If you’re the kind of photographer who likes to archive every single Raw file and video clip they’ve ever shot, Seagate’s upcoming new 18 and 20TB hard drives might just be what you’ve been waiting for.
According to a report from AnandTech, drive maker Seagate has confirmed it will release an 18TB hard drive in the first half of 2020 and follow up with a 20TB unit in the second half of the year.
The 18TB drive will come with the same nine-platter design already used in Seagate’s 16TB Exos drive and use conventional magnetic recording (CMR). However, shingled magnetic recording (SMR) will be used for the 20TB drive. This technology increases the storage density, and therefore capacity, of a drive by partly overlapping the magnetic storage tracks. This leaves the previous track narrower but allows more data to fit within the same platter.
Dave Mosley, CEO of Seagate, said the following:
“We are preparing to ship 18 TB drives in the first half of calendar year 2020 to maintain our industry capacity leadership. We are also driving areal density leadership with our revolutionary HAMR technology, which enables Seagate to achieve at least 20% areal density CAGR over the next decade. We remain on track to ship 20TB HAMR drives in late calendar year 2020.
Currently, Seagate’s largest drives offer a 16TB capacity and are aimed at the enterprise and NAS markets. The new 20TB drive will also use heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR) technology which temporarily heats the disk material, allowing for data to be written to smaller regions.
This much storage likely won’t come cheap. Seagate’s current 16TB Exos drive will set you back around $420, so the new versions will, at least at the time of launch, likely be more expensive than that.