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Need quite / silent external harddrive

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Last Modified: 2013-11-10
I want to buy an external drive, but it need one that is quite silent, and completely quite (no fan) when there is no/very little load, and without removing necesarry fanning.
(Acceptable alternative solutions could be a quite fanless drive where I can controle the load and have access to the temperature from my PC,  or a drive with a switch for the fan, if the drive is othervise quite).

Most drives I have seen have a fan going at constant speed.  Tkink it is because the unit can't know the temperature inside the drive?  In my present fanless setup there is some resonance vibration, and I think that is because I use an enclosure, and it should be different when I buy one unit?

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i have a fil to disk by amacom, it contains a laptop hard drive and no fan, i have had it for 5 years so its a little small now at 20gb but very useful
thetyy are larger now

see the website

Western Digital Passport - uses a notebook HD and has no fan:



I am thinking of a regular dekstop PC type drives (~500GIG).  I could sacrifice some perfomance if I were sure it could manage without a fan.

(I am infact using an old laptop drive in a fanless enclosure already)
you could look at the amacom  ez2disk 500GB USB 2.0 & E-Sata Drive
it is in an aluminium case for heat dispensation

I would recommend buying an Hitachi 5000 rpm drive in the 120-250 GB range, they run amazingly cool compared to the 7200 rpm drives, and being ATA100, they are only 20% slower than ATA133 drives.  They will run in the enclosure without any fan whatsoever, and they won't overheat like the newer faster drives will.  ALso, Hitachi (i.e. IBM) drives are the most reliable for the long term.  If you have any heat concerns, simply remove the top of the enclosure, and leave the drive screwed to the bottom, like in hot weather.


Would it be difficult to get more than 250 at a low rpm?

Also in my current setup the most noice is when I get vibration in the case, and if I bought it as 1 unit I could be sure I had a "total design", where it was also guaranteed that it would not overheat?

Though perhaps if I buy them seperately I am more in control?
Also, does the drive also have to turn?


i am not aware of any 500gb drives with a speed less than 7200


About the amacom  drive ("ez2disk 500GB USB 2.0 & E-Sata Drive" http://www.originstorage.com/detail.asp?id=8075 )
Low noice or heat is not mentioned in the product description.

Noise 3.1db

see http://www.digitalkind.co.uk/INU_Products/INU_ProdDetailsL8.ASP?ref=80232190

heat dispertion thorugh aluminium case mentioned on a website (cannot remeber which sorry)
"Would it be difficult to get more than 250 at a low rpm?"

yes, 250 is the max at the slower RPM, it is not so much the speed of the faster drives, but they run significantly hotter.

"Though perhaps if I buy them seperately I am more in control?
Also, does the drive also have to turn?"

Yes, I would get the drive that runs the coolest.  Bradley's idea just above is a good one, mount the drive on a solid aluminum frame, thicker the better, that will suck a lot of heat out of the drive.

Modern drives can run in any position, but upside down is not the best -- flat is the best actually.

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