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Help Me Choose: Hard Drives

The Storage drive permanently stores and gives access to the operating system, software applications, files and data on your PC. The storage drive is the only long-term storage on your PC, so it’s a good idea to consider how you are going to use your computer.

Hard Drive

What Hard Drive Do I Need?

Solid State Drive (SSD)

An SSD, or Solid State Drive, is a type of storage device that doesn’t have moving parts that provide user with longer battery life, improved shock resistance and faster data transfer than HDDs. 

Benefits of a solid-state drive:
  • Lightweight and cooler than standard hard drives
  • Greatly outperforms HDDs in read/write speeds
  • Improved performance
  • Durability
  • Better for mobile users

SATA Hard Disk Drive (HDD)

Hard Disk Drive is a data storage device that uses magnetic storage to store and retrieve information on one or multiple platters. HDDs are more sensitive to shock and vibration because they use mechanical parts to transfer data onto disks.

Benefits of using this type of drive:
• Cost per GB is lower compared to SSD
• Much higher number of write and rewrites compared to SSD

Dual-Drives

Some systems have a dual-drive configuration, they are equipped with both HDD and SSD storage devices, allowing the best of both worlds.

Benefits include:

  • Primary drive: SSD for quick load times on key applications and tasks, such as Operating System, Photoshop and Video Games.
  • Secondary drive: HDD for cost effective storage for photos and video.

How Much Storage Do I Need?

The storage drive is the only long-term storage on your PC, so it’s a good idea to consider how you are going to use your computer and ask yourself some of the following questions that will help you to define storage capacity, performance and security you need.
  • Are you going to play video games, consume media, store a few photos and videos?
  • Are you the type of user that is looking for high storage capacity and low cost for home media centers, large back-ups, video and photos?
  • Do you regularly use programs such as AutoCAD, Adobe Suite or other programs for design or editing?
  • Are you going to use your computer to browse the internet, check email, work on documents for School or work?
  • Are you working with sensitive information?

Storage Drive Size Storage Performance
Less than 256 GB Acceptable storage for email and office productivity applications, internet browsing, and other basic functions.
256 GB – 1 TB Adequate storage for most photo, music and video libraries as well as meeting typical office tasks like word processing or building spreadsheets.
More than 1 TB Abundant Storage for large digital libraries, modern video games and content created in applications like Adobe Creative Suite.

By Media Type

Media Type Average file size* 128 GB* 256 GB* 500 GB* 1,000 GB (1 TB)*
Music 4MB per 4minute song Up to 31,000 songs Up to 62,000 songs Up to 125,000 songs Up to 250,000 songs
Video (HD) 8.3GB per hour Up to 15 hours Up to 30 hours Up to 60 hours Up to 120 hours
Photos 3.5MB per 6MP image Up to 35,500 images Up to 71,000 images Up to 142,000 images Up to 285,000 images
DVD-quality movies Number of 1.5hr Movies — DVD Quality Up to 33 movies Up to 66 movies Up to 133 movies Up to 260 movies

How does Intel Optane memory work?


Intel Optane Memory

Intel Optane Memory

Intel Optane Memory

Intel® Optane™ memory with solid state storage combines the smart, adaptive responsiveness of Intel® Optane™ memory with Intel’s innovative SSD technology to help customers create, game, and produce with less waiting.

Recently launched is the next generation Intel Optane memory H20 with solid state storage delivering higher performance and lower power for 11th Gen Intel® CPU-based Dell platforms. Combining two revolutionary technologies, Intel® Optane™ technology and Intel® QLC 3D NAND storage, the Intel Optane memory H20 with SSD delivers a personalized computing experience providing improved performance and responsiveness with lower power consumption compared to the prior generation product. Intel Optane memory H20 accelerates what you use most, from everyday tasks to managing large media and gaming files and applications.

Optimized for Intel Core 10th and 11th generation processors, Intel Optane memory with solid state storage works in everything from laptops to traditional desktops, as well as AIOs and mini-PCs.

No other memory that exists today can customize your system’s performance like Intel® Optane™ memory. Intel® Optane™ memory recognizes, remembers, and provides speedy access to your frequently used files, applications, and games. As your computing habits change over time, Intel® Optane™ memory adapts to continue to deliver a responsive, accelerated user experience.

REV UP TO INTEL® OPTANE™ MEMORY H20 WITH SOLID STATE STORAGE
Intel® Optane™ memory H20 with solid state storage combines the smart, adaptive responsiveness of Intel® Optane™ memory with Intel’s innovative SSD technology to help you create, game, and produce with less waiting.


WHO IS IT FOR?

Anyone
who wants to quickly open large files and apps, even while multitasking

Creators
who want a smooth experience when working across demanding apps and importing large media and other files

Gamers
who want to launch games and load levels fast, even while multitasking

Small business owners
who want enhanced security options, including BitLocker support, Pyrite 2.0, and secure erase

HOW DOES IT WORK?
Intel® Optane™ memory H20 takes these two innovative technologies and puts them both on an M.2 card the size of a stick of gum. Incredible!

Intel® Optane™ Technology
Intel® Optane™ memory is a non-volatile memory solution designed to make computers highly responsive and able to access large sets of data quickly with low latency. This smart technology enables PCs to learn customers’ behaviors, so their PCs will launch and load their most frequently used files, games, and apps faster.

Intel® QLC 3D NAND Technology
All storage is not created equal! Quad-level cell (QLC) technology adds more bits to every memory cell, so you can get up to 1 TB of SSD storage capacity in a small footprint that’s ideal for thin and light PCs. This technology also makes it possible to transfer data at PCIe speeds!

Hard drives powered through Intel® Responsiveness Technologies

Wakes fast
With an optional solid-state drive and Intel® Rapid Start Technology, your system is ready to jump back into everything you were doing before you closed your PC. Plus, you’ll enjoy ultralow power consumption in standby mode.

Thinks fast
Get fast access to your favorite applications with an SSD and Intel® Smart Response Technology. It recognizes and caches your most frequently used files, allowing you to access them right away.

Renders fast
Dual hard drives are best if you work with large product files, such as high-resolution photography or video. Using an SSD as a boot drive and a standard HDD for capacity is another popular option. You'll appreciate the extra storage with either configuration.

Multitasks fast
Redundant array of independent disks (RAID) is a storage technology that divides and replicates data across multiple physical drives. The drives operate in tandem, so they work much faster than a single drive and prevent data bottlenecks.

Recalls fast
Caching stores data for faster recall. When a CPU or web browser attempts to access data, the cache client first checks the cache. If the cache contains the requested data, the client pulls the data from the cache (this is known as a cache hit). The greater the number of requests retrieved from the cache, the faster you’re able to access the data. Because the cache accumulates data over time, it’s best to periodically clear it to manage overall system performance.


FAQ

eMMC (embedded Multi-Media Card) is a type of storage that is offered in an industry-standard BGA package consisting of both flash memory and a flash memory controller integrated on the same silicon die. Performance of eMMC storage is somewhere in between speed of HDDs and SSDs. eMMCs are often paired with cloud storage, i.e. files are stored on a remote server.

Benefits of using eMMC
• Better performance compared to HDD
• Completely quiet compared to HDD
• Low cost/performance solution compared to SSD

Downside of eMMC
• Not easily replaceable
• Limited capacity being the common capacity range 32GB to 128GB
• Slower performance when compared to SSD
• eMMCs are often paired with cloud storage, i.e. files are stored on a remote server

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