Who has the data, has the power. -Tim O’Reilly
Data has become a valuable asset in our lives and we need space to store it. It is quite similar to the scenario where we store our important papers in a physical file. Just that, in case of a computer, to store data, we use storage drives. They are of different types, sizes, capacities, speeds and prices.
First let’s talk about Data. It can be anything from a picture of a cat to an important excel sheets to songs from your MP3 player. It can be anything which can be stored and read virtually on a computer.
Now, let’s talk about different types of storage devices and what’s best for you in preference suitable price range.
1.SD Cards (Secure Digital Cards):
These are small sized cards which allow you to store data on the go and access or edit it with the use of portable devices such as Cameras, Smartphones, MP3/MP4 players. The Micro SD cards are used in smartphones and MP4 players where as the full sized SD Cards cards are used in Cameras. They capacity starts from 128MB and goes all the way upto 400GB.
They come in different classes like Class 2, Class 4, Class 6, Class 8 and Class 10. For a normal user,anything between class 2 to class 10 will do. But if you are photographer or a person who needs faster data transfer, do prefer a class 10 SD Card.
Now coming to the Class, Class here talks about speed. Say Class 2, guarantees a minimum speed of 2MB/s and Class 10 guarantees a minimum speed of 10MB/s and higher while transferring data.
2. USB Drives (Universal Serial Bus):
USB drives are similar to SD cards but come with a USB pin which when plugged into your computer, you can use the drive to store data. It comes in capacities ranging from 1GB to 400GB. USB Drives are either 2.0 USB based or 3.0 USB based. We suggest that if your PC/Laptop supports USB 3.0 devices, prefer 3.0 based USB storage over 2.0 as they are much faster.
3.Hard Drives (Mechanical):
We’ve been using Hard-Drives everywhere. Most of the Computers and Laptops out there ship with Hard Drives. They usually come with an RPM of 5400 to 7200.
Now, the RPM here represents the speed at which the magnetic drive inside your hard-drive moves and faster the RPM, faster the drive speeds. They are magnetic in nature and compose of moving parts which can be a problem in laptops, if you are rough user.
But, if you need a storage device with high capacities of 1TB at low cost ( upto $50/-) then this is the best way to get it. Hard Drives have now become cheaper as SSDs have entered the market. HDD can be used as both internal and external hard-drives.
4.SSD (Solid State Drive):
In the recent years, Solid State Drives have entered the market and are changing the game of storage. As the name suggests, Solid State Drives are chunks of drives with no moving parts. They are highly expensive for higher storage variants but are blazing fast. They’ve the potential to replace hard-drives in future!
You can get 128GB SSD for as low as $50 but a 1TB SSD could cost you somewhere around $400-$500.
Now, which storage drive is the best?
All the storage solutions are best in their very own ways. It depends on you and your usage to pickup one of the above.
For portable storage, get a USB Drive or SD card
For Static Storage, get hard drives or an SSD