External HDD

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by migulic, Mar 28, 2008.

  1. migulic macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    #1
    I just bought my first miniDV camera and I would like to import the footage into my computer (I have around 3 hours so far) to do some basic editing in iMovie '08. I realized that video files would take up my internal HDD pretty fast, so I want to buy an external hard drive and keep all my video files on there. I found a very cheap 500 GB MyBook and I'm thinking about purcharsing it; however, the only connection that the drive has is USB 2.0. Is this alright for iMovie '08 or do I need a FireWire drive? I don't really want to buy a FireWire HDD since FireWire 800 drives are still quite expensive and I only have one FireWire 400 port, which would be taken by my camcorder during the capture process.

    So is USB 2.0 good for an iMovie disk or do I need to invest in FireWire 800? Or is there a way to have both an HDD and a camcorder connected to the same FireWire 400 port, to capture video from the camcorder straight onto the drive?
     
  2. AviationFan macrumors 6502a

    AviationFan

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    #2
    Yes, you can daisy-chain the camcorder and firewire drive if your drive has two FW400 ports, which many of them have. Another option would be to buy a cheap firewire hub for the FW400, which basically does the same thing (i.e. connect multiple devices to the same firewire bus).

    The consensus seems to be that firewire is superior to USB for video capturing and editing. The raw bus bandwidth seems OK for USB 2.0, but in reality the processor seems to be much more involved transferring data over USB than firewire. For video, I would recommend FW400 or FW800.

    - Martin
     
  3. migulic thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    #3
    Thanks. But is the speed increase with FireWire (since with the deal I found for the USB drive, even a FW400 drive would be around 70 euros more) really worth the money? Is it noticeable while doing editing, or does it only mean that capturing will take a bit more time.

    Also, does daisy-chaining a camcorder and a HDD cause a decrease in bandwidth/speed, dropped frames or anything like that?

    Thanks a lot.
     
  4. fluidedge macrumors 65816

    fluidedge

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2007
    #4
  5. AviationFan macrumors 6502a

    AviationFan

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    #5
    It's not (just) about the speed of the bus itself. It is the overall system design - FireWire was made for large block transfers without much CPU involvement, USB was not. USB may be fast enough for video, but if your processor chokes you still end up with dropped frames during capture. Not worth the trouble, if you ask me.

    - Martin
     

Share This Page