Limitations of Hard Drives

Hard drives are older technology than SSDs but still offer good capacity and performance. They’re a popular choice for laptops and desktop PCs.

A hard drive works by magnetizing portions of a platter and using read/write heads to detect their polarity. These heads can read data in the form of binary code, a series of ones and zeros that represents any piece of information. The platter also contains a pattern that the read/write head can use to identify specific bits of data on the disk.

The mechanical components of HDDs create a few limitations that aren’t found with more modern storage devices. For example, the actuator arm that moves across the platters takes time to physically find and access data, which is known as latency. Also, because the platter circles and read/compose head are located in close proximity they can be impacted by drops and vibrations that can cause damage.

Another limitation of HDDs is their power consumption and temperature. Typically, HDDs draw more power than SSDs while they’re working, and they can easily heat up when you’re doing heavy tasks like gaming or video editing. These conditions can result in poor performance, so we test for both power consumption and temperature to make sure you’re getting the best experience. We also test a few other important specifications such as RPM and spindle speed. The higher these numbers are, the faster the drive will perform. This will impact both sequential transfers and random access times.