Originally Posted by Pyrobob83
Well, the 5680 is the older version of the current 5690. So in theory, it could still only have USB1. But I highly doubt it. USB2 has been out for AGES! I'd recommend getting an enclosure that had firewire also (if your 5680 has a firewire port - it should do). Tests show external drives are faster with firewire even though USB2 speeds are supposedly 480 mb/s rather than firewire's 400. Can't argue with tests...
I can answer you on that. USB2.0 is in theory faster because of the actual bandwidth for data transfer. USB2.0 is 480MB/s while FireWire is 400MB/s. Hence, USB2.0 should be 80MB/s faster, not 480MB/s faster.
For file transfer undesr 1MB, USB2.0 is faster than FireWire. But for files larger than 1MB, FireWire runs at a speed that can laugh at USB2.0.
The reason USB2.0 is inferior to Firewire is because it has WAY TOO MANY overheads. Kinda complicate to explain, but just think of a highway. The more "check stations" there are. No matter how big the highway is, it will be slower than a smaller with less or no "check stations."
As for the original poster. I'd HIGHLY recommend a Firewire external enclosure for the hard drive. I personally went with a Western Digital and a Speeze 3.5" Firewire/USB2.0 aluminum enclosure. For CDRW and stuff, USB2.0 should be sufficient in my opinion since the optical drives can't really read/write THAT much data anywayz.