FireWire Hard Drive

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Mal, Jan 9, 2007.

  1. Mal macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #1
    I'm looking for a budget FireWire drive, preferably 60-80GB or more, though it could be as small as a 20GB. It's for a class I'm taking, and it'll be used as a scratch disk for Final Cut Pro (and possibly Final Cut Express), so 7200RPM is required. Something dependable is important, as is price. I've found a Lacie 60GB "Brick" drive for $78 from SmallDog, which I know is a good company, but it's only 5400RPM. Anyone know of a decent deal on a drive that fits those specs? To recap: 20GB+, 7200RPM, FireWire 400.

    jW
     
  2. crazycat macrumors 65816

    crazycat

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2005
    #2
    Well you could always use a DVD or 2, they will be much cheaper if your only thinking of getting a HD for one class. Your best option is to build somethign yourself which will be much cheaper.
     
  3. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #3
    Can't use a DVD as a scratch disk, though. That's why it's gotta be a HD. The professor recommended building my own, but I'd still need a HD that fits the specs. I'm just looking for a good source.

    jW
     
  4. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #4
    OK, now I'm finding options to piece one together. I have a seller on eBay with a 160GB EIDE drive (ATA/100), or a 120GB SATA drive for very close to the same price. Both are 7200RPM with 8MB buffers, and I believe both are Seagate. It seems to me that the 160 is the better deal there, but is there a significant advantage to the SATA in this case? Also, which type of casing would be easier to find, especially if I wanted the option of a bus-powered drive?

    jW
     
  5. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #5
    There's no advantage to SATA and it makes finding a budget external case much more difficult. Don't go eBay - go with a new IDE (Parallel ATA) drive with full warranty from a reputable reseller, and a new Firewire case. Don't go Bus powered -- go with AC adaptor. You won't find a reliable bus powered 3.5" drive enclosure, and the 2.5" drives are both higher priced and lower performance (even at 7200 RPM).
     
  6. fireball jones macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    #6
    You can always get an external case like this (I have one and like it, just unplug the SUPER BRIGHT HD access light):
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16817146602

    And your choice of drive. I prefer this because a) it's upgradeable in the future, and b) you can search out noise specs and get the quietest drive at the time. Trust me, going from a WD noisebox to a near silent Seagate kept me from going crazy ;)
     
  7. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #7
    Thanks, CanadaRAM and fireball jones, that's what I was thinking, but just wanted another opinion. Are there any cases that can be bus-powered on occasion if needed? I'm probably gonna be using this in a Mac lab on campus, which means I have to take it and plug it in, which would make bus-powered helpful. It's not necessary though, and it would probably save me some money.

    I'm curious though, with the savings I've found ($50 for the 160GB drive), is it really worth paying as much more as I'll pay to get it from a retailer?

    Anyone have one of these instead of the MacAlly to know if it's an ok substitute? I need to try to save anything I can without losing too much quality, and that's about $15 cheaper.

    Also, which brands of drives are good? I'm familiar with names like Seagate, Western Digital, Lacie, but I'm seeing lots of Maxtor, Hitachi, and Samsung drives on newegg.com. Are they worthwhile, or should I look elsewhere?

    One more question: how significant is the difference from ATA/100 to ATA/133?

    jW
     
  8. fuzzwud macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2004
    Location:
    Houston
    #8
  9. Reflow macrumors 68000

    Reflow

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2005
    Location:
    NJ/PHL
    #9
    How about This one. All you have to do is add a laptop drive and there you go. Great for the on the go. No need for a power supply firewire cable works fine on mac
     
  10. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #10
    That AcomData one looks pretty good, except it's only a 2MB cache, which the teacher said we couldn't get. Has to be 8MB or better. Might look at some others like it though (though it seems the drive + carrier sets are usually cheaper).

    Reflow, see CanadaRAM's comments on the laptop drives, I think I agree with him.

    jW
     
  11. crazzyeddie macrumors 68030

    crazzyeddie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2002
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #11
    OWC is a great company with great support. They also have very fair prices (you could save a few bucks going with someone else, but you're paying for support from a very reliable company that stands behind their products).

    Check out their Firewire 400 budget drives. (link)

    All the drives have at least an 8MB buffer, with the 250GB and up having 16MB cache. From those prices, it would make the most sense to get a 250GB drive, since its only $27 more than the 80GB... use it as a nice big scratch disk and backup drive (partition it if you want, keep the video partition within the fastest parts).
     
  12. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #12
    Heh, my dad just conjured up our old 120GB Western Digital, which is a 7200RPM with an 8MB cache and dual interface. If we can find the power adaptor that goes with it, he might have just saved me $100.

    Thanks for the input, all! I might still in the future look into an option like one of the recommended ones here.

    jW
     
  13. fireball jones macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    #13
    Just to add this, because it came up in some of the links:

    Some of the external cases/drives are VERY picky about being connected to a Mac. I have an external FW drive hooked up 24/7 to my mini that sleeps with it, but I went through 3 enclosures before I found one that would do it reliably.
     
  14. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #14
    Yeah, I noticed that in a few of the reviews and tried to steer clear of those. Thanks for pointing it out.

    jW
     

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