Seagate has unveiled its newest HDD, dubbed the Seagate Mach.2 Exos 2X14. This gargantuan 14 TB hard drive is the quickest in the world, rocking a 524 MB/s throughput, putting it shoulder-to-shoulder with SATA SSDs.
The Mach.2 is the first dual-actuator drive produced by Seagate – something the company has been working on for a while now. Dual-actuator drives feature two separate read/write head actuators instead of a single one. The advantage of this type of hard drive is that it can practically double the performance of traditional 3.5 inch HDDs.
This is the first HDD we’ve seen that can reach the speed level of SSDs. Before Seagate’s announcement, the idea of HDDs going toe-to-toe with SSD was practically a pipe-dream. The quickest hard drives we had previously come across were mostly capped at around 200 MB/s read-write speeds.
Sure, the Mach.2 can only reach low-medium end SATA SSDs and can’t possibly match NVMe ones (which feature throughputs measured in the thousands), but it’s an impressive feat of engineering nonetheless.
Note that with great power comes great power consumption. According to Ars Technica’s calculations, the Mach.2 uses 144% more power than traditional HDDs. However, this is still more efficient than using run-of-the-mill drives, since you’ll be getting 200% performance in exchange.
Judging by Seagate’s datasheet that showcases the Mach.2’s specs, the company believes the best uses for this powerhouse of a drive are for hyperscale applications, big data applications, data centers, centralized surveillance, and so forth. In practical terms, Seagate’s target audience for this drive are owners of huge sprawling data centers and mega-corporations, not people wanting to load Warzone faster.
Currently, the drive is only available to select customers. What this means in practise is that only enterprise-level businesses can order the Mach.2 drive directly from Seagate. The general public will have to wait for now.