The new laptop is finally getting near. Very near.
I don't want whatever stock drive they'll send me, so I'm going to buy a WD to replace it. The question is ... 500GB at 5400RPM ... or 500GB at 7200RPM? The price difference is negligible.
I'm going to be storing a lot of stuff on this drive (obviously). How reliable is a 7200RPM notebook drive? Does running at 7200RPM put a significant amount of greater stress on the hard drive? Heat? Vibration? How much will it affect the battery life, compared to 5400RPM?
If I move the laptop around while the drive is writing, is 7200RPM more sensitive and/or more likely to incur data loss?
These are the questions I need to know the answers to.
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I've got several laptops running 7200 RPM drives. Some of the new drives that don't use much more power than a 5400 RPM. Also, make sure you aim high in the Cache, this will certainly help you a lot if you will be transferring a lot of files.
From my experience, I have not seen more heat being produced from these drives, or the battery time remaining go down (maybe negligible). This is with newer drives though.
I am wondering the same thing myself. I have not use one yet, but I did read some reviews complaining about vibration / noise of 7200rpm laptop hdd. I don't know how true is that, can some one verify? Also just how significant is the performance improvement by using 7200rpm, instead of 5400rpm?
I think you'll get more useful information by comparing the drive power requirements specifications between specific drives, rather than simply looking at whether it's a 5400 v. 7200 rpm drive. If the "store" doesn't provide the detailed specs needed (Watts required during various drive operations) then go to the manufacturer's drive spec (usu. a PDF file).
How you use the drive can have more impact on total power consumption (and other things) than just whether it it spinning at 5400 or 7200 rpm, and there are other things to consider in making the purchase decision. For example, if your usage keeps the drive spun-down most of the day then the impact of drive RPMs alone on battery life is reduced even more.
Imact of I/O operations on temperature, drive life, and battery "ON" hours per charge
Monitoring SMART readings and using program "HDspeed", I've found in general the major drive-caused contributor to (non-SSD and non-Hybrid) hard drive high temperatures is very prolonged READ operation. Cleary the drive electronics associated with READ operations is consuming a lot of power. On a given RPM drive (whether 5400 or 7200), I've seen temps increase 10degC above the "base" temp* during prolonged READ ops, and only 2degC during prolonged WRITE ops (system and drive internal write-cacheing was enabled). If you're going to be using the drive for only highly intermittent R/W operations, then the contribution to increased temp would be considerably smaller as the drive will have time to cool-down between sessions. I'd expect the drive to show very little temperature increase due to highly intermittent R/W ops...the kind you might find when you're typing a paper and the notebook is only reading/writing a bit of data to the drive every 10 minutes or so.
However, ALL the temps depend a LOT on how well the notebook design allows cool air to flow around the drive and how quickly it can remove the heat. In otherwords, a poorly ventilated notebook hard drive could see temperatures soar much higher than I've indicated here, and could affect which operating condition causes the worst temps.
We know that high temperatures are anathema to hard drives and will decrease time to failure.
As to whether you want to keep the drive spinning or force it to spin-down after a short period of I/O inactivity, you may want to keep drive specs in mind and not just battery "ON" hours per charge.
At least for now only you can make the choices about what is right for you regarding balancing HDD life, performance, and laptop battery "ON" hours per battery charge. A notebook drive may have an head unload/load cycles specification as low as 50,000. The value varies. If you "spin-down" every 15 minutes, then in worst-case you reach that theoretical value in about 1-1/2 years. However, you generally won't see "worst-case" in normal use because you reset the "spin-down" or "power-off" timer every time you do an op to the drive. You should also keep in mind that spin-up requires a high current spike compared to keeping the drive spinning for a bit. These factors are inter-related and how they relate can impact how many hours your notebook will run that day on a given battery charge. Just remember that the more frequently the drive "spins-up/down" in your usage profile the faster you reach that minimum "head load/unload" spec and the more often you induce a "spin-up" caused power spike.
*For this post, the "base" drive temp is the steady-state condition of the drive just spinning and no or very infrequent I/O activity. Of course, with good cooling any increase in temperature would be moderated. Simply keeping the drive spinning doesn't seem to increase the drive temp more than a few degC in modern drives.
On my Acer laptop, I had a 400GB Scorpio Blue (5400 RPM), so I know how they sound, feel, etc. Very quiet with no vibrations to speak of. I think I might just go with what I know and stick with a 5400 RPM Blue.
If I get the 7200 RPM Black, and then decide to return it to Newegg, how much is the restocking fee? Is that fee just deducted from the refund?
I have a HP NC-6910P and it came with a Fujitsu 80GB 7200rpm sata hdd. It has been running for the past 3yrs and so far I have no issues with it. It is practically silent and no vibration what so ever. As for it's speed or affects on battery life, I cant comment as I dont have a referrence for you like had a 5400rpm then upgraded to 7200rpm situation.
Here is a link to my hdd. Obviously it is no longer sold but read through the user comments to give yourself more feedback.