If you use hard drives or generally computer storage, you must have heard of Western Digital. You might not have been aware that the company actually uses its full name as a brand for enterprise products only.
SanDisk Professional: An all-new brand for premium storage
Today, in its Flash Perspective event, the storage maker announced the all-new SanDisk Professional brand that focuses on “premium storage solutions for content creators and professionals.” Western Digital acquired SanDisk in mid-2016 to get into the SSD market.
Western Digital says the new brand will offer a range of purpose-built tools to harmonize every step of that process where “content that’s captured or created needs to be saved, transferred, off-loaded, shared and archived.”
During this launch, San Disk Professional was introduced with four new products.
PRO-CINEMA CFexpress VPG400
An all-new professional-grade, rugged CFexpress card for videographers and cinematographers, specifically those needing superior, uninterrupted performance.
The VPG400 supposedly delivers video recording at a minimum of 400MB/s, enough to keep up with the demands of any videography, broadcast, and cinema applications.
The new card is expected to be available this summer, with pricing being announced then.
Four new PRO-READER devices that feature a USB-C interface with USB 3.2 Gen 2 speed (10Gbps).
Designed to work with the latest and most common camera media, including CFastTM, CFexpress, RED Mini-Mag, CF, microSDTM, and SDTM cards. The series of PRO-READERS are expected to be available this summer.
This new 4-bay reader docking station can bridge capture and ingest with a truly scalable offloading solution. The new docking station is said to save critical time and money on multi-camera productions for professional users.
The PRO-DOCK 4, expected to be available later this summer, can handle up to four simultaneous card offloads.
G-DRIVE rugged external drives
With SanDisk Professional, the G-Drive brand, initially part of Hitachi Global Storage Technologies that became part of Western Digital in 2012, nows has a few members, the new 4TB G-DRIVE ArmorLock Encrypted NVMe SSD.
On top of that, existing G-Drive products, including the G-GRAID and G-GRAID SHUTTLE, also improve. They now use enterprise-grade Ultrastar internal hard drives and enterprise-grade RAID solutions and support both Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C with USB 3.2 Gen 1 speed (10Gbps).
All of these are slated to come out in June 2021.
WD BLACK gets three new drives
Western Digital first announced the WD BLACK brand almost two years ago and ever since has released impressive internal and external drives to meet the demand of gamers. Examples include the WD BLACK P50 or WD BLACK P10.
(The WD BLACK SN700 NVMe SSD had been released before the brand was established and later became part of the family.)
Today, the company announced three more.
WD BLACK SN750 SE: WD’s first PCIe Gen 4 NVMe SSD
As the upgrade the SN700 drive, the new WD BLACK SN750 SE SSD features PCIe Gen 4 (backward compatible with PCIe Gen3) — it’s the de-facto rival of Samsung 980 PRO.
However, the new drive is DRAM-less but is still slated to deliver read speeds of up to 3,600MB/s. On top of that, WD says it’ll new up to 30% less power consumption than its predecessor.
The new SN750 SSD comes with WD BLACK Dashboard software that monitors the drive’s health and helps with firmware updates and other options.
WD says the new SSD comes in 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB capacities, with the retail prices starting at $54.99. It’ll be available in Summer 2021.
WD BLACK D30 Game Drive SSD: Latest console-oriented portable drive
This is a new portable SSD that can deliver up to 900MB/s in reading speed. The drive is designed to quickly add large and fast storage space to a game console. It has a cool rugged design and comes with a stand complement to any gaming system.
WD says the D30 portable SSD comes in 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB capacities and starts at $89.99. It is available now.
WD BLACK D30 Game Drive SSD for Xbox
This is a special version of the D30 above made specifically for the XBOX. On top of what the D30 can do, this one comes with an XBOX logo and includes a 1-month XBOX Game Pass Ultimate membership that allows access to 100+ games on both the console and PC.
WD Black D30 Game Drive SSD for XBOX costs $10 more compared to the regular D30. It’s available in June 2021.
Update: The review of the WD Black D30 is available here.
This is by far the biggest news from Western Digital for 2021 and the past few years.
The new and arguably exciting products announced today will offer consumers more options for their storage space, to say the least. It also reaffirms the interesting fact that while consumers are moving towards flash storage, the good old hard drive will still be relevant for a long time in the professional storage space.
Check back soon for the full reviews of some that are mentioned here.