Not all LTO tapes are manufactured in the same way
LTO1 to LTO5 tapes were produced using traditional Metal Particle (MP) tape coating technology. However, Fujifilm developed advanced Barium Ferrite (BaFe) technology for their 6th generation LTO and enterprise tape formats.
So what's the difference between traditional Metal Particle and Barium Ferrite? The evidence can be found under the microscope.......
The right hand image is a close-up of Metal Particle LTO Ultrium tape: large particles, lying on their side, with little uniformity.
The left hand image is Barium Ferrite LTO Ultrium tape: ultra-small particles, packed extremely densely due to particle orientation being 'end on', facilitating greater track density.
What does this mean in terms of performance? Barium Ferrite coating provides greater storage capacity, higher output, superior Signal to Noise Ratio (SNR) and a longer archival life.
For critical applications, BaFe tape technology is the sensible choice.