WD Expands Desktop Hard Drive Line to 6TB Capacity

Shipping now, the 3.5-inch, 7,200-rpm drive is aimed at gamers and professionals who need high-performance desktop systems and workstations.

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Storage specialist WD, formerly known as Western Digital, announced the expansion of its WD Red Pro hard drive line with the release of 5TB and 6TB capacities. The WD Red Pro family is suited for network-attached storage (NAS) systems having up to 16 drive bays and serving businesses with more expansive storage needs than the standard WD Red drives.

The company also announced the expansion of its Black line of performance hard drives with up to 6TB capacity, which retail for just under $300.

Shipping now, the 3.5-inch, 7,200-rpm drive is aimed at gamers and professionals who need high-performance desktop systems and workstations.

Black hard drives combine 7,200-rpm spin speed, 128MB cache, dual-stage actuator technology, Serial ATA 6G-bps interface, and an integrated dual processor, and they are up to 29 percent faster than the previous Black 4TB version in maximum data rate throughput.

In addition, StableTrac technology, available on the 2TB and larger models, secures the motor shaft inside the hard drive to increase reliability and help reduce the impact of system-induced vibrations from other components.

By stabilizing the platters inside, the Black drive results in more accurate tracking in a particular sector during read-and-write operations.

"The WD Black hard drives are designed for creative professionals, gamers and consumers who are looking for hard drive performance, capacity and an industry-leading five-year limited warranty," Darrin Bulik, WD’s director of marketing, told eWEEK. "For our internal component drive, WD puts quite a bit of thought into the design and aesthetics of our hard drives. That being said, since our internal hard drives are typically installed in a system, WD has to balance cost, performance, environmental attributes—shock, vibe, cooling—to deliver a high-quality, highly reliable product."

The drives also feature dynamic cache technology, which helps improve caching algorithms in real time to better allocate and optimize cache between reads and writes.

This movement of cache for read data helps to reduce congestion and increase overall performance.

"For our more professional and discriminating WD Black customers, offering a five-year warranty reflects WD's commitment to customers who place the highest demands on their equipment and the level of engineering and design that we have implemented in this drive," Bulik noted.

Finally, a dual-core processor offers twice the processing capability that a single-core processor does, which maximizes drive performance for faster read-and-write speeds.

"Many of our WD Black customers are creative professionals and gamers, both of [whom] drive a lot of content and require high performance to manage that data," Bulik said. "We will continue to engage our customer base to make sure we are offering products that provide the features, technologies and attributes the customers are looking for."