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I have an old laptop that I want to use in my minivan to play mp3's and with winter just around the corner what effect can the cold have on using the laptop in -25 degrees C. Can the LCD/hard drive function in that kind of cold.
 

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Hard drives are rather sensitive to extremes in temperature. If you are looking to operate at -25C, you are looking for a "ruggedized" drive. These are going to have greater operating and non-operating ranges for temperature. They will also have other features in them that will accommodate for some of the hazards that may be encountered in a very mobile environment.

Here's a link to Seagate's ruggedized products, the EE25 series.

You may well be able to get a "normal" drive to work in a cold environment. Although hard drive designers state ranges for specs on temperature, altitude, shock, etc., there is still margin built into those number. Either that, or they were only tested to those points. So, yeah, a "normal" drive may work. However, reliability will be greatly reduced, and you then risk the loss of your data.

Poke around at these drives and see if there's something that fits your needs.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Otto, It is not usually that cold but we do get the odd overnight low that gets that cold. And my plan was to keep it in the van most of the time. (not worried about theft as its not worth much anyhow and the van has an alarm) can be hid out of site under front seat.
I wonder how Ipods do in that sort of temperature?
 

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Yeah, iPods would be susceptible to the same thing if they have a hard drive in them. But the little hard drives that are in the iPods are probably not as rugged as the EE25 stuff that Seagate has. Cold and altitude both affect the ability for the head to fly properly, the ability to read and write, etc.
 

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**** LCD's don't work at all hardly -- no contrast when very cold. :thumbsdown: I've done sub-zero van testing with equipment in Iowa January's. :dumbcrazy:
 
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