Storage peripheral-maker, LaCie on Wednesday announced that the company is shipping the 500GB Big Disk Extreme hard disk. In addition to its large capacity, the Big Disk Extreme also features two FireWire 800, one FireWire 400 and an 8MB buffer in the 7,200 rpm drive.

Storage peripheral-maker, LaCie on Wednesday announced that the company is shipping the 500GB Big Disk Extreme hard disk. In addition to its large capacity, the Big Disk Extreme also features two FireWire 800, one FireWire 400 and an 8MB buffer in the 7,200 rpm drive.

"This is the 4th generation of the one-of-a-kind LaCie Big Disk, allowing users to stripe one Terabyte of data across two Big Disk Extremes, achieving transfer rates over 150MB/s sustained," said Olivier Mirloup, LaCie Senior Product Manager. "This innovation confirms our leadership in the external hard drive market."

According to LaCie, the sustained transfer rate of the Big Disk Extreme makes it faster than and larger than any external Ultra 320 SCSI hard drive and most IDE-to-SCSI RAID solutions currently available.

The new models use the d2 upright aluminum design introduced on earlier drives, which dissipates heat from the drive and prolongs drive performance, according to the company. LaCie also designed the power supply with an external AC adapter thereby keeping the drive cool without the necessity of a noisy fan.

The Big Disk is stackable or can be positioned upright in the included stand or in a standard 19-inch rack.

The LaCie Big Disk Extreme is available in the US for $579 (around £320). The drives ship with a FireWire 800 cable (9:9-pin); FireWire 400 cable (6:6-pin); and iLink cable (6:4-pin). Also included is a power supply and LaCie utilities (Silverkeeper and Silverlining).