Toshiba has announced a new family of 3.5" hard drives for home and SOHO NAS devices. The new MN-series HDDs have up to 8 TB of capacity and support some of the features found in Toshiba’s enterprise-class hard drives. The performance of the new HDDs is similar to the performance of high-end hard drives from other makers, all due to increased areal density.

The Toshiba MN-series family includes 4 TB, 6 TB and 8 TB models with a SATA 6 Gb/s interface (note that the higher-end model supports the SATA 3.3, whereas the others are compliant with the SATA 3.1). The HDDs feature 7200 RPM spindle speed, are equipped with 128 MB buffers, and use rotational vibration (RV) sensors that detect and compensate for transient vibrations in multi-bay NAS and server environments - this aims to ensure that the drives deliver consistent performance. Speaking of performance, Toshiba declares up to 230 MB/s sustained data transfer rate as well as 4.17 ms average latency time for the top-of-the-line 8 TB model.

The new drives are based on several PMR platters (perpendicular magnetic recording) but are not filled with helium. (Helium can be used to increase the number of disks per drive beyond six). The Toshiba MN05ACA800 therefore uses six 1.33 TB platters, and the other drives use either fewer platters or ones with a lower capacity (as well as lower areal density).

Toshiba MN-Series HDDs
  MN05ACA800 MN05ACA600 MN04ACA400
Capacity 8 TB 6 TB 4 TB
RPM 7200 RPM
Interface SATA 3.3 6 Gbps SATA 3.1 6 Gbps
DRAM Cache 128 MB
Data Transfer Speed
230 MB/s 205 to 230 MB/s 195 to 205 MB/s
MTBF 1 million hours
Rated Annual Workload (read and write) 180 TB/year
Acoustics (Seek) 33 dB 30 dB
Power Operating 9.2 W 10.1 W 9.6 W
Active Idle 6.2 W 6.7 W 5.2 W
Warranty unknown

The MN-series HDDs from Toshiba are rated for 24/7 availability, with 1 million hours MTBF as well as a 180 TB/year workload rating. While the MTBF and the annual workload ratings are considerably lower when compared to enterprise-class hard drives, the MN-series still offer higher endurance compared to regular desktop HDDs.  

The Toshiba MN-series HDDs will be available in the coming weeks and months, but the manufacturer has not published its recommended prices just yet.

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Source: Toshiba

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  • ddriver - Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - link

    Any void warranty on a failed product means more profit.
  • ZeDestructor - Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - link

    They've always had em in a sense, they've just never been disclosed as they are being now.

    I mean, it's a mechanical device that vibrates on it's own with a good selection of bearings.. eventually it will fail, and you can be damned sure that the HDD vendors have that modeled somewhere.
  • Xajel - Thursday, February 16, 2017 - link

    It's always there, specially for the enterprise segment where these info are critical, regular consumers in the second hand just started to pay attention to these details in last few years, I guess as the drives are getting larger; a failure means a lot of data is gone... and now more SOHO users are using NAS's also makers like WD, Seagate, HGST and now Toshiba are making those NAS dedicated drives for high-endurances...
  • Michael Bay - Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - link

    Those workloads are truly woeful. To have all that storage space and not to be able to use it properly, nice.
  • repoman27 - Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - link

    It's a spinning disk drive. One full drive write would take 10 hours anyway, and that's 100% sequential. There's no way those things could even hit that number of drive writes per day with a purely 4K random workload. Do you tend to write > 500 GB daily to a single HDD?
  • Michael Bay - Friday, February 17, 2017 - link

    If it`s a backup drive, easily.
  • repoman27 - Friday, February 17, 2017 - link

    Maybe you missed the "for home and SOHO NAS devices" part then. Not sure how many clients you've got backing up to a single target, but unless you're editing video, 500 GB / day is thoroughly adequate for home or SOHO NAS scenarios. You'd be lucky to complete 1 full drive write to an 8 GB HDD in 24 hours over GbE anyway.
  • AbRASiON - Wednesday, February 15, 2017 - link

    As an owner of 6 Toshiba 7200RPM drives (and 4 more that were returned as faulty) I can ASSURE YOU, I have absoloutely, zero interest in purchasing any more 7200RPM disks for my NAS. 0 interest whatsoever.

    I would rather lose a paltry 5 to 15% performance and not have HOT and NOISY disks which love to fail. I'm not doing a cookout here, I'm trying to store data.

    If I wanted bloody performance, I'd install an SSD or 6 in my NAS, not a 7200RPM drive. Why on earth do these things still exist?
  • bananaforscale - Thursday, February 16, 2017 - link

    They are cheaper than SSDs and you can saturate gigabit Ethernet with one mechanical drive. Why would you spend on an SSD RAID NAS unless you have something faster than gigabit net?
  • jabber - Thursday, February 16, 2017 - link

    Basically some of us just want a cool and near silent box to dump loads of data safely for a time when we might need it again in the future. Therefore, as long as we get a reasonable transfer speed we are golden. Not everyone works in PIXAR or needs cutting edge or no holds barred performance. Be interesting to have say a RAID10 box using 4200rpm HDDs.

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