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Topic: Samples on 5400rpm drive?

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  1. #1

    Samples on 5400rpm drive?

    I run SONAR on my laptop, and I keep my sample libraries on a 7200rpm external drive, but there's not much space left for new libraries.

    I'd like to pick up a larger drive, and wondered if I'd lose a lot of performance by using a 5400rpm drive instead? The selection of large 7200rpm USB-powered drives is slim, but there are a lot more options for me in the 5400rpm selection.

    Any problems with 5400, or should I stick with 7200 all the way, even if it means spreading my libraries over multiple smaller drives?

    THanks,
    chris.

  2. #2

    Re: Samples on 5400rpm drive?

    5400 RPM drives, especially when using libraries that rely on disk streaming, are not nearly as effective. How less effective? Perhaps someone could chime in from a greater perspective of experience, but I would not suggest using a 5400 RPM drive.
    Sean Beeson
    www.seanbeeson.com
    Composer for videogames, film and television

  3. #3

    Re: Samples on 5400rpm drive?

    Correct me if I am wrong but Gigastudio for example asks for 7200 RPM HD. I agree with Sean, I wouldn't recommend 5400 RPM hard drives.
    Eduardo Tarilonte |Sample Library Developer
    SampleLibraries |MyWeb

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    Re: Samples on 5400rpm drive?

    You are talking about usb bus powered HD, so I presume you are using laptop-like 2'5 HD.

    Remember that what count for sample streaming is seek time. 5400rpm seek time may be fast enough if you are using only a first partition of the disk (where seek time is the fastest). But I won't rely on it... And anyway it doesn't solve you capacity pb.

    Some HD manufacturers are planning to realease 200Go 2'5 7200rpm HD. If you can wait, it is the best option.

  5. #5

    Re: Samples on 5400rpm drive?

    I had a 5400 in my toshiba laptop and it did samples pretty good, I was able do use piano samples and got around 120 voices out of it. I replaced it with a 7200 drive and it didn't perform any better

  6. #6

    Re: Samples on 5400rpm drive?

    On a toshiba notebook too, with a 5400T, no pb with NI Akoustic Piano or PMI's or Sampletekk's ones.
    But if you plan to use a full orchestra + pianos + percs + drums..., sure it won't be enough fast.
    Hitachi makes 2.5' 7200T HD. These have better seek time and a little bit more Mo/s, but that's not night and day. But anyway, a 2.5' will never be as fast as 3.5', because even if they both spins at 7200T, linear speed is better on a 3.5' because of a larger diameter.

  7. #7

    Re: Samples on 5400rpm drive?

    Quote Originally Posted by xav93
    But anyway, a 2.5' will never be as fast as 3.5', because even if they both spins at 7200T, linear speed is better on a 3.5' because of a larger diameter.
    Ah, so the inner diameter of a 3.5" platter must be 2.5" ...



    Ernie

  8. #8
    Senior Member Richard Berg's Avatar
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    Re: Samples on 5400rpm drive?

    I'd like to pick up a larger drive, and wondered if I'd lose a lot of performance by using a 5400rpm drive instead? The selection of large 7200rpm USB-powered drives is slim, but there are a lot more options for me in the 5400rpm selection.
    Really? 5400rpm is practically dead, and isn't any cheaper in the niches it still exists. No reason to settle for less than 7200rpm.

    edit -- I just checked Newegg. For internal 3.5" drives 300GB or larger, they had 41 7200rpm drives and zero 5400rpm for sale. Slap any one of those in a $15 USB/Firewire chassis and you'll be ready to go.

    5400rpm seek time may be fast enough if you are using only a first partition of the disk (where seek time is the fastest).
    Seek time depends only on the # of cylinders the head must travel and the rotational latency (1 / rpm). It's not any faster on the inside or outside of the disk. To optimize seek time, you want to put the most commonly used blocks near each other. The defragger in Windows XP helps this by placing the pagefile in the middle of the drive, where they're naturally closer to the average non-system file. Vista takes the principle further by optimizing specific usage patterns.

    You're probably thinking of streaming I/O, which is faster on the outside of the disk.

    Ah, so the inner diameter of a 3.5" platter must be 2.5" ...
    True, but the inside of a 3.5" will still be much faster. In addition to the smaller size, laptop drives have many more compromises: they must minimize power draw, minimize noise, be able to sustain accelerations (bumps & jostles) and reorientations (tilting the laptop sideways -- at 5400+ rpm, that's a lot of angular momentum to overcome) during active use, and so on. They're quite amazing pieces of engineering, actually, but they can't hope to perform as well as modern desktop drives.

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