5400 vs 7200rpm

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by freud, Sep 6, 2007.

  1. freud macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #1
    Hi Guys,

    I'm new here. Very briefly, I'm a PC user and I've always been (for more than 15years). I'm into audio production, an also I like paying a game ionce in a whiel, but I'm billion light years from being a hardcore gamer.

    I plan on changing computer, my pc is now 3yo and so it's time to upgrade me thinks.
    A friend of mine bought a macbook and it seems cool. I'm just having a hard time making that decision moving from pc to mac is really difficult for me (also, from desktop to laptop is not that easy).

    I would go for a macbook pro 15 - 2,16ghz - 2gb of Ram; that's the initial idea.
    But I'm wondering about the HDD. I fear that 5400rpm might be too slow. Is there a noticeable difference between the 2 (in performance/heat/...)?
    Does anybody have a 7200rpm on such laptop?

    Thanks for shedding some light

    any other comment on the purchase or on the ida to switch from pc to mac is welcome (but please no pro-mac and anti-billgates comments then, I'd rather read something useful)

    Thanks all for your help.
    Cheers
    F.
     
  2. squeeks macrumors 68040

    squeeks

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    Location:
    Florida
    #2
    i'm a PC user, i will always be a PC but ive also recently become a mac fanatic, but no way will i ever completly stop using windows, well, vista yes, but i love XP too much (lets face it there are just some things you need XP for no matter what the mac fanboys say)

    anyway

    i got rid of my HP laptop and got a macbook pro, ive used it for pretty much everything, some gaming (UT2k4 for OSX, Age of Empires II for OSX) runs well, ive done video editing with FCP (takes a long freaking time to render, whcih is why i still prefer sony vegas (XP only) for video editing over FCS, nothing beats Apple Soundtrack though, what an awesome program, you should very much enjoy that for doing your sound recording, i used it last night, and other than that fact that it kept wanting to use the internal mic insted of my USB soundblaster, it worked very nicely for what i was doing

    ive always been a very big supporter of "Have Two Computers" there are some things you just need a desktop for, and everyone needs a laptop, for me a desktop PC and a mac laptop work wonderfully, all of my internet useage has always been on my laptop, and the "no spyware, no viruses" thing i have to say so far ive found to be true, which is nice, for what you are planing to do, i think ill have to vote for, "Switch to Mac" and get he macbook pro

    the HD issue...i cant really help you, i have a 5400RPM 250gb drive, i would use a 7200 if they had it in a larger size, but i cant get away with 200gb

    but i dont find the speed to be a big problem really

    and ive found nothing beats handbreak for dvd ripping/ipod video encoding
     
  3. oYx macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #3
    freud,

    i'm in exactly the same situation as you are. am thinking of getting a mbp end of the year, with audio work being primary focus.

    i was thinking of using an external fw800 7200 rpm drive and leaving the internal drive as 5400 rpm.

    the external 7200 rpm will only be useful when dealing with a high track-count for the data bandwidth, which also means much larger capacity. and high track-count usually means mixing time, which means i'd be indoors, a situation where it's alright to plug in an external drive and not worry about battery.

    however, the bad thing is that the project may not follow you everywhere you go, if you decide to leave the fw800 drive at home.

    now, i figure i'd probably just upgrade it to 7200 regardless, as you just never know when the situation calls for a larger data bandwidth. :D

    here are some links you'd find useful:
    http://www.barefeats.com/rosa05.html
    http://www.barefeats.com/rosa06.html

    i'm also trying to find out the track-count range of a 5400 rpm to no avail, so do report if you find out! of course, we can do some maths using the numbers from the test and see how many 24 bit, 96 khz tracks we can do, but it's much better to have numbers from actual usage. :)
     
  4. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2007
    Location:
    Hootersville
    #4
    This site might be of benefit to you:

    http://barefeats.com/rosa05.html
     
  5. freud thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #5
    nice link!
    very useful!

    thanks!

    i'll have a read then i'll make a decision
    lol
     
  6. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2007
    Location:
    Hootersville
    #6
    At the time of order, I bought a 7200 100GB drive and it saved me $100 off of the slower 160 being offered at the time.

    A few weeks ago I bought a 7200 200GB Hitachi for $200 and installed it myself. I was going to wait for the 200GB Seagate coming out but it has a slower seek time than the Hitachi... so the better drive was on the market first. I believe Apple prefers Hitachi because that is what my original 7200 was.
     
  7. freud thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #7
    sounds cool

    any link to that harddrive?

    tx
     
  8. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

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    Apr 28, 2007
    Location:
    Hootersville
  9. freud thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 6, 2007
    #9
    thanks mate!

    very useful!

    still happy with the drive choice?
     
  10. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

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    Apr 28, 2007
    Location:
    Hootersville
    #10
    Best $200 I've spent since the Piper sisters.
     
  11. njp142 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2006
    Location:
    Rockville, MD
    #11
    Just remember you're going to get a little more heat with 7200RPM, something the MBPs certainly don't need any more of.
     
  12. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2007
    Location:
    Hootersville
    #12
    My computer came with a 7200 RPM 100GB drive. I just upgraded to it's big brother.

    I don't know why everyone is so concerned about MBP and heat. First off, Apple specs out 7200 HDs and offers them for sale. Second, the case is metal so, in the case of my 17" MBP, I have a 1.5' x 1.0' x 1.0" heat sink :eek: to cool everything off. Third, the only time I can really get the machine cooking is when I am ripping something and then (per iStats) it stays well within Apple's specs for heat.

    If you want hot, I have an eight pound Clevo/Sager (Alienware) Area 51 notebook with a desktop 3.06 GHz processor (with Hyper threading)... grunt! grunt!... that REALLY gets red hot. When the fans come on it sounds like a Lear jet landing in the back yard. The external power supply gets too hot to handle (literally) and even has it's own fan! Between the computer and power supply they can heat a small room in the dead of winter. ;)
     
  13. pilotkid macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Location:
    Chandler, AZ/Chicago, IL
    #13
    I have a macbook and it originally came with a 5400 80GB hard drive and I upgraded it to a 7200RPM 100GB hard drive and I did notice it starts up alittle quicker but I also noticed a reduction in battery life...Was it worth it? ummm not really.
     
  14. CL191 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2007
    #14
    Just curious, how bad is the 7200rpm drive with the battery, like 1/2hr ish?
     
  15. matt l macrumors member

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    Aug 30, 2007
    #15
    the faster drive uses hardly any more power then the slower dive, it works out at a couple of minutes less. i dont think people fully understand just what a difference faster hard disk make to your overall system. the hdd is the main bottle neck, and while people are willing to shell out loads more just for a slightly higher cpu clock speed, they skimp on the hard disk!

    speed over size every time, put you os and apps on a fast disk, and your data on a slow big one, easy!
     
  16. BrittQ macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 23, 2007
    #16
    Another option:
    Get an external enclosure and put a (/multiple) high storage 7200rpm 3.5 SATA (desktop) Hard drives in there. Connect with eSATA via the express34 slot... and enjoy (much faster than firewire).
     
  17. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Hootersville
    #17
    But the OS and cache is still on the slow drive.

    Spend the $200 and buy a 200GB 7200 RPM Hitachi. Best money I've spent since that wild night in Vegas.
     
  18. freud thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #18
    nice nice nice

    I'm not concerned about the heat to be honest.
    I also believe that if they sell such products then it's made for such machines.
    If my Mac would melt because of that, trust me I would go to an apple store and I would make them eat my well cooked MAC!


    that Hitachi drive looks neat! I'm sure they don't ship to my place though :(

    And honestly if you look at the benchmarks on http://barefeats.com/rosa05.html
    the 200gb at 7200rpm is definitely an improvement!

    Depends what u do with your mac also. I plan on doing Audio production (Ableton, Logic) and usually that means fast drive access (for recording and sample use). I could also use a FW800 drive (which I'll probably have to buy also bevause of lack of space, 200b is nothign nowadays ;) )

    cheers
     
  19. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2007
    Location:
    Hootersville
    #19
    Well, a 7200 RPM drive will improve the day-to-day performance of your system as well.

    I have an external FW800 drive and the transfers are fast. The disk inside is probably only 5000 RPM, I'm not sure.
     
  20. freud thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    #20
    default it is 5400rpm indeed
     
  21. robby818 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 2, 2007
    #21
    I swapped a 7200 rpm drive for the stock 5400 rpm drive but i went back to the 5200 rpm drive because of vibration from the 7200 rpm drive. On the macbook the drive is right below the palm rest so i could feel it under my wrist.

    i put the same 7200 rpm drive into my thinkpad x61s which has rubber drive rails and i can't feel a thing.

    the performance difference is noticeable.
     
  22. Veritas&Equitas macrumors 68000

    Veritas&Equitas

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2005
    Location:
    Twin Cities, MN
    #22
    See, I installed a 7200 rpm into my Macbook Pro upgrading from the default 5400, and I really don't notice a difference with vibration or anything like the previous poster, at all. The only thing is that it runs about 2 degrees Celsius hotter, and about 10 minutes less battery life.

    Regardless, the massive performance boost I've gotten from the 7200 far outweighs these cons. According to the Barefeats test, my 200gb 7200 rpm is about 25% faster than my original stock 120gb 5400, and I truly can tell the difference. Definitely wouldn't go back to the 5400.
     
  23. pilotkid macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Location:
    Chandler, AZ/Chicago, IL
    #23
    I have a macbook that came with a 5400RPM HD and I switched it out to a 7200RPM HD. I did notice that from power off and from sleeping to ready to use it happened faster BUT I also noticed a drop in battery life and alittle more heat.
     

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