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Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

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Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Howdy Doody Time » Wed Jan 01, 2020 12:30 pm

So my MBP having only USB3 ports, always needs a cable or hub to attach anything except USB3 things. I Have a very reliable MOTU firewire interface and I have been using a Thunderbolt to firewire adapter on my old MBP. On the new one cannot find a hub with Thunderbolt (2) because it's obsolete. Luckily I found a USB3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter, which I'm hoping to plug a thunderbolt 2 to Firewire adapter into. The USB 3 to Thunderbolt 2 cable was 40 quid and fifty pence, I forget how much the Thunderbolt 2 to firewire cable was.

So thats USB 3 to Thunderbolt 2 to Firewire. It may not even work, but I'll find out.

I suspect many Apple users will be a little miffed if they have to chuck out their thunderbolt 2 gear, so soon after chucking out their firewire gear.

Here's another little strangeness. I was running Reason 11 on the 2018 MB last night and all was well. Then I needed to run Apogee Maestro 2 (just freshly downloaded) and in the middle of successfully using Quartet to run Reason 11, Maestro calmly reports that there is no Apogee Quartet attached. No? you mean apart from the one that's running flawlessly?

For goodness sake, what is going on at Apple.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby desmond » Wed Jan 01, 2020 1:00 pm

The adaptor chain does work, although it's a faff of course.

Wait a minute - USB*3* to Thunderbolt? Are you sure you're not talking about "USB-C" ports?
The new MBP 16 eg has four USB-C ports, and they are Thunderbolt 3 & USB3. Thunderbolt 3 cables are USB-C too.

Your adaptor should go TB3 <-> TB2, then TB2 <-> FW. There is no USB3 involved.

TB3 is back-compatible with TB2, so any TB2 devices you plugin to a TB3 port (with the correct cable) should work.

I'm not sure that blaming Apple when Apogee's tool isn't correctly reporting you the status on their gear is the first thing I'd jump on, but...
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby ef37a » Wed Jan 01, 2020 2:57 pm

Here in UK (EU) you could buy all those bits HDT and if they didn't work, ship them back under the Distance Trading Regs. Do you not have a similar system?

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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Howdy Doody Time » Thu Jan 02, 2020 5:19 am

desmond wrote:The adaptor chain does work, although it's a faff of course.

Wait a minute - USB*3* to Thunderbolt? Are you sure you're not talking about "USB-C" ports?
The new MBP 16 eg has four USB-C ports, and they are Thunderbolt 3 & USB3. Thunderbolt 3 cables are USB-C too.

Your adaptor should go TB3 <-> TB2, then TB2 <-> FW. There is no USB3 involved.

TB3 is back-compatible with TB2, so any TB2 devices you plugin to a TB3 port (with the correct cable) should work.

I'm not sure that blaming Apple when Apogee's tool isn't correctly reporting you the status on their gear is the first thing I'd jump on, but...

It's one of the four on the MBP. Who knows what it's called USB3 USBC Thundebolt 3 Whatever.

It's difficult to know whether it's the short lived 2018 MBP, or Catalina, Or Apogee, but my experience to date would forgive my assumption it is Apple. There have been two updates to Catalina since I installed it, and when there is an update I try all the problem areas again to see if they are fixed.

A faff is an understatement. All additional cables/converters/hubs/obsolete ports etc. make for a very untidy, and more importantly a potentially unstable setup. Of course they are good news for the vendors of such paraphernalia.

I still like my Mac's though, and I'm determined to get some use out of this MBP. I have two iMacs that never gave me a seconds worth of trouble and I still use them, same goes for my normal MBP, my MBAir and my tiny gold retina 2016 air which I find indispensable for work and a joy to use. It only has one USB3/USBC/Thunderclap1/ whatever port but I rarely plug anything in to it.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Howdy Doody Time » Thu Jan 02, 2020 5:26 am

ef37a wrote:Here in UK (EU) you could buy all those bits HDT and if they didn't work, ship them back under the Distance Trading Regs. Do you not have a similar system?

Dave.

Yes, we do actually, so I'm OK if it doesn't work. We have those Studio 7 Apple approved shops, which is where I bought the cable, and there are a couple of Apple approved workshops not too far away that can do repairs if needed. Not sure any of it is enshrined in Thai Law, but I find shops here are pretty decent about this kind of thing. Desmond thinks it will work, so it probably will. I will try it out today.

:)
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby desmond » Thu Jan 02, 2020 12:18 pm

Howdy Doody Time wrote:It's one of the four on the MBP. Who knows what it's called USB3 USBC Thundebolt 3 Whatever.

They are Thunderbolt 3 ports, with a USB-C connector. Thunderbolt handles a bunch of formats over it, including USB, FW, DIsplayport, and Thunderbolt itself. It's both a good thing, and fairly confusing too.

The thing with Apple stuff is generally the current/future is quite nice, but handling the past *works" but is a bit more ugly to handle. Usually once you can strip the vestiges of the past, you end up with a slicker, better system, but it's often a bit of a pain for people who can't let go of older stuff.

But at least it works, rather than forcing you to ditch the old stuff and rebuy more modern versions.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Howdy Doody Time » Thu Jan 02, 2020 1:17 pm

Well I was all ready to test but I forgot about Catalina. Motu is Cat ready, except for Legacy stuff (which they are working on) So no drivers yet.
I think, Desmond, that it might be high time for me to look at the New MOTU range, which looks very nice. The in/out pair might be cool by the look of it, you get loads of ADAT in one box and loads of Analog IO in the other box.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby ef37a » Thu Jan 02, 2020 1:22 pm

Howdy Doody Time wrote:Well I was all ready to test but I forgot about Catalina. Motu is Cat ready, except for Legacy stuff (which they are working on) So no drivers yet.
I think, Desmond, that it might be high time for me to look at the New MOTU range, which looks very nice. The in/out pair might be cool by the look of it, you get loads of ADAT in one box and loads of Analog IO in the other box.

Ah done know? Ah ony heard but..RME might be a worth a look this time?

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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Howdy Doody Time » Thu Jan 02, 2020 6:08 pm

ef37a wrote:
Howdy Doody Time wrote:Well I was all ready to test but I forgot about Catalina. Motu is Cat ready, except for Legacy stuff (which they are working on) So no drivers yet.
I think, Desmond, that it might be high time for me to look at the New MOTU range, which looks very nice. The in/out pair might be cool by the look of it, you get loads of ADAT in one box and loads of Analog IO in the other box.

Ah done know? Ah ony heard but..RME might be a worth a look this time?
Dave.

Ahh - , RME. Had recent problems with them. Faulty fireface, advised to send to Bangkok Distributer, BKK Distributer hangs up when hearing English spoken (common problem in Thailand) Texts, emails, ignored. RME Germany say they will follow that up - never heard any more from them.

So no more RME for me. (I did buy a replacement fireface but that was indispensable)
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby desmond » Thu Jan 02, 2020 6:39 pm

You don't have a lot of luck with gear, by the sounds... :wtf:
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Howdy Doody Time » Sun Jan 05, 2020 4:20 pm

desmond wrote:You don't have a lot of luck with gear, by the sounds... :wtf:

It might be the climate. Humid, hot, Aircons always on full blast. Incoming power supply flakier than a very flaky thing on a flaky day, - even though every flaming thing is plugged into one of many UPS devices. But I've had some things forever - like my Korg Triton which never flickers and is basically a dedicated PC. So who knows. I have a very very low mileage Yamaha 01v96 that I have switched on maybe ten times from new, and yesterday I see a signal on channel 5 with nothing plugged in. Clicking noises. So that's probably the beginning of the end of that. Mind you, I've had similar problems with an 02R, and an 02R96 both of which are now decommissioned and under the bed in the guest room. Looks like they will be getting company soon.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Eddy Deegan » Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:44 pm

You need to get a better uninterruptable power supply by the sound of it. A good UPS device should not cause that many problems downstream.

Else, maybe the environmental conditions are somehow negatively effecting the circuitry in some devices?

I hasten to add, I sympathise with your problem.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby ef37a » Sun Jan 05, 2020 10:46 pm

Eddy Deegan wrote:You need to get a better uninterruptable power supply by the sound of it. A good UPS device should not cause that many problems downstream.

Else, maybe the environmental conditions are somehow negatively effecting the circuitry in some devices?

I hasten to add, I sympathise with your problem.

My thoughts exatcly Eddy. 'switching' UPS units give no protection against dirty or varying mains supplies unless the go out of the 'dropout' range. The continuous conversion type effectively run your gear from a battery and deliver a clean, stabilized supply at all times.

More expensive but it looks as though they would pay for themselves in a couple of years?

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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Howdy Doody Time » Mon Jan 06, 2020 4:05 am

ef37a wrote:
Eddy Deegan wrote:You need to get a better uninterruptable power supply by the sound of it. A good UPS device should not cause that many problems downstream.

Else, maybe the environmental conditions are somehow negatively effecting the circuitry in some devices?

I hasten to add, I sympathise with your problem.

My thoughts exatcly Eddy. 'switching' UPS units give no protection against dirty or varying mains supplies unless the go out of the 'dropout' range. The continuous conversion type effectively run your gear from a battery and deliver a clean, stabilized supply at all times.

More expensive but it looks as though they would pay for themselves in a couple of years?

Dave.


Not at home at the mo, and can't remember the brand, but they all have chunky batteries inside - look a bit like motorcycle type lead acid jobs.

If the power goes off, everything stays on, but much bleeping from the UPS things
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Kevin Nolan » Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:45 pm

desmond wrote:
Howdy Doody Time wrote:It's one of the four on the MBP. Who knows what it's called USB3 USBC Thundebolt 3 Whatever.

They are Thunderbolt 3 ports, with a USB-C connector. Thunderbolt handles a bunch of formats over it, including USB, FW, DIsplayport, and Thunderbolt itself. It's both a good thing, and fairly confusing too.

The thing with Apple stuff is generally the current/future is quite nice, but handling the past *works" but is a bit more ugly to handle. Usually once you can strip the vestiges of the past, you end up with a slicker, better system, but it's often a bit of a pain for people who can't let go of older stuff.

But at least it works, rather than forcing you to ditch the old stuff and rebuy more modern versions.

sorry to hijack this thread for a question - Desmond are you saying that Firewire interfaces will work with the latest MBPs / macos - if the driver installs, and with an appropriate usb-c to firewire connector? I have been thinking firewire is just out of the question with current macs and macos.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby desmond » Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:27 pm

Kevin Nolan wrote:sorry to hijack this thread for a question - Desmond are you saying that Firewire interfaces will work with the latest MBPs / macos - if the driver installs, and with an appropriate usb-c to firewire connector? I have been thinking firewire is just out of the question with current macs and macos.

As long as the driver works (or the device doesn't require a driver), then FW devices in general should work, yes, with the appropriate adaptors.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby Kevin Nolan » Wed Jan 15, 2020 6:59 pm

very interesting! Thanks for that insight.
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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby ConcertinaChap » Wed Jan 15, 2020 11:57 pm

My understanding is that firewire is no longer supported by Apple (i.e. if someone finds a bug in the driver Apple won't fix it) but the driver is still present. Given the maturity of the driver I wouldn't expect any significant bugs to be present.

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Re: Thunderbolt 2 goes the way of firewire

Postby MOF » Thu Jan 16, 2020 2:33 am

Kevin Nolan wrote:
sorry to hijack this thread for a question - Desmond are you saying that Firewire interfaces will work with the latest MBPs / macos - if the driver installs, and with an appropriate usb-c to firewire connector? I have been thinking firewire is just out of the question with current macs and macos.

As long as the driver works (or the device doesn't require a driver), then FW devices in general should work, yes, with the appropriate adaptors.

I hooked up an original Apogee Duet to a current iMac with High Sierra OS and it worked, not at 96khz but did work at 48khz sample rate.
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