I'm planning on buying a new 15" MacBook Pro and I'm deciding whether or not to stick with the default 5400 rpm drive, or to upgrade to the 7200 rpm drive. The performance boost is nice, but the main thing I'm wondering is does the 7200 rpm drive have a fairly large impact on battery life, or is the difference between the two drive speeds negligible?

1 Answer 1



I cannot comment specifically on the models that the Macbook Pro uses, but on standard laptops that I have upgraded, I have noticed that quite a few have incrased vibration and / or heat, but battery life is hardly changed at all.

If the Western Digital Specification is anything to go by, it looks like the 7200RPM drives use less power... I have no comment to say :S.

5400 RPM

Electrical Specifications
Current Requirements

Read/Write  500 mA
Idle    400 mA
Standby 50 mA
Sleep   20 mA

Power Dissipation
Read/Write  2.50 Watts
Idle    0.85 Watts
Standby 0.25 Watts
Sleep   0.10 Watts

7200 RPM

Electrical Specifications
Current Requirements

Read/Write  360 mA
Idle    165 mA
Standby 40 mA
Sleep   40 mA

Power Dissipation
Read/Write  1.8 Watts
Idle    0.83 Watts
Standby 0.20 Watts
Sleep   0.20 Watts
  • Thanks for the quick answer; those specifications are . . . interesting. :)
    – Kevin Yap
    Aug 6, 2010 at 21:43

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