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Thread: Hard Drives

  1. #1


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    Hard Drives
    The hard drive in my Powerbook finally crashed and I'm looking to replace it. It's an Aluminum 15-inch, and I'm pretty sure I'm going to get a 7200rpm. My main question is the difference between ATA vs. Ultra ATA vs. SATA. I've read positive things about the Seagate Momentus SATA, but will this work in a Powerbook? This blurb says yes:
    http://www.macgurus.com/productpages...0Gmomentus.php
    but I've also read otherwise. Any thoughts or advice on this subject, or on hard drives in general, would be helpful.

  2. #2


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    I have a 12" powerbook and I wanted to more capacity so went for a Western Digital Scorpio 120gb drive. It only spins at 5400rpm but I've never had a problem with it - the fan runs quite a lot but it did that before the new drive as well - it is 4 years old!

    WD Scorpio

    I also installed it myself through instructions from ifixit

  3. #3

    MaDDoG's Avatar
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    The connectors are different on ata/sata drives. I think the faster drives are usuallu found in desktops where ther are not suseptable to knocks etc. slower drives (4800 and 5400) usually in laptops because they can take punishment a little better.
    So you will need to make sure the drive you buy has the same connectors besides the obvious - being a 2.5" laptop and not larger 3.5" drive
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  4. #4


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    Thanks for the info. I'm guessing a SATA drive won't work in an aluminum powerbook. Can anyone clarify if this in generally the rule? So should I go with Ultra ATA over ATA? Where does PATA figure in?

  5. #5


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    You can get 7200 internal drives but the capacity is not as large as the 5400 drives. Take a look at this link on Amazon. The reviewers have actually installed the Seagate Momentus into their powerbooks.

  6. #6


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    I think I have it narrowed down to one of these two:

    http://www.nextag.com/st910021a_-_rk/search-html
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822148130

    Can anyone vouch that the 7200 is that much faster than the 5400 to make it worth the extra price and/or lower storage capacity? I can say I plan to do quite a bit of video editing. Is the 7200 too sensitive for a laptop?

  7. #7


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    To be honest if you're gonna be doing a fair bit of video editing you'll need an external hard drive anyway as you'll find it soons starts to fill up your hard drive.

  8. #8

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkingclock View Post
    I think I have it narrowed down to one of these two:

    http://www.nextag.com/st910021a_-_rk/search-html
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822148130

    Can anyone vouch that the 7200 is that much faster than the 5400 to make it worth the extra price and/or lower storage capacity? I can say I plan to do quite a bit of video editing. Is the 7200 too sensitive for a laptop?
    The 7200rpm notebooks drives are engineered to work in notebooks, so they should be fine. Whether there's a tangible difference in performance is another story.

    My only experience relates to an older Dell Inspiron 8200 notebook (P4/2.4GHz, 1GB RAM) that came with a 5400rpm drive originally. When the first 7200rpm drive came out (Hitachi Travelstar 7K60), all of the websites I frequented commented about how much faster it was than a 5400rpm drive in the 8200, so I paid the then steep price of $200 for the drive. Needless to say, I was underwhelmed. I couldn't detect a performance difference.

    Now, that was a few years ago (2003?) and 7200 rpm drives were bleeding edge at the time, so I don't know if they've been further refined over time. But in my opinion, unless you're really annoyed at the speed of your machine with the current 5400rpm drive, then save a few bucks and go with a 5400rpm drive.

    Also, I wouldn't worry about reliability - especially if you buy a Seagate drive as they have 5-year warranties (the Hitachi drive in my old Inspiron 8200 is still going strong - sold it to a friend a few years ago).

    To answer your other question - EIDE, ATA-100 and Ultra ATA are all terms that describe the older PATA (Parallel ATA) interface.

    ATA-150, ATA-300 describes the performance of the newer SATA (serial ATA) interface.

    I don't know the specifics of your machine, but if it's more than 3-4 few years old, it probably doesn't have SATA.
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  9. #9


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    I think I'm definitely going with a 5400, with 120GB. It seems even the newest Macbook Pros have a 5400 drive, except for the 17", and only if you request a 7200. I'm also planning to add 1gb of Ram. Sounds good, no?

  10. #10

    cwa107's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkingclock View Post
    I think I'm definitely going with a 5400, with 120GB. It seems even the newest Macbook Pros have a 5400 drive, except for the 17", and only if you request a 7200. I'm also planning to add 1gb of Ram. Sounds good, no?
    That's exactly what I just bought: http://www.macmall.com/macmall/shop/...0Hard%20Drives

    MacMall was a little more expensive than NewEgg, who I'd originally ordered it from (NewEgg was backordered), but expect to pay around $85 + shipping.

    1GB of RAM will help tremendously. You'll see a much bigger performance increase by going to 1GB than upgrading your HDD.
    Liquid and computers don't mix. It might seem simple, but we see an incredible amount of people post here about spills. Keep drinks and other liquids away from your expensive electronics!

    https://youtu.be/KHZ8ek-6ccc

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