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Leagacy Tape Drives        IBM 3590 Tape Drives

3590                 All Model In Stock – Call (800) 663-5523 for a Quote


The IBM Magstar 3590 models B11 and E11 are rack-mounted tape drives with an Automatic Cartridge Facility (ACF). The 10 cartridge ACF allows the drives  to be used as a mini-library with access to up to 1.2TB* of data. The Magstar 3590 B11/ E11 can be converted to a B1A / E1A for use in a fully automated library system

 DatasheetHigh-performance, high-reliability tape storage with extended media support and attachment support for SCSI and Ultra SCSI systems

  • Attaches to IBM AS/400*, RS/6000*, Hewlett-Packard, Sun Microsystems, and other SCSI systems; Intel**-based systems running Windows NT**; and Windows 2000; and IBM S/390* systems.
    Offers the choice of an Ultra SCSI interface for a maximum instantaneous data rate of 42 MB/sec or native Fibre Channel attachment for a maximum instantaneous data rate of up to 100 MB/sec.
    Features an uncompressed drive rate of up to 14 MB/sec to dramatically reduce backup and recovery times.
    Provides rapid access to data (5 meters/sec high-speed search)
    Includes a 10-cartridge Automated Cartridge Facility (ACF) that functions as a mini-library with random access to up to 1.2 TB of data (compressed) for the Magstar* 3590 Model B11 and E11
    Uses Magstar* 3590 E model extended length tape cartridges that can contain up to 120 GB of data (3:1 compression)


The Magstar 3590 Tape Subsystem consists of a family of powerful integrated storage solutions that provide the highest levels of capacity, performance, and data reliability for stand alone and automated systems. Now, the Magstar 3590 Model E Tape Drive provides direct attachment to the growing number of open systems that support native Fibre Channel connection. 
 Exceptional performance
The Magstar 3590 Tape Subsystem provides industry-leading performance with a native drive data rate of up to 14 MB/sec. Using the LZ1 compression algorithm, sustained data rates of up to 34 MB/sec are possible with Ultra SCSI attachment.With the native Fibre Channel connection, Magstar 3590 E Models are capable of reaching maximum instantaneous data rates of 100 MB/sec and sustained data rates of 42 MB/sec. 
 High capacity
Using Extended High Performance Cartridge Tape, a Magstar 3590 Model E Tape Drive with extended length support can store up to 40 GB (120 GB with 3:1 compression) on a single cartridge. A Magstar 3590 Model B can store up to 20 GB of data (60 GB with 3:1 compression) on a cartridge. The result is less tape cartridge handling, improved automation slot utilization, and a reduction in floor space requirements.Magstar 3590 metal particle tape media is housed in a cartridge with the same physical size as 3490 cartridges, enabling coexistence in an IBM Magstar 3494 Tape Library. The Magstar 3494 Tape Library with Magstar 3590 drives provides access to as much as 748 TB (with 3:1 compression). 
 Improved reliability and integrity
The Magstar 3590 Tape Drive is designed for mission-critical data storage. Improved Error Correction Code (ECC) and servo tracks written on each tape cartridge help ensure high data integrity. Resident diagnostics dynamically monitor drive and media performance to detect potential problems and aid in resolution.In addition, the Magstar 3590 provides redundant data protection capabilities. Because data is systematically disbursed across the media as it is written and redundant parity checking bits are included, there is less chance of an information loss when a topical media error occurs.
 Leading-edge technology
The Magstar 3590 Model E uses a bi-directional longitudinal serpentine recording technique and a fourth-generation magneto-resistive head that concurrently reads and writes 16 data tracks. This means that 256 tracks of data can be reliably written onto Magstar 3590 media. In addition, the electronics have been enhanced with a new digital channel technology that further increases data integrity.
 Investment protection
Existing Magstar Model B11 and B1A Tape Drives (B Models) can be field-upgraded to the new E Models, which helps protect existing investments in Magstar 3590 technology. Media investments are also protected, because the new E Model drives can both read (128 track) and write (256 track) to existing cartridges. In addition, IBM continues to market Magstar 3590 B Models as well as the newer E Models.Support for the new Magstar 3590 Extended High Performance Cartridge Tape, which doubles storage capacity, is available on both the 3590 B and E models. All new Magstar 3590 Tape Drives feature this support, while existing drives can be field-upgraded.The E Models can be upgraded to provide Fibre Channel support.
 Cost effectiveness
High-capacity media along with high-performance drives mean that less equipment and fewer cartridges and tape mounts are required. This translates into less floor space needed for tape drives, tape libraries, and tape cartridge storage.The resulting savings from reduced tape hardware and media requirements can help justify an investment in data automation. Over time, the lower cost of a Magstar 3590 Tape Drive implementation enables more data to be automated.A reusable storage asset, the Magstar 3590 protects existing investments and can be used as the foundation for a broad array of storage solutions. The Magstar 3590 also provides the capability to share tape drives through two Ultra SCSI or Fibre Channel ports.
 Ease of use
The Magstar 3590 Models B11 and E11 incorporate a standard 10-slot ACF for high-capacity, stand alone unattended operation. The ACF can be used in random access mode as a mini-library. Cartridges are loaded into and unloaded from the ACF in a convenient, portable 10-cartridge magazine.The Magstar 3590 also features an operator/service display showing device status, activities, error conditions, and messages.The Magstar 3590 Models E11 and E1A now provide native Fibre Channel attachment for drives used in standalone configurations, with the Magstar 3494 Tape Library, or with a StorageTek Automated Cartridge System (ACS).Fibre Channel servers can be supported at distances of up to 500 meters from the Magstar 3590 Tape Drive,or up to 10km with the IBM 2109 Switch or 2103 Hub
Magstar 3590 does not require scheduled preventive maintenance. IBM customer engineers use a built-in subsystem panel to perform service functions.
 Magstar 3590 models
The Magstar 3590 is available in several configurations for Ultra SCSI and Fibre Channel attachment:

  • The Magstar 3590 Models B11 and E11 are rack-mounted and incorporate a 10-cartridge ACF for high-capacity unattended operation. The Models B11 and E11 can be converted to Models B1A or E1A.
  • The Magstar 3590 Models B1A and E1A have no ACF and are designed to be incorporated into the Magstar 3494 tape library.
  • The Magstar Model C12 frame with one to four Model B1A or E1A Tape Drives provides attachment to the StorageTek 4410 and 9310 ACS.



Magstar 3590 Characteristics
Model Number B11 B1A C12 E11 E1A
LZ1 compression Standard Standard na Standard Standard
Recording technique (interleaved serpentine longitudinal) Standard Standard na Standard Standard
Number of tracks¹ 128 128 na 256 256
10-cartridge magazine Standard na na Standard na
Cartridge capacity 10GB (30GB)² 10GB (30GB)² na 20GB (60GB)² 20GB (60GB)²
Extended cartridge capacity 20GB (60GB)² 20GB (60GB)² na 40GB (120GB)² 40GB (120GB)²
Total capacity Up to 600 GB² na³ na Up to 1.2 TB² see note³
Model Number B11 B1A C12 E11 E1A
Native drive data rate 9 MB/sec 9 MB/sec na 14 MB/sec 14 MB/sec
Maximum sustained data rate with Ultra SCSI 27 MB/sec 27 MB/sec na 34 MB/sec 34 MB/sec
Maximum sustained data rate with Fibre Channel na na na 42 MB/sec 42 MB/sec
Burst data rate with Ultra SCSI 40 MB/sec 40 MB/sec na 40 MB/sec 40 MB/sec
Burst data rate with Fibre Channel na na na 100 MB/sec 100 MB/sec
High speed search 5 m/sec 5 m/sec na 5 m/sec 5 m/sec
Model Number B11 B14 C12 E11 E14
Library, rack-mount, or frame mount. Rack Library Frame Rack Library
Operating Environment
Model Number B11 B14 C12 E11 E14
Temperature with media in use 60 F to 90 F (16 C to 32 C) Standard Standard Standard Standard Standard
Relative humidity (20% to 80%) Standard Standard Standard Standard Standard
Wet bulb maximum (73.4 F; 23 C) Standard Standard 79F; 26C 78F; 25C 78F;25C
Heat output (BTU/hr) 1024 1024 7830 770 770
Power requirements (kVA) 0.300 0.300 1.2000 0.225 0.225

¹ B Models use eight sets of 16 tracks; E Models use 16 sets of tracks

² Depending on data content, with 3:1 LZ1 data compression

³ Depending on library model, since B1A and E1A Models reside in an IBM Magstar 3494 (or in a C12 or C14 frame for the StorageTek 4410 or 9310 ACS)