FW800 iPod possible??

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by Grimace, Mar 5, 2004.

  1. Grimace macrumors 68040

    Grimace

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    #1
    Could Apple release a FW800 Dock for the iPod and have it work with the current models? Or would a new version have to come out first? (Is the limitation the ipod or the dock is what I'm getting at)
     
  2. janey macrumors 603

    janey

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    #2
    iPod hardware only supports fw400.
    and its pointless for apple to release iPods using fw800 because most people with Macs dont have fw800 ports. Most people with PCs, the best they'll have is USB 2.0 (a tad faster than FW400)...
    so it'll be sorta wasteful...

    so the limitation would be the iPod itself...
     
  3. strider42 macrumors 65816

    strider42

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    #3
    it wouldn't do any good anyway. the hard drive would never be able to take advantage of the higher speed. it would have the connector, which wouldn't work with most computers, and then get probably no speed boost. So whats the point.
     
  4. Grimace thread starter macrumors 68040

    Grimace

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    #4
    Well they do make FW800-->FW400 adaptors which would solve one problem - but if the iPod couldn't transmit data that fast, it seems like something for the future. Remember when USB1.0 was the standard?? :D
     
  5. Le Big Mac macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

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    #5
    Wouldn't need a dock, just a cable with a FW800 jack. Question is whether ipod can read/write quickly enough to take advantage. DUnno on that.
     
  6. Grimace thread starter macrumors 68040

    Grimace

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    #6
    I guess that's what I was going for; the option to have current ipods connected through the FW400 dock, or an ipod cable that could utilize FW800. Anyone know if the specs of the ipod would allow for such a speed?
     
  7. Mantat macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    The iPod HD is way too slow. The faster a disk spin, the more energy it needs and its reduce the battery life. This is why they use a slow HD, it also cost less and cause less vibration.

    Just give it a try, use the iPod as an external HD and you will see how fast (slow) it is...
     
  8. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

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    #8
    Not necessarily, some report that a PowerBook with 7200 RPM HD is MORE energy efficient than with a 4200 RPM. Faster access time means less time the battery needs to be used. I don't know if that would hold true with the iPod, but the shock resistance of the slower speed certainly is a great reason to use a slower drive.

    I think the better question is:

    Do they even make faster drives in that small form factor?? :D
     
  9. Grimace thread starter macrumors 68040

    Grimace

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    #9
    I just transfered 7GB onto my iPod and it took a very short amount of time with Firewire400.
     
  10. strider42 macrumors 65816

    strider42

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    #10
    but how long did it take. did it even come close to 400 mbps sustained throughput? I doubt it. 400 mbps = 50 megabytes per second. 7 gigabytes at 400 mbps shoudl take about 143 seconds based on my rough calculations. a little over two minutes. I'd be surprised if the iPod came anywhere near that number. hard drives are inherently slow technologies. There's really not much out there that can make use of firewire 800 at this time. Even if its a firewire 800 device, doesn't mean its getting firewire 800 speeds. Just like they sell USB 2 scanners that don't come close to using that much bandwith.
     
  11. Grimace thread starter macrumors 68040

    Grimace

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    #11
    Yeah, some test files got 1GB every minute, others a little slower. So the internal HD on the iPod is the slowpoke, not really the cable. If it weren't hard disk based, would that improve transfer speed??
     
  12. strider42 macrumors 65816

    strider42

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    #12
    like I said, all hard drives are slow pokes, except maybe some scsi ones or SATA ones. normal IDE hard drive you find in desktop and laptops won't approach those speeds either on a sustained basis. I think IDE can do something like 60 MB per second max, and most of the time is significantly below that.

    If it were something other than hard drive based, it could potentially go faster, but it depends on what interface is used between the storage medium and the cable. I know the iPod mini uses compact flash (as the connector type, not the medium), dunno about the regular iPod. I also dunno if a CF interface is any faster or slower. There's a lot of potential choking points when it comes to transfering information.
     
  13. Kingsnapped macrumors 6502a

    Kingsnapped

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    #13
    I can't wait for a use for my powerbooks FW800 port. If I sacrificed a USB port for that thing, it better be put to good use.
     
  14. tomf87 macrumors 65816

    tomf87

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    #14
    My question here would be in regards to how the hard drive is being used. The iPod spins it up and caches data then powers down to save battery. With a 7200rpm drive, I'd guess that it takes more energy to spin it up versus its 4200rpm counterpart.
     
  15. chuckzee macrumors member

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    #15
    no, in the real world firewire 400 is faster than usb 2.0
     
  16. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #16
    So does that mean there is little or no speed gain by using one of those new FW800 external drives? How do those compare to FW400 ones?
     
  17. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

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    #17
    In tests that I've seen, the FW800 drives only marginally outperform FW400 drives, and not much of a speed difference that you would probably not even notice on everyday usage.
     
  18. janey macrumors 603

    janey

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    #18
    prove it. not just based on what you've seen, but like actual studies that prove FW400 is faster than USB. For everyone its goign to be different, so i doubt there is one answer.
     
  19. KC9AIC macrumors 6502

    KC9AIC

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    #19
    I have thought about FW 800 iPods, and decided that the only reason to do so is so that the user wouldn't need to take up their only FW 400 port.

    übergeek, MacWorld magazine did a test a few months ago that compared hard drives using FW 800, FW 400, USB 2.0, and USB 1.1. FW 800 was extremely fast, FW 400 a bit slower, and USB 2.0 was up there, but not near the speed of FW, and USB 1.1 was understandably trailing. USB may have a higher theoretical speed than FW 400 (480 vs. 400 Mbps), but FW has a much better throughput in actual use.
     
  20. KC9AIC macrumors 6502

    KC9AIC

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    #20
    And one more thing. Apple developed FireWire, and Intel (I think) developed USB. Therefore, regardless of performance, FireWire is better. :D
     
  21. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #21
    You have no idea what you are talking about do you? USB 2.0 is faster on paper but it has more overhead than Firewire so in reality it is slower than Firewire400. And yes, there is a single answer. FW400 is faster.

    From Barefeets:
    USB 2.0 is much faster than USB 1.1 but it is much slower than FireWire, at least in the case of the WiebeTech drive I used.

    From PCMagizine:
    Though USB 2.0 is rated at a higher throughput speed, FireWire delivered faster performance on external hard drives when connected to a desktop.

    From TechTV: Despite USB 2.0's 80 Kbps speed advantage over FireWire, our testing showed that the additional overhead of USB 2.0 made it slower than FireWire. For high-bandwidth devices such as external hard drives, the difference was as high as 70 percent.

    from usb-ware.com:
    Question: Which is faster Hi-Speed USB 2.0 or FireWire? Answer: In sustained throughput FireWire is faster than USB 2.0.

    And I've never seen, nor heard of, video editors using or recommending USB 2.0 based HDDs for video work.


    Lethal
     
  22. Sedulous macrumors 68000

    Sedulous

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    #22
    USB technology uses the CPU. That isn't so surprising as Intel plays a role in USB development (and probably why it is common in PeeCees). Firewire has its own chipset. So USB performance takes a bigger hit on slow computers.
     
  23. Macette macrumors 6502

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    #23
    i'm just glad the iPod wasn't born in the days of SCSI. imagine. :)
     
  24. G5orbust macrumors 65816

    G5orbust

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    #24
    There are a ton of reasons behind this, mostly because of the way Firewire transmits data (something Im not going to go indepth about).

    But, in any case, Im almost 100% positive that the switch to FW800 would warrant a complete redesign of the dock. Since FW800, I believe, uses 9 pins instead of 6, that would mean the inclusion of 3 more connectors on the dock and the port on the bottom of the iPod. (Correct me if Im wrong on any of this.)
     

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