If you’re snowed under the laptop for long hours, you don’t wish even for a single minute of a buzzing machine.
What makes a computer noisy?
There are two usual suspects: the fan and the hard drive. Today, our focus is on the hard drive.
If you are willing to spend your valuable minutes on this guide, you won’t be disappointed in the end. You will learn some of the best quietest hard drive options on the market today.
Let’s cross the lane and find out.
Why You Need a Quiet Computer Hard Drive?
Before going too far into this, there’s no such thing as a perfectly quiet hard drive for a computer. And yes, the market has decent models which won’t cause your head nightmares. But these can only emit just a bit of it.
Anyway, quiet hard drives pack a punch. There are several benefits to these tiny storage drives. For example, you are not going to stand a humming machine. A noisy computer will disrupt your peace, distort your mind, and consequently, you lose concentration. A quiet hard drive is poised to provide you with a relaxed environment for a free-flowing thinking process.
Next, quiet hard drives most likely emit less heat, which means that they are energy-efficient, consuming less electricity compared to the buzzing hard drives.
Compared to their counterparts, SSDs, hard drives are cheaper by far. SSDs are comparatively quieter, but they are quite expensive.
A quiet hard drive has a longer span compared to those that spin faster. The faster the spinning, the quicker the parts wear out. (Also read: quiet cymbals for apartment practice)
5400rpm vs. 7200rpm Hard Drives Comparison: Which One is Quiet?
Hard drive speeds are measured in revolutions per minute (RPM), technically known as the read and write performances of a hard drive. The 7200rpm hard drives post 120MB/s read and write speeds. 5400rpm hard drives produce 100MB/s of speed.
Consequently, the 7200rpm hard drives are noisier compared to their counterparts, thanks to the fast revolutions per minute. But their performance is also higher, of course. It means they will do a great job of transferring files or perform quick execution of programs.
On the downside, the 7200rpm hard drives can generate more heat. And as said earlier, they are noiser than 5400 drives. It also happens that they tend to have a short shelf span.
The 5400 rpm hard drives offer slower speeds. So the transfer of files is slow, but these hard drives use less energy. Because they spin at slower speeds, they are quieter and emit less heat. Because these hard drives spin at lower revolutions, they are also cheaper. (Source)
Quietest Western Digital Hard Drive
1. WD Red 10TB NAS Hard Drive
WD Red 10TB NAS model is one of the best silent hard drives in the market. WD Red is better suited to be used with the Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices and not desktop computers. It is an expanded capacity unit that requires no more additional storage. The 10TB storage capacity is perfect for IT gurus that need to create and store large files.
The hard drive comes with 5400 RPM spindle speed, which makes them quieter in operation. This hard drive uses less power while at the same time expending less heat. You can get the WD Red hard drive in a range of 1tb to 12TB capacities.
The hard drive boasts a 3-year warranty. But it comes with high endurance, reliability and is top-rated when it comes to data integrity. Also, the 180TB-a-year workload rating is excellent for businesses with goals of processing lots of data.
WD Red uses NASware technologies, components, and features to enhance its performance.
- Large storage capacity
- Quieter operation
- Offers NASware technologies and features
- Lower speeds
- A bit expensive
- Poor customer support
Overall, the WD Red 10TB is a great hard drive if you don’t want to compromise on your peace and quiet as you work. At 5400rpm, rest assured of that. You can have it for home use or business applications.
2. WD Red Pro 8TB NAS Internal Hard Drive
Western Digital Red Pro 8TB produces 30.3 decibels when in idle state and 33.4 decibels when active and can support large capacities of up to 24 bays.
It has improved reliability since it features the 3D active balance plus system and also the error recovery mechanism. It is more advanced than the 5400 RPM has more improved system compatibility that rides on the NASware 3.0 technology. Therefore, this allows for automatic integration with your network infrastructure.
It is fitted with an automatic shock absorber and has a unique technology that allows for adjustments when it comes to read or write function, thus protects your data.
3. WD Green 6TB 3.5-Inch SATA 6.0Gb/s Hard Drive
Western Digital is a reliable brand with its long line of quality hard drives. And while this WD Green does not offer the generous storage space as the other models above, it is an efficient, true-to-function option.
Features that best describe this drive include low energy usage, low noise generation, and fewer vibrations. The model is a 5400rpm drive – not the fastest type. It uses “IntelliPower” which is a set of algorithms that manage the spin speed, transfer rate and caching. For better performance, use this drive in NAS devices rather than on laptops or computer desktops.
WD Green will work for you if your storage needs are not vast, keeping in mind that the drive only has 6TB, which means that you may only want to use this hard drive for small-sized projects and not use it as a primary device.
- Fewer vibrations
- Great for back up
- Low speeds
- A bit expensive for what it gives
Overall, the WD Green hard drive is going to be a ready-to-go solution for people with small storage needs. It can be best used as a backup. The model is quiet, thanks to the Intelliseek technology.
4. Western Digital AV-GP 1TB
The last product on our recommendation list is the Western Digital AV-GP 1TB, which gives Average Noise level when active and idle 28.2 dB(A). It is a renewed product and has passed quality tests. It features a 1 TB capacity with an IntelliPower of between 5400 and 7200 RPM rotational speed with a 64MB cache. It is a heavy-duty unit with lower power consumption. You don’t have to worry about rising energy costs since this powerhouse does not overheat and is an energy saver. You can use it for surveillance, media servers, set up boxes and media centers.
It is a power saver and ensures your servers do not overheat, thereby creating a reliable solution. It has been approved, certified, and has passed the Western Digital Diagnostic software. It is perfect for storing your favorite photos, files, applications, movies, and videos. It acts as a backup and offers superior reliability.
5. WD Purple 6TB Surveillance Hard Disk Drive-5400 RPM
Security installations require a silent or quieter hard drive. Western Digital presents to you the 5400 RPM hard drive, which is modeled for use in surveillance. It is a premium product that significantly minimizes the loss of video frames. It is quiet and gives a 31.1db when idle and 34.7 active. It optimizes surveillance performance, ATA streaming, and TLER. The package comes with the hard drive only and with no screws or cables, which you might need to purchase separately.
It offers convenience since it allows for continuous operation and has built-in applications necessary for surveillance. It is quite versatile and compatible with most window applications such as Windows 8 and 9. It has been engineered by the use of frame technology that ensures there are low pixilation and reduced interruption. It can support 3HD cameras and has a 6TB capacity for holding 1.2 Million digital photos, 1.5 million MO3 files and 450 HD video hours. It comes with a limited warranty of three years.
Quietest Seagate Computer Hard Drives
6. Seagate BarraCuda 500GB Internal Hardrive
If you are looking for high quality, cost effective quiet hard drive, look no further. The Seagate hard drive is made from superior quality and gives 26.5db when idle and 34.7 when active. It has proven reliability and allows you to store more files, videos, movies, and photos. It has an internal storage of 500 GB, and this allows your computer to perform its operations fast.
It is a reliable product that gives you much confidence. It is a powerhouse for any desktop and allows you to set various capacities and other form factors. It is a perfect solution for most of the PC application for all your music, video, and photo editing, including PC gaming. It is made from world-class technology that has been in existence for close to twenty years. It comes with two years of warranty that allows you to shop with confidence.
7. Seagate Barracuda Pro 10TB Hard Drive
Seagate Barracuda Pro is an excellent product from the Seagate lineup of hard drives. The model comes with 10TB storage capacity while it delivers 7200 rpm. In other words, Seagate Barracuda Pro combines high speed and massive storage so that as an IT manager, you will be able to work on the large projects you have. And within the perfect balance of time, thanks to the faster 250 MB/s-transfer rate.
This model also demonstrates an impeccable workload rate. The 300TB/year limit ensures that the hard drive elevates your confidence, knowing that it won’t fail you any point in time. Barracuda Pro also offers an extra-large cache buffer of 256MB. Additionally, this drive is one of the lowest-power 3.5-inch drives in the market.
With a 5-year warranty backing this drive, you can be sure that the quality it offers is not doubted.
- Massive storage capacity
- Faster speeds
- Energy efficient
Overall, Barracuda Pro is a suitable hard drive for professional video and photo editors or PC users that would like to store huge chunks of data in their devices.
8. Seagate 5900 RPM
Seagate presents to you the 5900 RPM with a storage capacity of 6TD. It is one of the quietest hard drives and gives 33.7decibles when idle and 35.4. It features software that allows you to install hard drives without the need for UEFI BIOS. It uses the unique Acu Trac servo system that delivers exceptional and reliable performance. It is a versatile product you can use on your PC as a storage unit that will provide.
It is a cost effective solution suitable for online archiving, big data storage, object storage, and web-scale archiving. It is a workhorse and can support up to 24 Ã— 7 loads of 180TB annually. Additionally, it is a versatile hard drive that offers maximum storage capacity for your large files, photos, videos, and movies. You can never go wrong by picking the Seagate 5900 RPM since it’s a reliable product with exemplary performance.
9. Seagate IronWolf Pro 4TB NAS Internal Hard Drive
The IronWolf is an internal hard drive, cool and offers quiet operations. It gives 34.6db when active and 26.1 decibels when idle. It is a high quality unit, and it’s so quiet such that you can hardly hear any noise or vibration. Other than that it is the perfect solution for a maximum of 24 bay and is available for use in a NAS server environment where many users demand a high-level performance.
It is pretty fast and has more storage space for storing files, photos, videos, and movies. If you have a large company, employees can share files and folders quickly and reliably by use of this unique brand. It can offer 4TB and has speeds of up to 214MB/s. It boosts file sharing and protects data in case of power loss.
10. Toshiba N300 10TB NAS Hard Drive
Toshiba N300 is a high-performance, top-capacity device that features a 6 Gb/s SATA interface and spins at 7200rpms. Although the drive has a capacity of 10TB, this can be expanded up to 14TB while also providing buffer limits of up to 256mbs.
Moreover, Toshiba N300 is built to handle incredibly high data workloads up to 180TB/year – this is enough to last your NAS system for decades. The device also offers fast transfer speeds, at 260 MB/s.
This high-capacity storage solution works effectively in NAS devices. There is a built-in RV sensing technology for detecting and controlling the vibrations and shocks experienced in the system.
The only nick in this hard drive is that it has a short warranty period provided what Toshiba is capable of offering.
- Great storage
- High speeds
- Short warranty; only two years
Which Is the Quietest Hard Drive Seagate or Western Digital (WD)?
From the above review, it’s evident that both Seagate and Western Digital hard disks have manufacture silent hard drives option. How quiet the hard drive is will depend on drive speeds and storage. But be sure that there’s something for you from the two manufacturers.
Buying Guide: How to Choose the Quietest Hard Drive
It is not obvious that you will get a noiseless drive outright. So here is a short but crisp guide to give you a roadmap to finding a good model on the market.
The first thing to look at when buying a hard drive is its storage. The computers we buy usually come with limited storage space.
That could be 500GB or 1TB. When upgrading the drives in these devices, you want to switch to a higher capacity.
Hard drives can range from anywhere a few hundred MBs to 16TB. So you choose what fits your needs.
Only keep in mind that the higher the storage capacity, the more you are going to pay.
The transfer speed of a hard drive is pertinent to its overall performance. This speed is described in terms of disk spins per minute. There are two main types of speeds: 5400 rpm and 7200 rpm.
The hard drives with the 7200 rpm spin faster and provide faster transfer speeds while 5400 rpm hard drives spin much slower which means slower transfer speeds.
If you are going to transfer data in large amounts and quickly, the 7200 rpm hard drives fit the bill. However, their counterparts do utilize energy more efficiently, don’t heat up fast, and have long shelf-life.
Quiet operation is essential for hard drives of this type. Make sure to check the decibel output when the drive is idle versus when it’s active.
The consensus is that fast-spinning hard drives also produce a lot of humming. While you will enjoy faster speeds, you may need to cope up with the noise.
The slow-spinning types are the best when it comes to quietness and silent operation. As expected, you have to sacrifice on transfer speeds.
The other thing to check for is the warranty of the hard drive. Remember, in case the drive fails to meet the expectations before the expected time you might need to take it back for repair or replacement.
Some manufacturers offer extended warranties. For example, five years are good on a top-level device. Others provide one or two years.
Be sure to check the terms of the warranty policy before buying the product.
Solid State Drives the Fastest Quietest Hard Drive
Solid-State drives, unlike the hard disk drives, use flash memory to store data. They don’t have any moving parts/discs, so they don’t spin.
SSDs are known to be fast, light, while they use less energy in their operation. SSDs are also more durable. When it comes to quiet operation, the SSDs are very quiet. This is because they don’t have spinning parts that could generate such noise.
The shortcoming about SSDs is their expensive price tag and the small storage capacities. Hard disk drives are comparatively cheaper and have lots of storage in them.
This poses the question: are the SSDs the better options? Well, in terms of noise management, that would be a big yes. However, you have still seen the four HDD models above – they are quiet too.
Either way, it depends on your overall needs.
Final thoughts on Quietest Hard Drives
Getting a quiet hard drive can give you something to smile about, mainly when you use your computer every hour of the day. When you don’t want distractions of any form, your laptop or desktop should never get in your way. With this guide, hopefully, you receive the perfect quietest hard drive there has ever been.
The models reviewed in this guide are fantastic options you can always try out mainly, the WD Red 10TB NAS Hard Disk Drive. The model is tailor-made to operate with NAS systems, although you can as well use it on desktop computers for storage.
The WD Red hard drive exists in different capacities – ranging from 1TB to 12TB. However, if your quiet needs are more serious, an SSD should be the best option. (Also read: Drum sets for apartment practice)