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Difference between 2.5" hard disk and 3.5" hard disk

Posted on 2006-10-29
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What is the difference between 2.5" hard disk and 3.5" hard disk?
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Question by:kianhow
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7 Comments
 
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Raynard7 earned 1000 total points
ID: 17827977
The main difference is the size,

a 3.5" is cheaper and normally in a desktop
a 2.5" is more expensive and normally used in a laptop.

you can get them with the same specs in terms of cache - speed and capacity (but generally 3.5" is larger first)

You also need different housings for them - ie you can not put a 2.5" in most external enclosures for a 3.5" drive
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17827979
1"

But seriously, the 2.5" hard drives are generally used in notebooks and some high-end blade servers.  They are typically about the size of a credit card, only 9-12 mm in thickness.  They also have smaller maximum capacities, I believe currently topping out at 120 GB where as 3.5" drives max out at 750 GB.

3.5" hard drives are used in most desktops and servers - they are about the size of a paperback novel.
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Author Comment

by:kianhow
ID: 17827981
Is the 3.5" means the size of the disc in the hard disk?
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Expert Comment

by:Raynard7
ID: 17827990
yes - in inches
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17827994
I believe the naming is because the drive size is the same as a standard 3.5" floppy drive size.  The 3.5" floppies were 3.5" wide and the hard drive is the same size, only longer (deeper).
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Expert Comment

by:Raynard7
ID: 17827998
that was the impression that I had - that it is to do with the width - across the front - ie the input ports are at the back,

the 2.5" are considerably shorter and not as long as the 3.5
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LVL 96

Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 17849472
huh.... so my comments were useless to you?  And the answers provided weren't good?  Can you explain why you gave a C grade on this - what other information were you looking for?
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