Get ready for faster firewire

IEEE 1394, better known under the brand names of Firewire and i.Link, will get a speed bump before the end of the year: The IEEE has approved the new IEEE 1394-2008 specification that provides support for a bandwidth of up to 3.2 Gb/s.

Firewire has come a long way. From the initial development by Apple in the late 1980s, to the technology’s completion in 1995 and surge in popularity in the early 2000s, the technology has become a serial bus interface common in Sony and Apple computers as well as a range of consumer electronics devices such as video cameras.

Most IEEE 1394 devices are still running on the S400 (400 Mb/s) specification despite the fact that S800 (800 Mb/s) was introduced with the IEEE 1394b spec in 2003. The problem with this spec was a different connector than the design that was used for S400. However, bilingual cables that are compatible with S400 and S800 ports are available. (link)

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