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IDE vs SCSI: Interface or mechanism differences?

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December 10, 2002 5:13:10 PM

A friend of mine says that there must be some difference in the internal mechanisms of SCSI and IDE disks. He cites the noisiness of every IDE disk he's owned versus the relative quiteness of every SCSI disk he's owned. I thought that the internal mechanisms were the same and the difference between IDE and SCSI was in the interface to the computer. Who's right?
December 10, 2002 10:56:03 PM

A bit of both.
There are differences in both the interface and how the drives are constructed.

SCSI hard drives are constructed to a higher level of perfection, and are also designed in a slightly different way.
SCSI drives spin up slower, as they are designed for far longer power on times and come with a 5 year warantee. IDE drives favour fast spin up times and power on cycles at the expense of absolute lifetime. IDE drive now come with either 1 or 3 years warrantee.

Many more SCSI drives also come with fluid bearings, and only scsi drives come in 10k and 15k rpm speeds.

Interface wise SCSI is alot different, with the controller doing most of the work, not the CPU.
SCSI drives are also obviously optimised toward server orientated tasks.

It's really like comparing apples to oranges.



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December 10, 2002 11:36:06 PM

I have a 7200RPM 2GB Baracuda SCSI drive here that would proove his theory about SCSI drives being quieter WRONG, it's the noisiest drive I've ever heard. Generally speaking, the earlier 7200RPM drives were noiser than later models, and this one predates 7200RPM IDE drives.

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