From: Nat Lanza (
Newsgroups: comp.sys.mac.hardware
Subject: Re: Why are hard drives so noisy?

Cephalogen ( writes:
:Does anyone knows why new drives are so noisy?
:I saw (listened) my friend LC575 with a 2Gig Quantum and there's a night
:and day difference between it and my 40 meg (Quantum)...
:So is there a real reason to this? or is it just that Quantum decided to
:become cheaper and noisier?
Well, basically, it's due to the drive size. You see, the 2-gig drive is
huge, and don't think it doesn't know that. The little 'ol 40-meg drive
is tiny by todays standards, and is accordingly meek. It probably doesn't
think all that much of itself, and is afraid to speak up and be heard.
The 2-gig, on the other hand, is frankly quite narcissistic and wants
everyone to pay attention to it. As a result, you'll have to spend a lot
of time litsening to it boast.
As an aside, the whole noise business makes a lot more sense when you learn
the language of hard drives. Get yourself a good technical manual, sit down,
and read it cover to cover. You'll discover all the nuances of drivespeak,
:from  inflection to intonation. Unfotunately, you'll also discover that most
drives spend most of their time bragging about seek speed. It's kind of boring,
By the way, some insist (rather dully, I'm afraid...) that the excess drive
noise is not due at all to braggadocio but rather to the fact that a larger
drive probably needs a bigger and thus louder cooling fan. They're totally
wrong, not to mention unimaginative, but it's a decent enough attempt at
a mechanical explanation.
--Nat, the anthropomorphic