The difference is pretty much what a normal computer user will not ever notice. But for the sake of knowing it's faster, better, or cooler than the other drive people pay an extra $5.
I have three 7200.10's (320 gig model ST3320620AS) running in my system right now and I cannot hear them whatsoever. Of course, how you have them mounted in the case makes ALL the difference. They are mounted in a Antec P180B case with silicon rubber mounts.
If I had them mounted in a cheap steel case with full contact between the drive and the steel drive cage, I am sure they would be quite loud during seeks.
I do not have a .9 drive to compare the seek noise to however.
I have heard from a grape vine the 10 series are much louder than the 9 series. And there isn't a way to change the acoustic level
i have a cheap steal case, they are very audible, but in a friendly way.
looking around for a decent case. they (well the two middle ones) get noticably more toasty than the one on top and one on bottom.
I got mine today - in typical Fry's fashion - they're 7200.10s.
I know the 7200.10s have been cheaper in the past, but I've been too cramped for space for too long to wait for another $90 deal.
Since Seagate bought Maxtor, a lot of these Maxtor drives have just been rebadged 7200.10 Seagates.
Well this is news to me... I've never had any other drive fail on me but maxtor's so forgive me if I'm a little jaded Perhaps it will be time to give them another chance soon.
I still haven't purchased any myself, as a deliberate personal choice against the Maxtor brand name. It's just a lot of people on this forum have been buying these drives in the last ~3 months or so and yeah, it's definitely happening.