View Full Version : Which Hard Drive?

30-06-2003, 09:55 AM
I`m going to buy a new hard drive. I have a Pentium three 500 mghz with 256 meg of ram. The chipset supports ultra DMA 33. I believe that ATA 100 & ATA133 hard drives currently available are backwards compatible. Would there be any advantage in buying a 7200 rpm drive over a 5400 rpm drive given the system I am running? Also, if yes, any advantage in an 8mb cache over a 2mb cache?

TIA. Brads

30-06-2003, 10:08 AM
Yes ATA is backwards compatible.

A 7200rpm drive would be noticeably faster if you use the disk quite heavily. Not sure how much a larger cache would help.

Your main concern should be the size limit of your BIOS. It probably won't support larger than 40gb. 32gb if its an older board. Have a check at the manufacturers website.

30-06-2003, 11:24 AM
bmason is right. Go for a 7200rpm because you will notice the difference.
Anyway I think most new HDD's are 7200rpm these days anyway. And if not, it's not much more dollars to go to 7200rpm.
Haven't really noticed much difference in speed when it comes to the cache size but then I suppose it will depend on what you are going to do with the HDD.
One good advantage of buying the 8MB cache HDD's is they all seem to have a 3 year warranty while the 2MB cache HDD's only have 1 year.
But this could change so check when you buy the HDD.

30-06-2003, 12:56 PM
just to be different you won't notice a big difference between a 7200rpm drive abd a 5400rpm drive UNLESS you are useing a program that makes use of the faster seek speed (eg doing a lot of searching or reading writing small amounts)

unless you get an ata card to run the hardrive on i would just get a cheapy (good quaility brand of course) as your pc simply won't make much use of a high speed drive.

30-06-2003, 01:33 PM
What sort of size hard drive will you be needing brad?

Seeing that your motherboard only supports transfers of 33mb/sec, then it won't be as fast as one that can do 100mb/sec. Most hard drives these days are ata100,133 or the new sata interface.

So in that light, I probably wouldn't bother with an expensive 8mb cache drive because you won't see any benefit from it with the low transfer speed. Unless you upgrade your motherboard :)

Just get a 2mb cache one, that spins at 7200rpm.

Check out Pricespy (http://www.pricespy.co.nz/cat_3.html) for the cheapest price ;)

01-07-2003, 10:56 PM
Thanks all

I`ll be looking for a 40Gb HDD either 7200 or 5400 rpm, depending on prices. 40Gb will be plenty for my needs: Am currently only using 1.5Gb of a 6Gb HDD but want to try Mandrake linux in a dual boot setup with W98SE. Don`t know how I`ll get on but should be fun anyway. Thanks again all.

Cheers: Brads