With more and more laptops coming with an SSD option, is there a point in getting a 5400 RPM hard drive for a laptop? The simple answer is no.
SSD – solid state drives – are soon going to become mainstream in notebooks. Right now, most mid to high end laptops either have an option for an SSD drive or come with it standard. This means the 7200 rpm hard drive will soon be outdated. Yet some laptops still come with 5400 rpm hard drives. If you are looking to buy a laptop that comes with a 5400 rpm hard drive as standard, it is most likely a low end computer. So since 5400 rpm hard drives are getting outdated, should you still buy the laptop with this option? Yes, if you’re getting a good deal on the notebook, you can overlook the hard drive for two reasons – it’s very easy to upgrade in most laptops, and it’s not that big of a speed difference for the average person.
If you want to buy a new hard drive separately for your laptop, then do not get a 5400 rpm hard drive. You can get a 7200 rpm drive for the same price or even cheaper if you look around. In addition, most new 5400 rpm drives are for IDE connections, while 7200 rpm drives are for SATA connections. This means most newer laptops will accept the 7200 rpm drive, and if the price difference is no more than $10, it’s better to get a 7200 rpm drive.
In conclusion, if you find a deal on a laptop but it has a 5400 rpm hard drive, you should still get the laptop. If you’re buying a new hard drive for your laptop as an upgrade, get a 7200 rpm drive over a 5400 rpm drive if the price difference is $10 or less. The difference in speed between the two is not noticeable unless you are doing something like video editing all the time. And contrary to popular belief, a faster hard drive will not make your internet any faster whatsoever – a 5400 rpm hard drive can transfer data many times faster than your internet connection can.