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Internal Hard Drives: Powerful and Cost Effective Storage

Hard disk drives or HDD offer a cost effective way to store huge amounts of data. These spinning magnetic drives still have the lowest per gigabyte cost of any digital storage method, making them a popular choice for operating systems that require massive storage capacity at an affordable price.

HDDs are high performance storage devices designed for seamless integration into desktop computers, network attached storage or NAS, and even notebooks. They are ideal for creative tasks like animation and video editing, as well as among streamers and PC gaming enthusiasts who need lots of storage space for game files and captures. Business owners also use them for NAS systems that centralize essential data, as well as for other storage intensive applications like security camera systems.

Selecting the Right Internal Hard Drive

How do you know what is the right choice for your internal HDD? Think about these factors when determining compatibility:

Storage Capacity: Internal HDDs offer very large storage capacities, starting at approximately 500GB to 1TB and going all the way up to 12TB and more. That means you have got great options whether you want simple desktop storage or you are creating an office NAS server.

Form Factor: The 3.5 inch form factor is the most common in desktop PCs and network storage, and it tends to offer the fastest performance and highest storage capacity for the money. However, if you are installing the drive in a laptop, you will probably need a 2.5 inch internal drive instead.

Interface: SATA 6GB/s is the standard interface that hard drives today use to communicate with a computer motherboard. The exception is in enterprise applications, where you might find the interface in use due to its ability to run constantly and serve large numbers of users.

Cache Size: An HDDs cache is its working memory or buffer that it uses to quickly access data, especially when working on multiple tasks. A larger cache means more ability to buffer data and can offer working speed improvements.

RPM: Revolutions per minute or RPM simply refers to the rotation speed of the platter that the drive stores data on. As you might expect, a faster RPM such as the 7,200 RPM drives common today will usually offer faster data access than a slower one. However, a 5,400 RPM drive will still be fast enough for most users, unless you are accessing huge files or running a server with many people accessing files at once.

Warranty: Since your HDD will probably be storing critical data, purchasing a new drive with a warranty is a smart move. Most new HDDs offer a multi year warranty on parts and labor from the manufacturer.

Find your perfect storage solution with Micro Center’s full selection of internal HDDs from industry leaders like Western Digital, Seagate, and Toshiba. Looking for solid state drives? See all of our internal SSD options.