Become a MacRumors Supporter for $25/year with no ads, private forums, and more!

Is USB 3.0 really important?

ronaldcastillo

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 25, 2009
619
36
I plan on purchasing an iMac in the next couple days and was wondering is USB 3.0 really important? Will there be some type of way us current 2.0 users get 3.0? Also is there anything else new coming soon?
 

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
22,164
581
Finland
Depends on what you do. It isn't useful unless you have bunch of external drives that have USB 3.0. USB 2.0 still does everything what 3.0 does but slower
 
Comment

wessew

macrumors member
Feb 4, 2010
94
0
USB 3.0 is not going to help you with keyboards and mice. You can use the firewire 800 port for hard drives, etc. It would be nice to have USB 3.0 but that will not be likely until next year. It should not make or break or decision.
 
Comment

faithkev

macrumors newbie
Jun 14, 2010
6
0
I halted and debated myself over USB 3.0 before ordering the new iMac also.

cause of the way high price of apple products..

I thought if USB 3.0 or next gen. firewire came out..

to save cost I would by a CTO iMac with only one SSD drive and buy external HDD to hook up for data storage.

but it didnt'... :(
so i went for SSD + 2TB. (cost hell of alot.. but ohwell..)

My point is.. unless you 'often' need to transfer 'huge data' to external devices (ex. external HDD or ODD etc.) you wouldn't miss it.

as for short data transfer devices such as for printers, USB memory, etc. USB 2.0 is still good enough~!

maybe syncing iPod or iphone via USB 3.0 in the future will be faster..
but i'm guessing we will get the 'wireless sync via wifi' by then!! :)
__________________________
15' Macbook Pro (early '08)
iPhone 3GS 32G
 
Comment

Vylen

macrumors 65816
Jun 3, 2010
1,026
0
Sydney, Australia
You should use your precious FW port(s) for external HDD's. Sure you pay a little premium for the interface, but its worth it over USB 2.0 while everyone waits for USB 3.0.
 
Comment

mrwonkers

macrumors 6502
Oct 31, 2004
362
0
Cyberia
No way to get 3.0 if your iMac currently only has 2.0...the only Mac that will have the ability to upgrade is the Pro

Hopefully soon someone will come up with USB 3 drivers for Mac. I am not buying an iMac this time round as whats the point of having all that processor power when any useful drive speed is limited to the internal hdd. FW800 aint gonna cut it really and only one port:rolleyes: I have purchased a MacBook Pro 17 instead and am eagerly awaiting USB 3 support so I can use a USB 3 expresscard. Until then I'll do ok with my esata expresscard and 100mb sec write speeds. It is so unfortunate that Apple keeps features from Mac users that are common place in PC land. No esata No USB 3 No blu-ray is only a big bag of hurt for Mac users... If things keep up like this, this will be my last Mac. Give us a few fast data connection ports and a F'in BR optical drive U bastards........
 
Comment

brewno

macrumors 6502
Jun 8, 2007
461
17
Montreal, Canada
I have a PC with USB3 & an external harddrive (2Tb) that is USB3... I can copy gigabyites in mere seconds. My movie collection was copied in a couple of minutes... something that'd take 30min or more on regular USB2. I'm waiting for when they come with USB3 to make the move.
 
Comment

REM314

macrumors 6502
Jun 1, 2009
265
0
Canada
USB 3.0 isn't standard in PC mobos yet so I wouldn't be too disappointed. All it means is that Apple is following trends not setting them. The problem is that you'll have to buy an entirely new computer when USB 3.0 becomes mainstream as opposed to inserting a card into a PC mobo.

EDIT: Im just surprised apple hasen't put an eSATA port on the new iMacs.
 
Comment

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
22,164
581
Finland
Anyone tell me what the thoughtput is for USB 2.0 cable?

Debating on SSD external.

60MB/s though real world performance is around 40MB/s. Most SSDs have read speed of +250MB/s. You gain the latency of SSD but you can't take the full advantage of it. FW800 is better but still only 80MB/s in real world
 
Comment

Cave Man

macrumors 604
Im just surprised apple hasen't put an eSATA port on the new iMacs.

I have an eSATA port on my hackintosh and I'm not all that impressed with it. Hard drive performance in only about 10% faster (but I'm sure an external SSD would benefit) than FW800 in my benchmarks. My eSATA drives are a hassle to deal with because you have to plug in both a power cable and a data cable (2.5" FW drives are powered from the bus), it's only useful for disc drives (and not video cameras), and eSATA cannot be daisy chained (unlike FW). eSATA cables are also a pain in the @$$ to orient because they don't have conspicuously asymmetrical plugs. FW is much more flexible.
 
Comment

REM314

macrumors 6502
Jun 1, 2009
265
0
Canada
I have an eSATA port on my hackintosh and I'm not all that impressed with it. Hard drive performance in only about 10% faster (but I'm sure an external SSD would benefit) than FW800 in my benchmarks. My eSATA drives are a hassle to deal with because you have to plug in both a power cable and a data cable (2.5" FW drives are powered from the bus), it's only useful for disc drives (and not video cameras), and eSATA cannot be daisy chained (unlike FW). eSATA cables are also a pain in the @$$ to orient because they don't have conspicuously asymmetrical plugs. FW is much more flexible.

That may be but I still think Mac users should have the choice of being able to use it.
 
Comment

Cave Man

macrumors 604
That may be but I still think Mac users should have the choice of being able to use it.

It would be interesting to know if their iMac logic board's controller can have that many SATA connections. I had assumed it only had two (internal HD and DVD drive), but now it must have at least three (for the SSD). I don't know how Apple thinks sometimes, which is why I have two hackintoshes.
 
Comment

fhall1

macrumors 68040
Dec 18, 2007
3,534
784
(Central) NY State of mind
Hopefully soon someone will come up with USB 3 drivers for Mac. I am not buying an iMac this time round as whats the point of having all that processor power when any useful drive speed is limited to the internal hdd. FW800 aint gonna cut it really and only one port:rolleyes: I have purchased a MacBook Pro 17 instead and am eagerly awaiting USB 3 support so I can use a USB 3 expresscard. Until then I'll do ok with my esata expresscard and 100mb sec write speeds. It is so unfortunate that Apple keeps features from Mac users that are common place in PC land. No esata No USB 3 No blu-ray is only a big bag of hurt for Mac users... If things keep up like this, this will be my last Mac. Give us a few fast data connection ports and a F'in BR optical drive U bastards........

You can daisy-chain FW devices, so having the one port isn't a real limitation.
 
Comment

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
22,164
581
Finland
It would be interesting to know if their iMac logic board's controller can have that many SATA connections. I had assumed it only had two (internal HD and DVD drive), but now it must have at least three (for the SSD). I don't know how Apple thinks sometimes, which is why I have two hackintoshes.

There is at least one extra port for SSD. That was confirmed by OWC who disassembled the non-SSD iMac. The chipset supports up to 6 ports.
 
Comment

SmilesLots

macrumors regular
Apr 30, 2010
176
0
SW Virginia
There was a time in the early days of Apple when I took pride in having products from a cutting edge, though small and comparatively expensive, technology company. So I would have loved for Apple o put USB 3, or esata, or hdmi, and or any of several other things that put it on that edge. So usb 3 is not that important from the stand point of devices that are ready to play with it, but for me more from the perspective of being the leader in new technology. Apple for me sadly has not been this for a long time.
 
Comment

Yamcha

macrumors 68000
Mar 6, 2008
1,809
134
It depends, if you have an external USB 3.0 drive, it will perform the same as an internal drive.. So data transfer is much faster, and your not bottlenecked like USB 2.0.

Also faster read and write speeds with SATA 3.0 (6GB/s).. Too bad apple did not adopt USB 3.0 or SATA 3.0..
 
Comment

Penn Jennings

macrumors 6502
Apr 22, 2010
350
48
Michigan
USB 3.0 isn't standard in PC mobos yet so I wouldn't be too disappointed. All it means is that Apple is following trends not setting them. The problem is that you'll have to buy an entirely new computer when USB 3.0 becomes mainstream as opposed to inserting a card into a PC mobo.

EDIT: Im just surprised apple hasen't put an eSATA port on the new iMacs.


I'd love eSATA, the only problem is where do you put it on the the MB, MB 13 or MB 15.
 
Comment
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.