Video Editor looking for new Externals on Mid 2009

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by widderic, Mar 25, 2014.

  1. widderic macrumors newbie

    Mar 25, 2014
    Hey all, new here. I'm always googling things about my mac and the majority of helpful information I find is here on Mac Rumors so I thought I would join.

    I've been a videographer in Baltimore for 13 years now and I'm sure you all know how the technology has exponentially changed over the past years.

    I started with PC and Adobe Premiere and Avid and worked my way into the Mac world with Final Cut Pro and have been using it for a long time now.

    I've been through a few desktops and laptops but have come to enjoy the ability to travel with my work so I opted for a mid 2009 Mac Book Pro back when they came out.

    They have Firewire 800 capabilities and 3 usb ports. So i've been utilizing the 800 port for external drives when I edit (particularly firewire 800 drives with 7200 rpms.) The last two drives I purchased were TWO 2 TB External Seagate GoFlex Hard Drives. They worked well for a year or two until one of the "detatchable thunderbolt power supply adaptors" failed (The Drive itself is ok, I can switch out the other power supply and use the drive just fine).

    Unfortunately, Seagate no longer sells those power supplies. So what I need to do is find either a 4TB drive to dump both of these 2TB drives onto before the other Seagate fails, or get two more 2 TB drives and do the same.

    This is where my question finally comes into play….

    I know that USB 3.0 is far superior to Firewire 800, but does my Mid 2009 support USB 3.0? Should I just try to find some other Firewire externals that are more reliable? Do I need to invest in a superior laptop?

    Basically, I need some new Hard Drives. I've looked into network drives like NAS drives that do RAID but it's not in my budget at the moment. The TWO 2 TB hard drives contain duplicates of all my files so that I could safeguard myself from exactly what happened, all of my work is on those drives, so I wanna get some better drives now.

    Sorry for the long post, I've just been out of the loop for a while as to what is better than what I have, especially since I have a mid 2009.

    Thank you!
  2. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    [[ I know that USB 3.0 is far superior to Firewire 800, but does my Mid 2009 support USB 3.0? ]]

    No. USB2 only. It cannot be upgraded.

    [[Should I just try to find some other Firewire externals that are more reliable? ]]

    Firewire remains a solid technology, but speed-wise it has now been superseded by both USB3 and thunderbolt.

    [[ Do I need to invest in a superior laptop? ]]

    That's really up to you. If, after investingating, you find that you'd like thunderbolt and USB3, that's really the only option.

    Just a thought, my opinion only follows:

    Granted, having the MacBook while traveling is an advantage, but when "at home", wouldn't you prefer a larger screen for editing (perhaps you already have an external display that you use with it)?

    You might consider something like a Mac Mini i7 as a "home platform", combined with a nice monitor. They're quite affordable. I would recommend buying an "Apple-refurbished" one, as the current Mini is the "late 2012" model and due for an update (although the update seems to keep getting pushed farther and farther ahead).
  3. BJB Productions macrumors 65816

    BJB Productions

    Nov 10, 2008
    Hi Widderic, welcome to the forums. I'm a video editor as well so I'll share my thoughts.

    If your laptop is still going strong and is serving your needs, there's no reason to upgrade yet. Maybe plan on an upgrade within the next year or two. I do not recommend a Mac Mini for editing. I've had many issues with them in the past. I edit off an early 2011 MBP w/ SSD and it does just fine. I don't edit 4K though. I plan on eventually upgrading to a desktop for more power, but I still will need a powerful laptop for portability on some jobs so I haven't decided yet. I'm holding out for an updated iMac with a retina display most likely.

    We're both in the same situation! Here's a thread where I've been discussing options:

    I've been very happy with OWC drives. They come with a 3 year warranty and are very solid. I will add though that there are cheaper USB 3 drives available from reliable manufactures such as LaCie, however, these drives are solely USB3 with nothing else.

    I think the OWC drives are a good option for you because they still offer FireWire 800 for your current needs but also have USB 3 so you'll be future proof when you upgrade to a system that has USB3 capabilities. OWC also sells some cheaper raids that are worth looking at like this.
  4. widderic thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 25, 2014
    Thanks for the helpful information and thanks the link! I just spent the past 30 minutes reading your thread and checking out the links you provided. I'm a little confused as to your set up!

    For me I just have my workstation that has TWO 2 TB drives daisy chained together plugged straight into the computer. I was working on a demo reel so I was editing files from both hard drives simultaneously. Since one of them has failed, I can't finish my demo reel.

    I see you had a RAID0 Mirror (1 TB each?) hooked up to your workstation, and THEN you had two drives (photo/video) for archive that weren't being used with the workstation, and then you had those two drives backed up. So you use the RAID as your drive you edit with? I never knew that worked.

    Do you have a RAID for your workstation in case one of your "current" projects is corrupted?

    Anyways, lets say I have my laptop, then a 1TB drive for editing a single project, then two 2 TB's for archive, and then a 4TB drive that backs up those two drives? What happens when I fill the two 2 TB drives up and with that the 4TB back up drive would be filled up as well?!

    These drives are pricey, and all of this HD footage takes up so much space! I'm working with Canon 60D's, 7D's, and 5D's, its 16 gigs for an hour of footage. Once converted to apple pro res, its just as large. I've got 1.5 TB of over all footage on both of those two 2 TB drives!
  5. BJB Productions macrumors 65816

    BJB Productions

    Nov 10, 2008
    Sorry for the confusion. I don't have a proper system in place yet. Everything in the thread is ideas I've had for the best and most cost efficient method to edit and back up data. I was considering purchasing a RAID to use as a working drive. I would use it in RAID1 so one drive would serve as a working drive and then the other would be the backup. I then learned that a RAID does not offer complete protection against data loss so I would still need another HDD to back up the entire RAID as well.

    As for your question about filling up drives, isn't that what happens no matter what? Drives get filled up and you have to buy more. There's no real way around it. Since I can't afford a NAS, the most cost effective solution I was able to come up with was simply having lots of HDDs since they're relatively cheap now. I would have a large 4TB or 6TB backup which would backup my archive drives so I ensure that there is redundancy of every file. A cheaper option is to use a service such as Backblaze for cloud backups instead. However, my bandwidth is not that great so I'm not sure that would work so well.
  6. widderic thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 25, 2014
    Yeah, that makes sense now. I guess I'll just have to save up for a couple of those OWC drives before I can step it up to something more pricey.

    I lost a drive a few years back with half of my work on it, it was the back up. I just don't want that to ever happen again.
  7. BJB Productions macrumors 65816

    BJB Productions

    Nov 10, 2008
    Yes, I need to get a backup system in place as soon as possible. I don't want anything to happen..that would be catastrophic.

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