Differences between usb2 and firewire for a dvd writer?

I am Sergio, living in Argentina, even if italian…
I am entering dvd copy world. It is more complex than what I thought…
I own a Inpiron 7500, and need a dvd writer and a hard disk, both external…
I found out that someone say to use usb, many others say to use firewire, one told me to buy a combo pc card adapter and use usb for dvd and firewire for HD.
I undestand is not about speed, because both are more than sufficient for the dvd, and no sufficient fot the rate of a 3.5" 7200rpms HD.
I do not understand if a 3.5" hard disk is useless because the usb2 or firewire adapter will not support its full speed, or if anyway it would be better than a 5400 one (at least is cheaper), and what to do to use the best of it in tamdem with a dvd writer …
But, especially, what are the differences between the two connections, usb2 and firewire, when using a dvd writer or a hard disk, and, especially, when using both, togheter, to rip a dvd movie… because this is the first reason why I buy an external hard disk: the internal one is small, slow, and quite full… :rolleyes:

Any idea?
I could buy a combo adapter and a combo dvd and a combo HD, and see by myself, but this would be much more expensive, and, now, I can´t allow me… :doh:

We had a small discussion about some of this recently:


You might like to search the forum for some more information, perhaps in the ‘General Hardware’ section.

Apart from looking at the link indicated by imkidd57, please keep in mind that when it comes to HDD you have the maximum transfer rate and the maximum sustained transfer rate.
You shall not forget what we’re talking about, but the speed of the disk also impacts on aspects other than transfer rate and 7200 rpm disks will have faster access times when you ask it to provide you information - and this is a capital factor.
External HDD transfer rates in Mega Bytes can go up to the 30’s and we know this is
more than the required by video that is just 3.2
Firewire 800 can go to 50/60 and HDDs can do more, even the IDE.
But if you are after pure speed you can also consider e-SATA disks, as you can now find external enclosures with this kind of connection, and if it is SATA II compatible will be faster than any USB or Firewire.
Apart from that, and at least with Firewire, you can also consider external raid boxes, besides they can be expensive.

Hi Sir Joe,

I’m afraid you’ll never be able to do what you’re considering, i.e. burning to an external dvd drive from an external hard disk thru a PCMCIA (whether it be usb, firewire or combo) card. The PCMCIA interface just can’t supply the data in both directions fast and reliable enough.

You can use the two devices seperately though, so free your internal hard disk by storing less frequently used data on the external disk, thus keeping at least 10 Gigabytes available on the laptop for the dvd-data you need to burn. How large is your internal HD?

Once the data or image file you wish to burn is on the laptop’s HD, you then disconnect the external HD and replace it with the external DVD to burn your disc.

In general, firewire is preferable over usb, because it uses less cpu resources from your ageing laptop. I wouldn’t go for a combo card either, but use a dedicated firewire or usb card (or both alternatively - PCMCIA is hot-pluggable). Don’t expect 16X dvd-burning from this setup, if you get 8X you can be happy.