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Hey everyone, does our m14x still have the same standard 2.5" Sata drive that most other laptops do? I had heard that some of the drives have a 9mm height clearance and some have 12mm. I want to eventually exchange the 500GB standard that came with my Alienware for something bigger. I have a 7200RPM 640GB Seagate in my m11x, but I had nearly filled it. I could easily max out the 500GB drive. I saw a Seagate Constellation drive at 1TB/7200RPM, but it was a couple hundred dollars. I could get a standard 1TB/5200RPM drive, but how much performance would I lose on the tradeoff? Some of the users on various boards mention speed problems when using a 2nd drive on an optical caddy in place of the DVD-ROM.

I have quite a lot of games, movies, as well as VST instruments and samples, so I love using the 7200 RPM drive. What do you guys suggest? Thanks in advance! :)

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Well, I can't tell you how your m14 r2 will behave with a HDD as second drive. But I can tell you that 5400 rpm drives are no fun at all, in fact they can become the bottleneck of your system. However their existence can be justified by the amount of power they save. I have made good experiences with 5400 rpm drives, but those were desktop drives in a raid configuration and used for large continuous reads. As primary disk a 5400 rpm HDD is a no-go, but if you only use the as 2nd drive for storage of large files like movies the 5400 rpm drive is ok, in fact it may buy you even some extra mobility. If you plan to install applications or games only a 7200 rpm drive or an SSD can satisfy you.

The way i see it, installing an 5400 in a m14x R2 is like installing a cheap set of tires on a sports car.

PS: I have swaped my CD-ROM drive for a 7200 rpm drive for storage purposes and am quite happy about it, except that after a long time of no access the disk has to spin on again which takes about 0.5-1 sec. Acceptable but absolutely inconvenient.

PPS: What's with the Delorean? - Is that beauty yours?

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Hey there chmod1337, thanks for your input! I really do want to stick with the 7200RPM drive. I pulled my original Samsung Spinpoint 640GB from my m11x last night only to discover not only is my older laptop dead, but the hard drive as well. :( I could actually install a second drive in an optical caddy, as I have a DVD-RW external usb writer. It just seemed like a little too much trouble, especially after I've been tearing apart my m11x to rebuild it with a new motherboard. I also read about the long access delay times you mentioned, seemed to kill all practicality of it.

Yeah, that DeLorean is indeed mine. It's almost as expensive as my infant son lol "the other baby." I've had it since I was 24. Impossible to drive in the MO summer heat without a working air conditioner!

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I am sorry to hear about the fate of your m11x.

Maybe if you installed flux capacitor in your DeLorean, you could make use of the m11xs warranty, but then again why not get a new model from the future ;)

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lol I've given serious thought with the idea of calling Dell and extending my warranty on the m14x. It's still good for a year, but after what happened to the m11x...that's an expensive loss. I finally found a Seagate Constellation that was on sale, but the z-clearance height is 14-15mm...not gonna fit. Looks like the best I can do is 750GB at 9mm.

m11x= DeLorean after being hit by a train in Back to the Future 3

m14x= Time travelling locomotive :) (It runs on STEAM! hahaha)

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