back to article Firewire to gain 3.2Gb/s bandwidth boost

Not to be outdone by rival peripheral interconnect technology USB, Firewire is likewise having its data throughput increased, the organisation behind the standard said today. But it's target speed of 3.2Gb/s falls some way below that of USB 3.0. Firewire currently supports two speeds: 400Mb/s and 800Mb/s. Both use different …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Jason Togneri
    Dead Vulture

    Oh dear

    USB and Firewire

    HD-DVD and Blu-Ray

    S-video and Composite

    CD and Laserdisc

    Betamax and VHS

    Will the madness never end?

  2. Bryce Prewitt

    You forgot Ford and Chevy

    But more importantly, Hanging vs the Electric Chair

  3. foxyshadis

    That's the great thing about standards.

    If the past is any indication, the nominal USB 3 rate will be 4.7 but the most you'll be able to get will be 2.8. Hopefully they'll cut down on the signalling overhead and make faster chipsets this time around.

    Fortunately firewire learned its lesson and reused the old plug; unfortunately, many products are still being made with the incompatible but more common 400 connector.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Was it a crisis when....

    The textile industry went from wool to cotton..

    and now we have synthetics what will the sewers do.

    Get a grip. We can have two solutions based on different needs.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You pick then...

    If it is such madness, you pick which you think should be the only one to exist...

    ...then I will choose the other for all its good points.

  6. eurobloke

    Firewire? Never heard it!

    Sorry, but Firewire is a bit of dead as a dodo. I have very rarely come across it, the only places I have seen it is on a Apple laptop and on a car stereo. I even had to look it up in a book to find out what it was.

  7. Svein Skogen

    re: Oh Dear

    Sure it will end.

    Make one a DIN-Norm, at it should go away fairly quickly, buried in some paperpushers drawer.



  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The less technically sound, the better

    8086, VHS, Composite, MSWindows, Java ... I bet on USB.

  9. adnim

    @ jason

    In a nutshell, as long as there is more than one route to a particular goal, No. As a consumer, one does have some choice. My advice, don't be a guinea pig. Wait for symmetry breaking, and at least until the arrival of second gen devices.

    Saves a great deal of time, frustration and money.

    Right, I'm off to buy my first VHS player ;)

  10. Herby

    USB - yuck!

    The USB bozos should have just used ADB (look that one up) for keyboards and mice. If they wanted something "faster" use something like powered 10baseT connection. It was already there. That would make a nice 'local' (only on the desktop) network which could have used any simple (even a silly made up one) non-routed protocol. It would have used nice existing technology and we wouldn't be stuck with blue screens in demo in front of big audiences (W98 launch).

    Yes, Apple does come up with nice things, but the ugly market power of that other company corrupts things. Remember - until Apple used USB keyboards, USB really didn't take off at all!

  11. Anonymous Coward

    @ Hanging vs Electric Chair

    Firing squad.

  12. Alan

    here to stay.

    'Sorry, but Firewire is a bit of dead as a dodo. I have very rarely come across it, the only places I have seen it is on a Apple laptop and on a car stereo. I even had to look it up in a book to find out what it was.'

    Then you havn't used DV/HDV Cameras, where firewire/ilink is the norm because of it's two-way interface. Same goes in music hardware, and decent external HDD's. Firewir is here to stay in industry at least, and for consumer peripherals. Still, choice is a good thing.

  13. Anonymous Coward

    Let's see...

    TyTN, Zen Vision:M, thumb drives...

    My money's on USB.

  14. Anonymous Coward

    re. herby

    are you really amfm ?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Goodbye HDMI?

    Does this mean we might see the end of that piece-of-s*** interface called HDMI sooner rather than later? If S3200 can do that speed reliably over 100 meters as they suggest I'll take it over HDMI any day - especially if we won't have to fork over £50/meter or more for cable capable of a reliable 1080p connection...

  16. Jerry H. Appel

    Firewire rules

    Firewire rules because it was designed for high-speed data transfer at the outset where as USB was initially a low-speed peripheral interconnect. In addition to the consumer electronics and professional, high-end A/V users, let's not forget the military world where Firewire (goes with the war stuff) is the cabling of choice for the F-22 and F-35, and don't think that the latest military equipment will not continue to use this fast, off-the-shelf, system as war-mongering uses more and more digitized data.

    This latest speed jump has been in the works for years and it was part of the roadmap years ago albeit with fiberoptic cabling. It would be nice to be able to get around that expensive and fragile an item. My only gripe has to do with the different cable designs of the "a" and "b" standards.

  17. Scott Mckenzie

    Firewire Please

    I personally prefer it, the 2 way interface is far superior as mentioned above - allowing device control of audio/video players from a laptop, target disk mode on Mac laptops - all things i've used in the last few months.

  18. Sean Aaron

    USB is fine for pen drives

    But I wouldn't touch it for DVD/CD-burners or a non-portable external HDD.

  19. Juhani Vehvilainen

    Re: Never heard it!

    Eurobloke had to look Firewire up on a book. I guess that settles it then - Firewire is doomed. If it was anything important then surely Eurobloke would have heard of it.

  20. Steve

    Who cares

    Firewire and USB are probably both here to stay, if one was going to win it would have happened before they were launching 3rd gen versions.

    And that's fine by me. Most mbrds support both straight out of the box, most cases have front of case connects for both. I have many usb peripherals and 2 firewire peripherals. What makes anyone think that a 3rd gen is going to change this.

  21. Dan Price

    They're both here to stay...

    ...because they both have their uses. The majority of mice, keyboards, pen drives and so on are USB, whereas video and high-end sound devices are Firewire. Since as Steve says, most modern machines support both we have little to worry about.

  22. Colin Millar

    Whats with the USB vs Firewire?

    They are for completely different things. Sure, probably more people use USB than 1394 but that's because they connect mice, keyboards, printers, cameras, thumb drives and wifi cards. I wouldn't want to do a backup over it though.

    As for external drives surely e-sata is the way to go.

  23. andy rock

    RE: Firewire? Never heard it!

    you've obviously never used it, then. it has a much better _sustained_ transfer rate than USB2 (of which i have quite a few devices) and can daisy chain and scale without getting 'clogged up' like USB. for HDDs (or CDRW), it is a much better choice, even if it adds £10 to the cost of the device.

    as with a lot of things (VHS vs betamax, anyone?), it wasn't the technology that prevented this becoming the norm, it was marketing and product drive. i think Apple were a bit arsey about letting people 'just use it' so it never took off that well outside of Macs. a shame.

  24. Ryan Stewart

    @ Henry

    a company with less than 2% of the market share convinced everyone else? Doubtful.

    Firewire is faster, yes, but there are even faster technologies out there for data purposes and for everything else USB is prevelant. Its hard to convince manufacturers (and consumers) to shell out for another kind of plug that cameras and drives CAN (but usually dont have to) use on top of the one that supports 90% of the stuff they already own.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Firewire rocks

    Firewire is a great technology. Even though I use USB for most items I use Firewire for intensive applications like high speed video, external HDD, etc. USB is far less efficient there due to it's CPU usage requirements.

This topic is closed for new posts.