Why Firewire won't be coming back to the Macbook!

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by nylon, Nov 15, 2008.

  1. nylon macrumors 65816

    nylon

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    #1
  2. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

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    hows that compare to fw 1600, or 3200 for that matter?
     
  3. MasterNile macrumors 65816

    MasterNile

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    Well USB 3.0 (according to the article) is 6 times faster than FW800, so to match that they'd have to come out with FW4800 to match the speed.
     
  4. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

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    im not really sure where the logic in that is....

    Are you assuming each step is just doubling the speed?

    Edit, damit your right lol
     
  5. tonyl macrumors 6502

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  6. nylon thread starter macrumors 65816

    nylon

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    Its not just a question of speed. Its also a question of backwards compatibility, standardization, cost cutting and what's prevalent in the marketplace. USB 2 devices currently dominate the marketplace but don't provide the best speed. USB 3 rectifies the all the problems that plague USB 2 simultaneously eliminating all it's shortfalls and maintining compatibility with USB2 devices. Additionally, If companies only have to put in one type of port that provides all the benefits they will.

    I just wish the current Macbook USB port could be upgraded to the USB 3 spec.
     
  7. MasterNile macrumors 65816

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    But then again USB 3.0 products won't be hitting the market for about another year or longer so perhaps by that time they will already be working on FW4800 or better

    Are there any products currently using FW3200? or even FW1600?
     
  8. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

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    fw1600 and 3200 are fully backwards compatible.....
     
  9. nylon thread starter macrumors 65816

    nylon

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    What are the benefits of FW3200 and 1600 over USB3?
     
  10. Tosser macrumors 68030

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    Real-time recording, less overhead, dedicated chipset, more power (volts, amps), target disk mode, ability to host (if implemented, of course). There are propably more, but that's what I'm thinking off-hand.
     
  11. MasterNile macrumors 65816

    MasterNile

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    From what I've heard...Target Disk Mode is the only thing that comes to mind, I've heard it can't be done over USB (3.0 or 2.0) protocol, but I don't know if that's true or not. Can anyone clarify this for me?

    EDIT-Tosser had a much better reply than mine lol

    How much power does FW3200 or FW1600 ports put out?
     
  12. Tosser macrumors 68030

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    See my post above about other benefits. But yes, you're correct, USB doesn't do target disk mode.

    Edit, LOL: You saw my post :p
     
  13. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

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    As is usually the case.
     
  14. nylon thread starter macrumors 65816

    nylon

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    Interesting. Well then it will definitely be a differentiator between the consumer and pro lines.

    I think it will be hard for peripheral makers to adopt the new Firewire Spec over USB3 given USB2 market dominance. Dedicated chipset probably translates to higher cost with marginal benefit. I guess the market will ultimately decide.
     
  15. Tosser macrumors 68030

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    Firewire (doesn't matter which speed) puts out 45watts up to 30 volts on stationary computers. That's 1.5 amps – the USB 3.0 can put out 0.9 amps (900 milliamps).
    On battery driven devices, we get around 11 volts.

    Further, as there is no need for a computer as a middle man, the hosting (as I mentioned) is a possiblity. In real life it means I can connect external harddisks, card readers and whatnot to my audio recorder (as an example).

    Firewire can also be used for ad-hoc networking. I'm not certain USB does this, but I doubt it does.

    Several manufacturers already use firewire (and thus dedicated chipsets) – we're not talking "CPU-chipsets", but rather cheap chipsets.

    I wouldn't call the things I listed "marginal benefits". On the contrary.
    [Edit: USB 3.0 is a huge leap compared to USB 2.0 – but even the 3.0 standard has a long way to go in order to be as useful and versatile as the firewire standard. That's hardly "marginal".]

    Also, the things I listed aren't something new to the FW-standard. The only "new" with FW1600, FW3200, and so on, are the speeds. The rest of the specs are the same as FW800, and besides the plug, FW400.
     
  16. MasterNile macrumors 65816

    MasterNile

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    I think this will end up being true, most consumers do not know the benefits of FW to USB besides the speed (myself included until I was informed by Tosser) So put USB 3.0 on the consumer products and USB 3.0+FW3200 (or better once it is released) on the 'pro' products. The problem I see is what do the mobile pros do? are the limited to having to lug around a 15" or 17" laptop when they would much prefer a 13" laptop but can't use it for professional use due to lack of FW?
     
  17. Tosser macrumors 68030

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    I'm fearing the pros amongst us will have to live with tech that in real life situations is like taking a five-to-ten year step back in productivity come 2009/10, and will have to live with that sort of thing for around five years. Unless, of course, we buy "the last FW-equipped laptop standing" – then we will only feel like utter idiots for three or four years, until the next USB standard catch up with 2004 standards. Whoopy! If we're lucky, this will happen as soon as 2014-2015.
     
  18. nylon thread starter macrumors 65816

    nylon

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    I'm not disputing your contentions. However, to the average consumer Speed is the number one concern. And looking at the market dynamics that exist already I can't see the new FW Spec succeeding despite it's apparent technical superiority.
     
  19. Tosser macrumors 68030

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    I would assume that a "normal" consumer would also be interested in real-life speeds (i.e. efficiency). Unfortunately, though, I think you're right in the contention that they look at the "raw" speeds, not real speeds. Oh, and how they are going to plug in their iPhone, iPod and digital point'n'shoot.
    Come to think of it, I know several people who connect their digital camera directly, to empty the card. It takes forever, but they really don't care enough to even just drag the ones they want over – no, they drag the lot. :eek:
     
  20. MasterNile macrumors 65816

    MasterNile

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    #21
    Something that just came to mind, shouldn't FW800 drives or enclosures drop in price when USB 3.0 products come out?

    I've been wanting to get a FW800 enclosure for my 80GB drive I took out of my MacBook and in the future when I get a 500GB hard drive for my MacBook I will put the 320GB in the enclosure instead of the 80GB but I've got more time than money so I use my 250GB USB external for back ups rather than getting a FW drive (and yes it takes a veryyyy long time to back up 215GB of data over USB 2.0 but like I said... more time than money)
     
  21. nylon thread starter macrumors 65816

    nylon

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    I can see that for the current USB2 standard but all indications seem to point to "real speeds" in USB3 due to optical interface.
     
  22. Tosser macrumors 68030

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    The only reason for using optical instead of coaxial wires is size (i.e. you can have more connections with optical, or you can make the size smaller while maintaining the throughput) and for how long it can carry a digital signal for without being corrupted. The latter is all but moot, and the first has no bearing on speed. An optical connection carries the information no faster than a coaxial cable –*one could even argue that the lag that will occur from translating from electrical signal to optical and back again will introduce even more lag and overhead.

    But, anyways, USB having optical connectors doesn't mean it will be faster. Your cd-player might have an optical output (toslink), but it doesn't mean it goes faster.
    Bandwidth, I hear you say? Yes, it's true that one can indeed carry more over optical cables, given a certain diameter of both coax and optical, but this really doesn't matter in this situation.

    In other words: It doesn't matter if the connection is coaxial (copper) or optical when it comes to things like overhead. Them choosing to use a coax-optical and in the other end an optical-coax adaptor has no bearing on overhead or busspeeds.
     
  23. nylon thread starter macrumors 65816

    nylon

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    So what will be the "true" speed of USB3?
     
  24. Tosser macrumors 68030

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    Since the principle on how it delivers hasn't been changed, a qualified estimate would be half of the bus speed. However, since it's "ten times as fast" as USB 2.0, one would assume it would use even more of the CPU, so it could be even lower percentage wise.

    However, as mentioned, your centention that this will be faster because it can do optical is nonsense. It has nothing to do with that whatsoever.

    FW3200 will be faster in real life, just like FW400 is around 1.5 times faster than USB 2.0 (supposedly at 480mbps). I'm almost willing to bet that with large file transfers FW1600 will be able to compete with USB 3.0. Especially considering how much that would tie up the processor on the USB3-computer.
     

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