SSD vs HDD : What's the Difference?

Hard Disk Drive
Solid State Drive




Technology is moving at a fast pace and keeping up to date with internal storage devices such as Solid State Drives (SSD) and Hard Disk Drives (HDD) will definitely benefit you when  you decide to purchase a new laptop or desktop or even a tablet.In this post i will explain the the pros and cons of Solid State Drives (SSD) and Hard Disk Drives (HDD).This information will give you a good idea of which drive type to include in your computer package as purchase one.

HDD and SSD Explaination

Hard Disk Drive or HDD

Hard Disk Drives are essentially the primary storage mediums for data on our computers.It is based on non volatile storage which means that a computer can be turned off and our data (music, movies,files, etc)will still be stored safely, so when the computer gets turned on our data will be there.Most hard disk drives are physically made up of metal cylindrical platters which have magnetic coating on which our data are stored.Attached to these HDD platters is an extending metal arm with a read/write head which reads and writes data to and from the hard disk drive.


Solid State Drive or SSD

SSD stores data just as HDD but the methods of storage is different.HDD stores data on magnetic platters whilst SSD stores data on inter joining flash memory chips similiar to that of flash drives but not exactly the same .Most solid states drives are either directly installed onto the motherboards of newly built laptops or notepads or they can be in the form of a PCI/PCIe cards which can be connected to your pc, solid state drives can also be used as external drives which are usually attached by means of cable.
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Advantages and Disadvantages

It`s a fact that both the solid state drives and hard disk drives are needed in order for our computer system to be  booted which would allow us access to our files and documents etc.Though one or the other of these drives are needed for booting our systems they have different methods of reading and writing data and this is what sets them apart as the technology is completely different in each altogether.So how would a normal computer user know which to choose? I will further explained....


Price :If you were to do a typical price comparison on Amazon or Google you would see that the price of SSD`s are much higher than the price of a HDD.A 2.5 inch 1TB  hard disk drive would fetch a small price of around $65-$100 as compared to solid state drive which will carry double that price of around $130-$160, you may think twice now in buying a SSD over a HDD now because of the cost.The technology that SSD are built on are relatively new and this is what is keeping the price much higher than normal hard drives, however this price will drop as the technology gets more popular and used in more home computers and mobile devices.


Maximum Capacity:The maximum capacity for solid state drives are around 4TB (Terabytes), owing to the fact that they are still rare and highly priced.As of this writing it is common to find 500GB (Gigabytes) to 1TB (Terabytes) running as primary drives in commercial computer systems.However as they  get more popular with consumers they will slowly take over the hard drive market, we will even see price  and capacity dropping to facilitate lower end solid state computers.

Speed:SSD is king when it comes to speed.Tests have been conducted on SSD`s and HDD`s to see which is faster and  the results have proven that SSD`s are faster.A SSD computer will bootup within seconds, definitely under one minute as compared to a Normal HDD fitted computer.Most PC`s and Mac`s that are fitted with a SSD tend to boot and load applications much faster.Normal HDD have physical read/ write  heads attached to an mechanical arm which is used for accessing data from an magnetic platter which will take much longer as the data gets moved to different locations on the HDD.This is different for SSD as they are not dependent on any physical arm with read/write heads for accessing data.Thus giving us the reasons why it is faster than HDD`s.

Durability:HDD`s have moving mechanical parts attached to a platter, if a HDD was dropprd on the ground or was in a situation where they might have intense vibration like an earthquake,it is likely that our HDD data can become corrupted .SSD`s don`t have moving mechanical parts and if they are placed under intense vibration our data will still be intact.So if you are going to be working under harsh conditions and looking for a durable drive SSD is the way to go.  


Availability:Hard Disk Drives are more abundant than solid state drives, this is because HDD technology has been around for a relatively long time as compared to solid state drives which are relatively new.We will continue to see HDD in our computers for probably a few more years to come but as people see the advantages and benefits of using solid state drives as a medium of storage, it will become popular thus causing the price to drop.It is a fact also that most of the big manufacturer like Samsung, Toshiba, Seagate
and Western digital are behind most of the hard disk drives  but in time they will jump on board with the Solid state drives.


Form Factors:HDD`s have limitations on their physical form because of the magnetic cyclindrical platters they utilise, if it gets smaller it would mean the storage capacity would go down as well.Not long ago manufacturers were experimenting with the physical sizes of HDD`s, they attempted to produce a 1.8 inch hard disk drive but the capacity was limited to 320gb .So you see that was the smallest in terms of size and capacity that it could have gone.SSD`s do not have size limitations because they do not have metal platters which limit their physcal form.Today they are available in 2.5 inch size for laptops and notebooks.Since it does not have any size limitation it will eventually become a standard for storage mediums on laptops, tablets, notebooks, etc, this is because these devices will get smaller and slimmer.So, it`s just a matter of time before
 SSD becomes mainstream.

Noise:All HDD`s have a mechanical arm attached to a read/write head which move up and down on a magnetic plate when  data is being accessed and this up and down action alone makes a noise whenever the drive is in use.As time goes by and the drive arms become worn they will make even more noise which will become evident as you continue to use it.SSD`s don`t make any noise as they don`t have any mechanical arms attached for data retrieval,

Summary:It is a fact that HDD`s main advantages are lower price, higher capacity and availability while SSD main advantages are speed, durability, smaller size and virtually no noise when power up.With these advantages you would be more in a position to choose which drive is best for you.

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