hard drive history

1999: maturity

Quantum Fireball LCT

Photo: Red Hill.

Quantum Fireball LCT 08

The Fireball LCT came to fill much the same role in Quantum's model range that the U Series drives filled in the Seagate range: slow, cheap storage, primarily for the major OEMs. But the Fireball LCT arrived in that space by a peculiar route. There were four models.

The first of these, the LCT 08, was an orthodox 5400 RPM 3.5 inch drive on first sight broadly similar to the Fireball CX that preceeded it. The "LCT" apparently stood for "Low Cost Technology", and the LCT 08 was a direct competitor for the Seagate U8.

In their publicity material, Quantum went to some lengths to persuade buyers that the LCT was a major breakthrough, though they never quite managed to explain why. In the flesh, it looked like a rocketship (as Quantum drives always did), and performed on about the same level as you would expect from any other decent entry-level drive — a U8, say, or a Spinpoint V9100.

Illustration: A Fireball LCT 10 with a variety of Quantum drives including a Fireball LCT 08 (top centre).

Performance1.24Reliabilityno data
Data rate257 Mbit/secSpin rate5400 RPM
Seek time9.5msBuffer512k
Platter capacity8GBInterfaceATA-66
Read channelPRMLHead technologyMR
4.34.3GB1 head
8.48.4GB2 heads
13.013GB3 heads
17.317.3GB4 heads
2626GB6 heads