Exabyte 8500 and 8500c 8mm Tape Drives

Exabyte 8500

Both the EXB-8500 and EXB-8500c are enhanced 8mm digital helical-scan cartridge tape subsystems. Packaged in the industry standard 5.25-inch form factor and combined with an integral Small Computer System Interface (SCSI) controller (either single-ended or differential configurations), the EXB-8500 and EXB-8500c are the easily integrated solution to your journaling, archiving, data interchange, software distribution, imaging, data acquisition, and backup/restore needs.

Data Transfer Rates

Sustained Transfer Rates
The sustained transfer rates depend on the tape format, as follows:
In EXB-8200 format: up to 262.5 KBytes/second
In EXB-8500 format: up to 500 KBytes/second
In EXB-8200c format: up to 500 KBytes/second, assuming an average compression ratio of 2:1 (EXB-8500c only)
In EXB-8500c format: up to 1 MByte/second, assuming an average compression ratio of 2:1 (EXB-8500c only)


Burst Transfer Rates
The burst transfer rates are limited by the performance of the SCSI host bus adapter, the SCSI bus interface controller, and the EXB-8500’s or EXB-8500c’s buffer control hardware.
For the EXB-8500, the burst transfer rates are as follows:
Asynchronous: up to 1.5 MBytes/second
Synchronous: up to 4.0 MBytes/second
For the EXB-8500c, the burst transfer rates are as follows:
Asynchronous: up to 2.5 MBytes/second
Synchronous: up to 5.0 MBytes/second

EXB-8500 and EXB-8500c Specifications

These specifications are for the EXB-8500 and EXB-8500c 8mm tape drives.

About the EXB-8500 and EXB-8500c

The EXB-8500 and EXB-8500c 8mm tape drives use helical-scan recording technology and read-and-write head pairs to achieve an uncompressed data transfer rate of 500 KB/sec. The EXB-8500c extends the performance of the EXB-8500 to a 10 GB capacity at a 1 MB/sec transfer rate (compressed). The EXB-8500 reads and writes 8200 and 8500 formats; the EXB-8500c writes 8200, 8200c, 8500, and 8500c data formats. The tape drives are designed to perform onboard error correction and error recovery, along with full read-after-write verification to ensure data integrity.

The tape drives are available in two configurations: as internal tape drives and as external drives that provide the convenience of a standalone peripheral.

Data handling

(8mm EXATAPE, 112m)
EXB-8500: 5 GB
EXB-8500c: 10 GB (compressed)*
Recording method: Helical-scan
Compression method: Improved Data Recording Capability compression algorithm
Data transfer rate: 500 KB/sec, uncompressed
1 MB/sec, compressed*
Device reliability (mean time between failures): MTBF: 40,000 hours
Data integrity: BER: <1 in 1017 bits
Reed Solomon ECC

Tape Control

Search rate: 37.5 MB/sec, uncompressed
75 MB/sec, compressed*
Rewind speed: 32.7 IPS (75 times nominal)

* Compressed capacity based on typical 2:1 compression ratio. Ratio depends on type of data.


Host interface: SCSI-1 and SCSI-2


Operating temperature: +41°F to +104°F (+5°C to +40°C)
Non-operating temperature: -40°F to +140°F (-40°C to +60°C)
Relative humidity: 20% to 80% (noncondensing)


Power requirements: +5 VDC, +12 VDC
15 watts typical

Size and Weight

Dimensions: 3.25 in. (h) x 5.75 in. (w) x 8 in. (d)
(8.26 cm x 14.61 cm x 20.32 cm)
Weight: 4.5 lbs. (2.04 kg)

Chris Whitehead

Chris Whitehead is a tape drive repair and data storage expert based in Reading, Berkshire, providing tape drive repair and data storage solutions across the UK.