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  1. #1

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    USB to Firewire Adapter
    Hey I was wondering if anyone knew of a decent USB to Firewire adapter?

    I happen to have an extra Apple Firewire webcam (like this):



    ...and wanted to use it with my wife's older Dell laptop that only has USB ports. When I "Googled"...I couldn't really find many (or any) reasonably priced USB to Firewire adapters.

    I did come across this adapter that works with the ethernet port:



    ....but then I was not sure since the ethernet port is a "networking port" if somehow using it would mess up the wireless networking.

    Thanks,

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
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  2. #2

    hughvane's Avatar
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    Hi Nick - a quick search shows these: Amazon.com: USB-Firewire adapter and http://www.amazon.com/USB-Firewire-T...8800451&sr=8-2.

    The adapters you've shown should work without interfering with the network if you use an ethernet switch (hub). Cheap as chips, eg. TP-Link.

    Is the f'wre 4 or 6-pin? See Amazon.com: USB 2.0 to IEEE 1394 Firewire 4 Pin 4 feet Extension Cable for Digital Camer or…
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    Please post your Mac (or other) specs and MacOS version in your post, your profile or your signature. It helps us to help you better.

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  3. #3

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hughvane View Post
    Hi Nick - a quick search shows these:
    Hey man...don't give me that "a quick search shows these"...crap! Ha ha!

    I searched for quite a while before I posted...and didn't find much.

    In fact...the item that I have pictured in my original post was from Amazon...and was in the Amazon search list you linked. Also many of the items in that Amazon search list are not USB to Firewire adapters.

    Thanks a lot for the help. There were some items in that Amazon search list that I will have to look into further.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  4. #4

    hughvane's Avatar
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    The "quick search" meant that I didn't have/take time to screen all those I'd looked at, therefore there were some superfluous items.

    Tell you what though - I'm mightily taken with this little number Amazon.com: USB Firewire 1394 Cable Travel Kit 6 Adapter Converter: Electronics. Take a close look at all the fittings. I shall be ordering one to be sent to my Am friends in Maine to bring over when they arrive in Dec for their five months in paradise.
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    Please post your Mac (or other) specs and MacOS version in your post, your profile or your signature. It helps us to help you better.

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  5. #5

    bobtomay's Avatar
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    NOTE - VERY IMPORTANT:

    FireWire and USB are inherently incompatible. There are quite a few adapters out there that allow you to connect multiple devices. However, they will take a 4pin FW to 6pin FW or USB to USB... allowing you to carry a single cable for accomplishing multiple tasks. I have never seen an "adapter" that will allow you to connect FW to USB - except just to plug them in. I have seen reports of those that have burned out their ports in the attempt.

    Make sure you read all reviews of whatever adapter/converter you find to see if there are "specific" comments of end users accomplishing what you want to do.

    If you find one that will allow you to do this, please post back. This question gets asked at least a half dozen times a year. I've yet to see a positive successful response.
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
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  6. #6

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobtomay View Post
    NOTE - VERY IMPORTANT:

    FireWire and USB are inherently incompatible. There are quite a few adapters out there that allow you to connect multiple devices. However, they will take a 4pin FW to 6pin FW or USB to USB... allowing you to carry a single cable for accomplishing multiple tasks. I have never seen an "adapter" that will allow you to connect FW to USB - except just to plug them in. I have seen reports of those that have burned out their ports in the attempt.

    Make sure you read all reviews of whatever adapter/converter you find to see if there are "specific" comments of end users accomplishing what you want to do.

    If you find one that will allow you to do this, please post back. This question gets asked at least a half dozen times a year. I've yet to see a positive successful response.
    Bob,

    Thanks a ton for the warning!!! I certainly wouldn't want to damage something trying to do this. Not sure if it makes a difference...but you mentioned Firewire to USB....I'm trying to do the opposite...USB to Firewire.

    I'm guessing it's the same problem regardless of which conversion is trying to be made.

    And like you said...I've also couldn't find too much "positive" evidence on the internet (products offered or discussion in various computer forums)...that said that this sort of conversion was easy or a good thing to try or do.

    Thanks again,

    - Nick

    p.s. Bob...what do you think of the adapter I have pictured above? Since it goes thru the ethernet port...do you think that would be a "safer" way to get firewire accessibility on a laptop with no firewire port? Basically this would be an ethernet to firewire adapter. Thanks.
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  7. #7

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hughvane View Post
    The "quick search" meant that I didn't have/take time to screen all those I'd looked at, therefore there were some superfluous items.
    No problems! After "bobtomay's" warning...I'm not sure I still want to try this...not really worth the possible downsides. Unless of course I/we can find positive success with a specific adapter.

    Thanks,

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  8. #8

    bobtomay's Avatar
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    Yeah, I just went and checked at newegg and couldn't find a converter there either. I did find a couple of really good explanations about this a couple of years ago, but couldn't find them on a quick google any more.

    It's been about that long ago since I last researched this particular topic in depth.
    So, there "could" be something out there that will do it and I've yet to see it.
    Just wanted you to be warned, particularly with the <$10 adapters that are being peddled. My guess, if anyone has something that actually works, it's going to be in the $30-$50 range at a minimum. I've just not found a review on one that specifically states it will do it.

    edit:
    You'd think it wouldn't be much different than finding a serial to USB adapter, but apparently the way FW and USB move data is just too different. Figured if anyone had something Belkin would so I checked there also. They have nothing except some combo hubs, but still they're for USB to USB and FW to FW.
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  9. #9

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobtomay View Post
    Figured if anyone had something Belkin would so I checked there also. They have nothing except some combo hubs, but still they're for USB to USB and FW to FW.
    Yes...I'm with you on the "Belkin" theory...if they don't have it...you probably don't need it! Ha Ha!

    By the way...I edited my earlier post form this morning...and maybe you didn't see the edit before posting your latest response...but I was wondering your thoughts:

    "Bob...what do you think of the adapter I have pictured above? Since it goes thru the ethernet port...do you think that would be a "safer" way to get firewire accessibility on a laptop with no firewire port? Basically this would be an ethernet to firewire adapter. Thanks."

    Here's the Amazon link for it:

    http://www.amazon.com/TRENDnet-USB-F...8865407&sr=8-4

    Thanks again,

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  10. #10

    bobtomay's Avatar
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    That particular adapter is an optional purchase for this tester which allows you to test cable continuity. It's not actually an adapter enabling the ability to connect other devices to your computer - sorry. Check out the 2nd review of the adapter itself.
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
    In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.

  11. #11

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobtomay View Post
    That particular adapter is an optional purchase for this tester which allows you to test cable continuity. It's not actually an adapter enabling the ability to connect other devices to your computer - sorry. Check out the 2nd review of the adapter itself.
    Thanks again Bob...I think I'm going to skip this project altogether!

    This is what I get for trying to use an Apple firewire device (web cam) on an older Windows laptop without firewire ports!!!

    Looks like the mother-in-law is going to get the external Apple firewire web cam to use with her new Mac-mini!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  12. #12

    hughvane's Avatar
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    Well, well, after those dire warnings I went digging a little further in that Amazon link, and of the three reviews, two suggest that this thing is a potential liability, one downright slams it. I've said it before, but .... we live and learn, thank goodness - and thank bobtomay too!
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  13. #13


    Member Since
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    Yeah, there's really no such thing as a working USB to FW adapter. They are inherently incompatible.

    But even if there was, that iSight camera would flat-out not work anyway. It uses drivers found in only in Mac OS X to operate. You can't, to the best of my knowledge, make it work on a PC.

  14. #14

    chscag's Avatar
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    Like bobtomay, I've answered this same question several times. It seems to pop up every now and then. The answer is still the same... there is no adapter USB to FW. Like chas-m stated, they are flat out incompatible.

    Back to the drawing board Nick.

    Regards.

  15. #15

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chscag View Post
    Back to the drawing board Nick.
    Live & learn! This is what happens when a person such as myself is not a "Windows" guy...and try to get a Windows computer to do what a Mac can do.

    My wife's older personal Dell laptop doesn't have firewire...but her new HP work laptop does. That's what I get for working with a Windows laptop!

    But hey...it took you 5 days to reply to this thread...what's up with that! Ha ha!

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

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