Firewire under Linux, was: Re: [linux-audio-user] Setting up linux computer

Steve Harris S.W.Harris at
Mon Aug 23 03:39:11 EDT 2004

On Sun, Aug 22, 2004 at 11:10:01PM +0200, Robert Jonsson wrote:
> söndagen den 22 augusti 2004 22.09 skrev Thomas Pickett:
> > Hey,
> >           thanks for the advice.  I don't care too much on which distro is
> > easiest to install.  I care more about how good it works for music
> > production.  If you had the choice which one of the suggestions given would
> > you use?
> >
> > About the firewire stuff.   I think it is too bad that linux does not
> > support it at this point.  There are lots of decent soundcards that are
> > firewire based.  MOTU 828mkII,  Edirol FA-101,  Presonus Firepod.  
> Yes, lots of good stuff, though there are reasons why none of this is yet 
> supported. 
> There's virtually no support from the hardware companies at this time which 
> dumps it all in the hands of enthusiasts. And it is a bit much to invest in 
> one of the above when it will take you thousands of manhours to get it to 
> work. Even aquiring the specifications cost money as I understand it.

For the "class compliant" boxes they should mostly be supported by one of
the linux 1394 libraries (currently in development, I was tracking it for
a while but can't remember its name). But some, such as the MOTU box are
not class compliant, use a proprietary protocol, and MOTU have said they
have no intention of supporting linux, even to the extent of providing
> > I understand 
> > that it takes alot of work but I think that the firewire soundcards give
> > alot more options than the pci cards.  Any comments?
> In my book support for firewire gear is inevitable, it's just a question of 
> how soon we can have it, right now it does look like it will be a while.

I would imagine that there will be more pressure when small firewire
devices get to the price of USB ones, then more developers will be feeling
the lack of firewire support, and working on it will be less expensive.

- Steve 

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