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2.5" HDD 5400rpm vs. 7200rpm?

Discussion in 'Laptops' started by qwerty007, Mar 7, 2009.

  1. qwerty007

    qwerty007 Guest

    I need to purchase 2.5" HDD for my multimedia player (http://
    www.sarotech.com/english/product/dvp-254.html), but I am curious if
    7200rpm HDD might produce too much heat when I use it.

    Currently, I'm using 100GB 7200 rpm HDD, and this one produce too much
    heat when I use it. But I'm planning to purchase 320GB HDD to expand
    the capacity. My problem is I am not sure if I need 7200 rpm HDD just
    to play movie files, while, I think, 7200 rpm HDD produce more heat
    then 5400 rpm HDD.

    Can you guys suggest me which HDD I should purchase?

    Thank you in advance.
    qwerty007, Mar 7, 2009
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  2. For an MP3 player, it doesn't matter.

    It's not an absolute given that higher rpm drives automatically produce
    more heat, although it's often true. But when comparing drives for heat
    generation (which is really a comparison of power consumption ... the
    power consumed by a drive gets converted into heat), you have to compare
    two specific drives. While it's probably more often true than not that
    the faster drive uses more power and generates more heat, it is
    absolutely not ALWAYS true. Thus, for your purposes, you cannot compare
    7200 rpm drives to 5400 rpm drives. You can only compare one particular
    drive model with another particular drive model.
    Barry Watzman, Mar 7, 2009
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  3. qwerty007

    Jim Shipman Guest

    It sounds to me like your primary concern is for sequential performance
    of the drive. The RPM is purely for random performance and has next to
    nothing to do with sequential performance. If you need a drive to play
    movie files then RPM is of very little concern and you should get the
    lower RPM drive.
    Jim Shipman, Mar 7, 2009
  4. Your statement is simply wrong. A faster turning drive potentially is
    capable of delivering the data faster (certainly it does if the number
    of sectors per track is the same, but since the number of sectors per
    track may be greater, lesser or the same, no generalized statement is

    In the case of a media player, however, it doesn't matter, as neither
    audio nor video media will have any need to come off the drive faster
    than even the slowest drive can deliver them.
    Barry Watzman, Mar 7, 2009
  5. qwerty007

    Jim Shipman Guest

    The sequential data rate of a high performance disk drive is a function
    of many things, but with current drives one of the most difficult is the
    ability to write at very high frequency. The channel data rate of the
    read/write (mostly write) electronics limits the maximum data rate.
    Speeding up the RPM therefore requires that less data be put on each
    track (lower the bits per inch; bpi).

    When two drives with similar technology are designed the data rate is
    therefore limited by the data channel and the lower RPM drive can
    support a design with a higher bpi (more sectors per track), and thus
    virtually the same data rate as the higher RPM drive. We in the
    business call these drives "data tubs" and they have very high capacity,
    very high sequential data rates, and poor random performance.

    Of course if you are comparing drives at different RPM that are also
    different technology (because they were designed at different times or
    because they had different design goals (cost vs. performance) then, of
    course your mileage will vary, but two drives designed with the same
    technology will have very similar sequential data rates regardless of
    the RPM they run at.
    Jim Shipman
    Jim Shipman, Mar 8, 2009
  6. qwerty007

    M.I.5¾ Guest

    Although true in theory, in practice the number of bits per track can be
    potentially the same for a 7200 drive as for a 5400. The speed at which the
    data needs to be written or read is not the limiting factor. The limitation
    is more or less purely a magnetic one. Thus a 7200 drive will potentially
    deliver data faster than a 5400 one. There are other factors at play here
    such as the seek speed and how the sectors are ordered in the track. Since
    modern drives invariably have a large data cache, the real limitation is
    often the interface with the outside world.
    M.I.5¾, Mar 9, 2009
  7. qwerty007

    Roy Guest

    Hmm , so Barry even with 4200 rpm drives running Blu Ray Disc, would
    there be any much difference in performance if compared to 5400 and
    7200 rpm drive speed?
    Roy, Mar 9, 2009
  8. Your statement is simply not correct. Certainly, many 5400 rpm drives,
    probably even most (meaning more than 50% but not 70%-80%-90%) will run
    cooler. But, equally, many 7,200 rpm drives run cooler than many 5,400
    rpm drives. If you want to compare drives, you have to compare specific
    drives. You can't generalize, because not all 7,200 rpm drives run
    hotter than all 5,400 rpm drives, and in fact while as a generality it
    may be correct, it's not OVERWHELMINGLY correct; there are LOTS of 7,200
    rpm drives that run cooler than MANY 5,400 rpm drives.
    Barry Watzman, Mar 14, 2009
  9. qwerty007

    John Doue Guest

    I would agree with you Barry, but it looks like not many manufacturer
    are yet into 320G drives. As far as a quick search tells me, only
    Western Digital offers the choice of speed in that capacity for PATA,
    and for IDE, no choice, only 5400. The good news is, prices have fallen
    considerably. No so long ago, the highest capacity one could buy would
    fetch over $200.00, now around $80.00!

    Heat is one thing, but I personally would put more emphasis on
    vibrations. I do not have first hand experience with 7,200 speeds, but
    that would be my first concern. Vibration under your wrist can be very
    John Doue, Mar 14, 2009
  10. qwerty007

    BillW50 Guest

    In Barry Watzman typed on Sat, 14 Mar 2009 01:19:08 -0400:
    Where are these cool running 7200 rpm drives? As this isn't something
    they advertise. As many 7200 rpm drives consumes about 10 watts. And
    those usually runs very hot. Oddly enough, my EeePC machines uses 10
    watts for everything. My Gateways use 20 watts for everything. And I am
    using 5400 rpm here because they run cooler and uses less power.

    2 Gateway MX6124 - Windows XP SP2
    3 Asus EEE PC 701G4 ~ 2GB RAM ~ 16GB-SDHC
    2 Asus EEE PC 702G8 ~ 1GB RAM ~ 16GB-SDHC
    Windows XP SP2 ~ Xandros Linux - Puppy - Ubuntu
    BillW50, Mar 14, 2009
  11. Re: "As many 7200 rpm drives consumes about 10 watts"

    That is just BS. Most 2.5" drives consume 500ma or less (the maximum
    that they can consume and run from a USB port's maximum of 500ma), which
    is 2.5 watts. 10 watts would be 2 amps (at 5 volts). I have NEVER seen
    ANY 2.5" drive that consumed more than FOUR WATTS. And that was a very
    old 4,200 rpm drive.

    If you want to compare drives, you have to compare one specific drive
    model vs. another specific drive model. You cannot generalize.
    Although it probably is true that the average 7,200 rpm drive consumes
    more power than the average 5,400 rpm drive, there are LOTS of 7,200 rpm
    drives that consume less than lots of 5,400 rpm drives.
    Barry Watzman, Mar 14, 2009
  12. qwerty007

    BillW50 Guest

    In Barry Watzman typed on Sat, 14 Mar 2009 11:37:22 -0400:
    Not so! As 7200 rpm drives tend to draw more current (many of them over
    500ma) and get hotter as well. See figure 4 for typical current demands
    for a HD.


    TG Daily reports that 7200 RPM 2.5 drives consume three times more
    current than 5400 RPM 2.5 drives.

    "... previous 7200.10 drives with multiple platters, however, are rated
    at 7.5 watts - which is more three times the consumption of current 250
    GB 2.5" drives, which rotate their discs at lower speeds (5400 rpm
    instead of 7200 rpm), but typically consume only around 2 watts during
    read and write processes."


    Now Barry, if you want to argue that 7200 RPM drives can use less power
    than 5400 RPM drives... well you can't change physics. As it takes more
    energy to keep a platter spinning at 7200 RPM than it does at 5400 RPM.
    And about 70% of the current is used for spinning the platter(s). Now
    you can only squeeze two platters inside of the 9.5mm form factor. So
    the only way you are going to reduce the current from a 7200 RPM 9.5mm
    drive is to reduce the platters down to one. But that isn't even enough
    IMHO to get under the demands of a 5400 RPM drive.

    2 Gateway MX6124 - Windows XP SP2
    3 Asus EEE PC 701G4 ~ 2GB RAM ~ 16GB-SDHC
    2 Asus EEE PC 702G8 ~ 1GB RAM ~ 16GB-SDHC
    Windows XP SP2 ~ Xandros Linux - Puppy - Ubuntu
    BillW50, Mar 14, 2009
  13. You are simply wrong. Take a look at actual drives. Go to
    www.newegg.com, look up some 2.5" IDE 7,200 rpm drives (17 are currently
    listed for sale), and look up the power specs.

    For example, for the first drive, a Seagate ST980813AS, the specs are
    found here:

    [This document covers many models of Seagate 7,200 rpm 2.5" drives]

    on page 8 the power consumption is given .... the ONLY time when the
    power consumption exceeds 2.3 watts (which is under 500ma) is during
    spinup, when it MAY reach 5.5 watts (1.1 amps) for a brief period.

    The 2nd drive in the list, a Fujitsu model, has nearly identical
    specifications: as much as 1.1 amps for spinup (4 seconds max), then a
    MAXIMUM consumption from then on of 2.3 watts

    The 3rd drive in the list, a Western Digital drive, only says that the
    maximum power requirement is 500ma. In fact, from the WD data sheet:

    "Low power consumption - With technologies like IntelliSeek™, which
    calculates optimum seek speeds to lower power consumption and
    SecurePark™, which reduces power by parking the heads during low power
    idle mode [View demo], this drive delivers 5400 RPM-equivalent power
    consumption in a 7200 RPM drive"

    Start looking at the specs for actual drives. The average power
    consumption for 7,200 rpm drives probably is higher than for 5,400 rpm
    drives, but on a drive by drive basis, MANY 7,200 rpm drives draw less
    power than many 5,400 rpm drives.

    The difference in the amount of power required to keep a platter turning
    at 7,200 rpm vs. 5,400 rpm is negligible. More power is required for
    spinup, but that is a trade-off, you can do it with the same current if
    you allow it to simply take longer. In the meantime, advances in
    technology in the bearings and electronics have reduced power
    consumption for more advanced drives, and have increased the efficiency
    of the motors and the quality of the bearings (often fluid bearings in
    modern drives), while older drives do not have these advances.

    My point here is only that you can't make general statements about 7,200
    rpm drives vs. 5,400 rpm drives .... you have to compare one specific
    7,200 rpm drive vs. another specific 5,400 rpm drive. The fact that the
    average for 7,200 rpm drives is higher than the average for 5,400 rpm
    drive (that PROBABLY is true) does not mean anything when you go to
    replace a drive, because the average is not overwhelmingly higher and
    MANY 7,200 rpm drives draw less than MANY 5,400 rpm drives.

    There is ENORMOUS pressure on the drive manufacturers to make drives
    that will run (including spin-up) from the 500ma available at a USB
    port, and virtually all current 7,200 rpm drives will do that (even
    spin-up is dealt with, in many cases, by taking longer to spin-up when
    less current is available, but ultimately reaching full speed in, say, 8
    seconds instead of 4 seconds). VERY few, if any, drives will draw more
    than 2.5 watts except (perhaps) during spinup, and virtually all 5,400
    rpm drives will draw that same level of power.
    Barry Watzman, Mar 14, 2009
  14. qwerty007

    John Doue Guest

    As I said, I tend to agree with you that improvements in bearings and
    other ancillary techics have more than probably offset the impact of
    higher RPM which remains obvious everything else being equal. Nobody can
    dispute that.

    So this discussion could go on and on. But comparing drives is not easy.
    As I said in my previous posts, for a higher capacity, choice has
    narrowed down a lot those last months and it looks like we now have a
    choice between WD and WD ... which is a concern for me. Seagate and WD
    are not my favorites.

    I would be interested in a serious comparison, both for heat and
    vibrations, which would allow me make a more informed opinion on which
    brand and seeds I should prefer. Anyway, since I stick to PATA, the
    choice is narrowing down very fast.
    John Doue, Mar 14, 2009
  15. Re: "comparing drives is not easy"

    All of the major mfgrs have spec sheets for all of their drives online.
    And there are not that many mfgrs of laptops drives (WD, Fujitsu,
    Seagate, Hitachi, Samsung & Toshiba .... I think that's all there are
    (actually, looking at the list, it's more than the number of mfgrs of
    desktop drives, because Toshiba & Fujitsu don't make desktop drives)).
    I don't like Toshiba for drives although I like their laptops.

    Another option for comparing currently mfgd. drives is to go to Newegg,
    because they allow user reviews of products, which are VERY useful.
    However, if you are looking at older used drives (as you might need to
    do for an IDE drive), that won't help.

    I don't share your aversion to WD, but except for a dislike of Toshiba,
    I have no strong preferences or aversions.

    As to heat, heat = power consumption (essentially all of the power
    consumed by a drive gets turned into heat), so you can compare them. I
    have never had a vibration issue with any working laptop drive of any
    brand, nor do I believe that there is one (a drive that was vibrating
    would fail QUICKLY). Note, vibration and noise are two different
    things, however.
    Barry Watzman, Mar 15, 2009
  16. qwerty007

    ~misfit~ Guest

    Seagate 7200.10 series of hard drives are 3.5" desktop drives. Apples and
    ~misfit~, Mar 15, 2009
  17. qwerty007

    BillW50 Guest

    In Barry Watzman typed on Sat, 14 Mar 2009 14:25:03 -0400:
    My WD and Fujitsu HDD also have the same specs as you have stated above.
    And my Fujitsu drives hits 1.1 amps at startup. Which could be a problem
    with USB enclosures. Although I don't have a single problem with them
    used in this fashion on my laptops or netbooks.

    Makes you wonder if Fujitsu is just being honest while the other
    manufactures are hiding the real start up current they use, doesn't it?

    My two cheap external DVD slimline from China (they don't work reliably
    anyway) do have a problem on my EeePCs though. As when you connect them,
    the computer power drops off for a split second and the computer reboots
    (doesn't do this on my laptops). My external Samsung DVD doesn't have
    this problem and works perfectly.
    BillW50, Jul 31, 2009
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