When will laptop hard drives break the 100 GB barrier?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by gopher, Nov 9, 2004.

  1. gopher macrumors 65816

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    Maryland, USA
    #1
    OK the 100 GB barrier has been around for about 5 months, and before then the 80 GB barrier for over a year. It would be so nice to have a 200 GB laptop hard drive that is 7200 RPM without having to rely on Firewire or USB. Any chance of that?
     
  2. edesignuk Moderator emeritus

    edesignuk

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    Location:
    London, England
    #2
    Yes. When? Eventually.
     
  3. zelmo macrumors 603

    zelmo

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    Jul 3, 2004
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    Mac since 7.5
    #3
    Gotta love that insider information. You heard it here first! :)

    I'd be perfectly content with a 60 or 80GB drive in a laptop if it was 7200. Even if your portable is your primary cpu, do you really need to carry around 100 or 200GB worth of data everywhere you go? Sure, it'd be nice, but I'd rather see other improvements first, like a faster FSB, 256 GPU, and a built in coaster I can sit my coffee cup on. [My PB keeps it plenty warm, but I fear scratching the lovely aluminum surface. :eek: ]
     
  4. TLRedhawke macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2004
    #4
    The primary issue in this is shrinking the platters. A 2.5" drive can really have no more than 2 platters, otherwise it becomes too thick to be of much use in current laptops. That being said, to get to 200GB, you have to be able to produce small platters of 100GB. Now, as far as I've been made aware, 100GB platters are currently the norm with 3.5" hard drives, where they can fit 4 platters in a drive. As of yet, I've not seen a 3.5" drive with more than 400GB. External hard drives are not limited so much in terms of space, and as such, you see products like Lacie's external drives exceeding 1TB, because they can stuff quite a number of platters into the enclosure. Laptop drives will be doomed to increase very gradually, while desktop drives will jump considerably. You'll likely see a laptop drive break 120GB within the year.

    As for the speed, it is unlikely that the industry as a whole will adopt the use of 7200RPM drives within laptops. The primary reason for this is the heat it generates. While a hefty laptop like most Toshibas can handle this fine, smaller machine such as those made by Sony and Apple will have a much more difficult time of it. Consider that on a 12" PowerBook, the hottest part is the metal to the left of the trackpad, which is directly above the hard drive, and it uses only a 4200RPM drive. 5400RPM should be the standard by now, as should 512MB of ram in a laptop. Apple has been criticized for not making such shifts, but the majority of the industry has yet to make such shifts, so it seems premature to criticize. Also consider that the standard for desktops is still 7200RPM, despite the availability of speeds up to 15,000RPM.
     
  5. Jo-Kun macrumors 6502a

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    Dec 20, 2003
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    Antwerp-Belgium
    #5
    I want to see the Flash-Based Harddrivs in a laptop, no moving parts...

    they exist but I presume them to be quite expensive & in some cases thicker than Laptop Harddrives...

    but I think FlashDrives could be the future for Mobile Computer Storage...

    J
     
  6. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

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    Solon, OH
    #6
    I agree with you regarding solid-state hard drives in laptops, but I don't think flash technology will get big and cheap enough in time for use in laptop hard drives before MRAM matures. MRAM would be ideal for this task, since it has the capacity of a hard drive, the access speed of RAM, has no moving parts, like flash, and will be cheap to produce.
     
  7. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

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    Jul 11, 2003
    Location:
    Tampere, Finland
    #7
    60GB 7200rpm laptop hard drive exists, just install one and be happy :) i can tell you it's the best upgrade i have ever bought to my powerbooks, although a little pricey, worth every euro i spent.

    the real question is: when the laptop drives break the 1TB barrier :D :D :D
     
  8. JFreak macrumors 68040

    JFreak

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    Jul 11, 2003
    Location:
    Tampere, Finland
    #8
    where do you get that false information from? in my experience 7200rpm hard drive runs COOLER than 4200rpm hard drive, because it usually [read: most of the time] does less work cycles (because it can complete its task faster) and more idle cycles, compared to the slower one that has to be working more.

    the #1 reason for titanium powerbook paint fall-off issue was the 4200rpm hard drive, not the paint itself. i had one, and the paint stopped falling off as soon as i threw in a hitachi 7k60 hard drive which to my surprise ran so cool the cooling fan almost never kicked in anymore. i had to really stress the system to get the fan blowing, and before the drive exchange it was almost always on. the hard drive exchange also improved battery life about 15 minutes, so we're talking about huge savings in power consumption here.

    of course, if the 7200rpm hard drive does work all the time, it might get hot too. but in "normal use" (which is something else than web surfing in my opinion), the 7k60 is a clear winner.
     
  9. TLRedhawke macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2004
    #9
    My experience with alubooks is that they run considerably hotter when using a 7200RPM drive. While certainly, to perform the same tasks, it requires fewer cycles, when you get to accessing the hard drive constantly, far more heat is generated. That is the primary concern amongst manufacturers, and why they have not yet adopted it as standard.
     
  10. Mechcozmo macrumors 603

    Mechcozmo

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    Jul 17, 2004
    #10
    I have a 5200rpm 80GB drive in mine. I'm sooo :cool: . I've found that it is speedy enough for most things but runs cool enough to not burn me. :D

    Edited for clarity
     
  11. TLRedhawke macrumors 6502

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    Sep 17, 2004
    #11
    I think you mean 5400, but you're right, they are as speedy as most people will require.
     
  12. thatwendigo macrumors 6502a

    thatwendigo

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    #12
    Actually, there have been some attempts to put solid-state drives in to replace traditional magnetic drives, and it's been ridiculously expensive. That one company that repeatedly ripped off Apple's site design and sold overclocked parts - GoL.com - offered them as an option in their desktops. It's just a shame that a 100GB flash drive costs as much as an entire computer does on its own, and that it's subject to the far, far more limited write cycle thanks to the failure of memory cells over multiple fills.
     
  13. Timelessblur macrumors 65816

    Timelessblur

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2004
    #13
    oh it will happen some time in the futures but it will take crossing some major techical hurdles. physical size of the hard drive will not increase. Currently They have pretty much have max out platter densitsy. Platters full size hard drives are at the the max limit at something aroudn I want ot say 60 gigs per platter and laptop platters are smaller. The problem is to increase the density any more they going to start having magnectic interfecs when trying to write data and will start corrupting some data. Platter technology has really not changed that much over the years. They have increase densinty but basicly it is still the same tech as it was from earily computers.
     
  14. wrldwzrd89 macrumors G5

    wrldwzrd89

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    #14
    You're absolutely right there. The good news is that MRAM will overcome all of those problems. The bad news is that we don't know when it will mature enough to be put into a consumer/professional product yet.
     

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