Firewire card quality/options - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-11, 08:03 AM Thread Starter
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Firewire card quality/options

I am doing the MCE 2005 FireSTB trick and have been for a year. My problem is that one of my systems is flawless all the time and the other is problematic with channel changes and I also believe to a lesser extent with show capture.

On the upside, the troubleshooting process is made easy by the fact that both PCs are essentially the same except for the motherboard and firewire.

The system that is perfect is using an ABit NF7-S 2.0 with the integrated firewire. The problematic system uses an ASUS A7N8X-VM mATX and is using a Startech add-in firewire card.

Is there a better quality card that I can use that will not cost a fortune?
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-11, 12:28 PM
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I think there are only 2 or 3 Firewire/1394 chipsets used by the world's card manufacturers (TI, Promise, and I think there's one other) and they are rock stable after all these years, so I don't think there's a design glitch.

I'm guessing its your particular Startech PCI card that is problematic.

I've been seeing 1394 cards in the $30 range in some stores, and then some combo 1394/USB2.0 PCI cards in the $50 to $60 range. I'm running a couple of those combo cards on home PCs with no problems.



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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-11, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
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Ya, the other chipset is from VIA.

My parents have a D-Link card. I wil lhave to borrow that one and see how it behaves.
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 01:49 AM
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The cards with TI chips are probably the best. I've never been impressed by Startech products.
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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 07:28 AM Thread Starter
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Any idea who makes one with a TI chipset on it?
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 08:29 AM
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Adaptec. I have a PCI combo card that I picked up a few years back. The thing will work in a MAC or a PC. I don't have the model number but I think it was the Duoconnect 3020. Wow I just checked and it has been released since 2002. Still current though.
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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 08:58 AM Thread Starter
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Kewl!!!

NCIX still carries the Adaptec 4300 (fw only) and for only $44! I will have to get that one!
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 10:17 AM
 
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Just my 2cents
Monoprice has a good deal for firewire cards.
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 01:45 PM
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What do you use the firewire connection for?
External storage?

Diogen.
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 01:49 PM
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Out of curiosity I checked my home PCs to see which 1394 chipsets are on the cards and it turns out that one is a TI, one is a Promise, and 2 are VIAs. They have all been working excellently under Linux, knock on wood. I'm not so sure there's much of a difference between the brands after all this time on the market.



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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 01:53 PM
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Quote:
What do you use the firewire connection for?
For me they're mostly for external storage when backing up the machines, but I also have an external Firewire/USB2.0 DVD burner and a digital camcorder that feeds DV into the Kino digital video editor on Linux. I've played around with Ethernet-over-1394 just to say I did it but with GigEth cards it wasn't a necessity to keep using Firewire for that so I didn't bother with it afterwards.



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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 02:32 PM
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Some 3 years ago I read multiple articles claiming 1394's superiority over USB2 for external storage and was buying external enclosures only with firewire. Then one day I checked the difference in bandwidth: same drive, same enclosure, different connection. The difference was never more than 2% and no reliability differences.

Diogen.
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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 02:36 PM
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Agreed, each is good, but if a person wanted to they could upgrade their Firewire to the 800 version. I'm not interested at this point, but if the prices come down I might try it.

A good article about Firewire 800 and USB2.0:

http://www.tomshardware.com/2004/04/...nal/index.html



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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 02:51 PM
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OK Her'es MY 2 cents on this one, Via firewire Chipsets stink when combined with any intel chipset MB period And some Early Nforce chipsets, TI Chipsets are by far superiour and more tolerant of most MB chipsets.. I have seen this on numerous systems over the years.

Had the exact same issue with 2 identical video editing workstations and I do mean Identical as I
had built both side by side myself with the exact same components but one with a Via chipset 1394 card and the other with a belkin TI chipset card, the Via card system was an absolute nightmare performance wise and didn't correct it's self till we replaced the 1394 card to the belkin card with the TI Chipset, then presto all problems disapeared.

Having said that the Via Chipset seems to work just fine with a Via MB chipset
as that's what I am currently using. but if you are having any Issues a TI chipset 1394 card is highly reccommended. LOOK for a Belkin 1394 card
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 2007-02-12, 08:20 PM
 
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I think there is more difference than just the chipset, but that's probably the big one. At my work we had a lot of issues with Firewire cameras and industrial cameras, although the TI chipsets seem to work the best. We had good luck with cards from a company called Unibrain. I think you can Google them.

Most Industrial Imaging cameras specify Firewire boards with TI chipsets.
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