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Current-perpendicular-to-plane (CPP) giant magnetoresistive (GMR) heads with a current screen layer were fabricated, and the recording performance was measured. An output voltage of 1.9 mV and head-amp signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of about 30 dB were obtained from a 50-nm-wide head with an operating voltage of 120 mV. The MR ratio was 4%-5%, shield gap was 36 nm and resistance was 72 Omega. With using the thermal fly-height control (TFC), the fabricated head showed a potential to yield a 382 Gb/in2 recording (1252 kBPI times 305 kTPI). The current screen structure reduced the spin torque noise since just a low sensing current of 1-2 mA was required for obtaining a high output. Newly developed CPP-GMR films with a current screen layer showed the MR ratio of 18%-19% with the RA product of 0.2-0.3 Omega ldr mum2. Calculation showed that this film allows us to achieve 30 dB or more in the head-amp SNR when the sensor width was 40 nm or larger. The current screen CPP-GMR head is thus an attractive candidate that has a high potential suitable for an areal density of 500 Gb/in2 or more. Below 40 nm, an all metal CPP-GMR head with the MR ratio of 10% or more would be the best candidate.