What is The Difference Between a Hard Drive and SSD?

Whether you are downloading the new Call of Duty, or updating your OS system, your computer needs storage for everything. Everything you see on your screen right now is taking up the storage in your PC one way or another. Their are many different types of storage inside of your computer such as GDDR, DDR. The main storage in your PC is stored in either a Hard Disk Drive (HDD), or Solid State Drive (SSD). Now, even something as simple as a hard drive can determine how slow, or fast your computer can run. This can actually be one of the main reasons why you are your friend’s computer could be running slow.

Hard Drive or Solid State Drive?

This question is asked by many computer beginners as well as computer experts. What is better, Hard Drive or SSD? Well, it depends. The main difference between these two Drives, is that a Hard Drive using moving parts to collect and download data. Rather than an SSD that saves information from NAND Flash. Basically, NAND is made from floating gate transistors, that keep their charge when information is stored. This is similar to how your RAM memory works except in RAM the charge resets multiple times per second.

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Pros and Cons

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Even though these two storage devices were made to serve the same purpose. I will talk about the pros and cons to both the SSD and Hard Drive.

First, the most common question which is faster. Well, it’s the SSD. The SSD can be about 2-3 times faster than the Hard Drive. This is because the Hard Drive functions using moving parts and the SSD does not. So, the Hard drive can only be as fast as it can spin. The faster it spins makes another problem. Noise. Just like how it was explained previously, the Hard Drive is made out of moving parts. This creates another issue which is how loud it is. The faster it moves the louder the noise makes, and in a lot of cases is why people have very noisy computers. On the other hand the SSD makes very little to no noise because it has no moving parts.

Another very important part when deciding what to buy is the longevity of both SSD and HDD. Now, this is a category where the Hard Drive wins. A typical Hard Drive usually lasts around 10 years, while an SSD lasts around 5 years. This usually isn’t a very big deal because, you will probably be getting a new computer during this time.

Finally, the last big question and probably most important is the price. This is another area where the Hard Drive wins. Your typical 1 Tb Hard Drive will cost between $50- $60 (CAD). As where a typical 1Tb SSD will cost you anywhere from $120 – $140 (CAD).


Final Decisions

Now, with both these storage components having their own benefits over each other which one should you buy? The answer most veteran PC builders will tell you is both. Yes, you just read that properly. You should buy a smaller 250GB – 500GB SSD to download your OS, and applications in for a faster boot up and load speed. Then, you should buy a bigger 1Tb – 5Tb HDD for all your other data. This way you will benefit from both the speed of an SSD, and storage, and price of the HDD.

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Lucas Coulson

I first got into building my own computer when I was around 12 or 13. The first computer I had ever built didn't work. So I kept researching to figure what I did wrong. I really enjoyed researching, learning, and building computers, so I decided to turn it into an online business, and here I am.

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