SSD vs eMMC vs HDD – Which should you choose?

When you’re looking to purchase a laptop, you’ll see that the specs can be quite confusing. Sure, you might understand that RAM is the accessible storage on yor laptop, and you even probably know that when a laptop is 256GB, this refers to the amount of storage space on your laptop. But what about the type of storage that your laptop is using?

Nowadays, the majority of laptops will come with SSD storage – this is true for the premium laptops at least. However, you will still find cheaper laptops that are sold with eMMC storage instead. And if you have an old laptop, then it might even have HDD storage! But how to these all differ? Lets take a look at the differences between them.

SSD vs eMMC vs HDD

In short, nowadays an SSD is the best choice to go for out of these three different forms of storage. They’re faster, more resilient and you’re going to get a better performance. Let’s look at this in a little more detail.


SSD stands for Solid State Drive, and they’re the most popular in the current market of computing. An SSD is what comes in the majority of laptops nowadays, and if you want the best option available, then you want to stick with an SSD over the other storage methods.

Although SSDs have been used for decades, they haven’t been as readily available on the market for that long. However, nowadays with modern technology we can make SSDs with the same capacity as HDDs, which has been a gamechanger.

Another reason why SSDs have become to most used option is that they use less power than a HDD. This, in turn, ends up giving the laptop a better battery life as well. If you want a good external storage, check out this list of the top external SSD drives available.

  • An SSD is the fastest of the three options, and it can be more than 5x faster than using a HDD alternative.
  • It’s also undoubtedly the most expensive out of these options too, however in most cases it’s worth it.
  • SSDs are definitely the more durable of the choices, which is another reason why they’ve become to go to for new laptops.


The majority of the time, you’re going to find eMMCs (which stands for embedded multimedia card) used in phones and tablets. However, some brands also use eMMCs in lower spec laptops too.

Not only are eMMCs typically slower than SSDs, but typically they don’t have as much storage space on them too. Most of the laptops you see use eMMC storage will only have around 64GB or 128GB storage space. This kind of laptop is fine if you’re going to take advantage of cloud storage instead (like Google Drive).

  • They’re primarily used in phones, but cheap laptop brands will also use eMMCs in their laptops too.
  • eMMCs generally aren’t nearly as good as SSDs if you’re looking at something to use in a laptop. They’re still a better option than an old HDD, though.
  • They still provide an acceptable option for people looking for storage on a budget.


Pretty much all laptops released nowadays will come with an SSD, or cheaper ones come with an eMMC. A HDD, which stands for hard disk drive, is seen as outdated for being used as the main internal storage of a laptop.

However, HDDs can still be very useful to use as external hard drives. Why? Well, they give you the ability to save a lot of data at a really cheap price – you can pick up a 1TB for around a quarter of the price of an SSD. This means that if you have a lot of files that you need to save, then a HDD might prove to be a better choice.

  • No new laptops are being released with HDDs because they’re too slow.
  • Despite being slow, if you want a cheap way to store your files securely then a HDD can still do a good job.
  • They’re a better choice if you have a ton if files too, as you can get HDDs that have more than 10TB of space.

Other Storage Options

In the past, we’ve also used many other forms of storage to save our stuff. This includes;

  • SD Card – Probably the most used of the alternative storage we used nowadays is SD card, which are good because they are typically made to be compatible with many devices.
  • USB – For smaller files, a USB stick can still provide a good option if you want to carry something with you physically.
  • Floppy Disk – If you’re as old as me, you probably remember when everyone used a floppy disk for their files. Nowadays, we don’t use them due to their low capacity – there are much more efficient options out there.
  • CD – Although you might not think it, CDs are a form of storage! Nowadays they are also largely obsolete due to the fact we have much better options available.


If you’re trying to work out which would be best for your laptop, then it’s undoubtedly going to be an SSD. They’re much faster than the other options out there, and although they are more expensive, it’s likely going to be worth the price.

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