Saturday December 10, 2016

Western Digital Announces Ultrastar He12 12 TB And 14 TB HDDs

These are expected to begin shipping out in the first half (12 TB) and middle (14 TB) of next year, although the larger version is more of an exclusive that will be available to select clients only, being a host-managed SMR HDD. Internals have gone through a redesign to fit an additional platter, but general specifications (e.g., transfer rate of up to 255 MB/s, average latency of 4.16 ms) remain consistent.

The HGST Ultrastar He12 HDD can store up to 12 TB of data, whereas its version based on shingled magnetic recording technology has a capacity of 14 TB (note, both are under the He12 brand). It is noteworthy that to increase the capacity of the HDD, Western Digital had to increase both the amount of platters in the new drives as well as their areal density. The HGST Ultrastar He12 is built upon a completely new platform featuring eight platters, up from seven inside previous-gen drives that use Western Digital’s HelioSeal technology. The manufacturer does not reveal a lot about the new HDDs, but it looks like as the company has learned more about helium-filled drives and managed to squeeze eight platters into a 3.5" HDD to increase capacity.