USB external hard drive fast enough?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by wutisupmonSD, Dec 23, 2008.

  1. wutisupmonSD macrumors newbie

    wutisupmonSD

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2008
    #1
    I have a friend who is going ballistic because I am considering the unibody macbook. He thinks that a computer without firewire is death. I try to assure him that I have never needed firewire before, but I will be buying an external hard drive with it.

    How much of a performance difference does it make between USB 2.0 hard drives and firewire 400?
     
  2. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #2
    what do you plan on using it for?

    playback of videos, music is fine on usb
     
  3. alexbates macrumors 65816

    alexbates

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Location:
    Georgia, USA
    #3
    I have never used Firewire. USB has been fast enough for me over the years. I think that USB is supposed to be faster on the new MacBook's. Does anyone know if the new MacBook has USB 3.0?
     
  4. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    5045 feet above sea level
    #4
    it doesnt
     
  5. wutisupmonSD thread starter macrumors newbie

    wutisupmonSD

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2008
    #5
    sweet.

    anyone have any experience video or photo editting using a USB hard drive?
     
  6. robanga macrumors 68000

    robanga

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2007
    Location:
    Oregon
    #6
    I have done both on a Windows PC via a USB 2.0 drive with no real complaints. Yes FW is faster but in my opinion unless you are doing this activities as part of your job or business for 10 hours a day, the speed is not going to be an issue.
     
  7. Knolly macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2007
    #7
    USB 2.0 vs Firewire 400 is negligible.

    Firewire 800 IS significantly faster, but I only noticed it when copying files.

    Let me put it this way... I used to have a HD that had FW 800 and USB, but I used it with USB for convenience so I could just have a single USB hub to plug in. So basically, the difference was so minor in day to day use that it wasn't worth the hassle.
     
  8. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #8
    USB2 is a darn good storage medium and really works well if you aren't constantly moving files around as you work.

    You'll be more likely notice the speed difference editing a large/complex movie more than you will editing pictures (unless the USB drive is also designated the swap drive.)

    ---

    However, with the problems with FW800 on the Macs since introduction ... the USB2 drive will likely give you fewer problems than the FW drive over its life.
     

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