An essential gizmo for Mac video producers

firewire adapter.jpg

This is not an earthshaking post, but I thought I would share it anyway.

I’ve never been a fan of Apple’s decision to use FireWire 800 adapters on their most recent lines of computers since it meant that I couldn’t connect my camcorders to them without an adapter. I’ve resisted purchasing a FireWire 800 to 400 adapter because I have enough Windows computers around for most capture related tasks. I’d think “I want to capture on a Mac,” then “cripes, I need an adapter,” then “well, just capture on one of those great HP workstations you have.” So, I would, and if I needed to move the file to a Mac, I would via my office LAN or an external drive.

However, I was testing Telestream’s excellent WireCast product on a MacBook Pro, and wanted to connect a DV camera and switch between that and the iSight webcam. So, I broke down and bought the Rohs Firewire 800 9-6 Adapter shown on the left for about $11 on Amazon ( Other than the fact that my unit, as delivered, was black, it it worked as advertised. Sticks out a bit from the computer, but otherwise seemed sturdy and snug.

So, if you’re wondering whether you need to spend big bucks for an expensive adapter, the answer is no. $11 will get you in the game. I still disagree with Apple’s decision, but really, how much can you bitch if the fix costs $11?

About Jan Ozer

I help companies train new technical hires in streaming media-related positions; I also help companies optimize their codec selections and encoding stacks, and evaluate new encoders and codecs.

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