It's one of the strangest parts about computing; as hard drive sizes increase, one of the first reactions is "what would I ever do with that much space?" – usually followed by "I'll find something to do with it."
Western Digital (News - Alert), meanwhile, announced earlier today that its Black hard drive line is now available in four terabytes, giving us a whole new reason to wonder what we'll do with a whole lot of storage in one place.
This isn't Western Digital's first four-terabyte hard drive – the company has had them for some time now as internal drives geared toward enterprise use – but it is the first one it has brought out for the consumer.
The drive itself is an internal hard drive, and there's no word as yet on when this one will go external. But four-terabyte external drives have been part of the slate in the MyBook line, which runs on a 7200-rpm mechanism. It packs in a 64-gigabyte cache with a 6-gigabits-per-second interface, a pair of processors, and a pair of actuators.
Previously, the Black line topped out at two terabytes, with smaller sizes available – 1.5 and one terabyte, and 500 gigabyte – but now the line has a new ceiling.
The Black line may be large enough to handle most applications effectively, but it's not the fastest; that distinction goes to the 10,000-rpm VelociRaptor for workstations. But at 7200-rpm, the Black should be fast enough for those who want speed in their drives.
The Black is also not intended to act as the new drive Western Digital announced back in September, the one that was full of helium.
Those interested in getting their hands on the massive storage offered with the Western Digital Black hard drive line, though, can do so for $339, complete with a five-year warranty.
There's no denying that four terabytes is a lot of storage. By way of comparison, the average DVD holds around four gigabytes of data (generally topping out at 4.7 gigabytes), so having multiples of that on hand would be an entire video library for most people.
With video applications on the rise and games still a major part of the computing landscape, having a big hard drive on hand is going to be vital to the overall performance of the computing environment as well. Western Digital's Black line will likely be a big part of that for some time to come.
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Edited by Braden Becker