SSDs (solid state drives) or HDDs (hard disk drives)?

Which is better: SSDs (solid state drives) or HDDs (hard disk drives)?


Solid State Drive - Front

A Solid State Drive or "SDD" stores information similar to conventional mechanical hard disk drives or "HDDs" but do not have mechanical moving parts.  HDDs store information on magnetic disks that spin with an actuator arm that must be synchronized with certain areas of the magnetic disk in order for the read/write function to work.  SSDs are similar to USB flash drives, which use the same type of non-volatile NAND memory chips that retain their information even after a computer is shut off.  As there are no moving parts that need to be aligned, read/write speeds for SSDs are generally much faster than comparable hard disk drives.   

In terms of the use of power, SSDs are more efficient than HDDs.  In fact, SSDs are up to 80 times more economical when idling and 25 times more economical during accessing.  For mobile laptop users, using an SSD means more battery life.   

Regarding durability, SSDs are better able to withstand shock and vibrations than HDDs due to the fact that SSDs have no moving parts.  Studies have shown that SSDs can be up to 25 times more impact resistant during operation.  SSDs are also less prone to being affected by magnets or magnetic fields.     

With respect to speed, SSDs access data electronically as opposed to electromechanically, which means SSD read/write speeds are at least twice as fast as HDDs.  HDDs may require a few seconds before the HDD can read/write to the HDD.  In contrast, SSDs are near instantaneous with the ability to read/write immediately.      

Finally, concerning cost, SSDs are more expensive than HDDs for the same amount of storage.  In fact, SSDs can be up to 10 times as expensive, depending on the storage capacity and the specific model.  As non-volatile NAND memory becomes cheaper, the cost of an SSD is expected to decline in the future.       


Solid State Drive - Back

For those computer users who do not wish to relinquish the large storage capacity offered by HDDs, such users have begun to utilize an SSD in conjunction with an HDD.  In this hybrid solution, the SSD is used as the primary drive to boot the operating system and the HDD is used to store large amounts of information.  Some users have also begun replacing their laptop HDD with an SSD.  A good website illustrating this is  For those computer users who do not require massive storage capacity, replacing your HDD with an SSD will definitely reduce boot times and is the easiest way to make your computer faster overall.