Western Digital has released the 20TB variant of its Red Pro NAS HDD for a market price of $499.99. This is the third 20TB offering for storage hoarders from the company. Previous SKUs include the WD Gold 20TB and the Ultrastar DC HC560 20 TB. There is one key difference though. This is the first 20TB drive aimed at the mainstream audience, while the other two were primarily for the data center and enterprise segments.
The WD Red Pro 20TB features 64GB of NAND flash memory and 512MB of DRAM cache, allowing for peak transfer rates of 268MB/s. Like its lower-capacity brethren, it comes in a 3.5″ form factor, leveraging CMR recording technology, and OptiNAND to boost transfer rates. Let’s keep in mind that CRM stands for conventional magnetic recording. Unlike SMR or shingled magnetic recording, this is the de-facto technology powering HDDs since the dawn of the 21st century. Data is written on magnetic tracks that are side-by-side, and do not overlap. The write operations on one track do not affect its neighbors which makes it ideal for write-intensive SMB workloads such as ZFS.
WD achieves the 20TB mark by shoving nine 2.2TB ePMR (energy-assisted perpendicular magnetic recording) platters into the Helium-filled shell. It has a power draw of up to 7W, a workload rate of 300TB/year, and 5 years of limited warranty to back it up. The drive is now available for purchase on WD’s official website with a sticker price of $499.