CONFIRMED: No FireWire Support in 5G iPods

clayj

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Jan 14, 2005
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Just tested this... the text you receive if you connect a FireWire cable is as follows:

FireWire connections are not supported. To transfer songs, connect the USB cable provided.

Press Center to dismiss.
So that's that. Yes, you can still CHARGE with a FireWire cable, but no data transfers.
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
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Does this mean that you can't even get a dock for it that attaches with a FW cable?

I'm so glad that I've got a 4th 40gb model. I like the dock that came with it.
 

iDM

macrumors 6502a
clayj said:
Just tested this... the text you receive if you connect a FireWire cable is as follows:

So that's that. Yes, you can still CHARGE with a FireWire cable, but no data transfers.
ClayJ i have been trying to find this out and i'm sure people are tired of me posting about this but do you have any idea if that universal dock connector will drop into my 3rd gen 20 gig dock, so i could use the old one?
 

clayj

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iDM said:
ClayJ i have been trying to find this out and i'm sure people are tired of me posting about this but do you have any idea if that universal dock connector will drop into my 3rd gen 20 gig dock, so i could use the old one?
Sorry, no idea... I don't have any sort of docks here.
 

Jay42

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Jul 14, 2005
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I like how the iPods cost less, but Apple has really cut down on what they give you. All the extra stuff you want to buy really adds up. When I got my 3G 30gig iPod, they really gave you everything: cables, earbuds, remote, charger, dock, carrying case, storage bag, etc. Do the new ones even come with an AC charger?
 

clayj

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Jay42 said:
Do the new ones even come with an AC charger?
No, they don't. But you don't NEED one, either, unless you plan on charging your iPod away from a computer.

I'm kinda OK with them not including accessories I don't need... I hate paying for things I'm not going to use.
 

matticus008

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Jan 16, 2005
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iDM said:
ClayJ i have been trying to find this out and i'm sure people are tired of me posting about this but do you have any idea if that universal dock connector will drop into my 3rd gen 20 gig dock, so i could use the old one?
I am pretty sure the dock adapter will NOT fit into anything other than the Universal dock. However, I think there is a dock adapter for 3G iPods if you buy the new dock, so that you would only need one dock from now on. The new iPod might fit in the old dock, though, especially the 60gig.
 

steve_hill4

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May 15, 2005
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Makes it easier in a way now, no iPods include AC Adapter. So many consumers see this as a con, but not for the multiple iPod household and those who have their computers on all the time.
 

the_freddinator

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Aug 13, 2005
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clayj said:
No, they don't. But you don't NEED one, either, unless you plan on charging your iPod away from a computer.

I'm kinda OK with them not including accessories I don't need... I hate paying for things I'm not going to use.
No adapter?! What happens if you go on vacation? That's lame
 

clayj

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the_freddinator said:
No adapter?! What happens if you go on vacation? That's lame
Then you buy an adapter. Sheesh.

In my case, I take my laptop with me, so I can charge off the laptop. But we don't ALL need adapters, so why package them at additional cost to us?
 

jaykk

macrumors 6502a
Jan 5, 2002
854
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plus you cant boot off an iPod for emergancy

Too bad you cant boot your mac from these new iPods ( for emergency use).
 

clcnyc

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Jan 6, 2004
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That Sucks

So, basically I have to buy a whole new iMac to enjoy the new iPod. My iMac was the last of the G4's NOT to include USB 2. I can't even imagine how long it would take to sync 2200 songs and some videos. :mad:
 

matticus008

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clcnyc said:
So, basically I have to buy a whole new iMac to enjoy the new iPod. My iMac was the last of the G4's NOT to include USB 2. I can't even imagine how long it would take to sync 2200 songs and some videos. :mad:
Your computer is more than 2 years old. How long can you expect to get leading-edge performance out of it, in all honesty? Apple is maintaining compatibility with computers made since 1997, at a lower level of performance, but still compatible. It's sad, but technology changes, and you bought into a technology knowing that USB 2.0 existed and that Apple was implementing it. Sooner or later, you'd have to expect that something would actually require it (TV tuners, for example) for optimal performance.

Why should Apple bend over backwards and increase iPod's manufacturing, design, and support costs for computers that are over 2 years old? That's not the way Apple has ever worked...that's the way Microsoft and Intel work. The same reason people like Apple for their work is the exact same reason they're complaining now. It's ridiculous.
 

alex_ant

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Feb 5, 2002
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matticus008 said:
Your computer is more than 2 years old. How long can you expect to get leading-edge performance out of it, in all honesty?
I don't think an iPod with firewire on it is asking for "leading-edge performance"... given that the iPod came out WITH Firewire *4 years ago*.
It's sad, but technology changes, and you bought into a technology knowing that USB 2.0 existed and that Apple was implementing it.
At the time (before Apple implemented USB2) most Mac users were BEGGING Apple to implement USB2 knowing that almost every device would be transitioning to it in the near future. Apple was one of the LAST computer companies to adopt USB2, and now its customers are paying the price. Unfortunately Apple seems to have no interest in alleviating for these customers what was Apple's own mistake.
Why should Apple bend over backwards and increase iPod's manufacturing, design, and support costs for computers that are over 2 years old?
Because a lot of users need them to. How about this. Why should *I* bend over backwards and buy a USB2-only iPod for my 2 year-old USB1 Mac? The margins on iPods are so high, Apple could EASILY keep Firewire in them and absorb the cost and still profit insanely off them.

USB2-only is stupid. It's giving into PC users. Apple is doing it for money, plain and simple. What they're saying is this: "screw all the Mac users who haven't bought a new computer in the past 2 years - PC users are more important to us." When the iPod came out, it was like an extension of the Mac - Firewire was practically half of what made it so great. Now they're saying, "You know what we were saying about Firewire being great - nevermind, we're going to go with the lowest common denominator now, because all the people with HP Pavilions really want us to." Eff... that.
 

Laser47

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Jan 8, 2004
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I miss the days when iPods were mostly owned by mac users, now almost everyone has one, yet they dont even know who makes them. At my school everyone calls them a Mac iPod???. Its good for apple to have like 75% of the mp3 marketshare but i miss the days when ipods were owned by mac users.
 

matticus008

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alex_ant said:
I don't think an iPod with firewire on it is asking for "leading-edge performance"... given that the iPod came out WITH Firewire *4 years ago*.
I understand that, but as iPod moved from a niche within a niche market, things had to change to make it more accessible. "leading edge performance" refers to the computer, not the iPod. Once your computer is a couple revisions old, it doesn't matter anymore, because innovation must move forward. It can't happen if it's being held back too much by older technology.

That iMac, for example, is now FIVE revisions old, and that's with Apple's conservative revisions. Innovation and control are why Apple can accomplish these things--it's in a position to do as it chooses, without disrupting the entire computing world. It was the first company to do away with legacy ports (people complained). It was the company that brought us Firewire (people complained). It ushered in widescreen displays and their "strange" resolutions (people complained). It capitalized on LCD displays (people complained). It brought us the iPod, and now that it's furthering the iPod, people are complaining.

Because a lot of users need them to. How about this. Why should *I* bend over backwards and buy a USB2-only iPod for my 2 year-old USB1 Mac? The margins on iPods are so high, Apple could EASILY keep Firewire in them and absorb the cost and still profit insanely off them.
You shouldn't buy a new Mac to fit your new iPod. You should use the iPod you already have, that already works with your Mac. They existed until a week ago, and you can still get them for a limited time. If you WANT a new iPod, you have to be prepared to meet the requirements for it. Apple isn't forcing you to do anything. It's not like they've gone back and disabled Firewire on all older iPods. New technology begets new technology. People complained when USB came on the scene and replaced serial ports--what were they supposed to do with all those serial peripherals? The answer was simple: use them with your computers that you already have that have serial ports.

The gross margin is high on the iPod, yes. But that's not total profit. People say the same things about all sorts of technologies, but a single dollar more in production costs is a huge deal in a competitive environment. And iPod *IS* in a competitive environment. If it stops changing, it loses, especially because these are the early years of the market. In order to keep a competitive advantage, every dollar less on parts cost translates into millions of dollars saved that can go into continuing development. Why don't more motherboards include Firewire ports on the PC side? They're only about $2, including licensing. Part of it is razor-thin margins, but even on the high end, every single penny counts, regardless of consumer sentiment.

USB2-only is stupid. It's giving into PC users. Apple is doing it for money, plain and simple. What they're saying is this: "screw all the Mac users who haven't bought a new computer in the past 2 years - PC users are more important to us."
It's not stupid. It's the only viable choice. In addition to being compatible with 100% of computers on the market, it offers high-speed performance on 98-99% of that market. Firewire is NOT POSSIBLE on the shuffle and the nano, and for the sake of consistency (not an unimportant factor for Apple), it makes sense to pull it on the full-size as well. It furthermore simplifies design, reduces costs by a few dollars per unit, makes engineering costs lower (they only have to deal with one bus in the design phase and in the software development phase), and makes customer support costs lower (no training on FW, easier troubleshooting). Of course they're doing it for money; that's called being a business.
 

matticus008

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BornAgainMac said:
Or MAC iPod. Works with PCs and Apples ;)


I am hoping that the dock supports Firewire and USB 2.0. I needed the dock anyways for hooking up to a TV.
The dock is USB 2.0 only, just like the iPod. The iPod must physically have Firewire in it for it to work with Firewire, and the 5G iPod does not have this hardware.
 

carlos700

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Dec 17, 2004
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Apple went with USB 2.0 because almost all PCs (with the exception of some high-end systems) do not come with FireWire as a standard feature. USB 2.0 many not be on many different Macs. USB 2.0 is not faster, just more compatible. Apple needs to learn to be more compatible even if it means sacraficing performance.
 

devilot

Moderator emeritus
May 1, 2005
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carlos700 said:
Apple went with USB 2.0 because almost all PCs (with the exception of some high-end systems) do not come with FireWire as a standard feature.
I didn't know that.... my family's 6 year old + Windows pc has a firewire port-- I just assumed that if my old beat up machine had it, then most others would, too. :p
 

matticus008

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devilot76 said:
I didn't know that.... my family's 6 year old + Windows pc has a firewire port-- I just assumed that if my old beat up machine had it, then most others would, too. :p
Is it a Sony, by any chance?
 

devilot

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May 1, 2005
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matticus008 said:
Is it a Sony, by any chance?
Nope, parents are too cheap for that. ;) It's some no brander... some random brand I don't even recognize. :eek:
 

Laser47

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Jan 8, 2004
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matticus008 said:
Is it a Sony, by any chance?
Yea my mom has an old sony 600mhz p3 laptop and it had firewire(they call it iLink), i guess sony was one of the first companies to use firewire because,i think they developed it along with apple and also because they are the only computer company (i know) that makes DV cams too. I have a HP and it has firewire aswell almost every PC shipping now has a Firewire port. Dont know about dell though.