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Old 19th June 2020
Gear Nut
Mickey Free's Avatar

Firewire to Thunderbolt passes data, but will Firewire pass data through USB-C?

Complicated Interface port question here, related to my Firewire Apollo interface:

As many probably know, it is possible to route firewire devices to a Thunderbolt 3 equipped mac by using a firewire to Thunderbolt 2 adaptor and then connecting that to a Thunderbolt 2 to Thunderbolt 3 adaptor. I have done this with my Apollo firewire unit.

I am now considering buying a new PC laptop for audio production, and I'm considering one with the powerful new AMD Ryzen processors. Apparently, the Ryzen processors are not currently compatible with Thunderbolt. But their fantastic performance makes them seem like a worthwhile investment.

My question is this: If firewire and thunderbolt are indeed completely different protocols, yet you can pass data from a FW device to a computer's TB port, is it possible to pass data from an FW device, using the above adaptors, to a regular USB-C superspeed port, as many of the Ryzen laptops have in place of a Thunderbolt 3 port. I realize this will be at the same speed as FW, but will the connection work? I haven't been able to find any answers. Everything I've ever read has said you can't adapt Firewire to regular USB as they use a different data system (forgive my lack of technical knowledge and jargon), but if that is so why does FW to TB work?

Any help would be great! Thanks.