firewire port on macbook pro, uses?


macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 1, 2012
is there any real use for it? seems a bit obsolete. i had a firewire cable from an old ipod i thought id try with my iphone but its a different shape and any cables i find for anything else are that old shape.
Nov 28, 2010

External HDDs can be connected to it, many still have use for those, even in the age of USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt.
There are also other external devices using Firewire, like signal input/output converters for video and audio, which cost more than just 30 USD to be replaced by a Thunderbolt or USB 3.0 alternative for another 300 to 900 USD upon the purchase of a new 2012 Mac.

Firewire, as Thunderbolt, also allows daisy chaining Firewire devices, up to 63 of them (Thunderbolt only allows 6), and I often have 8 to 12 FW 800 HDDs connected to one Firewire 800 port on my Mac.

Capt Underpants

macrumors 68030
Jul 23, 2003
Austin, Texas
Many audio interfaces, video cameras, and high capacity storage devices have firewire ports. You can get an adapter from the 'old' Firewire 400 port to the new Firewire 800 port.

Apple's phasing it out, but it still has its uses.


macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2011
Lots of hard drives out there have FireWire 800 connectivity. It is faster than USB 2.0 but slower than 3.0. Some video cameras use FireWire as well. In terms of cables, cheapest ones you can find are @ Monoprice.


macrumors 6502a
Oct 26, 2007
Sydney, Australia.
That is the original iPod connection using FW400 which was considerably faster to the original USB 1.00.

Regarding your thread title. For the moment;
FireWire music interface and DACs.

External hard drives.

Target disc mode.

Once thunderbolt becomes affordable, I'd expect FW800 (and planned FW1600 and FW3200) to be redundant.