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Higher RPM vs large cache?

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April 6, 2009 4:07:21 AM

Which hard drive will be more feasible for gaming? How to chose which way to go? If money is not the issue, which hard drive would be the best choice? The hard drive with high rpm or the hard drive with bigger cache? Are there any comparative benchmarks or charts of different hard drive's performance? Perhaps for game applications all those criteria make no substantial difference; therefore the changes if any, are not even noticeable. Perhaps the only criteria that needs to considered is capacity?


Seeking the logical expert opinion, I was wondering which Hard Drive will give better overall performance running the latest games, and why?

250GB
7200 RPM
Cache:32MB
Average Seek Time 8.5ms
Average Write Time 9.5ms
Average Latency 4.16ms

or

150GB.
10,000 RPM
Cache: 16MB
Average Seek Time: 4.2ms
Average Write Time: 4.7ms
Average Latency: 5.5m

or

147GB
15,000 RPM
Cache: 8MB
Average Seek Time: 3.4ms
Average Write Time: 3.9ms
Average Latency: 2ms

thank you~

More about : higher rpm large cache

April 6, 2009 4:20:25 AM

All three are dead slow when compared to an SSD, in terms of IOps.

10k/15k server disks will also perform poorly with a queue depth of 1, which is the case with gaming. These disks are made for database-stuff, not simple desktop tasks. So a 15k rpm disk might be slower than a 10k raptor.

So, the way i look at it... Either you get a 300GB Velociraptor, or an SSD.

For the fastest SSD, take a look here: http://www.tomshardware.com/news/RAIDDRive-Storage-Flas...
a b G Storage
April 6, 2009 4:26:00 AM

Game performance is NOT improved by hard drive speed .

The only difference a faster hard drive will make is the loading time . After that the system is really only working from files loaded in RAM . [ the exception will be when you have too little RAM ]

The 10 K disks are not much faster than the newer technology 7200 rpm drives with a large cache , and cost a lot more per gigabyte .
Not worth it IMO

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April 6, 2009 4:31:12 AM

Indeed it wont affect your FPS, but nothing wrong investing on a good drive which makes levels load very fast. A harddrive is the only really slow component in your computer which measures in milliseconds instead of nanoseconds or picoseconds. So its several orders of magnitude slower than anything else in your PC.
a b G Storage
April 6, 2009 4:37:44 AM

The speed difference loading a game between a WD black series drive and a Velociraptor will be a few seconds .

Toms even had an article a couple of years back about putting two conventional drives in RAID 0 that spanked the Raptor so for half the money you got 4 times as much storage .


The OP should stick with a WD black series drive or a Samsung
a b G Storage
April 6, 2009 4:48:27 AM

While velociraptors are nice, and noticeably faster on boot and on many tasks (I have 2 in RAID 0, and love them), they definitely don't improve gaming performance at all. Also, don't expect miracles. It's definitely noticeable, but it can only speed up tasks a certain amount. Also, the more RAM you have, the less noticeable the difference is on everything but boot (more RAM doesn't speed up boot at all).

Basically, I would say that a velociraptor might be worth it, depending on what you use the computer for and how picky you are, but don't expect miracles in games or anything like that.

Oh, and don't get a 15k drive. They are about the same speed as a velociraptor for desktop tasks, despite being more power hungry, more expensive, and hotter running. Definitely not worth it unless you are running a server (in which case they will walk all over the velociraptor in every way - they are really optimized for server workloads, not single user workloads).
a c 179 G Storage
April 6, 2009 5:06:48 AM

As others have said, the hard drive will not affect the FPS of your game. Load times are mostly related to the sequential data transfer capabilities of the drive.
The rotational speed of the drive ie: 7200rpm, 10k, 15k do not directly correlate with the data transfsr rate. The reason is that the density of the platter makes a difference. The data transfer rate is related to the product of the density and the rotation speed. In addition, there is more data on the outer rings of a drive, so the data transfer rate is higher there as compared to the inner rings. Go to www.storagereview.com and access their performance database, and look at the maximum data transfer tests of a number of drives:
http://www.storagereview.com/php/benchmark/bench_sort.p...

There, the velociraptor is the best generally useful drive available now. Others come close.

The cache also makes little difference. If the data is not already in the cache, it needs to be read from the platters.

Today, the SSD in raid-0 could be a winner, but it is expensive for large capacities. The products will improve rapidly in the next year, and prices will come down,
so it might be best to wait.

Raid-0 of lesser drives might work, but offsetting the concurrent i/o of multiple drives is the penalty of positioning for multiple drives. SSD's have negligible positioning times.

For games, your money is better spent on a top vga card.
!