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firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0

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Jacquie Nauman
firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0
on Jul 15, 2010 at 8:13:00 pm

Dunno if this is the right place to post this question....

I have a Mac Pro Intel with usb 2.0 & fw 400 ports. I haven't had to buy a new external drive in a long time, so my previous drive only had usb 1.0 and fw 400. I'm being told by non-video editors that USB 2. is better and I do not need firewire. Is this true for video capturing and storage? Do I not need to spend the extra dough for a firewire drive and use only a usb 2.0 connection? The replacement drive I am test driving is usb 2.0 and firewire 800/400. The cable for the drive is an 800 with a connection to convert it to 400. Am wondering if I'm cheating myself by using that instead of the 2.0 port.

Thanks for any advice on this!

MAC: 2 x 2.8 Quad Core Intel Xeon
Memory: 2GB 800 MHZ DDR2 FB-DIMM
OS: Mac OS X 10.6.4

Final Cut Pro 6.0.6


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Shane Ross
Re: firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0
on Jul 15, 2010 at 8:33:42 pm

#43 - USB vs Firewire vs...

Shane's Stock Answer #43 - Types of hard drives and how they compare when working with video

Drive types and how good they are when it comes to dealing with video...

USB 2 = BAD
Firewire = GOOD
e-SATA = more GOOD
Internal SATA = more better GOOD
eSATA RAID = more MORE better GOOD
4 gig FIbre = Just about the best you can get! (great for SAN networks)
External PCIe = Da Bomb! 5 times faster than Fibre


[Jacquie Nauman] " I'm being told by non-video editors that USB 2. is better and I do not need firewire."

NON-EDITORS is a key word there. Because they don't know jack about the requirements of digital video. USB 2.0 sends data in packets...bursts. Firewire in a steady stream. They might be similar in speed for data transfers, but video needs the steady stream of data that firewire provides. USB 1, and 2, suck for video. 3.0 is better, but very new and not in any mac at this time.

[Jacquie Nauman] "The cable for the drive is an 800 with a connection to convert it to 400. Am wondering if I'm cheating myself by using that instead of the 2.0 port. "

No, just reducing to the FW400 connection, which is fine for DV, HDV and DVCPRO HD. ProRes needs FW800 at least.

Shane



GETTING ORGANIZED WITH FINAL CUT PRO DVD...don't miss it.
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Jacquie Nauman
Re: firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0
on Jul 15, 2010 at 8:45:04 pm

Thanks Shane! This is exactly the answer I was looking for and why I described non-video editors as my source. I knew it didn't sound right!! My instincts were right and I'm glad I bought the drive I did! THANK YOU! Creative Cow Rocks!


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Thomas Morter-Laing
Re: firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0
on Jul 16, 2010 at 6:08:01 am

Just a thought, sorry if I'm being stupid, but I swear mac pros had FireWire 800 ports? Even a g5 mac pro or whatever it is o worked on the other day (g5 tower) had a FireWire 800; did apple really bring out the model up and NOT put one in?

:D
Tom Morter-Laing
Certified Apple Product Proffessional, 2010
Production Assistant, Grace Productions
Degree; TV Production



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Jacquie Nauman
Re: firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0
on Jul 16, 2010 at 8:19:38 pm

Thanks for your post, Thomas. Turns out you are right. There is an 800 port but it's on the tower not the monitor. My cinema display only has 400. My 800 port was occupied, so I missed it. Thanks for bringing to my attention....looks like I'm the stupid one!

;-D


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Michelle Mizner
Re: firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0
on Oct 19, 2011 at 6:20:33 pm

Hi, I'm wondering if the Firewire > USB answer remains true in regard to USB 3 too. Does USB 3 also travel in packets? Does Firewire 800 still perform better for video editing than USB 3?

Thanks!
Michelle


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Shane Ross
Re: firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0
on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:08:31 pm

USB 3.0 doesn't travel in packets. But the point is moot, as Macs don't have USB 3.0.

Shane

GETTING ORGANIZED WITH FINAL CUT PRO DVD...don't miss it.
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Michelle Mizner
Re: firewire 400 v. Usb 2.0
on Oct 19, 2011 at 7:23:36 pm

Thanks, Shane. I've read "moot point" elsewhere, but was still interested in the speed of USB 3.0 for editing. Esp now that LaCie has the card and driver to convert your MacBook Pro, etc. It was just a conversation I had at work.


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