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 Post subject: the quietest drives for my drive bay
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 1:16 am 
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Hello, i just purchased the QX2 that is capable of working in different RAID modes and JBOD. Well as you prolly figured out, thats the mode i want to be using it to, JBOD!
So i was thinking to equip it with the quietest disk drives possible. At first, im certainly gonna be wanting to have one 4TB drive that will be used by TimeMachine as a backup drive (yes im a Mac user) and later on i will purchase a 2TB drive just for expanding my storage.
What drives would you suggest for this kind of use and please let me know why!

note: keep in mind the QX2 drivebay, outputs data using FW so in my opinion im not really looking for the fastest drive because it might be overkill... what do you think?


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 Post subject: Re: the quietest drives for my drive bay
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 3:11 am 
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SPCR did a couple of 4tb reviews in the past year, Western Digital Red 4TB & Se 4TB Hard Drives and Seagate NAS HDD 4TB, both should be good options, maybe WD has a slight edge noise wise, but seagate is not bad at all, im running 8 consumer 4tb on my server and they are not loud.

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 Post subject: Re: the quietest drives for my drive bay
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 4:29 am 
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I think you should estimate your storage space need, priorly.

Anyway, IME/IMHO nowadays the quietest 5400rpm drive is probably the WD Green 2TB (WD20EZRX-00DC0B0/WD20EURX-63T0FY0: the 1TB variant is be also very quiet, but IMHO there's no actual reason to prefer it over the 2Tb brother), while the quietest 7200rpm drive is probably the Seagate SV35.6 1TB (ST1000VX000).

Densely packed mechanical drives suffer from collective heating and vibrations: heating affects reliability, vibrations affect noise and reliability.
Multi-platter drives (so the higher capacity ones) also suffer from heating, vibrations and airborne noise (the more the platters/heads, the more the airborne noise level), so the less the platters are, the quieter the specific drive will be (and probably the more reliable it will be also).

IMHO, in order to minimize the overall noise, you should balance the smallest possible number of disk drives with the smallest possible number of platters, compatibly to your storage space need, and you may take into account any added disk as an about 3dB sound pressure level increase (3dB is roughly a twofold increase of the sound pressure level, but the subjective perceived noise level increase is noticeably lower than two times).

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 Post subject: Re: the quietest drives for my drive bay
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 4:58 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
Anyway, IME/IMHO nowadays the quietest 5400rpm drive is probably the WD Green 2TB (WD20EZRX-00DC0B0/WD20EURX-63T0FY0: the 1TB variant is be also very quiet, but IMHO there's no actual reason to prefer it over the 2Tb brother), while the quietest 7200rpm drive is probably the Seagate SV35.6 1TB (ST1000VX000).
Is there somewhere a site that has all the info so one can compare regarding his needs?


quest_for_silence wrote:
IMHO, in order to minimize the overall noise, you should balance the smallest possible number of disk drives with the smallest possible number of platters, compatibly to your storage space need, and you may take into account any added disk as an about 3dB sound pressure level increase.
So if i understood correctly, you are saying that if i want 4TB of storage perhaps i should prefer to have two drives to create that space so they can be quieter bla bla bla etc.


quest_for_silence wrote:
(3dB is roughly a twofold increase of the sound pressure level, but the subjective perceived noise level increase is noticeably lower than two times).
I didn't get this, sorry


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 Post subject: Re: the quietest drives for my drive bay
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 5:25 am 
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zoran wrote:
quest_for_silence wrote:
Anyway, IME/IMHO nowadays the quietest 5400rpm drive is probably the WD Green 2TB (WD20EZRX-00DC0B0/WD20EURX-63T0FY0: the 1TB variant is be also very quiet, but IMHO there's no actual reason to prefer it over the 2Tb brother), while the quietest 7200rpm drive is probably the Seagate SV35.6 1TB (ST1000VX000).
Is there somewhere a site that has all the info so one can compare regarding his needs?

Nothing I'm aware of, at the moment.


zoran wrote:
quest_for_silence wrote:
IMHO, in order to minimize the overall noise, you should balance the smallest possible number of disk drives with the smallest possible number of platters, compatibly to your storage space need, and you may take into account any added disk as an about 3dB sound pressure level increase.

So if i understood correctly, you are saying that if i want 4TB of storage perhaps i should prefer to have two drives to create that space so they can be quieter bla bla bla etc.

Noise-wise, IMHO you should compare the noise level of the 2Tb drive of choice with the noise level of the 4Tb drive of choice: whether the noise increase is less than 3dB, you should prefer a single 4Tb disk drive over two 2Tb disk drives. On the contrary, whether the sound pressure level increase is higher than 3dB, noise-wise going for two 2Tb drives should be preferable. That simplified count is referred to JBOD only (because, you know, a RAID setup will need at least two or more disks mandatorily).


zoran wrote:
quest_for_silence wrote:
(3dB is roughly a twofold increase of the sound pressure level, but the subjective perceived noise level increase is noticeably lower than two times).
I didn't get this, sorry

The Decibel scale is not linear, it is a logarithmic one. So, if I'm not wrong, using a phometer/sound level meter you will measure that every 3dB you will have a twofold increase (6dB is rougly two times 3dB, 9dB is about two times 6dB, and so on).
But differently from a microphone, the human ear (so, definitely, you) won't perceive a twofold increase of the sound pressure level as a twice louder sound, but much less than twice: as a rough simplification, you may think that the human ear will perceive a twice louder sound for an about tenfold increase of the sound pressure level (so around a 10dB increase).

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 Post subject: Re: the quietest drives for my drive bay
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 7:23 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
zoran wrote:
quest_for_silence wrote:
Anyway, IME/IMHO nowadays the quietest 5400rpm drive is probably the WD Green 2TB (WD20EZRX-00DC0B0/WD20EURX-63T0FY0: the 1TB variant is be also very quiet, but IMHO there's no actual reason to prefer it over the 2Tb brother), while the quietest 7200rpm drive is probably the Seagate SV35.6 1TB (ST1000VX000).
Is there somewhere a site that has all the info so one can compare regarding his needs?

Nothing I'm aware of, at the moment.

I beg to differ. Those 4TB drive reviews right here at SPCR contain extensive detailed charts comparing many drives, most of which are preselected for lower noise.

zoran wrote:
quest_for_silence wrote:
(3dB is roughly a twofold increase of the sound pressure level, but the subjective perceived noise level increase is noticeably lower than two times).
I didn't get this, sorry

The Decibel scale is not linear, it is a logarithmic one. So, if I'm not wrong, using a phometer/sound level meter you will measure that every 3dB you will have a twofold increase (6dB is rougly two times 3dB, 9dB is about two times 6dB, and so on). [/quote]
To clarify: In theory, 2 identical drives will be 3 dB louder than 1 drive, 4 drives will be 6 dB louder, and 8 drives will be 9 dB louder. In practise, see this portion of our big home server build guide with 9 HDDs from a couple years back.[/quote]
Quote:
But differently from a microphone, the human ear (so, definitely, you) won't perceive a twofold increase of the sound pressure level as a twice louder sound, but much less than twice: as a rough simplification, you may think that the human ear will perceive a twice louder sound for an about tenfold increase of the sound pressure level (so around a 10dB increase).

Again, to clarify, a 10 dB increase in SPL sounds to most people like a double of volume -- ie, "it sounds twice as loud!" We don't "hear" sound pressure level -- this is the technical term for what is measured to try and correlate with what we hear. In a nutshell, all audio measurements are an attempt to make sense of what we hear, the reference is human hearing; it's not the other way around.

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 Post subject: Re: the quietest drives for my drive bay
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2014 7:42 am 
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MikeC wrote:
I beg to differ. Those 4TB drive reviews right here at SPCR contain extensive detailed charts comparing many drives, most of which are preselected for lower noise.

You're welcome, Mike.
I have taken literally the words "has all info", so I'm not aware of any source which "has all info".
Among all the actual sources of info, I agree, SPCR has the most comprehensive and trustworthty collection of noise-related data (that's also why I often think that a guy, before asking here, has given a look to some SPCR articles, so that sometimes I forget to point them out).


MikeC wrote:
Again, to clarify, a 10 dB increase in SPL sounds to most people like a double of volume -- ie, "it sounds twice as loud!" We don't "hear" sound pressure level -- this is the technical term for what is measured to try and correlate with what we hear. In a nutshell, all audio measurements are an attempt to make sense of what we hear, the reference is human hearing; it's not the other way around.

Thanks for your clarifications, Mike: broadly speaking, mainly I wanted to point (to the OP) out that even a twofold increase wouldn't have been a dramatic one, but just a quite noticeable one.

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Luca

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