Is FW800 significantly better than FW400?

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by Kiwi-Todd, Jan 14, 2004.

  1. Kiwi-Todd macrumors member

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    #1
    I was just wondering if FW800 performance has improved over time as the benchmarks that I saw initially (about a year ago I quess) didn't seem that much faster than FW400.

    I use FW drives for DV editing - does a faster drive reduce FCP render times?

    secondly, does anyone know if the data rate is fast enough to handle SD video e.g digi-beta?
     
  2. rainman::|:| macrumors 603

    rainman::|:|

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    #2
    current drives can barely max out FW400, and only at bursts. so you'll see almost no performance gain, you're still limited by the drive speed. in a RAID it'd be great-- but for only one drive, it's pretty pointless.

    paul
     
  3. Kiwi-Todd thread starter macrumors member

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    #3
    Ahhh so thats the bottleneck.

    So would a software striped RAID (in disk Utility) of say 3 drives mean that I got a significant improvement?

    Thanks for replying.
     
  4. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #4

    paulwhannel is correct. The bottle neck in this situation is the HDD itself. I'm not sure how much of an improvement you'll get using software based RAID. Especially for DV editing. Unless you are pulling a bunch of DV streams (lots of video layers) and have a large number of rapid cuts (edits every few frames) you are not going to tax a 7200RPM HDD let alone FW400's bandwidth.


    Lethal
     
  5. Kiwi-Todd thread starter macrumors member

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    #5
    Thanks for that info - I will probably buy FW800 in future just because the $ difference isn't that great and a 15 -20% speed increase is still worth having.

    Cheers!
     
  6. Powerbook G5 macrumors 68040

    Powerbook G5

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    #6
    MacWorld did a story on this in the Feb issues. They tested USB 1.1, 2.0, FW 400, and FW 800 and the difference between 400 and 800 was only a matter of 3-7 seconds on all of their tests involving moving files of 300-500 megs or so. They were both vastly faster than either USB versions, but between FW, it's a very minimal difference.
     
  7. Kiwi-Todd thread starter macrumors member

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    #7
    so what's the point in FW800 - is it a 'future proofing' thing or is it just marketing hype?
     
  8. Powerbook G5 macrumors 68040

    Powerbook G5

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    #8
    I'm sure if you give it time, you will start seeing some awesome things coming from it. Remember, FW was made for real time video/audio streaming and we keep advancing so quickly in these types of areas. Only a few years ago, the kinds of high end video editing being done on consumer machines that we can do now on an iMac would have been unheard of. Just imagine in another couple of years the kinds of high demands this kind of video will put on even 800 Mbps.
     
  9. Kiwi-Todd thread starter macrumors member

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    #9
    Too true - yes we certainly seem to lift our expectations exponentially within the video realm - makes it hard when your customers expect Lord of the Rings effects for $20 budgets!

    So I guess the answer was future - proofing, I also believe that they are working on FW networking, and that the theoretical upper limits of the FW800 hardware are in fact much higher than currently stated.
     
  10. Kiwi-Todd thread starter macrumors member

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    #10
    RAID could be the way for FW800

    I just found this http://www.barefeats.com/hard35.html over at bare feats - I am exactly sure what he is saying but it seems to be positive. I'll need to do some re-reading (i've just had a friday night beer!)
     
  11. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #11
    It's future proofing. Take FW 400 and USB for example. Both techs were standard on Macs before they really "took off." But now both techs are very common. Apple has a tendency to give people what they need before they need it.

    In the next few years I think we'll see HDDs that will saturate FW400 and need FW800 to achieve their full potential.


    Lethal
     
  12. Duff-Man macrumors 68030

    Duff-Man

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    #12
    Duff-Man says.....I just went through all this myself since I need a bunch of additional drive space. Like said above, whether you go for FW800 or not depends on what you are doing with it (at least for now). If you are accessing the drive for large audio/video stuff where every seconds helps (like me...) then it is probably worth the xtra $$ (which seem to be dropping a bit lately). If you are just using it for basic storage or simple backups and money is a concern then FW400 will do you fine......oh yeah!
     

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