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Fireball lct – world's quietest desktop HDD

Quantum shouts it from the highest hills

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Quantum has hauled in a "renowned independent acoustical consulting firm" to confirm that it has the world's quietest desktop hard drive in the form of the Fireball lct. The vendor bases its claims on sound benchmarking tests conducted by Charles M Salter Associates (CSA) of San Francisco on 5400rpm drives from Quantum, Fujitsu, IBM, Maxtor, Samsung, Seagate, and Western Digital. When the Fireball lct is idle, the average decibel reading is 28 (presumably the power's switched on), the same level as someone whispering and around the same as the noise level of a "typical quiet living room" (which comes in at 30 decibels). In read and write mode the Fireball lct's average decibel level is 32 decibels. According to Quantum, it's nearest rival measured 32 decibels when idle and 35 decibels when active. The average PC hard drive produces 36-48 decibels when in use. The differences are greater than they -- ahem -- sound: decibel measurements increase exponentially (just like the Richter scale for earthquakes), rather than linearly. Quantum says it will incorporate its proprietary acoustic technology (called Quiet Drive Technology) into its 7200rpm Atlas V, and its Atlas 10K series high performance drives. Quiet drives are an essential feature for the new class of home entertainment devices requiring local storage. We wouldn't put up with the HDD "hum" in our living room, so why should we put up with that horrible noise in our offices? It's good to see vendors extending quiet drives to the desktop PC market. This strikes us as a much more meaningful performance improvement than shaving a millisecond or two off average seek time. ®

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