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  1. #1
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    Speedy Hard Drives - USB 2.0 vs. IDE Controlled

    Does anyone know what the difference is in speed between an external USB 2.0 Hard Drive and a IDE Controlled Hard Drive? Basically, I'm debating if external would be too slow for large file transfers, video playback, etc.

    Thanks in advance

  2. #2
    Did you try Google yet? Siliconjunkie's Avatar
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    On paper USB 2.0 should be faster than ATA133. This is also considering that you have no slower USB devices. It will go as fast as the slowest device.
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  3. #3
    Ultimate Member Telexen's Avatar
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    But using USB would take cycles from the CPU...whereas you have an IDE controller to handle hard drives...so you'd yield faster speeds - I would think.
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  4. #4
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    First of all, USB HDDs _are_ IDE HDDs - with a USB IDE controller in front of them.

    Then, USB 2.0 has a theoretical bandwidth of 480 Mbit (!) per second, or 60 MByte/s. Remember that's raw interface bandwidth; in real life actual transfer rates don't get any higher than 20 MByte/s.

    With the best IDE HDDs currently peaking at around 60~65 MByte/s, the question should be answered.

  5. #5
    Did you try Google yet? Siliconjunkie's Avatar
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    Do you have any linkage to support that it will only use 1/3 of the bandwidth? Just curious.
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  6. #6
    Human voltmeter DanU's Avatar
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    Here's a USB 2.0 vs Firewire HDD comparison I found on Google: http://www.thetechzone.com/display.php?i=227&p=1

    The gist of it is that sometmes USB 2.0 is faster and sometimes Firewire is faster, but you'll still want to stick with ATA133 (or SATA) if you're transferring large files and don't mind the inconvenience of hooking them up internally.

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