5400 RPM 120 gig or 7200 RPM 100 gig?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by illegaloperatio, Sep 3, 2006.

  1. illegaloperatio macrumors member

    illegaloperatio

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    Jul 26, 2006
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    Illinois
    #1
    This might have been discussed before. I dont mind losing 20 gigs of hard drive space if need be (I never fill one up anyway) but I do care about performance. So to configure my new 17" MBP I have this choice to make of a 100 gig at 7200 or 120 gig at 5400.

    Or does it really even make a difference?:confused:
     
  2. FFTT macrumors 68030

    FFTT

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    #2
    7200 RPM drives are faster, but they also use more power and produce more heat.
     
  3. illegaloperatio thread starter macrumors member

    illegaloperatio

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    #3
    Are they (the 7200) faster enough to notice a difference?
     
  4. NATO macrumors 68000

    NATO

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    #4
    I think you've answered your own question ;)

    You mention that you'd never fill a 120GB Hard Drive, and you do care about performance. Hence the choice between the 100GB@7200GB and 120GB@5400RPM is a no-brainer, given the criteria you've specified

    Check this out for a benchmark of the 5400 vs 7200 Drives
     
  5. Cygnus311 macrumors regular

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    May 6, 2006
    #5
  6. illegaloperatio thread starter macrumors member

    illegaloperatio

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    Illinois
    #6

    Good information guys, I feel that I should have explained my motives since it did not make sense.

    I was really contemplating a refurbished 17", however those come strickly with the 5400 120 no ifs, and, or buts about it. But if this is a big ordeal performancewise, I might buy the brand new one where I could configure which drive I get. I hope that clears it up :)
     
  7. NATO macrumors 68000

    NATO

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    #7
    Personally I'd go with the 120GB Drive, you can never have too much HDD space. My MBP is kitted with a 120GB Drive and I think it's very fast, I certainly haven't noticed a lack of speed during normal use. If you're doin heavy video editing you might notice the 7200RPM 100GB drive, but otherwise the 120GB is fantastic for speed and space.
     
  8. illegaloperatio thread starter macrumors member

    illegaloperatio

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    #8
    I'm tending to lean your way. That link you supplied explained a bunch PLUS if I get one with the 5400 it ships right away, the 7200 RPM one takes 3 extra days :D
     
  9. sonictruth macrumors member

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    Nov 18, 2004
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    #9
    I really notice the difference with a 7200 in my work laptop - biggest performance jump I've ever seen on a Windows machine outside of reformatting the HD and reinstalling Windows. My next Mac laptop will be 7200 without fail - I'd love to see the difference a 7200 in my 17in PB would make.
    The link from Cygnus311 is interesting, but without seeing specs, I'd still stick with the 7200. If/when you eventually need extra HD space, that's when you get a network-attached, wireless HD. An extra 20 GB on a laptop drive now is meaningless in the future.
     
  10. FFTT macrumors 68030

    FFTT

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    #10
    I'm not sure if its smarter to just have a larger FAST 7200 RPM external F/W drive.
    Something like the MYBook 250GB 7200 RPM SATA F/W

    If what you're doing is really important, you MUST have reliable back-up.

    Once you complete a project, you're better off saving it to a larger storage drive anyway, so you're probably fine with the stock 5400 RPM drive while you're working.

    WD makes both an "Essential" USB 2.0 drive and the Premium F/W drive.

    http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/productdetail.aspx?c=us&l=en&s=bsd&cs=04&sku=A0242036
    [​IMG]

    http://www.ecost.com/ecost/ecsplash/shop/detail~dpno~706945.asp

    http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/productdetail.aspx?c=us&l=en&s=bsd&cs=04&sku=A0615997

    [​IMG]
     
  11. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #11
    This is true....if the computer is "off."
     
  12. Reaver macrumors 6502

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    Aug 23, 2006
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    Columbus, Ohio
    #12
    I am going with the 7200 in my MBP I really wont be needing space as much as I would be needing a faster hard drive for faster application searches and faster application/ file running. If your going to need a external HDD I would just buy a HDD and then buy a external enclosure, it would be alot cheaper than buying a prefabbed external HDD from say western digital, maxtor, lacie.
     
  13. daneoni macrumors G4

    daneoni

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    Mar 24, 2006
    #13
    The whole 7200RPM drives use more power and produce more heat is total crap. I've used both and the battery life i get from both machines is the same sometimes even more on the 7200 RPM machine.

    The heat produced is also the same i dont notice the 7200RPM drive getting hotter.

    It has been said time and time again in all reviews the 7200RPM drives marginally use the same power as the 5400RPM and dont produce more heat. So stop thinking because a drive spins faster means it "taxes" the machine more. It taxes the machine BUT not a lot more.

    To the OP if you're gonna be using Bootcamp, i'd get the 5400RPM. However if you want performance and are going to be moving files around alot then defo get the 7200RPM drive.
     
  14. codo macrumors 6502

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    England, United Kingdom
    #14
    I say get the 120 gig - I was in the 7200 camp but then I figured... Is a couple of seconds in loading speed, if that, worth 20 gigs?

    I now have a 120 in my MacBook as a result of that question.
     
  15. Voltes V macrumors member

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    Sep 2, 2006
    #15
    it is always about performance thats why you're getting a MBP, so IMO i'd go for the 7200.it is always nice to be faster.
     
  16. risc macrumors 68030

    risc

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    #16
    quoting: http://barefeats.com/5472.html :

    The 7200rpm internal drive is NOT significantly faster than the stock 5400rpm when doing small RANDOM reads and writes. That implies that it won't give you much advantage for booting and normal operations...

    If you work on audio or video where large blocks are captured or played back, the 7200rpm internal drive of the MacBook has a clear advantage over the stock 5400rpm internal drive...
     
  17. Voltes V macrumors member

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    Sep 2, 2006
    #17
    same as NATO's post.
     
  18. risc macrumors 68030

    risc

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    #18
    Why thanks for pointing that out, all I did was copy and paste my same response from the other 5 times I've seen this question pop up and the OP didn't bother searching.
     
  19. Porco macrumors 68020

    Porco

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    Mar 28, 2005
    #19
    I say go for the 7200. You can easily have a *lot* more than 20GB extra capacity with an external drive, which you need to buy anyway if you wanted either more capacity or performance (from the external one I mean). Or even just to back-up, which is advisable of course.
     
  20. NATO macrumors 68000

    NATO

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    #20
    Thing is, the main motivation for wanting a 120GB drive was because you never realise just how much space you can make use of.

    For Example:
    1. You ideally want to have approx 10GB Free for normal OS X operation
    2. Default install of Tiger + iLife is approx 10GB
    3. You'll probably have a fairly large iTunes collection (in my case, 40GB)
    4. If you want to run Windows XP via Parallels, you're talkin another 10GB
    5. Windows XP Via Boot Camp will set you back another 10GB
    6. Various Applications (eg Office) etc will be anything up to 20GB

    Of course, this is a very rough "worst case scenario", but even at that, that's a total of 100GB. Bearing in mind that a 120GB Drive will actually format as 111.47GB you can see how it might be useful to have a larger drive.
     
  21. archurban macrumors 6502a

    archurban

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    Aug 4, 2004
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #21
    5400 and 7200 are not really different if you don't work some serious hard drive intensive work. for normal use, if you want to have more space like me, go with 5400RPM, 120GB or 160GB. it's more smart choice. do you think that you won't fill 100GB so faster? no. it will be very easy.
     
  22. Demon Hunter macrumors 68020

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    Mar 30, 2004
    #22
    Are both of the models (5400rpm and 7200rpm) Seagate drives? That would be the deciding factor for me. If they're both Seagate, that's gravy.
     

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