Have you ever turned on your computer only to have to walk away while it boots up? How about waiting forever for a game to load a new map, or a software to finally launch. All these things have a few things in common. They can all be influenced by using the correct storage. Choosing the correct storage type can make or break your experience with your custom pc. Below we’ll explain the differences between a Hard Disk Drive (HDD), Solid State Drive (SSD), and m.2 SSD.
There are countless types of storage. HDD’s, SSD’s, M.2 SSD’s, external, flash drives, SD cards. The list could continue forever. In this post we will be focusing on the internal drives. Hard drives, solid state drives, and M.2 drives are all stored inside the system. Hard drives are great for cheap bulk storage. You can get multiple terabyte HDD’s significantly cheaper than other drive types. SSD’s are faster and more reliable than HDD’s but cost more. SSD’s can also be manufactured with higher storage types, up to 100 terabytes! M.2 Drives are the upgrade from SSD’s. They are of course faster and more reliable, but they have 1 huge advantage. They are significantly smaller than all the other storage types.
So how do you choose the right drive? That depends entirely on what you plan to use the drive for. If you just have a ton of pictures and videos that you want to save onto one drive, a hard drive would be a perfect fit. You can get a large capacity drive at an affordable cost. However, the downfall is that they do not last as long. Hard drives have physically moving parts, which means they are more subject to more wear and tear.
If you are looking for something much faster and more reliable for your custom PC, you might want to look at an SSD. They have 0 moving parts so there is no need to worry about the disk scratching or the motor dying. They can reach speeds in some cases 30% faster than the traditional HDD. The downfall however is that SSD’s are of course more expensive.
If you are looking for the fastest storage on the market, then the M.2 Drives are right up your alley. M.2 drives can reach speeds of over 1 gigabyte per
second! That would be like downloading a 4k movie in 5 minutes! One downfall of an M.2 is that they use a different form factor than HDD’s and SSD’s. So, you need to make sure that your motherboard has the M.2 slot available to use this drive.
To recap: hard drives are great for general and bulk storage at a cheaper cost. Solid state drives are the direct upgrade from hard drives. They are faster and quieter, but they cost more. M.2 drives are the fastest commercially available. They are also significantly smaller than the other storage solutions, but they are the most expensive option.
What storage type or types do you use in your gaming pc or workstation?