Five Points to Consider Before Buying a Computer Hard Drive
A hard drive is a vital component in any modern computer. It’s recommended to buy a new drive every few years, to use it as an extra hard drive or replace an old one. However, with so many options available, which one do you choose?
The best thing about shopping for hard drives is that it’s not that difficult. As long as you stick to the following guidelines, you’ll not have to worry about getting the wrong drive or something like that.
Hard disk drive versus solid state drive
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The very first thing to consider is whether you want an SSD (solid state drive) or not. Although an SSD functions just like a HDD (hard disk drive), it comes with its own pros and cons.
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So, what are the differences between an HDD and SSD?
First, solid state drives read and write information faster. Secondly, SSDs need less power, conserving energy and lengthening the battery life of a laptop. Thirdly, as SSDs don’t have moving parts, they don’t make noise and are more durable. The drawback is that they have small storage space and are more expensive than HDDs.
What matters more? If price is an issue or you just want a backup drive, buy a traditional HDD. However, if the drive will be used to run an OS or contain plenty of constantly-accessed files and applications, particularly video games, pick an SSD instead.
Interface and size
After choosing between a hard disk drive and solid state drive, it’s time to select a form factor. Luckily, there are only two options and your choice will depend on your current setup. The two form factors are the 2.5-inch drive and 3.5-inch drive.
Desktop HDDs are typically 3.5 inches and laptop HDDs are 2.5 inches. SSDs, on the other hand, are much smaller since they do not require moving parts. Thus, most SSDs are usually 2.5 inches.
Specifications and performance
In terms of data volume, there are all sizes of HDDs, with storage capacity limited to 4TB because of physical restrictions. SSDs, on the other hand, are far smaller and the storage capacity doesn’t go beyond 1TB. Even so, many SSDs hardly exceed 512 GB.
Many factors dictate the performance of hard disk drives, but one crucial factor is revolutions per minute. A higher RPMs equals faster data transfer.
There’s a wide variety of prices for drives that look really similar on the outside. The onus is on you to pick which factors are important to your needs as well as which drive suits those parameters.
Internal vs. external
The final point to consider is where the drive’s going to be housed. Will it be housed inside the casing? Or will it be set up externally? Either way, your selection will be dictated by your preferences and needs.