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Thread: External drive RPM influence

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013

    Default External drive RPM influence


    first post here on these forums

    A friend of mine always edits on a iMac using external drives via USB2.0, usually with 7200 RPM disks. This works fine for him. I recently bought two Seagate 4TB external drives for him. Seagate refuses to give any information about the RPM of the disks (proprietary information somehow ), but using an analyze tool I was able to determine these 4TB drives are 5900 RPM instead of the regular 7200 RPM.

    My question is: will this affect the video editing/rendering/exporting speed etc? He mainly will use this drive via USB2.0, and sometimes Firewire800 (and occasionally a co-worker will use it on USB3)

    I'm still able to sent the drives back because they have not been used just yet. Still pondering if he needs 7200 RPM for his needs. Any suggestions/help appreciated!

  2. #2


    Firstly if you thing that the normal speed of a laptop disk drive is 5,400 rpm then this might give you an idea of how well it will function. I've never edited on a lap top or with a disk slower than 7200 rpm so I can't say how well it will work. 4Tb seems a bit big to use as a working disk. I have heard from "an expert" that the ideal size for a working drive is 500Gb.

    The other thing to note is a lot depends of the quality of the other parts of the system and the amount of work being done on the footage. ie colour grading is very hard on a system compared to just cutting. I guess that an iMac is a good quality device, so it will be interesting to see what happens.

    Sorry if this answer isn't as definitive as you would have liked but there isn't really a yes/no answer to a question like this. In brief I think it will be ok but not as good as using an internal SSD.

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