USB Hubs and external hard drives
Mar 25, 2006 at 10:53 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 2


1000+ Head-Fier
Jun 5, 2004
OK, I suppose this doesn't have too much to do with audio and more with computers in general. I just bought an 80gb 3.5" hard drive to backup FLAC files onto, and I need an external enclosure for it now. Problem is, I have a Powerbook with two occupied USB ports and one unoccupied firewire port. One USB port has an unpowered USB 2.0 hub attached to it. The other is used by my X5. I've heard that using an unpowered hub with high-bandwidth devices like hard drives will degrade performance. Is that true? Or will I see no real difference between the hub and directly from a USB port? I've tried using my X5 on the hub and haven't noticed anything different, but I was afraid maybe when transferring from the external hard drive back to the X5 would cause performance issues.

As a side note, the model I want to get is a powered 3.5" enclosure. I want to avoid firewire simply because they cost more.
Mar 25, 2006 at 11:16 PM Post #2 of 2


Headphoneus Supremus
Nov 19, 2005
It will degrade performance: but not at the level of audio playback, more like editing movies and such. I have two AC powered USB hubs that turn my notebook's two USB ports to 8 USB ports, it works well and as far as my ears could tell nothing is degraded. (I use an exteranal drive for music playback and usb soundcard).

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