Hard Drive manufacturing engineers have pretty consistently stated that suspending a drive is not good for drive reliability, and technically they do not provide a warranty for such installations
I've never come across any statements like this. Can you point to any references?
Certainly but as I previously wrote I have no reliable sources, just users on forums. The quote is taken from my thread about Seagate and reliability: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=64104
, the last post.
In fact, a 2001 Seagate white paper on Drive Acoustics is linked in the HDD Recommended/Reference article
. Citing that paper:
Seagate has considered the total effect of drives on a PC system and can show that structure-borne noise is the dominating source of disc drive-induced PC acoustics. In fact, testing has shown that changes in stand-alone drive acoustics had little effect on the overall system acoustics when drives were hard mounted in the chassis.
So hard mounting is the worst in matters of acoustics? No arguing with you there!
At one time, years ago, isolators were thought to be impractical for disc drive mounting; the frequent long seeks could induce excessive drive motion through isolator “wind up” and “release,” which caused settling problems during seeks, which could in turn reduce drive performance and/or data integrity. Current drive designs, combined with Seagate’s research and development of new isolator materials and designs, have largely eliminated these issues. In typical PC applications, over 90 percent of all seeks occur within only 30 tracks, which is less than one-fourth of one percent of the drive’s tracks, inducing very little motion and wind up. The materials Seagate recommends for isolators are highly damped rubber compounds, which minimize the possibilities for wind up, amplification and other unstable conditions.
Our testing indicates that WinBench scores (industry-standard drive benchmarks) are not affected by mounting drives using isolators. Further testing beyond the bounds of common disc drive functions did reveal that when performing high numbers of long seeks (long seeks are becoming more rare as track densities increase), write performance could be somewhat reduced, while read performance remains unchanged. Again, most drives perform many more reads than writes, so that overall performance, even in these extreme circumstances, is not perceivably affected.
Considering the exponential increase in HDD density in the 11 years since this paper was published, the amount of physical travel involved in typical seeks has to be considerably reduced... which means a well-implemented elastic cord suspension is "safer" now than ever before.
That's comforting to hear, been doubting my suspension due to failure of a few Samsung drives and a couple of Seagates but that was probably due to bad samples.
I love suspension but it limits the number of cases I can use to a small fraction and most of these have something I'm really bothered with, not to mention that most modern cases tend to reduce or exclude more 5.25 inch bays with each generation. Sure SSDs are a great way to get around the matter but the price limits them to being used for major storage purposes so for the time being we are to rely on 5400 RPM HDDs as well.
My 7200.12 will probably not be a system drive for long and neither will my very old but reliable Seagate IDE HDD so the problem these drives have with vibration will not matter but for new 5400 drive it will. I hope that rubber isolators will increase their effectiveness soon to be good enough to handle all vibrations of most slow spinning HDDs.