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Should I Buy LTO-5 or Buy LTO-6?

When deciding whether to buy LTO-5 or buy LTO-6, it's best to do a side-by-side comparison of the two. Both are fantastic products, but the requirements of your project will help determine which is best for your business.

And while it would be great to have an unlimited IT budget for the latest LTO-7, not everyone does. Don't worry. The older generations are still competitive, and can really help if you're shopping IT on a budget. Both LTO5 and LTO6 will allow you to store massive amounts of data, quickly and securely, but to make your difficult decision easier, we've done the grunt work for you.

Below, you will find a comparison of LTO-5 and LTO-6 to give you a better look at the pros and cons of each one. This will help give you a better idea of which one is better suited for your situation.


To buy LTO-5, you’re going to be looking at somewhere between $19 and $25 for a data tape. To buy LTO-6, you’re going to be out between $28 and $58.


LTO-5 cartridges have the capability of transferring data at a compressed rate of up to 280 MB per second (140 MB per second native). LTO-6 cartridges, on the other hand, have the enhanced capability of transferring data at a compressed rate of up to 400 MB per second (150 MB per second native).


For LTO-5 tapes, you can expect a native capacity of 1.5 TB and a compressed capacity of 3.0 TB. For LTO-6 tapes, the native and compressed capacity has improved to 2.5 TB and 6.25 TB respectively.


Whether you just want to save room in your office or you want to save the environment, you’ll want to consider the number of tapes that you’ll need to store the same amount of information. For example, to store the exact same amount of data, you will require more LTO-5 tapes than you will LTO-6 tapes.

Drive Compatibility: Reading and Writing

When considering whether you should purchase LTO-5 or LTO-6 tapes, you need to take a very close look at what generation of drive that you currently have and whether or not you plan on purchasing a new one in the very near future. The reason for this is because LTO Ultrium drives have the capability of reading data from tapes from its own generation as well as two previous generations. However, it can only write data on a current generation tape and one prior generation tape. For example, if you have a LTO 4 drive, a LTO-6 tape is not going to be fully compatible with your drive.


While upfront costs are always a factor, you also need to think about long-term expenses. If you purchase a LTO-5 cartridges now, how long until it goes out of date and you are forced to purchase a new tape? Is it better to spend a little bit extra now and get the LTO-6 cartridge, which is the most up-to-date tape with the latest technological advancements in the industry?


LTO tapes just like Oracle T10000 tape or IBM 3592JB tape cartridge 700Gb can be used for a variety of situations. However, there are instances where LTO-6 may outpower LTO-5, so it is important that you take a hard look at what you need the tape for so that you can make an informed purchase. For example, you should buy LTO-5 if you need to capture content or data, transfer data at a high capacity or back-up valuable information. Just keep in mind that LTO-5 tapes are smaller and slower. You should opt to buy LTO-6 if you need long-term storage (such as years at a time) or back-up for networks. These tapes have the capacity to handle larger loads at a faster rate.

Should You Buy LTO-5 or Buy LTO-6?

In the end, there is no outright winner. It all boils down to what suits your individual needs. What works best for you may not be what works for someone down the road.

If you are looking for the best price to buy LTO-5 or buy LTO-6 online, however, contact Big Data Supply or call 1 (800) 905-7329. All of our products, new, open box, or certified, come with an unconditional 90-day guarantee, and a lifetime guarantee against product defects.

Should I Buy LTO-5 or Buy LTO-6? | Big Data Supply Inc - New, Open Box, and Certified Tape Storage Media