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Seagate Momentus 5400  (Source: Seagate Technology)
Seagate's latest notebook offerings, 3 capacities with hybrid NAND flash technology, does not currently produce promised results

The first Seagate hybrid hard disk drives are now shipping but the reviews will disappoint. Seagate first announced the Momentus 5400 PSD line of hybrid 2.5-inch hard disk drives this past June promising a performance boost based on the hybrid design using NAND flash memory for use with the Windows Vista operating system.

The Momentus 5400 PSD line is shipping in capacities of 80 GB, 120 GB, and 160 GB of magnetic storage combined with 256 MB of flash. The manufacturer's specifications state a 44 MB/sec sustained stransfer rate and 8 MB of that oldschool cache. The average seek time is 12.5 ms with an average latency of 5.6 ms. Combined with Microsoft Windows Vista's ReadyDrive technology hybrid hard drives are supposed to improve system performance, hold increased reliability, and reduce power consumption and/or increase laptop battery life.

However, the first impressions of the first hybrid hard disk drives are leaving consumers with those familiar "empty promise" feelings. Is Seagate's product to blame?

Melissa Johnson, a product manager for Seagate, stated that the cause of the lack of performance improvements over the original flavor of the Momentus 5400 line was in the BIOS and operating system drivers.

Earlier this year, before any hybrid hard drives were available to the general public, Lenovo bloggers made bold claims that first generation hybrid hard drives would be a bust. So far, it seems those claims were true. We can only hope these issues are resolved or the entire idea of a hybrid hard disk drive may become another technology that never could.




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