Bus Powered External HD?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by micvog, Apr 2, 2005.

  1. micvog macrumors 6502

    micvog

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2003
    #1
    I am looking to get an external HD to backup my system before upgrading to Tiger - backing 20GB of data to DVD is too much hassle.

    I have been leaning towards a "portable" external HD. Is there any down-side to a bus-powered HD? I like the idea of fewer cables, but I seem to recall that connecting the iSight and the iPod to the computer at the same time was causing issues which many felt were bus-power related.

    I have a strong preference for a FW drive as I am running out of USB ports.

    FWIW, I have a 1.8GHz SuperDrive iMac G5 w/1GB RAM and the following devices connected:

    * 3G 20GB iPod (thinking of selling for a 2G iPod Mini)
    * USB Bluetooth Dongle
    * Apple Keyboard/Mouse
    * HP DJ 5740
    * DSL Modem via Ethernet

    Thanks.
     
  2. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #2
    The biggest drawback is price, but if you're willing to spend some money you'll have a nice little bus powered drive.

    And you're right about iSight. If I just plug it in I immediately lose all my other FW devices--iPod, drives, EyeTV.
     
  3. Sedulous macrumors 68000

    Sedulous

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2002
    #3
    I don't have any actual statistics but it seems like FW powered drives are slower than the beefier A/C powered external drives.
     
  4. micvog thread starter macrumors 6502

    micvog

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2003
    #4
    Thanks. At this point I will assume it is an iSight-specific issue and not applicable to all bus-powered devices.

    Probably true. All of the bus-powered FW drives I have found are 2.5" 4200RPM/5400RPM laptop drives. The externally powered drives tend to be 3.5" 7200RPM drives, although there are externally powered 2.5" drives as well.
     
  5. kgarner macrumors 68000

    kgarner

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    Location:
    Utah
    #5
    FWIW, I love my LaCie Mobile Drive. Its only 40 GB, but that is enough for my needs. I haven't noticed any problems while using it, but I don't have an iSight or anything else bus powered. If you need to carry a drive around on a daily basis, I highly reccomend this drive.

    I got mine from LA Computer (found on dealmac.com) for $100. May be too much for a back up drive, but highly worth it if you need to carry the drive around a lot.
     
  6. micvog thread starter macrumors 6502

    micvog

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2003
    #6
    Thanks kgarner. I did not know about dealmac - that is exactly the kind of setup I am looking for.
     
  7. AZGINBOGA macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2004
    #7
  8. kettle macrumors 65816

    kettle

    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Location:
    England, Great Britain (Airstrip One)
    #8
    Wiebetech

    Wiebetech are the people to see about bus powered hard drives.

    ..here is a link to a pdf explaining the long and the short of 3.5'' hard drives running on Firewire Bus Power.
     

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