Can't capture DV on new Western Digital Media Center external firewire drive

3 replies [Last post]
Joined: Jun 7 2005

I'm a relative newbie so please bear with me. Here is my setup

-Dell 1.5 Ghz laptop with 20 Gb internal drive
-160 GB Western Digital Media Center combo USB 2.0/ firewire drive attached via firewire
-DVD Burner attached to Media Center via USB 2.0 (I could switch to fire wire, but does this connection matter since the connection is drive to drive and not back to the pc? (my actual PC has an older USB - 1 or 1.1?)

(For what it's worth, my laptop is only USB 1 or 1.1, so I get a message that a have a high speed device plugged into a high speed port. However, as I have the Media Center attached via firewire, that should only affect tranfers from the card readers built into the drive - I think)

The Problem: I have now spent my budget to make home movies on my pc. My video capture software (Pinnacle Plus 9 trial version) now tells me that my 160 GB drive will not write fast enough to capture Digital Video from a camcorder to the hard drive. It reports that my drive can only capture at 2300 kbs, while the software requires at least 4300 for capture. (My too small internal drive can write at around 8000) This new external drive is a 7200 rpm with an 8mb cache. As far as I can tell it has one partition and is FAT32. I checked my OS (Win XP) and it is NTSF. Can anyone help me squeeze another 2000 kbs out of this brand new drive so I can mail Grandma DVDs of her new grandchild? Hope this made some sort of since. Any assistance will be greatly appreciated by me as well as my family!

Sincerely, Tom

mooblie's picture
Joined: Apr 27 2001

Hi, wecome. From your setup description - have you got BOTH FireWire and USB cables between your laptop and the 160GB drive? (as you appear to have USB between the 160GB and your burner??)

If so, I would try the 160Gb drive WITHOUT USB -i.e. FireWire only, and see if that helps.

Martin - DVdoctor in moderation. Everyone is entitled to my opinion.

H and M Video
Joined: Jun 5 1999

After having to purchase an USB2 PCI card you definitely won't be able to capture video to your Ext HD via USB 1.1.


PC Specialist 3Gz Dual Core, Premiere CS3, Encore CS3, After Effects CS3, Matrox RT.X2, Panasonic HD HS-300, Z1E & PMW-EX3 Cams.
Now with a PC Specialist Quad Core i7-3770, 16GB RAM, 180GB SSD, GeForce GTX560 Ti Graphics Card, Blu-Ray & DVD R/W Burners and can't wait to set it up. Now up and running.  What a difference in Blu-Ray footage.

Joined: Jun 7 2005

Thanks. To clarify, the drive is connected by the firewire. In that configuration, the only purpose of the usb cable is to allow me to access the built in flash card reader on the drive from my laptop. It works for downloading images from a compact flash, it's just slow. Still, just to be sure I have tried the drive with and without the USB cable hooked up, but with no more or less success.