Firewire Cables: 6-pin stay in better than 4-pin?

Discussion in 'Amateur Video Production' started by axel27, Mar 26, 2007.

  1. axel27

    axel27 Guest

    Noobish Question of the week #2 for me. Thank you for your
    patience. :)

    I have a 2 year old Dell XPS gaming laptop which I'm going to use to
    edit home travel video footage. Running WinXP with the NVIDIA GeForce
    Go 6800, 2ghz processor, 2gig RAM. I got an external firewire hard
    drive (320gig) to hold the video.

    I am using the Sony Vegas consumer editing software.

    Anyway so far my laptop seems burly enough to crunch the video.

    My Firewire connection is 4-pin. I like to sit on the couch with the
    computer on my lap and I notice the 4-pin connector likes to wiggle
    loose pretty easily while I'm sitting here. I'm not even sure if
    during the editing process, once the video is put in the media bin or
    whatever you call it, if the software needs to access the external
    drive very frequently.

    My question is if I need to worry about the Firewire cable coming
    loose during editing, as long as it's not during rendering or other
    activity that uses the raw footage from the E drive and writes to the
    E drive.

    Question 2 is whether the 6-pin firewire cables like to stay in
    better. I can always get an adapter card with a 6-pin hole and get a
    different cable. Seems like a waste of money but I know I will do most
    of my editing sitting here on the ol' couch. :)

    Thanks for any replies!

    axel27, Mar 26, 2007
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  2. That would be a major concern to me. The primary risk
    is losing the entire project and having to start over again.
    Of course, you still have the original camera tapes, so it is
    a matter of re-capturing them, etc. You do still have the
    original camera tapes, right? You run the same risk if the
    hard drive crashes, etc.
    There is no question that the 6 pin version is mechanically
    more robust and stable. But using an adapter (presumably
    a PCMCIA "PC card") just to get a 6-pin Firewire connector
    is adding annother layer of software and hardware complexity
    that seems to be almost worse than what your are trying to

    Editing on the couch seems kinda risky to me, particularly
    if you have an intermittent Firewire connector.
    Richard Crowley, Mar 26, 2007
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  3. axel27

    nappy Guest

    If you are going to edit on the couch., which I heartly endorse, find a
    way to do it so you don't damage the firewire connector! Doh! Tape it or
    tyewrap it to the laptop. The 6 pin connectors are larger and weigh more
    so I feel that there is no real advantage to either if you set your work
    area up so they don't wiggle out. If you can figure out how to curl up and
    edit then you can certainly come up with a way to secure the hard drive

    OR.. make really low res proxies of your source files and put them on the
    laptop drive.. go back to the firewire drive when you want to render for
    final output.
    nappy, Mar 26, 2007
  4. My first thought on reading the OP was almost exactly what you said in
    your last paragraph.

    What worries me a bit more is what would happen to the drive if the
    connector pulled out during a write to the drive. It might not be

    BTW, I have not noticed that 4-pin IEEE-3492 connectors tend to fall
    out - but even when I work on the couch, I use a board to hold the
    computer a bit more securely. Actually, I use a stiff dinner table
    place mat with a picture of a winter scene on it. The snow scene helps
    keep the laptop - as well as my lap - cool.
    Gene E. Bloch, Mar 27, 2007
  5. axel27

    nappy Guest

    adding a firewire port is not usually a complex andeavor.
    nappy, Mar 27, 2007
  6. I was thinking of the added complexity of a PCMCIA card hanging
    out the side with a 6-pin Firewire connector levering off it.
    Doesn't quite seem like a net "gain" in reliability? But mebbe
    I'm just paranoid.
    Richard Crowley, Mar 27, 2007
  7. axel27

    nappy Guest

    a little.. probably with good reason..
    nappy, Mar 27, 2007
  8. axel27

    axel27 Guest

    Actually just taping it with blue tape during editing is probably the
    easiest solution, lol. I love simple ideas.

    Thank you all for replying. :)

    axel27, Mar 27, 2007
  9. No, not blue - use green tape. Blue tape just can't work.

    Obviously I'm kidding, except that the only blue tape I am aware of is
    a kind of masking tape that does not stick very well (properly so for
    its intended use, of course). That is good if you don't want to leave a
    sticky residue on your laptop, but bad if you want to stabilize the
    Gene E. Bloch, Mar 28, 2007
  10. axel27

    nappy Guest

    Aw heck.. a C-Clamp will work just fine.
    nappy, Mar 28, 2007
  11. Or for us more up-to-date people, a C++ clamp.

    (I almost don't believe I said that!)
    Gene E. Bloch, Mar 28, 2007
  12. axel27

    axel27 Guest

    Rofl. C++ clamp. And here I am talking about tape like some
    neanderthal. ;-)

    axel27, Mar 28, 2007
  13. Nah, you guys are behind the times.
    These days we use C# ("C sharp")

    But be sure to use pads to avoid marring
    the surface of your computer with the sharp
    edges. About 3 or 6 dB of pad will work for
    most clamping jobs.
    Richard Crowley, Mar 28, 2007
  14. C#. Omigod - I've just been caught being outdated...

    I still have Java for Dummies, but I haven't opened it yet. Perhaps I
    should try to find it and start to learn Java. Or buy C# for Dummies
    and never open it :)
    Gene E. Bloch, Mar 29, 2007
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