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Old September 17th, 2003, 05:58 PM   #1
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Fcp 4 - Iomega Troubles When Batch Capturing

Howdy Ho,

I recently purchased a new Mac laptop with 1 GB of memory and Final Cut Pro 4. When setting up to batch capture I added an external Iomega 120 GB drive with plans to keep all my media separate from my main harddrive.

Since the Mac comes with only one Firewire port I purchased one of those Adaptec Firewire extension cards, so now I have three extra ports.

When I load up my system, GIGI (code name for the Iomega drive) is recognized by both my harddrive and Final Cut Pro or at least is looks like it is when I select GIGI as a scratchdisk in FCP4.

The trouble starts when I try to capture. FCP just spins and spins and eventually I have to force quit to access the application again. I'm having zero luck digitizing to my Iomega drive. Unfortunately, due to a deadline I had to use my internal drive to capture for a rush project. I'd rather not do this in the future as I know this will create problems in the future.

Any ideas? Thoughts? Suggestions?

Thank you!
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Old September 17th, 2003, 06:11 PM   #2
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Beth,
Sorry to hear of your frustration. This is actually the first time I can recall anyone remarking that they use one of the Iomega drives. I certainly do not know, but strongly suspect, that something in that Adaptec PCMCIA card is not kosher from FCP's perspective.

If you've not already done so it would probably be worthwhile to pursue this at Apple's FCP support pages as they may have the most complete body of info on product compatibilities.

For what it's worth (probably just more aggravation) the single Firewire port on newer Powerbooks is not really much of a limitation, since Firewire devices can be daisy chained. Typical Firewire drives have two 6-pin Firewire ports. (I don't know about the Iomega drives.) One is connected to the computer via a 6-pin/6-pin cable and the other would be connected to your camera via a 6-pin/4-pin cable.

Good luck with this.
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Old September 17th, 2003, 06:21 PM   #3
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Thanks Ken. I will check out Apple's site. Unfortunately, the Iomega does not have two ports but rather one.

Hopefully the Iomega is not *incompatible*.

Best,
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Old September 17th, 2003, 06:54 PM   #4
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Actually Apple does not endorse the use of any firewire drive for capturing with Final Cut Pro. Some people get dropped frames on capture and playback. However many people are able to do this fine, especially with notebooks.
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Old September 17th, 2003, 07:08 PM   #5
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Does Apple endorse USB capture then?
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Old September 17th, 2003, 07:51 PM   #6
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USB, at least the current version, would not work...it's too slow.

Capturing dv to a good Firewire drive works just fine. I think Apple, in part, just doesn't want to get into the never-ending, profitless product approval game. Also, not everyone captures dv, with its relatively modest transfer rate, in FCP. Video formats with less compression would certainly strain some of the slower 5400 rpm Firewire drives. So it could be a real rats nest to issue formal approval.
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Old September 17th, 2003, 08:01 PM   #7
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I think I see what you mean so, the Iomega driver should work in theory but Apple doesn't want the responsibility or the potential profit loss of "endorsing" third party drives - 'zat right?
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Old September 17th, 2003, 08:19 PM   #8
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Basically, that's what I believe.

If this is the drive you're using, it looks like it would be fine. Iomega's psuedo-proprietary non-standard Firewire enclosure is what's holding you back by not featuring a 2nd Firewire port. (Iomega does not manufacture hard drives, so the drive itself comes from someone like Seagate, Western Digital, et.al.)
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Old September 17th, 2003, 09:48 PM   #9
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Note that Apple doesn't certify as compatible, any drive, SCSI, FireWire etc. The problem is in the multi-port adapter (my best guess). Try capturing without the adapter and you should be fine. That adapter may also cause other problems than just capture.

One of the big advantages of FireWire is the plug and play capability of the daisy chain feature of adding additional peripherals. If you can return the drive and get a multi port drive.
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Old September 17th, 2003, 10:47 PM   #10
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One alternative for adding Firewire ports is to pull the Adaptec and get a more standard, relatively inexpensive Firewire hub. There are several available from Pyro, Belkin, et.al. They require a/c power but should be far less problemmatic than the multi-port card adapter. (I use a Pyro model on my desktop Macs.)
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