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Why does my new notebook computer have a 1394a port instead of 1394b?

Why does my new notebook computer have a 1394a port instead of 1394b?

I just purchased a Dell Studio 1555 notebook computer. The specifications said it has a 1394 (note no letter) port. I assumed that since 1394b is 7 years old, that it would be a 'b' port. Not so. When I contacted Dell about this, they said to go to their store to purchase a 1394b solution. Specifically, they mentioned a 1394b to USB converter. That's even slower than 1394a (USB 2.0 bandwidth limits)!!!

Asked by: Guest | Views: 142
Total answers/comments: 2
Guest [Entry]

"Historically 1394(Firewire) is generally used by more mac-centric hardware. The use of it on a mostly Windows platform is rare, 1394b(Firewire 800) dramatically more so.

Of the two options, 1394a is much more commonly used, regardless of OS, than 1394b. I would guess that Dell defaulted to the ""most compatible"" solution rather than the ""highest performance"" solution.

Anecdotally, I was shopping for an external 1394b drive for my Mac mini and the price for a 1394b enclosure alone is nearly the same as the price for a external 1tb usb drive. 1394b(firewire 800) is just a rare connection standard."
Guest [Entry]

"1394a connectors are rather more common than 1394b, especially on video camcorders. Hence the preference for equipping a laptop with an earlier standard.

My laptop has both, and I typically use an adaptor to plug an 'a' cable into the 'b' port ot get a second 'a' device connected."