Seagate's newly upgraded Momentus XT drive now sports 750GB of storage and 70 per cent faster performance. The drive claims boot-up and application launch speeds comparable to full SSD's despite only having 8GB of solid-state storage for only $US245.
Released last year, the first-generation Momentus drive promised PC users what sounded like a miracle: they could have the blazing-fast performance of SSDs at a fraction of the cost and without the reliability problems of solid state storage. Solid state drives are fast, but unfortunately their storage cells wear out faster than the storage on hard drives. SSDs are also far more expensive than HDDs.
Seagate's solution to this problem was to make a solid state "hybrid" drive which actually means that a bulk of the drive's capacity is a good old-fashioned hard drive. The key is Seagate's "Adaptive Memory" technology which learns a your behaviour and stores the most used files in the solid state portion of the drive to take advantage of the faster performance for the stuff you actually use the most often, and stores everything else on the lower-priority hard drive. The technology is so good that it minimises the number of times that you write to the solid state storage and thereby increase its lifespan — Seagate even guarantees the drive for five years.
The newest Momentus iteration sports larger 750GB capcity — compared the prior 500GB max — and twice as much flash storage. The new Momentus XT also carries some new technologies to help the drive learn your behaviour faster and a special storage location for your machine's boot files—Seagate promises boot times three times faster than an HDD. The second-generation Momentus XT is shipping now, and is available from major retailers. [Seagate]