New Western Digital 30TB HDDs could be on the horizon

Western Digital (WD) doesn’t expect hard disk drives (HDD) to go out of vogue anytime soon, and in fact hopes to deliver disks with capacities of up to 30TB in the not too distant future.

The company shared its HDD roadmap at the 5th Annual Virtual Wells Fargo TMT Summit Conference, according to Tom’s Hardware.

WD’s current portfolio of 20TB drives, the Ultrastar DC HC560 20TB, and the WD Gold 20TB, use nine 2.2TB platters, and it appears the company is getting ready to add a 10th platter to the mix.

HAMRing forward

“We are able to deliver our 20TB on nine platters, we can add the 10th, and we get another 2.2TB of storage,” remarked David Goeckeler, WD’s CEO, at the conference.

WD builds its current generation of large capacity drives with the help of energy-assisted perpendicular magnetic recording (ePMR), together with its proprietary OptiNAND technology, which integrates iNAND Universal Flash Storage (UFS) Embedded Flash Drive (EFD) with traditional spinning disks.

WD believes it can leverage on the technology and stretch it all the way to 30TB. But from 30TB and upwards, the company admits that it’ll need to rely on heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR) technology. 

“So we really have that staircase to take you to 30 terabytes and then you get on the hammer curve and you go for quite a bit longer. So I think it’s a really good story for – a really good road map for the hard drive industry,” remarked Goeckeler.

Interestingly, Seagate has just unveiled its 20TB conventional magnetic recording (CMR)-based HDDs, which are priced similar to WD’s 20TB portfolio. However, Seagate already has a portfolio of 20TB HDDs based on HAMR that it has made available only to select customers.

Looking to build a NAS? Check our list of the best NAS devices, and also take a look at these best high capacity drives

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Microsoft vs Google browser fight gets ugly with Edge pop-up Chrome diss

Microsoft has fired more flak at the Chrome browser, trying to persuade those who are attempting to download Google’s web browser that Edge is a superior piece of software.

As Neowin spotted, in the scenario that you are using Microsoft Edge, and you head over to download Google Chrome, Edge will serve a pop-up promoting itself – there are actually several messages which have been spotted on both Windows 10 and Windows 11 systems.

One of them insists: “Microsoft Edge runs on the same technology as Chrome, with the added trust of Microsoft.”

And another pop-up really goes for the throat, stating: “That browser is so 2008! Do you know what’s new? Microsoft Edge.”

Do you know what isn’t new? Microsoft badgering users who are already using one of its products (Windows) to use its other products like Edge and OneDrive – and this practice was getting old some time ago.


Analysis: The heavy hand of Microsoft

As we’ve said before, this kind of promotional activity inevitably puts us in mind of the nag-fest days when Windows 10 was first launched, and Microsoft set about trying to convince Windows 7 and 8 users to take the free upgrade. It felt unnecessarily heavy-handed back then, and it still does now.

I suppose one thing we can be thankful for – sort of – is at least the pop-ups are gaining something of a sense of humor. Calling Chrome ‘so 2008’ did elicit a chuckle from us, but we guess you could argue this perhaps serves to remind people that Google has been working to refine and hone its browser for 13 years now. And just because something is ‘new’ does not equate to it being good (that said, we do think Edge is a good browser, in fairness).

As for: “Microsoft Edge runs on the same technology as Chrome, with the added trust of Microsoft.” Well, it does indeed use Chromium – along with a number of other browsers – but as to the ‘trust’ of Microsoft, that’s a pretty bizarre angle to throw in. What is Microsoft trying to suggest? That Google is anything less than unimpeachable in the browser world? Tsk, tsk, whatever next…

To be honest, we are wondering what on earth Microsoft will do to promote Edge next, as the gloves are seemingly coming off. But the real shame here is that Edge promotes itself quite well on its own merits, and any perception of verging towards desperation to drive adoption will surely backfire.

Via Windows Central

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Zwilling Enfinigy table blender review

Italian design tempered by German precision, or German engineering suffused with an Italian love of luxury? Whichever way you look at it, this intersection of technological excellence and design simplicity is the result of a collaboration between one of the world’s oldest brands and Milanese design studio Matteo Thun & Partners; it’s also why you’ll have to pay £199 for this blender.

And that’s a sizeable investment.

In the box there’s a 1,200-watt motor unit in frost silver with a 1m dove grey power cord, a ribbed, transparent blender jug with integral handle, a lid with a 60ml measuring cup insert, a 23cm dark grey tamper and a red instruction manual.

Zwilling box contents

It is also worth noting that you get a five-year warranty upon purchase and registration of the blender, and you can opt to download the free Zwilling app, which has a database of original recipes.    

Zwilling blender design

The blender blade and housing is built into the bottom of the blending jug. There’s no unscrewing or unclicking to separate the two for washing or storage, which means fewer parts to get lost or damaged and fewer opportunities to slice your fingers by mistake. This setup also allows for the innovative “wave” base of the blender.

All blending functions are controlled by a 4.5cm diameter dial on the motor unit, so there are no separate buttons to press for pre-set programmes. When you assemble and plug in the blender, function icons around the dial illuminate, and you simply turn it to your chosen option and press – it’s a very neat and clean way of doing things.

Blender dial

And this appliance is robust: the motor unit alone weighs in at 2.8 kilos and the jug at 1.1 kilos, even the lid weighs 240g. Zwilling has manufactured this blender from quality materials, including TBAA-Tritan for the jug.

The design simplicity, the jug ribbing, the handle feel, the base and jug weight give this appliance the same high-quality, golden age feel that a KitchenAid mixer has, for example.

Using the Zwilling blender

Press the dial to turn the blender on, pop your ingredients into the jug, place the lid on, place the jug onto the ports on the motor unit – there’s no need to lock anything into place – and choose your programme by turning the dial before pressing it again to start.

There are five pre-set programmes: clean, ice, cocktails, smoothies, and pulse. There are also a number of incremental speeds that you can manually control yourself; the noise level increases significantly from low to high speeds, but that’s a 1200-watt motor for you.     

The jug measures in both fluid ounces and millilitres and has a cold capacity of 1400ml and a hot capacity of 1000ml.

Be aware: there’s a built-in safety feature on the lid. The white pin on the lid needs to fit securely into the socket at the top of the jug handle; otherwise, the icons on the motor unit won’t illuminate and you can’t blend a thing – this caught us out a few times as the lid needs a good push downwards due to the substantial seal, which doesn’t leak, even when you turn the jug upside down.  

Zwilling blender lid

The blender also has non-slip feet to prevent skating across countertops while blending or tamping.     

What can you use the Zwilling blender for?

Zwilling suggests blending shakes, dips, sauces, and smoothies, but the pre-sets give you an ice-crushing and cocktail programme as well.

We used the cleaning programme first to ensure the jug and blade were ready for food preparation. Put 400ml of water into the blender, add a few drops of washing-up liquid, choose the clean function, and press the button. It takes about 40 seconds, goes through four blend phases, beeps when the programme ends, and generates a creamy soup of suds that just needs to be rinsed out.

It’s a remarkably effective way to clean the blender and means you don’t have to fuss around with washing-up brushes or sharp blade cleaning.

Next up, we tried the ice programme: the true test for an appliance of this kind. You can only crush 150g of ice at any one time, which is roughly equivalent to 12 ice cubes, but the result was pretty much frosted snow in 17 seconds.

Ice crushed in the Zwilling blender

Encouraged by this, we then tried 150g of frozen berries to see what would happen, and that was a revelation: finely granulated and spoonable grains of berry that were perfect for sprinkling into yoghurt or atop desserts.

Zwilling crushed berries

We initially used the smoothie programme to blend a base sauce for a British Indian restaurant style curry, so water just off the boil with stewed onion, garlic and ginger. This was where the “wave” design of the bottom of the jug and the “piranha” teeth of the blade really came into their own.

During the 30-second programme, the ingredients whirled through the jug in an almost tidal fashion. When we came to pour it out, the sauce was velvety, smooth, and rich with no lumps or fibres. And the blender itself hardly shook at all, despite pulsing at high speeds.

The cocktail programme runs for 40 seconds, and the capacity of the jug will make eight Brandy Alexanders at once, or three to four Hemingway daiquiris, depending on the volume of fresh fruit you add. You can also make two iced coffees, Greek frappe-style, if you want to serve them long; three if you serve a little shorter.

The Zwilling range

We tested the silver Table Blender, but the model also comes in black, retailing at the same price of £199.

Zwilling also makes an Enfinigy Personal Blender with a conical 550ml blending bottle and a to-go sports attachment, a 600-watt motor and two presets for £99.95.

If you want something larger, the Enfinigy Power Blender has a 1.8 litre jar, six presets, twelve speed settings and a 1600-watt motor, but the price goes up considerably – to £349.   

Zwilling blender with illuminated dial

Verdict

The Zwilling Enfinigy Table Blender looks tremendous, works beautifully and is a dream to use. And it would be a perfect bar-top appliance: there’s something about it that conjures up an image of Ernest Hemingway drinking daiquiris in Havana’s La Floridita.

It’s very much a blender for a larger household or a small hospitality business that demands style, but not at the expense of ease of use, function, or durability. It’s not the most expensive blender on the market by a long shot, but measured against models at a similar price point, it leads the pack in terms of balancing modern aesthetics with exceptional engineering.    

Looking for more blender options? Check out our reviews of the Smeg 1.5 litre jug blender and the Homgeek 2000W jug blender.

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Amazon has new EC2 M1 Mac instances so that you can build your own Mac supercomputer

AWS has new EC2 M1 Mac Instances which will allow you to develop build test and sign Apple apps on Amazon EC2. That news has just been announced at AWS Re:Invent where Mike Moore is reporting for us. These are based on the new Apple M1 Mac Mini unveiled earlier this year.

Amazon already had EC2 Mac instances but they were based on the 2018 Mac Mini powered by the 8th generation Intel Core processors. In a statement from October 2021, a spokesperson for AWS did tell us that the company was planning to offer “EC2 instances that take advantage of the new M1-powered Mac mini in the future”.

The time has come.

This news is developing

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Nvidia makes the 12GB GeForce RTX 2060 unofficially official

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Michael is a former graphic designer who’s been building and tweaking desktop computers for longer than he cares to admit. His interests include folk music, football, science fiction, and salsa verde, in no particular order.

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Please let these RTX 3050 graphics card rumors be true

Usually when a new graphics card generation comes out, we see budget products come out about 6 months later, and at most a year later. But they’re nowhere to be seen from AMD or Nvidia after about 14 months for Team Green and a year for Team Red. Luckily, there’s a fresh rumor out there. 

Videocardz has reported on a couple of rumors from renowned leakers @kopite7kimi and @TUM_APISAK, both of which I’m very used to seeing in the wild world of GPU rumors. @kopite7kimi suggests that an RTX 3050 could be coming, based on a GA106-150-Kx-A1, with 8GB of GDDR6 VRAM. But what makes this rumor even more of a rumor is that even the leaker has it in all caps that it is A RUMOR. So, like, take this with a bigger grain of salt than usual.

This Nvidia rumor comes right on the tails of another rumor suggesting that an AMD Radeon RX 6500 XT could be on the way, according to another Videocardz report. 

Update that: GA106-150-Kx-A1RTX 30508G GD6December 2, 2021

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It’s definitely still early days, but we really should have already got the Radeon RX 6500 XT and GeForce RTX 3050, so whenever they do show up, they’re going to be late to the party, but we’ll still welcome them enthusiastically because we really need cheap graphics cards

Nvidia RTX 3070, RTX 3080, And RTX 3090 Lined Up In A Promotional Image From Nvidia

(Image credit: Nvidia)

No budget GPUs

Right now, if you want a budget gaming PC, you’re basically stuck with something like the Radeon RX 5500 XT or the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Super. Both of these graphics cards are basically ancient by today’s standards, launching at the tail end of 2019 and are built on the last-generation RDNA and Nvidia Turing architectures, respectively. 

While having the latest features doesn’t necessarily matter when you’re talking about a $200 graphics card, but building a budget GPU on Ampere or RDNA 2 helps with efficiency, which helps gamers without a lot of cash get a bit more performance for their money. Which, at that tier of performance, every little bit helps. 

Because outside of those older budget cards, the cheapest current-generation graphics card from either company is the RTX 3060 from Nvidia or the Radeon RX 6600 from AMD. These are both mid-range GPUs and are still found in gaming PCs over $1,000 or £1,000. 

And don’t even get me started about gamers that just want to upgrade their existing rig. 

Cash exchange between two professional looking men

(Image credit: Shutterstock / VAKS-Stock Agency)

It would at least be cheaper

Even an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 or an AMD Radeon RX 6500 XT is probably going to sell out within minutes of going live, then resold at a much higher price, which is going to absolutely suck for people counting on these GPUs for an affordable upgrade. 

But while it’s true that the graphics cards will absolutely not be available for MSRP for more than 5 minutes, the resale price will at least be a bit lower than an RTX 3060 – at least it should be. And I guess that’s the silver lining here – that a graphics card in this tier should save you some cash, even if it’ll probably be more expensive than the companies quote whenever (or if) they’re officially revealed. 

The paradigm of a budget gaming rig has completely changed, and right now the best bet is to just sit on whatever hardware you have on hand until the supply situation gets a little better. But it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen any time soon. 

Instead, it’s going to be super important to keep an eye out for cheap processors, RAM and SSDs in order to save up a bit more for a GPU upgrade, even with a cheaper graphics card like the RTX 3050. 

All these new GPUs will do is make it slightly more realistic for most people to get their hands on a new graphics card. That’s a depressing outlook, but in the 2021 graphics card market, every little bit helps. 

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Boost your broadcasts with the Blue Yeti X mic for $95

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Ian is an independent writer based in Israel who has never met a tech subject he didn’t like. He primarily covers Windows, PC and gaming hardware, video and music streaming services, social networks, and browsers. When he’s not covering the news he’s working on how-to tips for PC users, or tuning his eGPU setup.

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