MBP Hard Drive speeds. 4200vs5400vs7200

kntgsp

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jul 27, 2004
781
0
I'm looking at buying a new MBP, and I was wondering how noticeable the difference in performance is between the varying HD speeds.

I'm either going to get the 7200 160gb or the 4200 250gb.

They make 200+gb hd's with faster than 4200 speeds, surprised apple doesn't have them.

Anywho, just wondering where I'll see performance drops and where if I opt for the 250.

Thanks.
 

clevin

macrumors G3
Aug 6, 2006
9,097
1
4200 if pretty slow, I would go for 7200 and get external HDD if necessary.
 

gnasher729

macrumors P6
Nov 25, 2005
16,535
3,132
I'm looking at buying a new MBP, and I was wondering how noticeable the difference in performance is between the varying HD speeds.

I'm either going to get the 7200 160gb or the 4200 250gb.

They make 200+gb hd's with faster than 4200 speeds, surprised apple doesn't have them.

Anywho, just wondering where I'll see performance drops and where if I opt for the 250.

Thanks.
1. Higher density drives are faster at same RPM than low density drives. So a 250 GB drive will be faster at same RPM than a 160 GB drive.
2. Fuller drives are slower than emptier drives. Put 120 GB onto a 160 GB drive and a 250 GB drive, and the 250 GB will be faster.

A 7200RPM 160GB drive may be slightly faster than a 4200RPM 250GB drive, but it won't beat a large 5400RPM drive. And the 250GB will give you more storage.
 

clevin

macrumors G3
Aug 6, 2006
9,097
1
1. Higher density drives are faster at same RPM than low density drives. So a 250 GB drive will be faster at same RPM than a 160 GB drive.
2. Fuller drives are slower than emptier drives. Put 120 GB onto a 160 GB drive and a 250 GB drive, and the 250 GB will be faster.

A 7200RPM 160GB drive may be slightly faster than a 4200RPM 250GB drive, but it won't beat a large 5400RPM drive. And the 250GB will give you more storage.
consider we lack of any information about how that 250GB disk is structured. I don't think you can make those assertions.
http://www.mactech.com/articles/mactech/Vol.23/23.01/2301LaptopHardDriveSpeed/index.html
not to mention that 4200 rpm HDDs are especially at different level as 5200/7200s.
 

MovieCutter

macrumors 68040
May 3, 2005
3,348
2
Washington, DC
Get the stock drive and pick up one of these...

http://www.amazon.com/Western-Digital-WDXMS2500TN-Passport-Portable/dp/B000RY2PLQ

and swap it into your MBP yourself. It gives you 250GB storage at 5400RPM. I went from a 160GB 7200RPM drive in my new 17" to this one and haven't noticed any speed difference and I have 90GB more to show for it. The installation was actually pretty easy, and I was always afraid to open my MBP up, but I had the new drive installed in about 20 minutes.
 

Zwhaler

macrumors demi-god
Jun 10, 2006
6,759
983
I'd watch out, I heard here theres a recall on some of the 7200rpm drives.
 

buywisdom

macrumors member
Aug 17, 2005
41
1
consider we lack of any information about how that 250GB disk is structured. I don't think you can make those assertions.
http://www.mactech.com/articles/mactech/Vol.23/23.01/2301LaptopHardDriveSpeed/index.html
not to mention that 4200 rpm HDDs are especially at different level as 5200/7200s.
I am confused this link what drives is it comparing? Are they the same size? What are the sizes? There are only two graphs that contain hardly any info at all. What's going on. Did he just give up on the 4200rpm drive? To me these test are inconclusive. I would love to see a more detailed analysis of this type of thing tho.

I have a MBP SR 2.2 with a 250gb 5400rpm and it faster than the 120gb that came with it. It took 30 mins to make the switch. I would consider it much easier than the ibook hard drive upgrade. The only hard part really was the fact that apple glues a ribbon cable to the HD which you must pull off to switch it out a bit scary but nothing crazy.
 

Stephen-EXV

macrumors newbie
Jul 4, 2007
9
0
Oklahoma
I've been wondering this as well. Also, this may have been asked and answered a hundred times, but would operating a 7200rpm hard drive (as opposed to a 5400rpm drive) significantly reduce battery life?
 

MovieCutter

macrumors 68040
May 3, 2005
3,348
2
Washington, DC
I saw that you said you did it yourself, but, correct me if I'm wrong, doesn't that void the warranty?

And I thought it was supposed to be pretty hard to swap HDs on the MBP?
It doesn't void the warranty unless you're stupid and break something during the process. Apple won't cover the new drive though obviously.