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Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

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Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Masa » Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:27 pm

...given the arrival of all these gorgeous new Macs and that Apple have effectively ditched FW 400 / 800, we will all have Thunderbolt to "adapt" to in the future. Can those who have had ACTUAL experience of using Thunderbolt adapters let us, who have yet to have that pleasure, know which FW interfaces work / don't work with the adapters?

I have fairly recently acquired a Focusrite Saffire Pro40 and the Focusrite official view is that "Preliminary testing indicates that the Thunderbolt to firewire adapter does work with our Saffire Pro range"......hardly a ringing endorsement and shouldn't "preliminary" testing now be "final" testing given the timescales!

So guys....what actually works.....please????
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby twotoedsloth » Wed Oct 24, 2012 3:25 pm

The MOTU Traveler, both the original and the Mk 3, work very well on my Macbook Air using the FW-Thunderbolt adapter. The only irritation is that the adapter uses the FW800 connector instead of the more common FW400 connector.
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Rob R » Wed Oct 24, 2012 8:08 pm

following this, as I am interested to know if anyone can shed light on using an apogee duet (firewire) and an external HDD daisychained via the adaptor... because this might be the deal breaker for me if I can't run em... reason I feel sceptical is because I noted on the FW / TB adaptor comments on the apple store that some found it underpowered.

Really need to have a bigger screen with my old eyes(the 17"mbp is too small when it comes to logic now)... I was so glad when I read the new iMacs are 75% less reflective (i do photography too, and this had stopped me buying an imac til now), but narked to find I need MORE cables..... (optical drive & FW/TB adaptor...)

I could go top end mac mini and a decent monitor of course... I'm such a fanboy at times.... yeah i know...
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Howdy Doody Time » Wed Oct 24, 2012 11:34 pm


"given the arrival of all these gorgeous new Macs and that Apple have effectively ditched FW 400 / 800"

Steady on. I was insulted, and called a troll for saying exactly that last week on this forum. In fact so severe was the criticism that I believed I was wrong and shelled out a thousand quid on an iMac that is apparently going to be obsolete next week. If I'd stood my ground I'd have waited for the new iMac, but that's what bullying will do.

It does have Firewire 800 as well as Thunderwhatsit and the 800-400 adapter works fine, and I have no doubt the Thunderthing to Firewire will be fine too. The Apple stores here sell aftermarket adapters exclusively and they all work.
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby ChrisCarter » Thu Oct 25, 2012 6:39 am

We're using MacBookAirs with Thunderbolt-to-Firewire adapters and have had zero problems running an ancient Edirol FA66 FW interface and various MOTO FW interfaces. Very impressed.
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Rob R » Thu Oct 25, 2012 10:08 pm

ChrisCarter wrote:We're using MacBookAirs with Thunderbolt-to-Firewire adapters and have had zero problems running an ancient Edirol FA66 FW interface and various MOTO FW interfaces. Very impressed.

Yay!

ta
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby danielhuw » Thu Nov 15, 2012 12:49 pm

I use a MOTU Ultralite. It's connected to my MBP via a firewire 400 to 800 cable, plugged into the Apple thunderbolt to firewire adaptor. The Mac can't provide power to the Ultralite - I have to use the separate MOTU power adaptor. The cable works fine (provides power) on my old laptop which has a firewire socket. It's not a big issue for me to plug in the MOTU power adaptor, and the audio works perfectly.

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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby BigAl » Thu Nov 15, 2012 1:12 pm

It all sounds reasonably encouraging as I was thinking of getting a f/w interface.
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Kaw-Liga » Sun Nov 18, 2012 9:51 am

I wouldn't ever buy a thunderbolt to firewire adaptor. The thunderbolt is insanely more powerful than firewire: google "thunderbolt hub" and you'll get firewires, usbs, esatas, hdmis, thunderbolts, and expresscard 2.0 connectivity through one thunderbolt port.
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby TBTS » Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:59 am

Kaw-Liga wrote:I wouldn't ever buy a thunderbolt to firewire adaptor. The thunderbolt is insanely more powerful than firewire: google "thunderbolt hub" and you'll get firewires, usbs, esatas, hdmis, thunderbolts, and expresscard 2.0 connectivity through one thunderbolt port.

this is good advice, to lock it off to just firewire, is a waste.
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Scope » Sun Nov 18, 2012 2:19 pm

Is it just me or is £35 for a simple cable (Tb to FW) a right royal ripoff ?
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Masa » Sun Nov 18, 2012 5:27 pm

....of course most of us would prefer a thunderbolt hub....but £300 is some serious money whereas £25 (not £35...but still expensive) is easier to absorb.

I use a Focusrite Firewire audio interface which does exactly what I need it to do, but when I buy my new iMac (get a move on apple) I have no option to connect except with an adapter or hub. I guess many people will be in the same boat as me and the intention here is to offer cost affective options. As the new iMac comes with more than enough connectivity for all of my other stuff, a hub would be expensive overkill.

...but all good options/advice for many I'll wager....
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Kaw-Liga » Sun Nov 18, 2012 6:40 pm

Masa wrote:....of course most of us would prefer a thunderbolt hub....but £300 is some serious money whereas £25 (not £35...but still expensive) is easier to absorb.

I use a Focusrite Firewire audio interface which does exactly what I need it to do, but when I buy my new iMac (get a move on apple) I have no option to connect except with an adapter or hub. I guess many people will be in the same boat as me and the intention here is to offer cost affective options. As the new iMac comes with more than enough connectivity for all of my other stuff, a hub would be expensive overkill.

...but all good options/advice for many I'll wager....

I agree: cost is definitively a factor. It is also possible to buy the needed firewire adapter now and the hub later, when it'll be much cheaper, if it proves necessary. And the firewire adapter would be the better option anyhow, if one often makes field recordings while wishing to travel light.
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Bob Bickerton » Sun Nov 18, 2012 7:20 pm

Scope wrote:Is it just me or is £35 for a simple cable (Tb to FW) a right royal ripoff ?

I think you'll find it's not a 'simple cable'

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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby desmond » Sun Nov 18, 2012 7:24 pm

Bob Bickerton wrote:
Scope wrote:Is it just me or is £35 for a simple cable (Tb to FW) a right royal ripoff ?

I think you'll find it's not a 'simple cable'

Yep - TB cables all have a fair amount of circuitry in them...
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Masa » Sun Nov 18, 2012 11:12 pm

desmond wrote:
Bob Bickerton wrote:
Scope wrote:Is it just me or is £35 for a simple cable (Tb to FW) a right royal ripoff ?

I think you'll find it's not a 'simple cable'

Yep - TB cables all have a fair amount of circuitry in them...

...and it's £25....not £35 ...unless I'm looking at a different Apple store to everyone else...
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby TBTS » Mon Nov 19, 2012 12:39 am

i'd guess the price will drop fairly soon, with it being fairly new tech still. But yeah, it could be considered overkill for some.
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby Masa » Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:41 am

Update...my 27inch iMac arrived early (Weird eh?)....everything works beautifully, including my FW to Thunderbolt adapter!!

The Adapter itself is very well made and feels classy...I bought a FW800 to FW400 cable to connect my Focusrite Saffire Pro 40 to the Mac and IT WORKS seamlessly!!

Happy days
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby JPH » Fri Dec 21, 2012 6:38 pm

Started using one this week on my 2011 iMac, hanging an external RAID1 disk array off it, which has USB and FW800... had previously used FW800. S'good. Works absolutely fine. No complaints whatsoever.

Will eventually get round to getting a TB disk array, but theres no rush for that. Current setup is absolutely fine and frees up my FW800 socket on the iMac, which I might use for something else, as yet undecided....
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Re: Firewire to Thunderbolt adapters...actual examples in use...

Postby miczac » Sun Dec 08, 2013 2:13 pm

Hi,
I'm afraid I've to report that on my newly acquired MBP my trusty MOTU Traveler (original version)
can't be powered via the Apple Thunderbolt to Firewire adapter .
After more than 6 years working with a 17" MacBook Pro (3,1)
I was waiting for the new issue of MBPs, which were finally released on Oct 22.
Since I had a bad feeling about not having Ethernet/FW/separate audio I-O/anti-glare screen
I decided to go for a refurbished 2012 MBP (MacBoocPro9,1), which I'm very happy with.
I also ordered a TB to FW adapter that works fine with my external hard disks.
My MOTU Traveler works great on the FW800 port the MBP provides but shuts down
immediately after booting when connected to the TB/FW adaptor.
This is on par with my estimation regarding bus power capabilities of TB and FW
(based on the specs found for TB and FW [1]).

So in my case it appears that it just does not work.
In other cases it just might work – from the specs it wouldn't.
Formally, and in general, I wouldn't rely on that since in a different setting – like on stage – it
may not be as reliable as it appeared before
in a stable environment like at home or in the studio. It's somehow just on the edge.
As a travelling musician I want to have as few as possible cables, hubs adapters etc. since
it's all prone to loss and failure.

Earlier I estimated that the audio industry might rather lean towards USB 3.0 than TB,
but currently it is hard to tell. AFAIK so ar there's just Avid and Apogee supporting TB
and RME just released with MADIface XT the first USB 3.0 interface.

Michael.

[1] according to this info TB can deliver 9.9W while the Traveler consumes 12W of power.
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