[MacDV] Re: Little Tiny 40Gig

Michael Winter winter at mac.com
Mon Jun 7 08:10:09 PDT 2004

On Jun 6, 2004, at 8:10 AM, Bill Calamita wrote:

> I'd definitely get a 7200 RPM drive with a large cache for video.  
> These
> tend to be more expensive on the portable drives.

Just as another viewpoint, IMO the "fast expensive" drives aren't 
necessary for DV capture and editing, unless maybe you're setting up a 
pro shop.

First off, for DV capture I don't think you can find a drive on the 
market that's too slow. I have a couple 1st generation 5400 rpm 
Firewire drives and they have no problems keeping up whether on a 400 
MHz iMac DV or a dual 1 GHz G4. In fact I can even copy to and from the 
drive while video is being acquired without a problem other than the 
copy being slower (isn't Firewire great -try that with USB 2).

When it comes to editing, the only operation I've found to be dependent 
on drive speed is exporting to DV. For any other export or transcoding 
operation I've never found the drive speed to be the limiting factor 
-maybe if I had a new dual G5 system it might be different.

As far as cache size goes, does it make any difference wether you have 
a 2 or 8 MB cache? IIRC, for sustained reads or writes of large files, 
cache size becomes irrelevant. Is that not so?

So, having said that, I'd make the decision based on other factors. If 
you're on a tight budget, any cheap (but reliable) drive will do -$150 
will get you a good drive if you don't need portability. If you can 
afford it the 7200 rpm drives with large caches are nice for other 
reasons, but getting one in a portable drive won't come cheap.

Just MO.


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