CES NEWS: Hitachi and Asus join forces to take more music and HD movies on the move

Bit smug about that shiny new portable player with its 80GB onboard storage? Think again - hard-drive manufacturer Hitachi is launching a 2.5in drive capable of storing 500GB at next week's Consumer Electronics Show.

And it's joined up with Asus to deliver a laptop computer with 1TB of onboard storage - just the thing for carrying all your movies around with you - also to be launched at the show.

The new Asus M70S (left) uses a pair of the Hitachi Travelstar 5K500 drives, giving enough storage capacity for 1000 hours of video, or 250,000 songs. It comes with the option of a 17in widescreen WUXGA display of 1920x1200-pixel resolution, meaning it's fully capable of showing HD content, and also has a built-in digital/analogue TV tuner, with recording capability.

The new drive has been created by installing another platter, bringing the total to three, and using strategies designed to pack data more tightly into the space available. In addition. Hitachi engineers have included new vibration sensors to keep the drive's read/write head functioning correctly.

The company points out that these are required due to the ever more sophisticated sound systems being built into laptop computers, which can create a lot of vibration when music is played loudly.

The 500GB drive is thicker than conventional 2.5in designs, thanks to that extra platter, and thus can't be used as a drop-in replacement in existing machines. But Hitachi seems confident notebook manufacturers will re-engineer their products to accomodate it, so much emphasis is there on storage capacity.

Technorati Tags: Asus, hard disk, HD, Hitachi

Andrew has written about audio and video products for the past 20+ years, and been a consumer journalist for more than 30 years, starting his career on camera magazines. Andrew has contributed to titles including What Hi-Fi?, GramophoneJazzwise and Hi-Fi CriticHi-Fi News & Record Review and Hi-Fi Choice. I’ve also written for a number of non-specialist and overseas magazines.