, what about noise? With a year's worth of reviews already out there on the internet, we don't have anything new to say about its performance, but we can do what we do best: Give the drive a complete and thorough acoustic examination.

This box is about ten times the size of the actual drive.

The drive was shipped to us in a large retail box, most of which was occupied by red packing foam. The drive was embedded in the middle inside a shiny antistatic bag, and a few basic accessories were also included: A cable, some screws, a generic manual / install guide, and a CD with a few utilities.

Very well padded.

Hitachi Global Storage Deskstar 7K1000 HDS721010KLA330
(from Hitachi's data sheet)
Storage capacities up to 1 TB Still the industry high water mark.
Perpendicular magnetic recording technology Old news now, this is the driving technology behind the most recent generation of capacity improvements.
SATA 3.0 Gb/s interface This interface speed is still well above the point where it could become saturated.
Ramp load design increases shock protection and power savings Almost a standard feature these days, and Hitachi has had it for years.
Thermal monitoring and fly height control enhance reliability Compensates for thermal changes, allowing a wider range of operating temperatures.
Three low-power idle modes boost power efficiency They mean it when they say idle modes; recovery time for these is counted in seconds.
Silent seek acoustics achieve ultra-quiet operation AAM comes standard on most drives, but its effectiveness varies a lot.
Host/drive authentication for hardware security Presumably, this requires a compatible drive controller and some work on the part of the user to enable.

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