There’s never been more choice for those looking to buy a hard drive. There are standard hard drives, SSD and now hybrid drives that combine both SSD and a regular drive in one.
Then you need to weigh up the following.
- How much space you need
- How fast you want your drive to be
- How much money you have
You won’t be surprised that if you want a lot of 1 and 2 then you need a lot more of 3.
SSD drives are fast, but not cheap, especially if you want a lot of space, for example a 512gb Crucial SSD is around £500 ($800), whereas for that kind of money you could get 2 x 3TB 7200rpm Seagate drives, or any other good drive for that matter. There are hybrid drives, but the jury is still out on them and reviews haven’t been that favourable.
A couple of things to consider.
- As most Macs and PCs have room for more than one drive you can get the best of both worlds by having an SSD as your system drive and a standard drive for your media. That’s the system I have, in fact I have an SSD drive for system, then 3 x standard drives for Sessions, Samples and Video.
- Pro Tools 10 HD gave us Timeline Cache, which in fact means that the speed of your drive is far less important. I tested this when Pro Tools 10 first came out and ran a session from my Apple Time Capsule over Wifi to see if it would work and it did.
However, some of you will be on a limited budget and will not have HD, so you need to make sure you choose one good drive, except one thing - you should always try and have a dedicated drive for your media.
So here are the things you should make sure of
- 7200rpm speed
- As much space as you can afford
- A known brand - your creative efforts are too precious to trust to a cheap Ebay knock-off, especially when you can buy a quality product for less than £100.
Shop around and you can get a bargain - for example I got a 3TB Seagate Barracuda for £108 on Ebay last week.