Loss of FireWire on low end = death of FireWire?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by PracticalMac, Jan 26, 2009.

  1. PracticalMac macrumors 68030


    Jan 22, 2009
    Houston, TX
    For me first post, I present a question:

    Will the removal of FW on the MacBook Air and MacBook, and possibly the MacMini (rumors suggest Apple will use hardware that does not support FW), and uncertainty about iMac, mean in short order FW will die in the consumer market?

    Looking at a wider scene:
    FW is no longer used on low end Camcorders (DVD or HDD types <$400)
    FW is not on iPod any more.
    eSATA is available for eternal hard drives.
    And the number of USB2 products on sale is beginning to blow its puny 5v, 1 amp power supply!

    To make it worse, because of Sony, nearly all PC's use the small 4 pin iLink connector, so if you do need FW cable power, tuff!

    In case some of you wonder, FireWire is VASTLY superior to USB (do not forgot, USB was meant to be like Apples ADB, only for keyboards, mice, joysticks, and printers.)

    More reading here:

    SO, by Apple not including FW in its consumer products, that drastically reduces the market for FW products using 6 and 9 pin, and the PC side is not really helping (thanks to Microsoft's very tardy support with drivers for Vista).

    I firmly believe this is the start of the end for FW.

    OH, about USB3
    It is due next year, claims to be 10x faster then USB2, is a RADICALLY new technology (It is actually 2 completely separate bits of hardware using the same shape of plug, but with 9 wires, like FireWire!)
    Who knows if USB3 will be good. May be like it is now. CLAIM to be fast, but be slower then FireWire 3200...
  2. t0mat0 macrumors 603


    Aug 29, 2006
    I think it's best to see it in perspective of upcoming faster transfer systems USB 3.0, potential for faster FW than FW800 etc. Also, the loss of FW could have been partially down to the size of the board and just not being able to put everything in, without getting the laptop bigger.
  3. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Firewire board takes space because it has a dedicated processor for file tranfers, while USB is CPU intensive.

    However if computer becomes faster than there might be less slow down with usb, but USB still have latency issues for certain professional use which are firewire only, for now.
  4. PracticalMac thread starter macrumors 68030


    Jan 22, 2009
    Houston, TX
    The FW chip is less then 3/8 in Sq, smaller then most peoples finger nails.

    And USB3 will be be out until sometime in 2010, and then it will be a few more months before the Mac's will have them installed.

    So, for about 2 years you will be perfectly happy to use USB 2.0 to back up to 2TB drives?
  5. Flying Dutchman macrumors regular

    Oct 22, 2007
    Nope, but FW800 does it for my MBP here, just fine! (2TB)
  6. SkyBell macrumors 604


    Sep 7, 2006
    Texas, unfortunately.
    Lots of us will keep the Macs we currently own, or will buy soon, that have FW for the next two years. I know I will.
  7. cherry su macrumors 65816

    cherry su

    Feb 28, 2008
    if apple does kill firewire, then it better learn how to write good USB drivers!!! (see windows vs. mac, usb performance)

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