Friday, January 15, 2010

FireWire vs. USB: Which Is Faster?

"USB 2.0 has a maximum theoretical bandwidth of 480 Mbps, vs. a nominal 400 Mbps for FireWire 400, via real-world experience I can attest that USB 2.0 lags well behind FireWire 400 — to say nothing of the FireWire 800 used on all Macs still sold today with FireWire support. And adding insult to injury, USB 2.0 doesn’t support incredibly useful Target Disk Mode. I’ve also found that while booting a Mac from a USB 2.0 drive is possible, it’s not nearly as satisfactory and low-hassle (or speedy) as booting from FireWire drives. However, the report also notes that the imminent release of USB 3.0 products in early 2010 promises speeds greater than FireWire 800 or even eSATA."

Whether you use a Mac or not, if you are a video editor, or use external hard drives for some other purpose, I highly recommend reading the full article.

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