Hard drives have come a long way since the 1950s when a 5MB disk weighed hundreds of pounds and had to be moved via forklift. Now, hard drives can hold thousands of hours of video and millions of minutes of music in a size no larger than a small paperback book.
Two main approaches to storage have become the norm for computer users: hard disk drives (HDDs) and solid-state drives (SSDs). Keep reading to learn the difference between the two and determine which approaches are preferable in specific situations.
How an HDD Versus SSD Works
Hard disk drives consist of magnetic platters that are constantly spinning. This motion allows data to be stored and accessed from the platters. The faster the platters spin, the quicker data can be written and accessed. In addition, manufacturing costs have steadily declined over the years, making HDDs an affordable option for modern storage.
Solid-state drives are different in that they have no moving parts
. Instead, they are assembled using integrated circuits. As a result, they can take up less physical space than their HDD counterparts.
HDD Benefits and Cost
Computers have been using HDDs for decades now, so this technology has stood the test of time. These drives are very reliable
, with life spans ranging from 7-15 years. On occasion, a bad drive will make it to market — but this is a fluke more than a trend.
Installing an internal HDD can feel like a chore, but the extra effort is well worth it for the additional storage space. Of course, consumers who don’t want to mess around inside their computer can always go for an external drive as well.
The overwhelming benefit of using an HDD lies in the cost. Storage space on HDDs can be incredibly affordable
, with consumers able to pick up massive 8TB internal drives for around $170. A drive that size is big enough to hold approximately eighty ultra-high-definition 4K movies. External drives are also extremely affordable, with 5TB units retailing for just over $100.
SSD Benefits and Cost
With HDD space available at such a low cost, why would anyone go for a pricier option? The answer can be summed up in one word: speed.
SSDs are blazing fast, thanks to their ability to write and access data immediately. Some tests have shown that equivalent SSDs are 14 times faster than their HDD rival — a reality that makes them well worth the extra cost.
An internal SSD doesn’t need to be mounted anywhere, so it’s essentially a “plug and play” component right inside the computer, making it easy to install
. External SSD drives are also an option for most users. However, speed is limited based on how the device connects (for example, USB-C).
Unfortunately, the cost is still a barrier to entry for some people. For example, if users want to load up their PC with 4TB worth of internal SSD storage, it will cost them about $350. The old saying “time is money” has never been more accurate when it comes to describing SSD pricing.
The Verdict of SSD Versus HDD
HDDs and SSDs fulfill the same function but in dramatically different ways. These differences will end up being the deciding factor behind whether you choose an SSD versus an HDD.
If speed isn’t valued and a strict budget exists, then an HDD is a no-brainer. On the other hand, if money is less of an issue — and performance is prized above everything else — then an SSD is the way to go.
Protecting Tech Investments With Upsie Extended Warranties
Backing up files with a hard drive is important, but you also need an extended warranty to protect your laptop or PC from external damage and early wear. The best extended warranty for laptops and PC
is from Upsie
Upsie’s warranty plans feature clear and direct coverage terms, as well as plans that cost up to 70 percent less than warranties from retailers or manufacturers. In addition, Upsie protects your tech from manufacturing defects, cooling issues, and more.
There’s no better option for achieving technological peace of mind.
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