Has the death knell finally sounded for the hard disk drive? As HDD manufacturers wrestle each other for best market position a newcomer lurks in the shadows - the solid state drive (SSD) is becoming a beast to be reckoned with. Taiwan's OCZ Technologies gave the world it's first glimpse of its 1TB (1024GB) behemoth named Colossus at June's Computex information technology show in Taipei, Taiwan.

With a name like Colossus and weighing a monstrous 400g you'll no doubt be thinking that the drive might be a bit on the chunky size but it's form factor is compact enough to fit into a standard 3.5in drive bay. Too big for laptops but perfect for your gaming PC. Its claimed read speeds of up to 250MB/s and write speeds of 220MB/s over a SATA2 interface will help make sure all that precious data is available in a flash.

The reported price for the Colossus 1TB SSD is somewhere around the USD$2500 mark. This is sure to fall as more and more manufacturers reach (and no doubt surpass) the current 1TB grail (pureSilicon and ASUS have already announced products in this capacity range) and it won't be too long before we only have to part with a few hundred sheckles instead of considering re-mortgaging the house.

According to OCZ Technologies the Colossus SSD is likely to reach the marketplace by mid-August and will also be available in a less pricey 500GB (512GB) version.

So to answer the leading question - does this mark the beginning of the end for HDDs? Yes, it probably does. But as branded 1TB HDDs are currently available for a mere fraction of the cost of SSD siblings, the survival of the spinning disc is assured for the immediate future at least.

* Ed note: OCZ are no longer using a Jmicron RAID controller as previously reported.