Firewire compact flash card reader


Active Member
Has anyone got a firewire compact flash card reader, if so how does it perform. Or any suggestion as to where or what to buy?




I wasn't aware these are available, but, apart from the speed, is there any advantage of firewire over USB for this particular device?

I've run a USB version for 18 months or so, and apart from having change to get it to run with XP, have had no speed or data loss problems.



Active Member
I want the speed advantage more than anything - find USB a little slow when copying to my mac (plus I have a spare firewire port ). And with card prices dropping and bigger capacity ones coming on the market more speed is always gonna be handy.

There are a few about but they aren't exactly cheap so was wondering if anyone had used one before I spend my hard earned cash.

richard plumb

Distinguished Member
are the cards actually capable of performing faster than USB speeds?

I was wondering this when looking at the sony 717, which has USB 2.0 connectivity, but I'm sure the memory sticks are too slow to take advantage of it.


Active Member
Good question - In theory the faster cards can perform better using firewire - quite how much faster in real terms i'm still trying to find out. Its amazing how little knowledge shop staff have of the products they sell.

I might just take the plunge and get a cheap one from the states.

paul spicer

As far as I know the IBM microdive has one of the fastest transfer rates for the compact flash form -

Burst tranfer is max 12mb/s
Sustained data transfer is 4mb/s

With these speeds you may as well stick with USB 1.0 !!


Active Member
USB 1.0 is so slow!
Microdrives main advantage over flash is the much faster write time. Read times, which is my main concern, are pretty similar.

I've just found info on firewire vs USB and I think it speaks for its self.


Active Member
Cheers for that. Seems a good price, but unfortunately my computer doesn't have a USB 2 port. It has firewire built-in, hence my wanting to go the firewire route.

I've sourced a firewire one in the US (only $40 over there but about £60 over here) and am waiting to hear back as to whether or not its compatible with mac OS 10.2. If not, then my search continues...

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