Tape Drives: What the Future Holds

Next Generation

  • Current, planned models of drives we know (no 9-tracks!)

  • Not including Travan, QIC (they can't backspace files)

Type Name Capacity Speed Available Cost/Media Comments
DAT/DDS DDS-3 12 GB 0.5 MB/S Now $800/$20 Price still dropping
DDS-4 20 GB 3 MB/S Now $1.2-1.4k/$40 Backwards compatible w/all DDS tapes
Exabyte Eliant 7 GB 1 MB/S Now $1.2k?/$10? lowest end 8mm drive left
Mammoth LT 14 GB 2 MB/S Now $1.3k/$36 "Lite" version of Mammoth
Mammoth 20 GB 3 MB/S Now $2.3k/$50 "Dirty" old tapes problem
Mammoth 2 60 GB 12 MB/S Now $4k/$90 Most Expensive but highest performance?
DLT DLT 2000 10 GB 1 MB/S Now ?/? Original DLT format, no longer available
DLT 4000 20 GB 2 MB/S Now $3k/$40 Lowest end DLT available
DLT 7000 35 GB 3 MB/S Now $5k?/$70 Industry Standard (for backups) but expensive
DLT1 40 GB 3 MB/S Now $1.25k/$40 compatible with DLT4000 only
DLT 8000 40 GB 6 MB/S Now <$5k/$85  
Super DLT 100 GB ? 2000 ?/? Not yet available


Tape Drives: What the Future Holds
Pat Murphy