The Main Differences Between Hard Disk Drives and Solid State Drives

Hard disk drives, or HDDs, and solid state drives, or SSDs, are the two most prominent types of disks for computers and other technology that relies on reading and writing to a drive. However, you might not know much about the differences between them, only that they’re two common types of drives. If you’ve been looking for the real information on SSD vs. HDD, here’s everything you need to know about the two

Hard Disk Drives

A hard disk drive consists of a platter that revolves around a spindle at over 5,400 revolutions per minute. It uses changing magnetic fields to read and write information from a disk.

  • Pros

The main pros of HDDs include the amount of information that they can store and the cheapness of the drive itself. HDDs often come at a price of as low as three cents per gigabyte, and you can store 10 terabytes of data into a drive the size of a kitchen sponge.

  • Cons

The biggest con of an HDD is the fact that because it’s mechanical, it produces a lot of noise and heat. That can make it unwieldy for laptops and other small products that don’t have the capability for consistent cooling.

  • Best For

Most often, HDDs are used for desktop computers or file backups. They’re perfect if you need to store a lot of data in a small amount of space, but not great if you want something portable or subtle.

Solid State Drives

A solid state drive uses flash memory, which are computer chips that retain information even with the computer turned off. The information isn’t stored mechanically, but instead using computer chips.

  • Pros

Because of how SSDs read and write information, they’re extremely fast at writing and retrieving information. Your SSD hard drive will likely be extremely fast at booting up and shutting down your computer, as well as opening files.

  • Cons

Especially when compared to HDDs, SSDs are much more expensive per gigabyte. It’s possible to get SSDs that have multiple terabytes of data storage on them, but the price is likely to be sky-high when they first come out.

  • Best For

If you want the quickest reading and writing situation, especially if you don’t have a problem with storage space, an SSD might be for you. For many computers that utilize SSDs, it’s a good idea to invest in a backup storage service so that you can delete local files and free up space.


Obviously, HDDs and SSDs are both extremely important in the world of computers. It’s impossible to say that either one is objectively better than the other, because they both have a space. However, there are typically better options for different situations. You need to make sure you have all the information necessary to make the right choice. With this information, hopefully you can choose between an HDD and an SDD for your next computer, whether it’s for a personal need or for your company’s next equipment upgrade.

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