I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Silencing hard drives, optical drives and other storage devices

Moderators: NeilBlanchard, Ralf Hutter, sthayashi, Lawrence Lee

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Mon Aug 12, 2013 2:29 pm

I want a quiet 2.5" HDD. I'd like to get the Western Digital Scorpio Blue 500GB. Is that a quiet drive, or are there issues with frequent head parking and/or spin up/down noises?

fwki
Patron of SPCR
Posts: 120
Joined: Mon Dec 17, 2007 7:06 am
Location: Houston, Texas U.S.A.

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by fwki » Tue Aug 13, 2013 7:53 am

Seagate Momentus XT hybrid drive......http://www.silentpcreview.com/article1071-page5.html SPCR test of older model, new models are out and have more SSD memory, but I have two of these in two desktops and they are fast and silent relative to any traditional HDD.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Tue Aug 13, 2013 11:20 am

Thanks. The Seagate Momentus XT seems very nice and FAST, but also more money.

Listening to those audio recordings, the Scorpio Blue seems quieter than the HD502HI, which I have and never hear (except for at boot or shutdown).

So it seems I don't need anything quieter than the Scorpio Blue. My only concern with the Scorpio Blue is the heads parking and spinning down frequently if that cannot be controlled.

james
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Jun 11, 2013 9:46 am

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by james » Tue Aug 13, 2013 11:45 pm

i have a blue 2.5 1TB drive in my PC at the moment. Easily the quietest 2.5" drive i've ever had, but still audible. Head noise is also pretty low as well. If you are worried about drives spinning down, theres an option in windows power settings to never power down the drives. I however set mine to power off after a minute, so 90% of the time they're never on!

Is this being used as a main (OS) drive, or additional storage?

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Wed Aug 14, 2013 8:36 am

james wrote:i have a blue 2.5 1TB drive in my PC at the moment. Easily the quietest 2.5" drive i've ever had, but still audible. Head noise is also pretty low as well. If you are worried about drives spinning down, theres an option in windows power settings to never power down the drives. I however set mine to power off after a minute, so 90% of the time they're never on!
Thanks. I currently use the Window settings for controlling spin down on the HD502HI and it works fine. I just read somewhere that in the Blue the spin down control is done at the firmware level in such a way that it cannot be controlled in software by the OS. I suppose that might have been for Mac OS (or some other OS) or just not true. But that is my concern. As long as it can be controlled by Windows, I'm fine with that.
james wrote:Is this being used as a main (OS) drive, or additional storage?
This is for data storage/files/projects. The main OS/System/Applications drive is an SSD.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Mon Sep 09, 2013 1:34 pm

Well, I got the WD Blue 2.5" and installed it. This drive spins itself down regardless of hard disk sleep settings in Windows 7 or Mac OS X. So unless the drive is actually reading or writing it is not spinning. This is really annoying because there is a noticeable delay anytime you access the drive while it spins up and makes noises spinning up and clicking.
Unless I can figure out a way to permanently change this behavior, I'm going to return the drive.

Vicotnik
*Lifetime Patron*
Posts: 1828
Joined: Thu Feb 13, 2003 6:53 am
Location: Sweden

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by Vicotnik » Mon Sep 09, 2013 2:08 pm

Are you sure the disk actually spins down, and not just parks its heads?

WD has a utility called WDIDLE3 that can be used to disable the idle timer. Not sure if all drives are supported though.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Mon Sep 09, 2013 5:54 pm

I'm sure I'm hearing a spin up sound. I'm also hearing clicking sounds that could be the heads parking.
The lag/delay and noises are worse in Mac OS X than Windows, but neither is acceptable for any sort of use as a data storage drive.
I'll probably just return it.

I'd really like to find a 2.5" drive that doesn't have these issues. But if none exists I suppose I'll just make do with the my old drives for the time being.

Vicotnik
*Lifetime Patron*
Posts: 1828
Joined: Thu Feb 13, 2003 6:53 am
Location: Sweden

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by Vicotnik » Tue Sep 10, 2013 10:54 am

Many 2.5" HDDs do the head park thing, but instant spindown is a new for me. But I rarely play around with 2.5" HDDs and the only 2.5" HDD I have my hands on right now is a WD Black 160GB. Came with my netbook, which now has a small SSD.
The WD Black behaves, doesn't even park it's heads it seems, but it's a 7200RPM drive and far from quiet.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 12:11 pm

Vicotnik wrote:Many 2.5" HDDs do the head park thing, but instant spindown is a new for me. But I rarely play around with 2.5" HDDs and the only 2.5" HDD I have my hands on right now is a WD Black 160GB. Came with my netbook, which now has a small SSD.
The WD Black behaves, doesn't even park it's heads it seems, but it's a 7200RPM drive and far from quiet.
Instant spindown is new to me too, and it's extremely annoying. The best way I can describe it is it's like using a CD-ROM drive. Whenever you need to access it there is a delay while it starts spinning the disk. I don't know how anyone could tolerate this sort of thing from a HDD.

I removed it and put my Samsung HD502HI back in and what an improvement! I suppose I'll just make due with the "big" drive until I find a 2.5" that I really like.

CA_Steve
Moderator
Posts: 7489
Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Location: St. Louis, MO

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by CA_Steve » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:28 pm

Oddly enough, I was having the same issue with my older 3.5" WD Blue 640GB. My OS and apps are on an SSD and my media library resides on the HDD. While listening to music, the s/w buffers a song or two, and the damn HDD spins down sometime before the next track starts....which leads to a delay between songs while the HDD spins back up.

Abula
Posts: 3628
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:22 pm
Location: Guatemala

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by Abula » Tue Sep 10, 2013 7:08 pm

I own 4x Hitachi 5k500b and imo they are very quiet, they were reviewed by SPCR and got silver awards, its a nice drive, not that much vibration, nor noise.

I would wait to see how are the new WD reds 2.5, maybe SPCR also can get some.

Mr Spocko
Posts: 229
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2011 1:56 pm
Location: UK/Eire

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by Mr Spocko » Thu Sep 19, 2013 1:09 pm

I bought 3 2.5" hard drives
1 x WB blue 500gb
1 x Hitachi 7k1000 and one 5k1000

All are quiet, with very little vibration.
The 7k1000's performance is superb for a hard drive with a big buffer, faster spindle speed making it ideal as a boot drive.
The 5k and WD blue are both good and similar performance/noise wise

Get a 7k1000 2.5" I'm impressed it's performance was superior to a 3.5" 7k1000c
But with very little noise and vibration.

Abula
Posts: 3628
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2004 12:22 pm
Location: Guatemala

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by Abula » Thu Sep 19, 2013 2:42 pm

I have hitachi 2.5 7k1000 and its a great drive, but it does vibrate much more than my 5k500b and 5k750, no seeking noise that i can hear and its a good drive, specially since it performs well.

One drive that i want to test is the just released, HGST Travelstar 5K1500 but i fear the triple platters.... but i would love to have 1.5tb.

Mr Spocko
Posts: 229
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2011 1:56 pm
Location: UK/Eire

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by Mr Spocko » Thu Sep 19, 2013 3:15 pm

I've got both side by side, and there is very little vibration off of either the 5k or the 7k drive. I have mounted them both in a Scythe Twin Mounter 2.5 Rev.C fitted to the 3.5" bay of a Sileo 500 which also has some rubber mounts for the HDD bay.

The drives are effectively inaudible even during intense HDD activity. You can only get a very very slight seek noise if your ear is very close to the case.
I have no hesitation recommending either drive, but the 7k's performance is surprisingly good and better suited for the OS and as a boot drive.

Drives can vary in noise one of my 7K1000C 3.5" drives is certainly stronger vibration and seek noise. The WD blacks are also hard to tame in vibration and seek noise too. I was going to try the green series, but for fun I gave the 2.5" Hitachi 7K1000 a bash, so far I'm impressed it gives up nothing in performance to most desktop drives, and it's very quiet at least in my set up.

I see some new bigger 2.5" drives out recently WD20NPVX 2TB for one. But bigger (not a problem for desktops)
I'd wait for less platters and lower prices myself. 1TB is quite a lot for most folks just add another drive.

batka
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 6:53 am
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Contact:

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by batka » Tue Apr 01, 2014 2:25 pm

I have 2 kind of 500 GB single platter 2.5" disk:

- Toshiba MQ01ABD050 500GB (17 dBA)
- Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 500GB (ST500LM012) (2.4 Bel)

The Toshiba MQ01ABD050 is definitely quieter compared to the Seagate ST500LM012 when talking about the idle hard disk spinning. However the Toshiba is often clicking sound if there is read or write, it's the parking of the head. This parking can be easily disabled although, at least in Linux OS (hdparm -B 254 /dev/sda).

The Seagate ST500LM012 does't park the head, no clicking sounds.

And neither has spinning up or spinning down.

How the WD Blue 2.5" WD5000LPVX or WD5000MPCK compares to these?
The parking can be totally disabled with WDIDLE3?
I mean once disable it , then HDD remembers? (If I want to use in USB rack).

And how Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 500 GB compares?

Vicotnik
*Lifetime Patron*
Posts: 1828
Joined: Thu Feb 13, 2003 6:53 am
Location: Sweden

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by Vicotnik » Wed Apr 02, 2014 12:45 am

batka wrote:The parking can be totally disabled with WDIDLE3?
I mean once disable it , then HDD remembers? (If I want to use in USB rack).
Yes, WDIDLE3 makes its changes to the firmware of the HDD, so it's persistent.

batka
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 6:53 am
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Contact:

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by batka » Fri May 16, 2014 11:24 am

Well, I bought a 2.5" WD Blue 500 GB WD5000LPVX also myself, thinking the spindown can be disabled, but I have exactly the same experience as toronado455.

The disk spin up/spin down cannot be disabled, and it spins down after 8 seconds regardless of WDIDLE3 settings.

The WDIDLE3 setting from DOS boot disk reports as successful, but in fact it's doesn't affect the spindown.
I tried both "wdidle3 /D" and "wdidle3 /S300". The original value was 8 seconds.
It maybe disables the head-parking, but the spindown remains unaffected. With either setting.

I have tried also another method described here, with WdIdleDisable V6 . using native SATA with this tool drive is not found. I put the disk in ASM1051 chipset USB3 enclosure, then the driver is recognised indeed, but it's not supported. So that doesn't work either.

The WD Blue WD5000LPVX is not recommended for those who is annoyed by spinning up and down. That feature maybe useful in some cases (when disk rarely used or continuosly), but sometimes is very annoying.

I recommend the Toshiba MQ01ABD050 if someone is using a Linux based system or using NAS with Linux, because the headpark can be easily disabled from Linux and this drive is very silent. If someone using the disk in an USB enclosure with Windows or with a media player and wants to avoid headpark nosies and spindown, then Seagate ST500LM012 is recommended. It's a bit louder than Toshiba but doesn't park.
Last edited by batka on Wed May 21, 2014 10:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Fri May 16, 2014 10:00 pm

batka wrote:Well, I bought a 2.5" WD Blue 500 GB WD5000LPVX also myself, thinking the spindown can be disabled, but I have exactly the same experience as toronado455.
Thanks for posting. Nice to know that someone else has replicated/verfied my findings! But sorry that you had to go through all that. I didn't even try the methods you tried because I didn't want to have to start tinkering with a brand new product when I could just return it.

batka
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 6:53 am
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Contact:

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by batka » Wed May 21, 2014 10:27 am

toronado455 wrote:
batka wrote:Well, I bought a 2.5" WD Blue 500 GB WD5000LPVX also myself, thinking the spindown can be disabled, but I have exactly the same experience as toronado455.
Thanks for posting. Nice to know that someone else has replicated/verfied my findings! But sorry that you had to go through all that. I didn't even try the methods you tried because I didn't want to have to start tinkering with a brand new product when I could just return it.
Yeah, I read your posts before I ordered, but wanted to test.
I returned it as well, and I got it replaced to Seagate ST500LM012.

justice99
Posts: 124
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2011 1:12 am

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by justice99 » Sat May 31, 2014 11:42 pm

What about the Western Digital Slim (WD10SPCX) 1TB ?

mastabog
Posts: 66
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2007 10:00 pm

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by mastabog » Sun Jun 01, 2014 10:15 pm

justice99 wrote:What about the Western Digital Slim (WD10SPCX) 1TB ?
I just posted this about the new WD10SPCX: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=67652

I quite dislike their whoosh noise ... waiting on 3 x Samsung M9T (667 GB/platter) to see how they compare. Theoretically, a single M9T should actually be noisier at idle than 2 x WD10SPCX, because the former is 25 dBA and the latter is 20 dBA at idle, so two of them makes 23 dBA ... that is if (i) the specs are accurate and (ii) they were both measured in the same way. I don't trust manufacturer noise numbers so I'll test myself.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Tue Sep 09, 2014 11:34 am

batka wrote:Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 500GB (ST500LM012) (2.4 Bel)
I'm confused because when I search for this model number I'm finding both Samsung and Seagate. Which is it, or is it both???

I still haven't bought another 2.5" drive yet since my first attempt. But I still want to get one.

CA_Steve
Moderator
Posts: 7489
Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Location: St. Louis, MO

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by CA_Steve » Tue Sep 09, 2014 12:28 pm

Seagate bought most of Samsung's HDD business a couple of years ago.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Tue Sep 09, 2014 3:20 pm

CA_Steve wrote:Seagate bought most of Samsung's HDD business a couple of years ago.
Thanks. So this means if I find a Samsung branded unit, it is older stock? I'm mostly seeing only the Samsung brand ones.

CA_Steve
Moderator
Posts: 7489
Joined: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:36 am
Location: St. Louis, MO

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by CA_Steve » Tue Sep 09, 2014 4:57 pm

the acquisition was completedin Dec 2011. I have no idea what they are doing for branding of models since then.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Wed Sep 10, 2014 10:03 am

Thanks. I think I'm going to get either this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6822236600

or:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6822152289

The WD is $30 more, but double the capacity, and twice the speed - up to SATA III as opposed to SATA II on the Spinpoint. And the WD is the newer product. So kinda leaning toward the WD. I just still have a bad memory of the last WD I got with the instant spindown and don't want a repeat of that.

batka
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 6:53 am
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Contact:

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by batka » Sun Sep 14, 2014 2:23 am

toronado455 wrote:
batka wrote:Seagate Momentus SpinPoint M8 500GB (ST500LM012) (2.4 Bel)
I'm confused because when I search for this model number I'm finding both Samsung and Seagate. Which is it, or is it both???
Yeah, it's both Samsung and Seagate because as CA_Steve said, Seagate purchased Samsung on HDD side.

The Seagate ST500LM012 is actually a Samsung HN-M500MBB, it's even printed on the label of the HDD itself. And it's still produced, I bought my 7th item from this HDD, it was produced in 2014 Aug. Still the best 2.5" 500 GB one-platter disk IMO.

toronado455
Posts: 376
Joined: Mon May 15, 2006 12:24 pm
Location: CA, USA

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by toronado455 » Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:17 am

batka wrote:The Seagate ST500LM012 is actually a Samsung HN-M500MBB, it's even printed on the label of the HDD itself.
Thanks. Does the label also say "Seagate" or is it the original Samsung label?

batka
Posts: 75
Joined: Thu Aug 16, 2007 6:53 am
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Contact:

Re: I want a quiet 2.5" HDD

Post by batka » Mon Sep 15, 2014 1:59 am

toronado455 wrote:
batka wrote:The Seagate ST500LM012 is actually a Samsung HN-M500MBB, it's even printed on the label of the HDD itself.
Thanks. Does the label also say "Seagate" or is it the original Samsung label?
Strangely both brand is printed on the label!! Seagate ST500LM012 is printed in bigger font, while below the Samsung HN-M500MBB is printed in a smaller font.

Post Reply