FireWire Hub - 6 Port

Hubs are a great accessory. It's an easy way to add more connections to your system, AND save wear and tear on those ports within your computer.

For those peripherals that you plug in once during system setup, using the ports on the computer is just fine. However, for those devices that you repeatedly connect, such as webcams, card readers, video cameras, iPods, iPhones, headphones, and portable hard drives, using a hub is a much better option.

image Belkin FireWire 6-Port Hub F5U526-APL
Repeatedly plugging and unplugging puts stress and strain on those connections. Over time there's a very good chance that a port's soldier connection will eventually fail. With a hub, you can just switch to a different port or if necessary, replace the hub.

Changing out a hub is a lot easier and more economical than having to repair your computer. A hub also puts those ports within easy reach - you won't find yourself standing on your head to make a connection on the back side of your computer.

This Hub, by Belkin, is a FireWire version and comes with 6 ports. It's a powered hub meaning it can act as a repeater, so you can place devices up to an additional 15 feet (4.5 meters) from other connected FireWire peripherals. Connecting devices to the Hub using 6-pin to 6-pin FireWire cables enables them to draw power from the hub and not the computer. This port can transmit data up 400Mbps - depending on the capacity of your devices.

Belkin FireWire 6-Port Powered Hub

One final note: External Hard drives should NOT be connected to a Firewire hub - they should be connected directly to your computer. While some hard drives work fine on a hub, a good share of them do not. If your documentation for the hard drive indicates that they will work on a hub then it's ok to do so. Unless you know for sure, my advice is to play it safe and plug those into the back of the computer.