SSD vs eMMC vs HDD – Which Should You Choose in 2021?

If you are looking to buy a new laptop, you might get confused with all the different specs you hear. Even though some of the specs are simple such as the RAM (the laptop’s accessible storage) and the storage space which is indicated in GBs.

Some other specs might be more complicated, such as SSD, HDD, or eMMC. Those three terms are different forms of storage, but what are the differences between the three and which is best for users?

Recently, all the top-notch laptops that support high frame rate, come with SSD storage, while cheaper laptops come with eMMC storage. And when it comes to old laptops, you will find that they come with HDD storage.

So, which one to go for while shopping for a new laptop? Let’s dig deeper and find out the differences between SSD, eMMC, and HDD.

SSD vs eMMC vs HDD

Between the three types of storage, an SSD is considered to be the best form of storage due to their high speed, resilience, and their great performance. SSD is usually used in making expensive laptops, but when it comes to cheaper or budget laptops, they usually go for eMMC storage.

eMMC storage is typically used in mobile phones as well. Lastly, the oldest type of storage is HDD and it is not in use as much as it used to be back in the day as a form of laptop storage, but they are still usable as great external drives.

SSD

SSD stands for solid-state drive. SSDs are the newer, better, and faster alternative to hard disk drives (HDDs), which have been in the computing market since the 1950s. Most modern technology laptops come with SSD storage because it is the best of the three storage forms.

While SSDs have been in use for years, they haven’t been so popular in the market for a long time. But ever since modern tech made the SSDs similar to HDDs in capacity, everything has changed! Additionally, SSDs use less power than HDDs, giving your laptop extended battery life, unlike HDDs.

More about SSDs

  • SSDs are 5x faster than HDDs, making SSDs the fastest storage type of the three.
  • Even though SSDs are the most expensive option of the three storage types, it is by far the best and most reliable choice.
  • SSDs have the highest durability, which is why it is used for modern tech laptops.
  • Laptops with SSDs are lighter and thinner than laptops with HDDs, this is due to the small size of the SSDs.
  • The smallest size of SSD is 128GB, meaning that any laptop with less storage uses eMMC storage.

eMMC

eMMC stands for embedded multimedia card. Even though this type of storage is typically used in tablets and mobile phones, it can also be used to make budget laptops. eMMCs are soldered to your laptop’s motherboard.

eMMCs are made of flash memory as well as the multimedia card itself, which is the most commonly used type of storage in the market. Laptops using eMMCs usually have a storage space of about 64GB or 128GB maximum, which means you might need to use cloud storage for extra space as well. eMMCs do not offer the amount of storage SSDs offer users, additionally, it is way slower than SSDs.

More about eMMC

  • Mainly used in mobile phones and tablets.
  • Slower than SSDs.
  • Attached to the motherboard making it difficult to upgrade to SSD.
  • eMMCs make a good purchase choice if you plan to use cloud storage or external storage.

HDD

HDD stands for hard disk drive, it is the oldest form of storage and it’s practically outdated, however, it is still used as a perfect external storage unit as they offer you up to 1TB for almost 25% of an SSD price.

HDDs used to be the most popular form of storage for laptops, but with today’s technology, almost all modern laptops come with SSD or eMMC. While the use of HDDs decreased over the past few years.

More about HDDs

  • HDDs are now considered way too slow to be used in modern technology laptops.
  • HDDs can still be used for external storage for a very cheap price when compared with SSDs and eMMCs.
  • They also offer users plenty of space, you can get more than 10TB of space for a conveniently affordable price.
  • You can look into the options of upgrading your storage form if you already have an HDD installed in your laptop.

Can eMMC be upgraded to SSD?

Many users are wondering whether it is possible to upgrade their laptop’s eMMC storage to SSD, the answer is yes, it is possible but might be quite expensive if you are planning to get professional help.

The reason why it is so expensive is that the eMMC is attached to the motherboard, meaning that you will need to disconnect it first to be able to add the SSD into the device. However, this upgrade is not worth the hassle.

How fast is eMMC?

The average transfer speed of an eMMC is around 400mb/s. While the average speed for an SSD is around 150mb/s faster! Even a cheaper SSD will have an average speed of 550mb/s.

Which is better, eMMC or HDD?

While the SSD is by far better than the eMMC, eMMCs are still preferred over HDDs. This is because of the very low speeds of HDDs, which is about 100mb/s, that speed is about a quarter of an eMMC speed.

However, when it comes to bulk storage, users tend to go for an HDD, this is because their hard drive capacity is quite high for a conveniently low price.

If you are on a budget and looking to get a good laptop, you might want to go with an eMMC laptop and use a cloud storage service on the side to store your files if you have plenty.

However, if you are looking for a top-notch laptop, you should definitely invest in an SSD laptop instead. In both cases, you can still have external storage using an HDD, which can offer you plenty of storage space for way less money than SSDs.

Written By Callum Wright

With a background as a business owner for a company wokring with 3D animation and Visual Effects, Callum is just the person you need when you need help regarding laptops for professional use like graphics designing, photo editing, and general business administration.