WD Passport Drive on iBook G4

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by mikeytwice, Jun 22, 2009.

  1. mikeytwice macrumors member

    Jun 19, 2005
    Hi all,

    I'm in need of some additional HD space for media (and really an entirely new computer, but don't have the money), and I was considering buying a 500GB Western Digital USB Passport drive. I noticed that in some reviews, however, that Powerbook G4s can have trouble powering these hard drives via the USB port.

    I have a 1.42GHz iBook G4... does anyone have experience using a bus-powered USB hard drive on a similar laptop? Am I okay to buy?

  2. rpang macrumors member

    Apr 20, 2009
    So Cal...
    The powerbook G4s do not have enough power to power up an external drive without an external power supply, i.e. 2.5 portable drives. There are some docks however, like the one seagate uses, that you plug in two USB ports which will power an 2.5 drive.
  3. mikeytwice thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 19, 2005
    Thanks. Does the same go for the iBook G4? I assume so.
  4. NewMacbookPlz macrumors 68040


    Sep 28, 2008
    I'm not sure if the WD 2.5" external drives do this, but the Seagates come with a double-headed USB cable. You do not need the dock accessory to do this. My 500GB FreeAgentGo came with this cable and I didn't purchase the additional dock.

    If your computer can power the drive with just one, you just just the main one, but if it cannot, there's a 2nd plug for extra power that can be used.

    Alternatively, you can use a FW400 based drive, and there you should have enough power. The Seagate FreeAgentGo for Mac has a FW800 interface, and I'm pretty sure it comes with a FW800-->FW400 adapter cable as well.
  5. molala macrumors 6502a

    Oct 25, 2008
    Cambridge, UK
    I was going to suggest the same. I have a WD Passport with both FW and USB. I only use FW and have used it with my PBG4, it works.

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