Solid State Drive vs Hard Drive
Until recently, computer buyers had a very small choice of what kind of memory to stock their laptop or desktop computer. If he bought an ultrabook, he probably had a solid state drive (SSD). Any other desktop or laptop equipment had a hard disk drive (HDD). Now you can configure your system with an HDD or SSD, or in some cases both. But how to choose?
We explain the differences between SSDs and HDDs, showing their pros and cons to help you choose.
A traditional hard disk drive is a device used to store non-volatile information on a computer. This means that the information on it does not “disappear” when the system is turned off, as is the case with data stored in RAM. HDDs are essentially made up of a metal plate coated with a magnetic coating that stores data. The rotating discs are read by the head on the shoulder.
The SSD is functionally all the same as an HDD, but the data is stored in connected flash memory chips. SSDs can be permanently installed on the motherboard, or in a field that is the size and shape of a standard drive. SSD flash memory chips are of a different type than is used in USB flash drives and are usually faster, and more reliable. SSDs are therefore more expensive than USB flash drives with the same capacity.
What distinguishes both types of drives fundamentally is the price. In order to understand the reason, we would have to analyze the economic laws of supply and demand when introducing market novelties, as production costs are less important here.
The standard for newly purchased laptops is a 500GB hard disk drive. The same SSD capacity would increase the value of the equipment so much that many people would not decide to buy it. A temporary solution, therefore, is to use two HDDs, SSD for the operating system and larger HDD for data in the devices that allow it. There are also hybrid drives, which are a combination of SSD and HDD, but these so far show a considerable failure and are not worth recommending.
Speed: Solid State Drive vs Hard Drive
What the SSD shines in is speed. Loading the system takes an unparalleled amount of time, and any disk operations leave the HDD behind. This is influenced by many factors, such as the way the system is fragmented.
The SSD does not contain moving parts, so it is more durable, especially during falls and shocks. Most hard drives park the head while the system is switched off, but while the readers are flying over the drive platter, a few nanometers away.
Since HDDs consist of rotating discs, there is also a limit to their miniaturization. In the case of SSDs, this problem disappears.
Even the quietest drive emits some noise when in use. The drive system of the platter, the head arm, has to make sounds. Often they are the bigger, the faster the drive is. SSDs emit practically no noise because they are non-mechanical.
Solid State Drive vs Hard Drive: summary
Hard drives win on price, performance and availability. SSDs work best if speed, strength, shape factor, noise or fragmentation (technically part of the speed) are important factors for the owner.
In terms of durability, while it is true that SSDs wear out over time (all cells in the flash bank can be written and deleted a limited number of times), thanks to TRIM technology, which dynamically optimizes the cycles read, aging slows down.
It is not known whether SSDs will completely replace traditional hard drives. SSD prices are going down, but they are still too expensive to completely replace terabytes of data from users’ computers.