Western Digital unveils 120GB SSD + 1TB HDD dual drive

By Jos
Nov 25, 2013
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  1. We’ve heard of hybrid drives before which combine ample storage capacity with limited amounts of NAND flash for caching purposes. The result is a nice speed bump but not quite the same as an actual SSD. Today Western Digital is...

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  2. Blkfx1

    Blkfx1 TechSpot Addict Posts: 866   +167

    It would be nice if the drive was 7200RPM instead of 5400RPM. I like the concept, though. I will need something for my laptop soon.
    Burty117 and H3llion like this.
  3. amstech

    amstech TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 761   +178

    This is nice because most laptops (even ones costing over $1000) only have one drive bay. My L702X has 2 drive bays and when it comes time for a restore I am going to nab a 120GB SSD & setup my current 500GB 7.2K in the second bay as storage.
  4. Vrmithrax

    Vrmithrax TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,259   +216

    This is exactly the configuration I have been waiting for since SSDs were first introduced. The hybrid drive had my hopes up until I found out it wasn't truly separate drives, but this one fits exactly what I hoped would come about. Heck, I was originally just hoping for a dual drive in a 3.5" form factor, but they went a step above and got it into a 2.5" for laptops.
  5. 9Nails

    9Nails TechSpot Paladin Posts: 904   +72

    This is perfect for laptops who want the speed boost of a solid state disk plus need large amounts of local storage. Put your OS on the 128 SSD drive and any critical applications. And everything else on the 1TB drive.

    Those of us who want high performance SDD+7.2K RPM will probably have to wait. But it's a good compromise in one 2.5" disk space for the rest of us.
  6. treeski

    treeski TechSpot Guru Posts: 864   +128

    I think I'm missing something here. Why would the HDD be unusable?
  7. OneSpeed

    OneSpeed Newcomer, in training Posts: 97   +20

    It would only be useful if the thickness is 7 mm. in today's laptops, there really isn't room for 9.5 mm drives. After saying that, I'd prefer a pure SSD drive in any laptops because most laptops are inherently slow.
    St1ckM4n likes this.
  8. Squuiid

    Squuiid Newcomer, in training Posts: 20

    Perfect for the PS4.
  9. Squuiid

    Squuiid Newcomer, in training Posts: 20

    Oh, maybe not....

    "by default only the SSD portion is usable but WD supplies a USB drive with drivers to make the hard drive portion accessible as well."
  10. OneSpeed

    OneSpeed Newcomer, in training Posts: 97   +20

    Yea. I think you need 1 partition for the PS4. In the WD, it would be partitioned as OS, and DATA.
  11. Vrmithrax

    Vrmithrax TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,259   +216


    They have a driver workaround to access the HD portion. It's connected as a SATA drive, which means the system is expecting 1 drive per SATA connection, and this hybrid onboard controller probably has some type of SATA splitter circuitry, almost like a mini hub. Without the driver to let the system know how to talk with that hub/splitter, the system would initially only see the first drive in the line.
    treeski likes this.
  12. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TechSpot Booster Posts: 239   +27

    I think its requiring software for both drives to work over the same sata bus, usually you only have one drive per sata port.
    treeski likes this.
  13. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,096   +1,186

    It would be nice if the HDD was physically addressed after the SSD. I'm not a big fan of hybrid drives. Treat the SSD as its own partitioned volume and the HDD as a second partition within the same volume. Or better yet allow the consumer to choose which configuration they desire. Whether it be hybrid mode or independent mode. Wait is that what Western Digital has just done? :)
    Blkfx1 likes this.
     
  14. treeski

    treeski TechSpot Guru Posts: 864   +128


    Okay, got it. I guess I was thrown off with the "default" keyword, which made me think it was intended to be that way.
  15. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TechSpot Booster Posts: 239   +27

    umm... thats what this does, thats what makes it unique
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  16. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 1,086   +154

    You can get a 1TB SSD for ~$600 (maybe less?) nowadays so they are available but still pricey.
    9Nails likes this.
  17. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 3,197   +555

    Some nice marketing bollocks again. Where is the quoted speed result coming from? If we assume it's set up 'default', then only the SSD portion is usable, which means those test results are pathetic.
  18. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder TechSpot Guru Posts: 1,856   +400

    Yea, I agree on that.

    Though this is a cool concept, the problem right here is that price tag on the end: $300 (Ok 299)

    I mean I understand they are trying for mobile and making this essentially two drives in one bay, however I feel that at that point a hybrid would work just as well for less. Or as many laptops where people generally benefit in this day and age from the speed of an SSD with the need of that much extra space, a second bay is available. I mean when 300 bucks will get me a Samsung 840 pro 256gb drive and a 1tb 7200RPM 2.5 drive, that's a better option for most mobile users anyways.

    If it really comes down to space, a hybrid drive might be a cheaper and just as good of an option. But this is a great idea if the price drops down a bit.
  19. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,096   +1,186

    The intended use is probably for Netbooks and Tablets, where there is only one drive option available. Some may say just get an external drive for storage and put an SSD in the device. Others may want their storage and speed all in the same device. Like all hybrid drives, they have a place and that place is not where two drives can be used.
  20. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder TechSpot Guru Posts: 1,856   +400

    Well yes I can see that, but on something like a netbook, does anyone really need/want that much space. The point of a netbook for general usage is normally for a traveling companion and having over a tb of space seems like a pointless endeavor at least to me.

    The other thing is that on a netbook, generally they don't use even a normal 2.5 drive anyway, its always some micro version drives and such. Even crammed into a 2.5inch drive, this still to me would feel like a waste except on a few exceptions like something along the ultra book lines. So if were shooting for ultra books with this, that's cool, but to me that's the only line up at the moment that would really benefit from something like this.

    Just an Opinion.
  21. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,096   +1,186

    And some might prefer having a netbook/tablet instead of a full size PC. In those cases they may want as much space as can be afforded. I personally know people that have switched to these small devices for all their processing needs.

    Edit: I do get what you are saying about the 1.8" or smaller drives.
  22. It could be good for older notebooks that can only have one 2.5" drive.
    Nearly everything I'm seeing lately has mSata SSD's installed.
    On gaming notebooks there's upto 3 MSata SSD'd in stripe with an additional 2.5" HDD for storage so it makes this WD Hybrid redundant...
  23. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 1,086   +154

    Yes traveling academics for sure. PCIe based drives like the ones found in MacBook airs are approx 3in x 1in and up to 512GB so that covers the small form factor too.

    Let's face it - 320GB drives are what we had been using in laptops years ago. People now have phones with 8+megapixel cameras. They take large photos and videos. It's not intense processing stuff but it takes a lot of space.
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  24. nazartp

    nazartp TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 198   +7

    Most notebooks also have only one HDD and you need to swap optical drive out to put the second one in. If you are traveling with kids, likely some of the DVDs are traveling with you. From my personal perspective, I shoot a DSLR that creates RAW files anywhere between 25 and 50 MB in size. A good trip brings back anywhere between 2,000 - 4,000 pictures. I like the idea of the drive, but do not like the price. I would grudgingly buy one if it was in a $200 - $250 range.
  25. GhostRyder

    GhostRyder TechSpot Guru Posts: 1,856   +400

    Yes, thats true, with space becoming an ever amounting concern because of the increase in resolution on pictures, videos, and other forms of media, we burn through space on drives faster than we care to imagine. I still remember feeling like a boss when back in 2005 I had 80gb HDD inside my rig. Now I need a 512gb SSD and a 1tb HDD for data minimum and im more than halfway on both as it is.

    Yea your right on the marker as usual, I get the need for mobile because most of my family and people I meet in this day and age grab a laptop over a desktop. I just feel that at this price when a netbook or ultrabook is already at a 400 dollar price point, a 300+ dollar drive like this feels a bit overpriced especially considering the performance and the fact the mechanical part is 5400RPM. I mean I have a gaming laptop (MSI GT70) that had a 7200RPM drive and it had 750gb of space and was plenty fast. I put an SSD in because I had the bay (120gb Vertex 3) and the speed went up, but mostly in the boot and gaming side. For everyday means I dont see really any difference (When using the SSD I mean). I have a friend using a hybrid drive and its performance is awesome for alot cheaper. Thats just my view point on this.


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