What were the fastest 3.5 inch IDE pata Hard drives?

I would like to purchase an IDE hard drive for my older PC i thought this would be a great place to post this question. What were the fastest IDE hard drives for older pcs. Are there any made still today that are faster now. So a standard IDE 3.5 inch not the smaller ones or adapter stuff.

Welcome! I don’t think I can help directly - perhaps you can say what year of PC you’re thinking of. But perhaps of interest, this article about the first IDE drives, by Connor for Compaq:

Here’s a table of Connor’s IDE product evolution:

and we see the first was the CP341I, type 43. There’s another site with technical details, the earliest drives being

where we see 3600RPM, 29ms seek, 5ms track seek, 8kB cache, and 1MB/s transfer rates. All of these are performance-related stats.

I don’t think I can answer your exact question in terms of what manufacturer or if they’re still made; I think the fastest drive IDE I remember using was 7200RPM.

However, if you truly want to bring speed to an older computer (depending on how old) a good option is Compact Flash. IDE → Compact Flash adapters are trivial and inexpensive; I have a 32GB CF card in my Thinkpad X40, which is unbearably slow otherwise, by modern standards. Depending on what CF card you have, you may or may not need to take some steps to keep it from wearing out (not all older CF cards have wear leveling). I haven’t worked on this in a few years, but google should be able to point you to some good guides for using CF cards as solid state drives in older machines.


I’d also go with CompactFlash, but another option is a PATA-to-SATA adapter. Modern SATA 3.5" drives still have the same form factor and mounting threads as the old drives, and the adapter board plugs flush against the back of the drive. The PATA connectors are in practically the same positions as a classic PATA drive.

If you really want authentic PATA, it’s not too hard to scrounge up old 3.5" PATA drives if you know someone who has horded them. Good luck with drive errors and failures, though.

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