hard drive

Building a Custom Computer: Choosing the Right Hard Drive

Hard Drives: What To Choose

The hard drive, the main storage device for the computer, is the next component that someone needs to consider when building their computer. You want to make sure that you choose a hard drives that is stable, fast enough for your needs, and holds enough. There are many different options that you can choose, but for the purposes of this tutorial, we will be looking at solid-state drives and hard disk drives.

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 Solid-state drives:

Solid-state drives, or SSD’s, are the new players on the block. Anyone who has ever used a flash drive has used the technology behind SSD’s. This allows solid-state drives access data much faster than traditional hard drives, it is argued that a last much longer as well. On the other hand, since this technology is so new, it is still much more expensive per gigabyte for SSD and for traditional hard drive. However, many users choose to use an SSD as a ‘boot drive’, or they choose to install the operating system on that drive and a larger HDD as their primary source device. While looking for solid-state drive, look for both reading and writing speeds. If you choose to install your operating system on it, choose at least 64 GB, if not more.

 Hard disk drive:

These drives have been around for decades. They use metal platters that are selectively magnetized and read/ write head to access the data. Currently, some of the largest hard disk drives can hold 3 TB, or 3000 GB. However, they are much slower than solid-state drives, but they make up for both further larger capacity and lower price per gigabyte. When looking for a hard disk drive, look for RPM, which determines how fast the hard disk drive rotates. The faster it rotates, the faster data can be accessed. Cache is used as a faster means to access information. That is, information is routinely access is stored there in order for faster access speed. Of course, the last thing you want to look at is the size of the HDD.

When deciding what to choose, look to your needs and what the computer will be used for. For light needs, an HDD of around 250 GBs is more than enough. However, if you do a lot of gaming or you want faster access speeds, then you will need something more. Judge the cost per benefit ratio to decide what is best for you. Only then will we be able to make a decision.

Matthew Mallicoat

I am a technical writer, very much involved in the world of technology and a lover of all things electronic. I love anything from PCs, video gaming, mobile devices, jailbreaking, etc.