2,5" ATA or SATA? FW 400 or F800? Daisychaining?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by juanm, Jul 6, 2007.

  1. juanm macrumors 65816


    May 1, 2006
    Fury 161

    I'm gonna replace my MacBook with the lower end MacBook Pro, and then put 4Gb of RAM in it. It's main use will be Aperture.
    I'll do pretty much the same as shown here:
    However, I still have some doubts
    In the video, they use two Lacie Rugged hard drives, daisychining them to get data mirroring.
    I plan to get later an array of hard drives, so I can get much more storage for less $, and get two identical external enclosures. This way, when both drives are full, I swap them with new ones, send one someplace for backup purposes and keep going.
    My wanderings on the net made me stumble on macsales.com, and I'm currently considering these two options (Price difference doesn’t really matter (about 30$ more for the SATA enclosures, and not much for the drives):

    1 http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Computing/MOTGFW400/
    External HD enclosure for ATA/IDE 2,5" hard drives with two Firewire 400 ports. I’ll assume I can daisychain two of these.

    2 http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Computing/MSTG800U2K/
    External HD enclosure for SATA 2,5" hard drives with two Firewire 800 ports and one USB.

    There are no SATA/FW400 or ATA/FW800 options.

    My questions are :
    - What do you think of the setup ? Any experience or advice to share ? Another brand perhaps ?
    - Should I go for the ATA/FW400 or for the SATA/FW800 ?
    - Is there an actual speed difference in real life? I’ll be using them mostly for the Aperture library.
    - Can the FW800 port on the MBP power two FW800 drives at the same time ? Does it use more power than the FW400 ?
    - Is there an ExpressCard 34 with two eSata ports so I can do the same thing (but the daisychaining) ? I know the bottleneck are the hard drives, but should I expect a difference ?
    - Am I right with my decision of going for the lower end MBP ? I think that for my purpose (Aperture library), with twice the RAM and two external hard drives I’m more than offsetting the small speed difference (a mere 0,2Ghz and 128 additional VRAM) between my computer and its big brothers…

    Thanks for reading, for your help, eventually, and sorry for my English :)

    For illustration purpose, these are the ports of both enclosures:
  2. zioxide macrumors 603


    Dec 11, 2006
    Firewire 800 is compatible with Firewire 400, so get the FW800. If you have to use it with a laptop that only has a FW400 port, you can get a 9-pin to 6-pin FW cable (FW800 to FW400), and it will work fine.
  3. juanm thread starter macrumors 65816


    May 1, 2006
    Fury 161
    The cable is included, and I'll have both ports on the MacBook Pro, thanks :)

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