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  • Jobs Responds to Angry Customer about No FireWire Port

    An angry customer, and previously loyal MacBook fan, emailed Steve Jobs about the new 13 inch MacBooks not having a FireWire port and received a response.

    Characteristic of Jobs, he only briefly responded with one line;

    "Actually, all of the new HD camcorders of the past few years use USB 2."

    AppleInsider experts have validated the authenticity of Jobs response with a great degree of certainty.

    Jobs and FireWire ports have a long history together; after all it was Apple that invented the FireWire port in the late 80s as a replacement for SCSI. Apple released the technology through a standards body to become IEEE 1394, while DEC, Texas Instruments, and Sony contributed to the development of FireWire ports.

    As FireWire was really taking off as the new technology for video and music applications, Jobs tried to procure some licensing royalties from it for Apple after his return to the company in 1997. However, it was ironically the 1998 iMac that really began to push the adoption of USB and in 2005 Apple took FireWire Synce out of the iPod. Another instance of Apple always pushing the envelope on the latest and greatest technological advances.

    In his response, Jobs was correct, as Canon, Hitachi, JVC, Samsung and Sony all use USB 2.0 to transfer footage.

    David responded

    Hi Steve,

    Thanks for the fast response! In answer to your statement, though, I decided to look at the selection of camcorders on BestBuy.com since I believe they represent a pretty average staple of what consumer electronics people are buying. Although you are correct that (almost) all of the new HD camcorders use USB 2.0, there are still many, many standard definition camcorders (read: affordable for average Joes) that require firewire. Does this mean to say that Apple no longer supports average Joes from making home movies on their computers? In other words, if I have a $300 firewire camcorder and a new MacBook, shouldn’t I be able to edit videos of my kid's birthday just as easily as someone who has a MacBook Pro and a $1200 HD camcorder?



    Interestingly, perhaps in an effort to smooth things over, Jobs sent this angry customer (David) another confirmed email from his iPhone,

    The new HD camcorders start around $500.

    What do you guys think about FireWire port missing? My husband has a MacBook Pro and a USB 2.0 camcorder, so I don’t miss it…but I have a few friends who do…


    AppleInsider | Jobs responds to outrage over MacBook's missing FireWire [u]
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Jobs Responds to Angry Customer about No FireWire Port started by AppleChic View original post
    Comments 50 Comments
    1. Alperovich's Avatar
      Alperovich -
      i think its a little annoying but its only $20-30 for a firewire to usb adapter, sure i agree it would have been nice to have nontheless
    1. HarvJH's Avatar
      HarvJH -
      Well all the pro video cameras, that are still consumer aren't USB at all so they made a mistake in not having firewire, and firewire is a much better connection for video anyway as it's a constant rate instead of a changeable rate which usb is.
    1. z3r01's Avatar
      z3r01 -
      I have 2 mbox 2 , one FireWire and one USB , I really love the FireWire one but really can't tell a difference
    1. Mes's Avatar
      Mes -
      Quote Originally Posted by organik View Post
      Actually, there is no such thing as usb2 to firewire cable, or adapter. They are not compatible, in any way
      So true .... you can't even buy a dongle/gadget/black box that converts between the two

      The writing is on the wall. No firewire ports today, no firewall OS support in the future. Apple continues to dictate what we want. And as complete fools, we bend over and say ..... one more time please !!! Vote your dissatisfaction with your wallet.
    1. dennder's Avatar
      dennder -
      Quote Originally Posted by Alperovich View Post
      i think its a little annoying but its only $20-30 for a firewire to usb adapter, sure i agree it would have been nice to have nontheless
      Jeeezzz... how many times people here should tell those like you, there is no such thing?

      The only way i see it can be done, is the dual USB/FireWire Hub.
      But i seriously doubt it will work the way we all want.
    1. Dash-2's Avatar
      Dash-2 -
      I've never used firewire so it doesn't matter to me. But as Cali Lewis said, you can get an adapter for your "old" gen electronics.
    1. bluaeon's Avatar
      bluaeon -
      WOW!! is he one of the few people that actually uses the firewire? i dont use it and i dont think i will be having any devices that needs to connect to a firewire. good luck to him i guess.. :?:
    1. billchase2's Avatar
      billchase2 -
      i will not be getting a new macbook due to the fact it doesn't have firewire.

      i guess i'll just have to go with a new macbook pro... ;-)
    1. Bill69's Avatar
      Bill69 -
      I COMPLETLY AGREE! Most old currently owned cameras use firewire it is bs to assume that everyone buying a computer also just bought a camcorder its bs
    1. skatertrash's Avatar
      skatertrash -
      people who edit video professionally want firewire ports. people with external hard drives want firewire ports because firewire is MUCH faster than usb 2.0. professional and students involved in video editing will be very disappointed/ disinterested in a macbook with the power of mac pro incapable of interfacing with pro video equipment. im not even sure you can capture video with usb 2.0 in final cut pro. it was just a bad decision all around.
    1. lillewis51's Avatar
      lillewis51 -
      ive gotta say i have never used the firewire port but if it is faster then why would apple take it out and why does everyone use usb? this makes absolutely no sense. and i agree with skatertrash there are some kids in my school that are in to movie editing and all they use is firewire.
    1. mrt2's Avatar
      mrt2 -
      This forces me to have to get a much more pricey macbook pro for my next laptop instead of a macbook as I'm sure is part of the reason they took firewire out of the macbooks. I don't do anything video related just yet but there is no way I'm doing transfers over USB... USB to put it simply.... sux.
      USB has always proven to be unreliable when transferring large files are a large amount of files. Firewire on the other hand has always blown large files away or a large number of files. I mean I can transfer 30 gigs no problem in a matter of minutes with Firewire but USB takes a LONG TIME and even then some of the files end up being corrupt or the transfer stops all together. Firewire FTW... plus unless they allow target disk mode over USB, Firewire is a must... and even if they do allow target disk mode over USB... I wouldn't trust it.

      **OFF TOPIC** The crazier thing than the firewire is the whole mini display port thing... I mean what the heck? I want that new monitor but my barely 1 year old Mac Pro can't even use it...
    1. czarnachmura28's Avatar
      czarnachmura28 -
      Quote Originally Posted by organik View Post
      Actually, there is no such thing as usb2 to firewire cable, or adapter. They are not compatible, in any way.

      There is usb2 to usb1.1 and firewire 800 to firewire 400, but those are part of each respective standard.

      To repeat, because this misinformation is flying around everywhere...it is impossible to use firewire devices with a usb2 connection!
      I used adapter long time ago , from fire 400 to usb.just go to any pro video store its only 10-25 $
    1. SERBIAN's Avatar
      SERBIAN -
      What is a Firewire to USB Adapter?

      "The two technologies are not integrated, and it is not possible to connect a USB device to a Firewire port either directly or through the use of a Firewire to USB adapter."

      "Posted by: anon16212
      I just received a 4-pin firewire to usb adapter (about 2 inches long) from Hong Kong. I am in the central US. It cost me $2.69, which included shipping, on eBay."

      "Posted by: anon16010
      why would you need to? the usb would severely bottleneck the speed, what benefit is gained?"

      Anyway..Lacking of FW port(s) in new MacBooks will stop me of buyin one for sure...
    1. 6309phone's Avatar
      6309phone -
      >I used adapter long time ago , from fire 400 to usb.just go to any pro video store its only 10-25 $

      Does this adaptor work with a camcorder->iMovie? If so, then great.
    1. Jgamble317's Avatar
      Jgamble317 -
      I have a 2007 MB and if I upgrade I will miss the FireWire only because I liked being able to access my hdd on another comp. Using it as a portable disk.
    1. boe_dye's Avatar
      boe_dye -
      Quote Originally Posted by dennder View Post
      I have a M-AUDIO FireWire 410 (semi-pro external audio i/o device).
      It is designed to be "do music on the go". Newer, better one - FireWire 610 has been introduced few weeks ago. Both still use FW !ONLY!

      I have all the macs around and i've planned to buy a new macbook...
      So what now? MBP or competition?

      Despite the fact, that i became an apple fan - **** happens, apple! =(


      I disagree. It does not. The fastest ones are always optional and for additional charge higher, than in competiting products. GPU's arent the fastest at all.

      I agree though, that apple low-end is mostly "high-ender" than the competiting mid level products.
      You hit the nail on the head for me!

      While i don't use anything firewire, my wife happens to be into audio production, and uses a focusrite LE interface, very similar to your m-audio 410.

      The thing about firewire is that it has a 12 volt bus and can power the interface, unfortunately for her she is running an HP DV9000 series laptop and there is no way to power her interface without a wallwort power supply.

      As it stands, there are no way to get power from a laptop that only has a 4 pin firewire. Even the PCMCIA cards wont power it.

      She prefers Macs over P.C's and we were thinking of getting her back into a mac and the new ones looked like the way to go.

      But now, if they aren't supporting firewire on them it looks like we are going to have to nix that idea.

      To comment on USB vs Firewire, sure there is speed differences, but considering that both are pretty fast, your not going to notice that great of a difference.

      A couple of seconds? Probably, but Minutes? I doubt it. I've transferred gigs back and forth over both, and have never really noticed any greater or lesser speeds.

      At least nothing for me to get excited over...

      Quote Originally Posted by czarnachmura28 View Post
      I used adapter long time ago , from fire 400 to usb.just go to any pro video store its only 10-25 $
      there aren't cables that do this, but there are Hubs that can do the job.

      You can buy a PCMCIA card for laptops that will have both 4 pin and 6 pin plugs in them, but they wont power the device.

      You can also buy an external Hub that will work as an interface.

      Newegg.com - BELKIN Hi-Speed USB 2.0 and FireWire 6-Port Hub for Mac mini Model F5U507 - Apple Accessories
    1. dennder's Avatar
      dennder -
      If you "googled" for the keyphrase "firewire to usb adaptor", then you should have also googled for the thing itself.
      This usb to 4pin firewire is not a cable, nor adaptor. It works under XP only. In order to make it work you need to install driver and software.
      Therefore, it is a UBS device, that has FW 4-pin connector.
      And giving the fact, it works under XP only, it is absolutely useless for mac.

    1. huntor's Avatar
      huntor -
      hahaha, i love steve jobs.
    1. facebook's Avatar
      facebook -
      I've never used firewire, but if USB 2.0 is slower by just a bit- FireWire vs. USB 2.0 - Speed Comparison - then whats the point of making a macbook more expensive / thicker for the other 95% of the target market.

      On another note.... is the guy buddys with Steve Jobs? Coz I never email my sr. directors / CEO for small things like that....

      Note - In my opinion its a small thing... I'm sure a huge percentage of apple users will agree...