I’ve been wanting to start tracking this for a while; we’ll see how well it works. Solid state disks have been showing up more and more and getting cheaper and cheaper; but they were still a good deal more expensive than traditional “spinning rust” hard disks. Then, the unfortunate Thai floods started in July (and are apparently some areas of Thailand are still flooded), affecting both Seagate and Western Digital hard drive factories. Since those two companies now encompass most of the world’s hard disk manufacturers — Western Digital is on track to finish acquiring Hitachi’s manufacturing, and Toshiba, Fujitsu, and Samsung are still there but represent a relatively small portion of the market — it had a huge impact on the price of spinning drives, and has already started affecting availability. In late October, drives started doubling in price, and people started making runs on stores; in late November, it was hard to find certain drives at NewEgg or Fry’s.
So here’s my attempt to start comparing drives, both raw street price and by cost/GB, to see when SSDs become a cost-effective option against spinning disks. We’ll see if it actually happens this year.
As of 1/15/2012, we’ve still got a ways to go:
|2TB||Spinning SATA||Consumer||Hitachi||7K2000 2TB||$160||8.00|
|2TB||Spinning SATA||Enterprise||Hitachi||A7K2000 2TB||$450||22.5|
|3TB||Spinning SATA||Enterprise||Hitachi||7K3000 3TB||$652||21.73|
(Note, these aren’t price guarantees; they’re going to fluctuate constantly. The price links are to the searches where I found the prices listed. I’ll try to update once every couple of weeks to see where things go.)