New Apple Thunderbolt to FireWire 800 adapter

pgiguere1

macrumors 68020
Original poster
May 28, 2009
2,157
1,082
Montreal, Canada
This adapter has just been announced at the same time as the new Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet adapter, but only the latter seems to be on Apple's website.



Does anybody know if the page exists and I'm just too blind to find it, or has Apple forgotten to add it to their website? It could also be coming later but I think Apple would have mentioned it during the conference.
 

Chippy99

macrumors 6502a
Apr 28, 2012
973
27
This adapter has just been announced at the same time as the new Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet adapter, but only the latter seems to be on Apple's website.

Image

Does anybody know if the page exists and I'm just too blind to find it, or has Apple forgotten to add it to their website? It could also be coming later but I think Apple would have mentioned it during the conference.
I cannot for the life of me think why anyone would want either of those.

Is there a computer in existence that has a thunderbolt port, but no FireWire or Ethernet ports?
 

skorpien

macrumors 68020
Jan 14, 2008
2,339
0
I cannot for the life of me think why anyone would want either of those.

Is there a computer in existence that has a thunderbolt port, but no FireWire or Ethernet ports?
I sincerely hope that was an attempt at sarcasm...
 

radiogoober

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2011
972
1
I cannot for the life of me think why anyone would want either of those.

Is there a computer in existence that has a thunderbolt port, but no FireWire or Ethernet ports?
MacBook Air, and I believe the new next gen macbook pro.

Also, it (hopefully) allows you to do link aggregation.
 

brucku

macrumors regular
Jun 19, 2003
186
16
Very important

This is very important. (and I'm hoping it is backwards compatible with the last Macbook Air - which I bought 3 weeks ago :-( )

Here's why its important. Until now - the Macbook Air was one of the only macs that makes a great traveling technician computer (Like me an Apple Consultant) - but it is missing 2 major features.

1) Being compatible with "Target Disk Mode" - which means my SSD inside the Air may some day become trapped in a failed machine

2) It is also unable to read "Target Disk Mode" of other Macs in trouble

With Firewire - At least 1 of these 2 will now be solved... maybe both!
 

Ratatapa

macrumors 6502a
Apr 3, 2011
665
25
It is compatible with the 2011 Air i just got an update in the Software update for it

All i hope is that they will get it soon in stores (don't want 7 days shipping)
 

radiogoober

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2011
972
1
It is compatible with the 2011 Air i just got an update in the Software update for it

All i hope is that they will get it soon in stores (don't want 7 days shipping)
It ships overnight. Mine already left Apple and be here tomm.
 

trifero

macrumors 6502a
May 21, 2009
726
514
Target mode, great tool...

----------

This is very important. (and I'm hoping it is backwards compatible with the last Macbook Air - which I bought 3 weeks ago :-( )

Here's why its important. Until now - the Macbook Air was one of the only macs that makes a great traveling technician computer (Like me an Apple Consultant) - but it is missing 2 major features.

1) Being compatible with "Target Disk Mode" - which means my SSD inside the Air may some day become trapped in a failed machine

2) It is also unable to read "Target Disk Mode" of other Macs in trouble

With Firewire - At least 1 of these 2 will now be solved... maybe both!

Macbook Airs with thunderbolt do Target mode through a thunderbolt cable. You don´t need the adapter to Firewire 800 unless the other machine lacks of thunderbolt port.
 

Chippy99

macrumors 6502a
Apr 28, 2012
973
27
I sincerely hope that was an attempt at sarcasm...
No, just lack knowledge on my part. I had not realised Airs don't have these things. Although a USB to Ethernet or USB to FW Adapter can be bought for $10 to $15, so in a way, my question still stands.
 

Ratatapa

macrumors 6502a
Apr 3, 2011
665
25
Unless there's new out the 10-15$ one are USB so capped at 400mbps agile thundrrbolt is à gigabit

Alsi thé might get them in the apple store today so I'll just go pick one thrre
 

radiogoober

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2011
972
1
No, just lack knowledge on my part. I had not realised Airs don't have these things. Although a USB to Ethernet or USB to FW Adapter can be bought for $10 to $15, so in a way, my question still stands.
The other part of the answer is speed.

- USB2.0 supports a max of 480 Mbps, and I don't understand the next part (so if I'm wrong please correct me for my own knowledge), but something about USB means its inefficient compared to things like FireWire or ThunderBolt or even USB3.0, so you would never sustain 480 Mbps

- Gigabit ethernet is 1000 Mbps, so an adapter of USB2->Gigabit ethernet means you would not get full Gigabit ethernet speeds, in fact you'd get less than half of Gigabit ethernet speeds. And since it's inefficient USB2.0, you'd probably get more like 100 Mbps (again if I'm wrong, please let me know.)

- FireWire 800 is 800 Mbps, so a USB->FW adapter would give you, at best, half of the speed of FW800 due to USB2.0 limitations. There is definitely a limitation thing to USB2, because if you take a USB2 drive and a FW800 drive, the FW800 drive feels infinitely faster than a slow ass USB2 drive.

- ThunderBolt supports 10,000 Mbps (or do you say 20,000 Mbps because it has multiple channels?), which is obviously humongous. So a TB->Gigabit adapter will give you the full 1000 Mbps gigabit ethernet speed, anda TB-> FW800 adapter will give you the full 800 Mbps FW800 speed.

Basically USB2.0 adapters don't allow FW800 and Gigabit to operate at their full speeds. Thunderbolt kicks the **** out of USB2, see the attached image.

Just look at the new Thunderbolt Display, it has a whole lot of ports on the back of it (USB, FW800, and Gigabit ethernet, I believe), and it can fully saturate those ports, and also provide output to a beautiful huge display without a hickup. TB is just incredibly fast.

-

Just to point out, that's what's so cool about Thunderbolt, the massive speed and bandwidth. If you remember old school computers, where you put in cards and **** in the big box (you still can wtih mac pro), the thunderbolt port can allow you to attach boxes with cards in it, and it works exactly as if they were put into your computer old-school style. So you can literally have a thin-ass MacBook Air, and hook it up via thunderbolt to a box and have like a professional video editing card, or a professional sound card, or a box that supports a massive RAID card, or whatever.

We are seeing some incredible TB **** coming out:

http://www.sonnettech.com/product/thunderbolt/

- The expansion box in that link is pretty damn cool
- The Mac mini xMac thing in that link is incredible too, you can take a Mac mini and make it capable of basically humongous server tasks, adding a stacked ethernet card, eSATA cards, etc.
 

Attachments

Koodauw

macrumors 68040
Nov 17, 2003
3,937
174
Madison
I too am waiting to buy this. The one thing fromt eh keynote I want to buy and of course its not out yet.
 

pgiguere1

macrumors 68020
Original poster
May 28, 2009
2,157
1,082
Montreal, Canada
I just found a more precise release date: July.

If you go in the Tech specs page of the Retina MacBook Pro, the "Connections and Expansion" section states: "Apple Thunderbolt to FireWire Adapter (sold separately, available July)".

That's a reasonable wait. :cool:
 

zulusafari

macrumors newbie
Jun 12, 2012
2
0
Nairobi & Texas
Safe bet to work in reverse?

Would it be safe to assume that this adapter could work in reverse? I think the assumption is that it is normally used to plug the thunderbolt into a computer and then use the FW800 to plug into a hard drive, etc. BUT would it be possible to plug the thunderbolt unto a thunderbolt only hard drive and then plug the FW800 side into a computer?

Thoughts?
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,427
762
Would it be safe to assume that this adapter could work in reverse? I think the assumption is that it is normally used to plug the thunderbolt into a computer and then use the FW800 to plug into a hard drive, etc. BUT would it be possible to plug the thunderbolt unto a thunderbolt only hard drive and then plug the FW800 side into a computer?

Thoughts?
No, it won't work in reverse. Tb has far more bandwidth than FW800.
 

zulusafari

macrumors newbie
Jun 12, 2012
2
0
Nairobi & Texas
No, it won't work in reverse. Tb has far more bandwidth than FW800.
? I'm not sure I understand, why would that not make it work? I obviously won't get thunderbolt speeds, that's not what I want. I'm going to buy a thunderbolt raid drive for my new MBP, but would like it to still be used by older MBP/iMac that only have FW800. I don't care about the speed, only compatibility.
 

anthony11

macrumors 6502
May 18, 2007
320
8
Seattle, WA
The other part of the answer is speed.

- USB2.0 supports a max of 480 Mbps, and I don't understand the next part (so if I'm wrong please correct me for my own knowledge), but something about USB means its inefficient compared to things like FireWire or ThunderBolt or even USB3.0, so you would never sustain 480 Mbps
Couple of things there:

o Firewire is a more sophisticated technology, and the interface chips in devices do much more of the processing than their USB 2 counterparts do, so with USB the host has to work harder. This can constrain throughput.

o My understanding is that 480 Mbps is the transfer rate, but that isn't a clear pipe for data. There's protocol overhead, and I've read that the interface is sort of channelized, eg. some is reserved for keyboard / mouse activity, etc. Those combine to limit real-world throughput.
 

d21mike

macrumors 68040
Jul 11, 2007
3,316
356
Torrance, CA
No, just lack knowledge on my part. I had not realised Airs don't have these things. Although a USB to Ethernet or USB to FW Adapter can be bought for $10 to $15, so in a way, my question still stands.
Please provide a link for a USB -> FW Adapter. We have not been able to fine one. I think USB 3 -> FW 800 would be very useful. The Macbook air only has 1 Thunderbolt and if you use it for the Monitor (for the DISPLAYPORT - Not Thunderbolt Monitor) then you can't use the Thunderbolt to FW800 Adapter. We have been searching for a while and can only find very expensive to be release Thunderbolt Docking Stations.
 

goMac

macrumors 604
Apr 15, 2004
7,062
1,086
No, just lack knowledge on my part. I had not realised Airs don't have these things. Although a USB to Ethernet or USB to FW Adapter can be bought for $10 to $15, so in a way, my question still stands.
USB to Firewire adaptors are impossible because USB lacks DMA.

So Thunderbolt is still the only way.

It looks like there are some people offering "adaptors" online, but if you look at the reviews, tons of people nothing they don't actually work, and are apparently only meant for charging.
 
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