Toshiba Packs 160 GB into Single-Platter 1.8-inch Hard Drives

Toshiba Packs 160 GB into Single-Platter 1.8-inch Hard Drives

If there’s one thing digital media consumers are supposed to want, it’s more storage capacity in ever-smaller packages—and Toshiba’s Storage Device Division is willing to comply, today announcing a new series of 1.8-inch hard drives that manage to cram 160 GB of storage onto a single platter. The 1.8-inch form factor is commonly used in devices like portable media players and camcorders that need a large amount of storage in a compact, power-sipping form factor. Although flash-based storage is becoming de rigueur on mobile phones and many media players—and flash-based SSD drives are becoming more common in notebook computers—small hard disk drives still hold the edge in the cost-and-capatcity argument.

"With the increasing demand for anytime content access and capture, we continue to see healthy opportunity for 1.8-inch HDDs in portable devices," said Toshiba SSD marketing VP Maciek Brzeski, in a statement. "Our 1.8-inch produces have fueled innovation in a variety of markets, and have been installed in many products that are today common household items."

The new MKxx34GAL series sport a 8 MB of onboard cache, a 4,200 rpm rotational speed, a 15ms average seek time, and support transfer rates of up to 100MB/s. Although the devices consume up to 1.8 watts when spinning up, they run at under 1 watt when seeking, writing, and reading data, just 0.4 and 0.3 watts in active and low power idle modes, and just 0.7 watts when sleeping. The drives connect to devices using a standard Parallel ATA connection, and put out just 15 dB of noise when operating.

Apple just announced a 160 GB version of its iPod classic; Toshiba didn’t saw whether the device is using its new 160 GB drive.

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