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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > 5400rpm v. 4200rpm HD - worth the upgrade?

5400rpm v. 4200rpm HD - worth the upgrade?
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loringdm
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Jun 16, 2004, 12:15 PM
 
I currently have a 1.25ghz PB 15 AL w/ 80gig 4200rpm HD. I was considering upgrading the HD to a 5400 rpm (I believe the Hitachi 80gig drive also comes with a 16meg cache vs. a 8mg cache)drive for added performance. Is the performance boost really worth the $250 cost? Anyone with experience on the effect on battery life? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
biposto
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Jun 16, 2004, 12:22 PM
 
Originally posted by loringdm:
I currently have a 1.25ghz PB 15 AL w/ 80gig 4200rpm HD. I was considering upgrading the HD to a 5400 rpm (I believe the Hitachi 80gig drive also comes with a 16meg cache vs. a 8mg cache)drive for added performance. Is the performance boost really worth the $250 cost? Anyone with experience on the effect on battery life? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
I wouldnt do it for $250, its different when you have a bto machine and get it done for what? 50?
I would use that $250 for more ram, if possible.
Or get a fast external drive, ever thought about that? get best of both worlds, fast external drive is always handy, for back-up's, or take it with you to some other system
     
Carl Norum
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Jun 16, 2004, 12:51 PM
 
BareFeats was saying a while ago that the increase in disk speed is a pretty big deal. But that all depends on how much you're willing to pay, I guess.
     
djohnson
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Jun 16, 2004, 12:52 PM
 
Good question since I was pondering this as well. I think it would be worth the axtra $125 or so through BTO...
     
iREZ
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Jun 16, 2004, 12:54 PM
 
I for one am really wanting to upgrade the stock 40gig drive in my 12" to a faster drive but I don't wanna have to pay $250 for the drive and then $80 for installation, that's a little too high a cost to maintain my warranty and have a screaming HD. Maybe an external is in my near future.
NOW YOU SEE ME! 2.4 MBP and 2.0 MBP (running ubuntu)
     
biposto
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Jun 16, 2004, 01:03 PM
 
Originally posted by Carl Norum:
BareFeats was saying a while ago that the increase in disk speed is a pretty big deal. But that all depends on how much you're willing to pay, I guess.
More important, why do you want to use the extra speed for?
Video edit? forget 5400 and go for a fast 7200 or faster.
Thing is with OSX you rarely reboot or restart programs, i have all my fav. apps open all the time so any speed gain with that is a no go.
I guess with gaming you will notice it during loading, gameplay itself you wont.




Originally posted by iREZ:
I for one am really wanting to upgrade the stock 40gig drive in my 12" to a faster drive but I don't wanna have to pay $250 for the drive and then $80 for installation, that's a little too high a cost to maintain my warranty and have a screaming HD. Maybe an external is in my near future.
Yeah, a nice LaCie external 200-250gig hard drive, 7200 or so not too bad at all
( Last edited by biposto; Jun 16, 2004 at 01:09 PM. )
     
loringdm  (op)
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Jun 16, 2004, 01:06 PM
 
If I were buy and install the HD by myself, I would void my applecare warranty? Is there anyway to avoid this? As to buying a fast external drive - I do have a 7200 rpm external drive. I fail to understand how a fast external drive would help since the system would still be running off my slower 4200 rpm drive.
     
biposto
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Jun 16, 2004, 01:16 PM
 
Originally posted by loringdm:
If I were buy and install the HD by myself, I would void my applecare warranty? Is there anyway to avoid this? As to buying a fast external drive - I do have a 7200 rpm external drive. I fail to understand how a fast external drive would help since the system would still be running off my slower 4200 rpm drive.
No, you can boot OSX from that fast external drive
( Last edited by biposto; Jun 16, 2004 at 01:26 PM. )
     
Powaqqatsi
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Jun 16, 2004, 01:58 PM
 
Originally posted by biposto:
No, you can boot OSX from that fast external drive
So much for portability.
     
biposto
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Jun 16, 2004, 02:11 PM
 
Originally posted by Powaqqatsi:
So much for portability.
Yep, it's always a trade-off, lots of speed, hd space > external solution
Less speed, less hd space > internal solution
Really depends on your needs.
     
iREZ
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Jun 16, 2004, 02:23 PM
 
For an overall performance boost would you guys suggest I get a 1gig stick of RAM (768MB right now) for a total of 1.25GB, or should I go the HD route and up the internal HD to an 80gig 5400 (40gig 4200 right now)? I'm selling an iPod right now and I'm going to have $200 to upgrade my 12 incher.
NOW YOU SEE ME! 2.4 MBP and 2.0 MBP (running ubuntu)
     
biposto
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Jun 16, 2004, 02:58 PM
 
Originally posted by iREZ:
For an overall performance boost would you guys suggest I get a 1gig stick of RAM (768MB right now) for a total of 1.25GB, or should I go the HD route and up the internal HD to an 80gig 5400 (40gig 4200 right now)? I'm selling an iPod right now and I'm going to have $200 to upgrade my 12 incher.
What software do you run mostly?
How is the vm_stat? lots of swapping going around? get more ram 1st
     
Dr.Michael
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Jun 16, 2004, 05:53 PM
 
Originally posted by loringdm:
I currently have a 1.25ghz PB 15 AL w/ 80gig 4200rpm HD. I was considering upgrading the HD to a 5400 rpm (I believe the Hitachi 80gig drive also comes with a 16meg cache vs. a 8mg cache)drive for added performance. Is the performance boost really worth the $250 cost? Anyone with experience on the effect on battery life? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
The first thing you will experience is: faster boot, faster application startup, faster loading of docs. Everything noticible.

Going back is a pain.

But after a few days you will get accustomed to the speed and you will stop noticing it. So you spend your money for very few days of very short pleasure.

It makes as much sense as upgrading a rev a machine with a rev b machine.
I would say: If your hd is too small or if it is broken, buy the faster one. But as long as your old 4200rpm hd is fine save your money.
     
iREZ
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Jun 16, 2004, 06:59 PM
 
Hmmmmmmm.........then I guess HD it is for me, seeing how having 40gigs doesn't have enough room for my MP3's (all are stored on 17 data CD's and are on my iPod) and I wouldn't mind a boost in Application's, gotta check what Apple Certified Tech's charge for installing these damn things.
NOW YOU SEE ME! 2.4 MBP and 2.0 MBP (running ubuntu)
     
typoon
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Jun 16, 2004, 08:48 PM
 
Well i'm going to be getting the 60 Gig Toshiba Drive with the 16 meg buffer. Since I can get them for 140.

PM me if you are also interested.
"Evil is Powerless If the Good are Unafraid." -Ronald Reagan

Apple and Intel, the dawning of a NEW era.
     
wei
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Jun 16, 2004, 09:26 PM
 
Originally posted by iREZ:
......Barefeats
that was posted by iRez, a useful link! Here i share it with you. thanks again iRez.
     
Tenacious Dyl
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Jun 16, 2004, 09:32 PM
 
I have a 12" powerbook with a 4,000 rpm stock 40 GB drive, I too considered upgrading later to at least 5,400 rpm, but I ended up getting a seagate external. (actually a 3.5 inch barracude 7,200 rpm 200 gb drive in a firewire 400 case). I am VERY happy, its fast, its large capacity, and swappable w/ all of my macs. Thumbs up to those....
yep.
     
rambo47
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Jun 18, 2004, 09:26 PM
 
I just replaced the standard 30 GB hard drive (4200 RPM) in my Ti667 Gigabit Ethernet with a new Hitachi 80 GB 5400 RPM drive because I finally filled up my old one. I thought 30 GB sounded cavernous and like total overkill, but once you get into digital photography, music, and movies, the space goes quickly.

The new Toshiba drive adds quite a bit of "snappiness" to my venerable old Ti Book. Very much worth the upgrade, and by adding one of OWC's External FireWire Enclosures the process of transferring my old stuff to the new drive was quite painless. Plus I now have all the storage of my old 30 GB drive for whatever I want. Archiving some DVDs or as a backup device are the leading candidates for now. Since the new drive was pristine on install I naturally did a clean install of Panther rather than my usual upgrade install. Sweeeeeet!
     
Frumpy
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Jun 19, 2004, 09:12 PM
 
Just bought my new 12" with the 4200 drive, and I have to say that I really have no complaints. As far as iMovie, iDVD, Final Cut and DVD Studio Pro go, I couldn't ask for a bigger speed boost from what I had before (iMac G4 800). I was considering the 5400 drive, but I already had an 80gig WD 7200 external, so I didn't bother with it. I'll wait for the new 100gig laptop drives to come down in price. Then I'll upgrade the HD.
Specs:12" PowerBook-1.33GHz, 768 PC2700, Airport Express, Panther (10.3.9), iSight, 15GB 3G iPod
     
todrain
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Jun 20, 2004, 09:41 AM
 
Pricewatch - great website to find prices on stuff.

http://www.pricewatch.com/

Hitachi 80GB 5400RPM drives start at about $180.
     
   
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