The benefits of good hardware

July 23, 2007 | In Tech

I recently, after much saving, purchased a 320GB LaCie D2 external drive for my desktop setup at home. Previous to this I had a 250GB drive (Seagate I think) inside a reasonably generic case. The disadvantage to the latter was that it had poor MacOS compatability, where if the Mac went to sleep, I’d have to pull the cable from the drive before it would eject under the operating system. Thankfuly, I don’t have the same issues with my new D2, which even goes into a sudo power saving mode when it hasn’t been used for a few minutes.

I’m not quite sure if using the Firewire 800 port on the D2 has helped any, but I’ve also seen an increase in performance in Final Cut Pro after moving my capture scratch to the new drive. Everything seems to render a little quicker and playback seems a little snappier. However, I still really do need to swap out my 512MB of RAM in my G4 Powerbook for a 1GB stick just to bump up the performance that little bit more. Suprisingly, FCP seems to handle well under the RAM I’ve currently got, but I’m sure it would happily use all the RAM I’ll throw at it.

My advice for this situation? Don’t buy no-name external cases/drives off Ebay like I did. While I’ve put the old drive into use now as a backup drive, I would have been better off buying a good quality drive in the first place. Incidentally, LaCie have released a Quatro interface drive (as opposed to my Triple interface drive) which adds E-Sata – definetly worth checking out.

I’m looking forward to getting a spanking new Black MacBook and 5th gen iPod from Apple in a few weeks after securing a part-time job with them as a Campus Rep around UTS (and Uni of Sydney as well). I’ll be sure to post photos of my new setup when I turn my PowerBook into a sudo desktop setup for video editing, and begin to use my MacBook as my primary machine.

– james

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