Your slow-spinning hard drive won't perform well, right? Well, Seagate's new Barracuda LP hard drive turns that old adage on its head. The desktop hard drive, that Seagate claims is the highest-performing low-power hard drive available, spins at 5,900 and ships in 1 TB, 1.5 TB, and 2 TB versions.
Typical desktop hard drives spin at 7,200 RPM, but use 50% more power than the Barracuda. Seagate's Barracuda is both quieter and has higher PCMark05 ratings than competing 5,400 drives from Samsung and Western Digital. The key to its high marks is a balance between ultra slow-spinning 5,400 RPM drives and normal 7,200 RPM drives—5,900 RPM is a sweet spot between the two, according to Seagate.
The Barracuda doesn't have the performance power for, say, professional movie-editing, but it has more than enough for most computer users. Seagate's drive is aimed squarely at the low-power green PC market, so we won't see the Barracuda in power-intensive computers anyway. It's energy-efficiency—3 watts of power while idling, 5.6 watts while operating—translates into an extended life for the drive. Efficiency is achieved through a number of measures, including low temperature, low noise, and of course, speed reduction. Stay tuned in the coming months for an external drive version of the Barracuda.