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Maxing out USB bandwidth

Tags:
  • Dell Studio Xps
  • Bandwidth
  • USB
  • Devices
  • Components
Last response: in Components
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July 24, 2009 6:49:39 AM

Hi, I just recently purchased the Dell XPS 13, however a small problem is the lack of USB ports. There are only 2 available. I am thinking of getting a USB hub, but I am concerned that my devices would be nerfed from the decreased amount of bandwidth. Obviously, an external hard drive would need its independent USB port if you don't want to slow down speeds, but what about other devices? Mouse, keyboard, printer, usb soundcard, etc.? Because these are all connected through one usb port (and split through a hub) would they become less effective? Would I have data loss?

How much of the bandwidth do these devices use? Is there a tool/program that can test how much actual data is transferred through USB on a particular device?

More about : maxing usb bandwidth

July 24, 2009 7:23:17 AM

If at all possible, try to connect any high-speed devices such as disks, scanners, etc. directly to the port on the computer. Low-speed devices like mice and keyboards are fine to go through a hub.

If you have an open PCI slot on your motherboard there are plenty of adapter cards that will give you up to 4 more USB ports. They're very cheap, typically $20-30.
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July 25, 2009 8:08:40 AM

I don't think there are any expansion slots for the XPS 13. Would laser gaming mouse still be runnable on "low-speed" devices? Mice such as the Logitech G5/G7/G9?
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July 25, 2009 8:28:13 AM

Hes using a laptop, so adding extra usb ports would be done by the 54mm express card slot via an expansion card. The mouse you speak of should work just fine on a hub but look into an expansion card if your planning to use quite a few usb items.
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July 25, 2009 8:35:31 AM

Bandwidth is NOT an issue.

Currently, the maximum USB hard drive speed is about 32MB/second or just over half of your available 60MB/second. This limitation is due to the current SATA/PATA->USB chips. The hard drives themselves exceed this.

It's interesting to note that hard drive speed drops as the average file size being transferred drops. Even with a hard drive with maximum average read speeds of 100MB/second you can see only 12MB/second for music files part way through the drive.

So the answer seems to be apparent. Get a hub. No worries.
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July 25, 2009 8:40:33 AM

Expansion slot for USB port?

I suppose you could, but why not simply use an existing USB port?

Also, I've noticed the Expresscard ports are in an awkward spot if you use a mouse. I bought my dad an eSATA Expresscard before realizing that the cord is in the way of the mouse so it's only worth using if he uses a separate monitor and keyboard.

Make sure to get a powered hub.
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July 25, 2009 12:02:24 PM

Quote:
Currently, the maximum USB hard drive speed is about 32MB/second or just over half of your available 60MB/second. This limitation is due to the current SATA/PATA->USB chips. The hard drives themselves exceed this.


USB hard drives use the same normal hdd's that can get 70-120 MB/s in external enclosure. Only thing limiting speed is USB. Yes max speed is 60MB/s but USB has too much overhead limiting real life speeds at around 40 MB/s
It is best to use e-Sata external Hdd's
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