SSD vs HDD: Difference Between SSD and HDD Storage

Confused about choosing the right storage for your desktop computer or laptop? Or are you planning to purchase additional storage? Whatever your reason, it’s time to choose the right storage.

The storage in a computer is not only used to store data. It also plays an important role in the performance of the computer.

Generally, two types of storage HDD and SSD are used in laptops and Desktop computers. To choose the right storage for you among them, you need to know the differences between both HDD and SSD.

I will explain to you the differences between HDD and SSD in terms of speed, cost, power, noise, and lifespan. This way you will know which is the best storage for your computer.

Why is storage needed?

Storage is important for all computing devices like smartphones, tablets, laptops, and Desktop computers. All the data required for the CPU process is stored in the storage itself.

For example, an Operating System (OS) is essential for a computer to run. A user can access the computer only through the OS. At least 20GB of storage is required to install that OS. Additionally, any software you install requires a certain amount of storage. It can be HDD or SSD.

Storage is essential for storing personal information, files, videos, images, etc. And Storage is used everywhere where computers are used like offices, businesses, data centers, etc.

What is HDD?

HDD is a non-volatile type of storage device that stores data on disk trays. Non-Volatile means maintaining the data in the storage even after turning off the computer. HDD stands for Full Form Hard Disk Drive.

Hard Disk Drive stores data using magnetism. Data is read and written by the head on a rotating platter. This type of storage has been used for a long time. Due to its low cost, most laptops are equipped with HDD-type storage.

HDDs are available in two sizes for laptops and desktop computers. Available in 2.5 Inch size for laptops and 3.5 Inch size for Desktop computers.

There are two types of HDD storage available in the market namely Internal HDD which is installed on the motherboard of the computer and External HDD which is used externally via USB.

Generally, HDD storage is used to store software programs, songs, images, videos, and other types of files.

How to Work HDD?

Looking at the top of the HDD, it will look like a closed metal case. Its Storage Capacity will be written on its top. Its front is equipped with SATA Pins to connect to the computer.

The interior of the HDD consists of circular disk trays. These discs are made of aluminum, glass, or ceramic with a thin magnetic coating.

That is, the disk is divided into billions of small segments. Each of them stores 1 if magnetized and 0 if unmagnetized. Thus all data is stored as binary numbers.

When the hard disk drive is running, the disk platter is continuously rotated by the motor attached to it. The plate rotates 7200 times in one minute. Data is read/written on the disk platter using the magnetic head mounted above the platter.

HDD has a number of disk trays depending on its storage capacity. HDDs with higher storage capacity are equipped with more than one disk tray.

What is SSD?

SSD is a storage device that stores data on Flash Memory Chips. This also depends on the Non Volatile storage type. SSD stands for Full Form Solid State Drive.

In this, instead of a disk, Flash Memory Chips are connected continuously and data is stored through it. It works faster and provides better performance compared to HDDs.

SSDs perform the basic functions of conventional HDDs. But because of the high speed of Solid State Drive storage, it boots the Operating System faster. And software loads faster when opened. Files can be saved quickly when saved.

SSD has no moving parts so data can be kept safe. The SSD is shock-resistant, so it performs better even when subjected to shock.

An HDD requires an electric motor to spin the platter. But since SSD storage has no moving parts, an electric motor is not required. Hence the power requirement is less in SSD as compared to HDD.

SSDs use NAND Flash Chips. The SSDs can only be written a certain number of times. Because each time it is written, its chips are destroyed little by little.

How to Work SSD?

Solid State Drive storage consists of three important components: NAND Flash, Controller, and Firmware. Among them, NAND Flash is responsible for storing data. The controller and Firmware work together to manage the storage, performance of the SSD, and maintain its lifespan.

The controller is a microchip embedded in the SSD. It will issue requests for writing and reading data. The controller is as important to an SSD as the CPU is to a computer. That means the controller acts as the brain of the SSD.

Transistors in NAND Flash are arranged in a grid with columns and rows. Transistors have a value of 1 if they allow current, and 0 if they do not. This data is stored as bits in each storage cell.

There are three classifications depending on how many bits are stored in each storage cell. A single Level Cell (SLC) stores one bit (1 or 0) in a single cell. A multi-Level Cell (MLC) stores two bits in one cell. A Trinary Level Cell (TLC) stores three bits in a single cell.

Although a storage cell can store more bits and have a higher capacity, it wears out faster. For example, TLC stores more bits and is cheaper. However, its lifespan is shorter than SLC and MLC.

Difference Between SSD and HDD

Tabled here are the differences between the two types of storage, Solid State Drive and Hard Disk Drive.

1Full FormHard Disk DriveSolid State Drive
2ComponentsHDD consists of moving components like rotating disk platters, Arm.SSD has no moving parts. Contains electronic chips.
3Storage ElementHDD stores data on an aluminum or glass plate with a thin magnetic coating.Data is stored on NAND Flash Chips in SSD.
4SpeedA maximum of 150MB per second can be copied to the HDD.Super fast copying up to 500 MB per second on SSD. The newer NVME-type SSDs can copy at speeds up to 3000 MB.
5FragmentationLarge files stored on HDD are prone to fragmentation.Fragmentation does not occur on SSD.
6Storage CapacitiesHDD storage of up to 10 TB capacity is available in the market.SSDs are sold up to 4TB capacity.
7NoiseHDD has moving parts that cause noise.SSDs don’t make noise because they don’t have moving parts.
8WeightHDD storage weighs heavily.SSD storage weighs less.
9Data ProtectionSince HDD has moving parts, because of vibration can sometimes cause crashes and damage.SSDs can withstand up to 2000Hz frequency. It is more than HDD.
10Release PeriodHDDs have been traditionally used for a long time.SSDs were recently released a few years ago.
11Power ConsumptionHDDs consume more power due to the use of electric motors.SSDs consume less power as they have no moving parts.
12ReliabilityCrashes and Being affected for strong magnets, HDD’s reliability is low.SSDs are more reliable compared to HDDs.
13SizeAvailable in 3.5 Inches for Desktop and 2.5 Inches for Laptop sizes.SSDs are available in 2.5 inches. It is designed to fit into Laptop and Desktop Drive bay.
14CostHDD will cost less. The average price of one GB HDD is 2.5 rupees.The cost of SSD is high. An average cost of a GB SSD is Rs 10.
15LifespanThe lifespan of HDDs is about 3 to 5 years.The lifespan of SSDs is about 10 years. It is more than HDD.
16Long term StorageHDD is ideal for the long-term storage of data.If there is no power for more than a year, data leakage occurs. So SSDs are not ideal for long-term storage.

Which Storage Better for Gaming

Usually both HDD and SSD store data. But both of them run on different technology. Storage can affect your gaming experience as much as the like CPU and GPU you choose.

When you are using HDD you have to wait a few minutes for each Gaming Session. But, SSD is faster so loading time will be reduced. When you are choosing storage for gaming, it is best to choose according to your budget.

If you have less budget then you can choose HDD. As long as the HDD storage has enough capacity to store the games and enough graphics, there is no problem. Perhaps if your budget allows, you are better off buying a Solid State Drive.

Another great choice is that you can will store files, software, videos, etc. on an HDD with a higher storage capacity. SSD can be used to install Operating Systems and Gaming Software.

Final Words

In this post, we have seen many differences between HDD and SSD. Both have their pro and cons. HDD is suitable storage for those who have storage purposes of large files, high-quality videos, images, etc. SSD is suitable for fast OS Boot, Fast Loading, Browsing, etc.

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