5400 v.s. 7200 Really?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Fearless Leader, Aug 11, 2006.

  1. Fearless Leader macrumors 68020

    Mar 21, 2006
    im going to get a mbp soonish :) , and i want to know how much faster is the 7200 is than the 5400. I dont care if you use a stopwatch or a benchmarking app, all i want is data per second rates to see if the faster drive is worth 20 less gb.

    Thanks for all your help in advance.
  2. California macrumors 68040


    Aug 21, 2004
    The Hitachi Travelstar 100gb 7200 seems to surpass the Seagate 100gb 7200 in all benchmarks. However, the Toshiba 100gb 5400 16mb cache has double the cache than either the Seagate or Hitachi, so I wonder how close it is to them in benchmarks. I put one in a friends iBook and it was much faster than the hitachi Travelstar 100gb 5400 with only an 8mb cache.

    So I'm saying that if you are trying to save a buck, maybe the Toshiba 16mb 100gb 5400rpm might be the drive for you. But not sure what they offer in Macbooks -- I'm just talking straight hds.
  3. neib macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2006
    I can't be a perfect judge of this because I can't make a direct comparison but I guess it depends on what you are using it for. In most cases, both drives will perform about the same, however the difference lies in the sustained transfer rate. 5400 rpm drives are likelier to transfer at a slower rate the longer they are being accessed so if you are, lets say, opening HUGE photoshop files or moving other large media for a long period of time, then it's probably better to go with the 7200rpm. If however, you work with smaller files like say an indesign or illustrator layout then it's better to go with the 5400.
    If you're concerned about storage space, get a external hard drive, it'll save you a lot of grief (at least it has for me).
  4. NATO macrumors 68000


    Feb 14, 2005
    Northern Ireland
    Check out this comparison between Apple's 5400 and 7200RPM Drive options

    In Summary:
    "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."

    Also check out this previous thread
  5. apfhex macrumors 68030


    Aug 8, 2006
    Northern California
    Despite whatever claims people make, when I upgraded the drive in my PB from 5400 to 7200 I noticed a significant difference in anything involving disk access. NOT huge, just quite noticeable all over.
  6. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    It will certainly be faster. However, it is important to consider how to spend your money to get the most improvement. The obvious choices are: Higher processor speed, more RAM, faster harddisk. I think buying more RAM will be the first thing to do, followed by faster processor, and faster harddisk comes last.

    Also, internal harddisks for notebooks are always very expensive; you should consider getting an external harddisk with Firewire connection, giving you much more storage and the speed for less money.
  7. macenforcer macrumors 65816


    Jun 9, 2004
    You can test all you want. The fact is the higher number is the faster one. :D

    Seriously, it will feel faster but heh zup to you.
  8. okwhatev macrumors 6502

    Oct 19, 2005
    It really depends on what you do. Honestly, it's so much faster in anything involving heavy access (like multitracking) it's a no-brainer for me. Having a 7200RPM drive means you come much closer to desktop performance.
  9. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    It spins faster ...

    Which will just make you throw up faster than the guy spinning slower.

    In reality, it is the mechanism and how fast it can transfer that gives you a MB/sec edge (may be any rotational speed otherwise.) The faster spinning one with improve seek times, great if the drive is uber fragmented or a random access database search. A brand new drive will mean less fragmentation, but it will slow a bit later on as fragmentation slows it down.

    The Bus speed and bigger cache only help fill and drain the cache faster/slower -- then you run into the mechanical limit. Of course you can also run into a poorly programmed cache scheme also (happens), which will reduce the times you use the cache and must wait for the drive.
  10. Fearless Leader thread starter macrumors 68020

    Mar 21, 2006
    ok i've made up my mind im getting the cheapest hd internally for the MBP and a nice 300gig fw external for the $100 upgrade price. also anyone have a good firewire hdd case that just uses the power from the firewire to run. I know its possible becuase the drive itself take ~5.5v and internal components ~1v and the firewire buss offer ~12-13v.

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