External hard drive & USB 2

Discussion in 'Computer Components' started by grhm, Dec 23, 2006.

  1. grhm

    grhm
    Guest

    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0
    I'm looking at a Western Digital My Book Essential 320GB USB 2.0 External Hard Drive to transfer my CD's to. Will a USB 2.0 also work with my older computer with a USB 1.1? Is upgrading to a 2.0 easy to do with a desktop computer? Also, are there external hard drives for desktops that wouldn't work for a laptop?
     
  2. sbowler

    sbowler
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2005
    Messages:
    3,799
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Location:
    Leeds
    Ratings:
    +481
    All drives are compatable with both desktop and laptop, they are also backwards compatible with USB1.1 its just a slower transfer rate.
     
  3. norealplan

    norealplan
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2005
    Messages:
    5,142
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Location:
    Backpacking around the world
    Ratings:
    +733
    I'm looking at getting one of these MyBooks too, however am getting a Mac in the next few months and was wondering if it was worth going the model up and getting one with firewire 400. Is firewire 400 much quicker than USB2.0?

    I have now noticed another mybook model with USB2.0, Firewire 400 and firewire 800. Anyone have any experiences with firewire 800? I know not many Macs support it at the moment, but on paper it looks mighty fast! Is it stable? Any drawbacks?
     
  4. clockworks

    clockworks
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,573
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    106
    Location:
    West Country
    Ratings:
    +297
    You can buy a PCI card (fits into one of the slots inside your PC) that has several USB 2.0 ports. Depending on what operating system you've got, you may need to load a software driver as well. XP SP1 supports USB 2.0 without drivers.
     
  5. MarkE19

    MarkE19
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2002
    Messages:
    17,533
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    166
    Location:
    Rainham Essex
    Ratings:
    +2,517
    Firewire 400 = 400Mbs constant
    USB2.0 = 480Mbs peak

    Although USB2.0 is in theory faster than FW400, in practice it is often slower as it is only 480Mbs peak and as the PC gets buisy the rate can drop below that of firewire. For things such as video capture from a camcorder firewire is recommended as dropped frames occur if the rate drops too far. But with modern powerful PC's this is getting to be less of an issue.
    Firewire 800 = 800Mbs contant (you'd never have guessed that would you :devil: )
    800Mbs knocks the socks clean off USB2.0 but as you say is not very common, even on new Macs (and apple are the ones who invented firewire), so there is not much need for it at the moment. If not too expensive then it may be worth getting to 'future proof' the investment, but I personally wouldn't pay a lot extra for FW800 yet.

    Mark.
     
  6. norealplan

    norealplan
    Well-known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2005
    Messages:
    5,142
    Products Owned:
    0
    Products Wanted:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    136
    Location:
    Backpacking around the world
    Ratings:
    +733
    Thanks for your reply mate. It works out about £25 more to get firewire 400 and 800 with a Western Digital My Book, so i think that's worth paying to be future proof.
     

Share This Page

Loading...