If you’re shopping for a new computer — or looking to upgrade your existing computer — you might be wondering whether a solid-state drive (SSD) is a better choice than a hard-disk drive (HDDs). All computers have a storage drive. The two most common types of storage drives are SSDs and HDDs. While SSDs are still relatively new, they’ve become increasingly popular due to their exceptionally fast speeds. So, are SSDs more reliable than HDDs?
The Basics of SSDs
An SSD is a data storage device that’s characterized by the use of semiconductor chips. It’s used to store, as well as read, non-volatile data.
SSDs differ from HDDs in their respective operations. Although there are different types of HDDs, they all use magnetic disks known as platters to store and read data. The planners spin while an arm stores or reads data on them. SSDs don’t have magnetic disks. They operate using semiconductor chips, instead.
The main benefit of using an SSD is speed. SSDs are noticeably faster than their HDD counterparts. According to Intel, SSDs offer up to 10 times faster read speeds and 20 times faster storage or write speeds than HDDs.
If you’ve ever used a computer with an HDD before, you may recall hearing a spinning noise. This noise comes from the platters. The platters must spin so that the computer can retrieve data stored on them. There are no spinning platters in SSDs. As a result, SSDs can read and write data more quickly than HDDs.
Not only are they faster, but SSDs are typically more reliable than HDDs as well. HDDs use a mechanical method of operation that increases their risk of failure. If you drop your laptop or knock over your desktop, the HDD may succumb to damage. The physical shock can damage the HDD’s components, in which case it may fail to read or write data.
SSDs are also better protected against environmental contaminants than HDDs. Airborne moisture can easily reach an HDD’s platters where it can cause them to degrade. Eventually, an HDD may fail from moisture exposure. SSDs, however, offer an enclosed and sealed design that protects against environmental moisture and other contaminants.
Storage drives typically don’t last forever. Regardless of the type, most storage drives will eventually need to be replaced. The good news is that SSDs are, in fact, more reliable than HDDs. They are better protected against both shock and environmental contaminants.
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