Video editing is a process that takes a toll on your computer. Not only are you running sophisticated software that does numerous computations, but you’re also manipulating video files, some of are very large.
For the process to go smoothly, you’ll need a computer with a hard drive that can perform well so that you don’t face serious lags and possibly miss deadlines.
Here well look at some of the best internal hard drives for video editing. Internal drives are great because you only need to switch on the computer to use them.
Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases from the product affiliate links.
Comparison of Best Internal Hard Drives for Video Editing
|Western Digital Black||HDD||3.5"||256MB||7200 RPM|
|WD Ultrastar |
|Seagate BarraCuda||HDD||3.5"||256MB||7200 RPM|
|Samsung 860 PRO||SATA|
List of Top Internal Hard Drives for Video Editing in 2020
The following internal hard disks and SSDs stand out the most for video editing.
- Toshiba MG07ACA14TE – Expensive, reliable data center drive
- WD Black – Premium, High performance and Cache
- WD Gold Ultrastar DC HA210 – Reliable drive with high cache
- Seagate Barracuda – High cache 7200rpm HDD
- Samsung 860 PRO – Highly Rated 520MB/s SATA 3 SSD
- Western Digital WDS100T2B0C – Whopping Fast NVME SSD – 2400 MB/s
1. Toshiba MG07ACA14TE – Expensive, Reliable Data Center Drive
One of the most reliable hard disk currently rated. Data center grade reliability.
According to Backblaze, their 14TB Toshiba drives are doing much better than the other drives used in their data centers.
An annualized failure rate research revealed that 0% of the Toshiba drives they used failed.
For a user, the best internal hard drive for video editing should be one that’s very reliable and this drive has proven itself to be.
It’s a data center grade 3.5-inch drive that’s suited for long operations, allowing you to use it under very high workloads without any issues.
One con is that the drive is a little expensive, compared to other HDDs, but in turn, you get high capacities which are great for video editors who need the storage for large volumes of high-resolution files.
Being a 3.5-inch drive means that it can’t be internal to a laptop, however, it can easily fit inside a workstation as an internal drive and serve you well.
2. WD Black – Premium, High performance and Cache
A premium 7200 RPM desktop grade hard disk. Mostly used by gamers and high performance users.
The WD Black is a premium edition of WD drives for desktops, especially compared to the others like the Red, Blue, and the Purple.
The drive itself is a great performer as it has a 7200 RPM hard drive. This has positive implications on the drive’s performance, making it one of the best internal hard drive for video editing.
With a high cache of 256 MB, the drive has just enough storage to store some commonly accessed files in a faster storage location for quicker access. This lets you work with reduced wait times and can improve a video editor’s workflow.
The WD Black is designed for professionals in the creative industry. As a result, you get great performance coupled with large storage capacity for your files. It comes with capacities of up to 6TB and uses the popular SATA interface so compatibility is not an issue.
3. WD Gold Ultrastar DC HA210 – Reliable Drive with High Cache
Another highly reliable data center grade hard disk that offers high cache at all capacity options.
The Ultrastar is another great-performing drive from WD according to Backblaze. It has a high tolerance with the ability to handle workloads of up to 550TB a year. This is ten times more than what a regular desktop hard drive can handle.
The drive is slightly expensive, compared to other HDDs but this can be attributed to the fact that it’s a data center grade HDD with very high cache even at lower capacities.
The drive features a 7200 RPM disk that delivers fast read and write speeds. This coupled with the fact that it has high cache capacities even with lower HDD capacities results in a fast HDD with speeds that can get to 200 MB/s.
With this drive, you get large disk capacities and there’s even a 14TB model. This ensures that all your files can be stored in one internal location for ease of access.
The Ultrastar is a high performing HDD from WD that’s built with data centers in mind. This makes it one of the best internal hard drive for video editing as you get large capacities and great reliability.
4. Seagate Barracuda – High Cache 7200rpm HDD
A very affordable option. Offers 7200 RPM disk speed with a fairly high cache memory for its price.
Another entry for the best hard drive for video editing is the Seagate Barracuda. This one too comes with a large cache of 256 MB which makes file access smoother for better user experience.
In addition to that, you also get a disk with 7200 RPM for optimal performance. This is far from the kind of performance you’d get from an SSD but it’s still workable.
You can get the drive in a 3.5-inch configuration which will fit inside a desktop PC’s case comfortably and get you speeds of up to 160 MB/s. There’s also a smaller 2.5-inch one for portable devices like laptops.
This drive is great for multiple pc applications that are resource intensive, from gaming to video editing, and is designed to deliver great performance with Seagate’s guarantee.
In addition to being a good performing drive, you also get a good price for the Seagate Barracuda. This will allow video editors to configure their workstations with different drive capacities to fit their needs.
5. Samsung 860 PRO – Highly Rated 520MB/s SATA 3 SSD
A popular and a reliable SATA 3 SSD that can reach speeds upto 520 MB/s.
Unlike the first four drives, this one is an SSD and therefore offers some of the best performance you’ll want in an internal hard drive.
The Samsung 860 Pro is a highly-rated SSD that utilizes the SATA 3 interface. This will let you install it on most computers since SATA is a popular interface. What’s more, the drive is pretty fast with speeds that can reach up to 520 MB/s.
Being a 2.5-inch drive means this SSD can fit inside most laptops as well as desktop computers.
With its fast performance, you will hardly be limited by the codec you’re working with as the drive supports large data bandwidths.
The drive itself is quite affordable for an SSD so you don’t necessarily have to empty your pockets to get one for your computer.
For users working with large video libraries, the SSD comes with storage capacities of up to 4TB.
6. Western Digital WDS100T2B0C – Whopping Fast NVME SSD
A fair priced and a very fast NVMe SSD. Fits into a free M.2 slot.
Finally here we have the fastest and most recommended internal hard drive.
This is an NVMe SSD with an M.2 2280 form factor. Unlike the SATA SSD which connected to the slower SATA III protocol, the NVMe SSD is much faster as it connects to the PCIe slots.
Hence, this particular drive can reach blazingly fast speeds for 2400 MB/s.
The only issue with these drives is that they require a free M.2 slot that is capable of running the NVMe drives. While most of the latest motherboards and laptops do feature at least one NVMe slot, the same cannot be said about older machines.
However, if you do have a free NVMe slot, then you should look no further as an NVME SSD drive such as this could give you a huge performance boost.
What to Look For in the Right Internal Hard Drive for Video Editors?
When looking for the best drives for yourself, there are a few things you’ll need to consider. These should include the following.
The core specs relate to the given specifications of the drive itself, mostly expressed as numbers that paint a picture of the drive’s performance.
HDD Recommended Speed
HDDs are great because they are affordable, meaning you can get large storage capacities for a good price. The problem is that they tend to be generally slow.
This can be partly solved by getting a faster HDD.
The RPMs (Revolutions Per Minute) of an HDD determine the drive’s speed. A 7200 RPM drive is recommended for video editing at the very least if you want great performance.
You may go higher with this but going lower can cause performance hits.
Modern cameras capture a lot of details hence, generating a lot of data. To store all these files internally, you’ll need a hard drive with a large enough capacity.
Hard drives are relatively slow. But this problem can be overcome by having a cache. A cache stores some of the commonly read files on the HDD in a space that’s easy to access. This improves reading speeds.
SSD vs HDD
We have already seen that HDDs can be a little slow. For this reason, a video editor may choose a faster alternative, like having an SSD as an internal drive. SSDs are faster than HDDs and have become affordable.
They have no moving parts, don’t generate noise and use less power than HDDs.
We also talked about two different types of SSDs here i.e the SATA and the NVMe SSDs.
SATA SSD are basically slower and come in two form factors i.e 2.5″ and M.2. NVME SSDs are faster and only come in the smaller M.2 form factor.
SATA SSDs can be connected to the SATA ports but the NVMe require a dedicated NVME M.2 slot.
In terms of speeds, NVMe SSD are blazingly fast. The NVMe SSDs are at least 5 times faster than their SATA counter parts.
With SATA SSDs you can expect a speed of about 530-550 MB/s. With NVMe you can expect speeds ranging from 2.5 GB/s all the way to 4.0 GB/s with the speeds ever increasing.
Of course, the faster the NVMe drive the more expensive it is.
Compare this to the faster 7200 RPM HDD which have a nominal transfer speed of about 140 MB/s.
An internal drive needs to be reliable for a video editor. You wouldn’t want the performance to vary from time to time. Instead, you’d want a hard drive that has the same performance throughout.
While no hard drive is 100% reliable. DATA Center grade hard drives are the most reliable lot out there with the highest MTTF (Mean Time To Failure).
As far as the SSDs are concerned, an average SSD is concerned more reliable than an average HDD as it has no moving parts and thus does not suffer mechanical failure.
We recommend having a combination of an SSD and HDD in your system.
That way you use the SSD for storing current video editing projects as well video editing software and you can use the HDD for storing your archived projects or footage.
Something to Note: Codecs
With video editing, you will be working with multiple video files that are encoded differently. You will notice performance differences based on the drive you use. Here are some popular codecs and the bandwidths they require for reference.
- AVCHD 1080P at 30fps – 3MB/s
- XDCAM EX 1080P at 30fps – 4.5MB/s
- ProRes 422 1080p at 30fps – 21MB/s
- ProRes HQ 4K at 24fps – 106MB/s
You may notice that as you advance in video quality, so does the workload on the drive increase. This is because higher resolutions mean more data needs to be read. You therefore need a faster HDD to work effectively.
In this article, we looked at some of the best internal hard drives for video editing. Basically, our aim was to list the most reliable hard disks here.
Therefore, you may have noticed that some of the internal hard disks mentioned here are particularly built for data centers.
Other than that, we also talked about high performance hard disks as well as SSD that can prove to be excellent for your video editing needs.