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Everything posted by Mickey

  1. I think the problem is that CDRW drives take a sizable amount of current to run. That, combined with the relatively small amount of power the USB interface can supply, is probably why there aren't any (that I've seen, at least) which don't use an AC adapter. That's probably also why the batteries don't seem to last long.
  2. Mickey

    WD1000BB or WD1000JB?

    For your application, it doesn't sound worthwhile, at least not in terms of value. If you want the better performance and don't mind paying more for slight improvements, then go right ahead. OT: It has been quite a while since those aired, hasn't it?
  3. You're right; one day magnetic recording as we know it will get replaced with flash or some other solid-state storage. The odd thing is the date keeps getting pushed out and magnetic storage keeps chugging along. For all the folks that hate the slowness, the noise, the power consumption, the fragility, etc, etc, gosh darn it, there really isn't a practical substitute for the average user. And when the day comes HDD's with moving parts are dinosaurs, I hope I'm in another line of work. It was a lot of fun going to DiskCon and seeing the exhibit on drive technology through the years. Of course, it's a little scary when you can tell someone mismatched parts from different companies in the display. 8O
  4. Mickey

    WD 120BB Ka-Tunk sound

    The sound is likely the drive recalibrating itself. I wouldn't consider it normal, but I have an older WD drive that does that, too. It doesn't have anything critical on it, so I'm adopting a wait-and-see attitude, and otherwise it behaves just fine. Has the drive always done this? I know sometimes particular revisions of firmware can do odd things in drives. If it's not too much trouble, I'd suggest you RMA the drive. I'd definitely suggest doing an RMA if the drive gets worse or makes any other noises.
  5. Mickey

    Maxtor D740X = Quantum in disguise?

    It's a Quantum design, although I'm not sure who is doing volume manufacturing at this point for Maxtor. Before the merger, Maxtor had their own factories, but Quantum contracted through MKE. I think post-merger, they are using a combination of the two to have enough capacity. If MKE is still in the picture, then I would think any Quantum-based designs would be manufactured through them, as they would already have the assembly tooling in place. I can't imagine Maxtor spending the capital needed for all the assembly tooling if they didn't need to. BTW, the casting saying MKE only refers to who made the base casting, not who assembled the drive.
  6. Mickey

    Is my 75GXP sick?

    If it's obviously damaged from handling (dents, nicks, damaged labels), IBM could refuse to honor the RMA, as drive abuse voids the warranty. You'll likely either get another 75GXP or 60GXP as an RMA, as by all accounts there is plenty of stock left. IBM has no incentive to ship out 120GXP drives as replacements when they can sell them new for more.
  7. This is becoming an interesting thread. I put up the question about improving shock/vibration performance because it's not so much what the end-user does once it's in a case that concerns us, but what happens to the drive before it arrives. UPS and other shippers are not known for handling things gingerly, for example. Major OEM's are not gentle either when assembling drives into pre-built systems (one OEM griped about our drives dying and we went out to audit their site; it turns out the assemblers were slamming (!) drives onto the assembly table before mounting them). Many distributors/retailers don't know how to handle drives, either. Improved shock performance would mean you're much less likely to have a drive that is DOA. As for reading a CD/DVD to RAM while it spins up, I doubt the read element could do so before the spin speed stabilizes. I know a HDD can't do it (well, the heads don't fly below around 3K rpm for one thing) as the timing for the read channel is thrown off unless the speed is relatively stable. Who know, though? Today's dream could be tomorrow's product.
  8. A lot of these things are technically feasible, but not financially practical. Increasing cache and lowering access time fall in that category. Of course, this doesn't mean one of the HDD vendors won't come up with a way to do things that are also financially practical; I just don't know when it's going to happen. *sigh* Going to a smaller form factor gives the benefit of a much shorter stroke, thus it would reduce access time. It improves shock/vibration performance, usually lowers acoustics due to windage effects, produces less heat, and takes up less space. It also makes it more attractive to increase rpm. This is what I would like to see happen soon, though again, goodness "when" it will happen. The biggest drawback is drive capacity using 2.5 inch platters is about half that of 3.5 inch platters.
  9. Hmmm. I guess that means either all the folks claiming to have a WD1200JB are either misinformed or they're lying. Or, WD isn't "officially" releasing the 1200JB as a product, but doing test runs in retail and distribution to gauge interest. If there is enough interest, it'll be an official product. Or maybe someone at WD goofed? *puzzled*
  10. So far, I rather like it. I found if I didn't login first before writing a reply, the act of logging in swallowed my message and I'd have to retype it. Since then, I've done a quick copy/paste to a text file on my desktop before hitting the "Submit" button, just in case. The little emoticons are a nice touch, though I prefer typing them out as it's faster.
  11. Perhaps the difference between the WD1200JB and WD1000JB will be the same as that between the WD1200BB and WD1000BB. If it's a bigger difference, then it would seem increasing cache has a bigger effect the higher the areal density of the drive. Eugene, any word on when you'll be getting one to review (if at all)?
  12. I kinda think for a CD to spin that fast it'd either become a flywheel and go to pieces because of the stresses on the plastic, or the motor needed to make it go so fast would suck up so much power you'd need a huge housing plus beefy power supply. This is just a guess on my part, though. I don't know what kind of motors CD drives use. I think for such fast speeds, it'd make sense to go solid state. Mechanical objects can only move so fast. To get the faster access times you'd have to combine bigger and denser magnets, lighter actuator arms, and faster rotational speeds. I don't know the relative bang-for-buck ratios, but I do know magnets cost a lot of money. The transfer rate is dependent on areal density plus rotational speed. So many possible things to tweak for better performance. I wonder which way the industry will go? Or will each vendor go a different way? *shrugs*
  13. Mickey

    Isn't this nice? And 75GXP stuff

    I have to agree about that. Media has a set shelf-life. It doesn't work well if it's been sitting around in a warehouse too long. Besides, it's designed for a specific areal density. That implies that IBM must have had an older program using 15 GB/platter or better glass platters, or they wouldn't have old stock. Since SCSI drives usually lag IDE drives in areal density, it's unlikely to be leftovers from their Ultrastar line. It's the wrong size to be leftovers from the Travelstar line. Unless IBM bought a bunch of disks cheap from another HDD maker or media vendor, I don't see why they'd want to "recycle" media like that. The risks are too high and frankly, IBM doesn't need to cut costs in what they pay for raw materials because they can afford it.