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External Hard Drive advice


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#1
Gemius

Gemius

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I'm looking for an external Hard Drive probably 500GB

I'm running Vista Home Premium with an Asus motherboard which supports 1394a Firewire. I've seen there's a faster version available 1394b Firewire 800

Does anyone know if I will be able to utilise the extra speed of 1394b or is it a waste of time considering it?

On the question of speed I would appreciate opinions about Firewire v USB 2 or SATA.

Edited by Gemius, 20 December 2008 - 11:29 AM.

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#2
Neil Jones

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All speed limitations are theoretical. Like my car's will do up to 130Mph. Some days you're lucky to get out of second gear in built-up areas.
The hard drive will probably be the slowest link in the chain which means the speed you'll get will be nowhere near the maximum stated.

In any case the maximum throughput of Firewire 1394a is 400Mbps. USB 2 is 480Mbps. Bearing in mind most hard drives can only deliver about 100 megabytes per second on average anyway, you don't need anything faster than this, however 480Mbps is usually plenty, bearing in mind its shared across all USB ports.
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#3
Gemius

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Thank you Neil.

So I'm limited by the hard drive whatever I use. My computer does have an external SATA 3.0 Gb/s port, is it OK to use that?
If so it would leave my USB ports free for other uses.
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