Most people that have been using Macs professionally use or have used FireWire devices, due to their speed and longevity. Apple’s current MacBook Pros, however, only have one FireWire 800 port. What’s a multi-device power user to do? Moshi answers the call with their iLynx 800.
What is it?
The iLynx 800 is a FireWire 800 hub – a device that can connect multiple FireWire devices to your computer using only one port. FireWire hubs are something of a rarity for some reason, and tend to be expensive.
Although the iLynx 800 is fabricated from plastic, it nevertheless has an incredible solid feel. Both USB and FireWire 800 cables plug in securely and with minimal effort, and aren’t easily removed without deliberate force. The iLynx 800 is well-designed, matches the aesthetics of an iMac or MacBook (it was designed for the iMac), and performs solidly.
What’s in the box?
Moshi’s packaging is minimalist – the box contains only the iLynx, attractively and securely packaged in biodegradable cardboard. The packaging is both effective, and as minimal as I would want it for this type of product.
We put the iLynx through the paces, running numerous tests. At it’s peak, it was running 4 consecutive USB devices (my iPhone, plus 3 hard drives, each of which were transferring data) as well as 2 FireWire 800 devices (again, both hard drives transferring data). The iLynx was able to perform admirably even under full load, and while transfer speeds did eventually slow, this would be expected from any hub.
Note that the two FireWire drives I am utilizing are both made by Lacie, are extremely strong industry-grade performers, and were graciously provided for us to use in various hard drive-related tests that we might perform. They are the Lacie Rugged Mobile and the Lacie D2 Quadra, and they team up to form the ultimate FireWire 800 Storage Solution (one to stay on your desk, one which you can take places, both lightning fast.)
Unlike most FireWire 800 hubs, which require external power, the iLynx 800 is powered only by the iMac or MacBook’s bus. This is achieved by plugging the device into both the FireWire and USB ports on your device. I also appreciate that it tucks nicely under my cheap bargain store laptop stand, helping me hide and organize my cables.
Comments / What I’d Change
While the device is well-designed, and the rubber pads on the bottom prevent damage to your table or iMac pedestel, they do not prevent sliding. If anything, I’d add a bit of weight to the iLynx to help it stay in place better.
I really enjoyed using the iLynx – it has become an indispensable tool in my daily work, and it performs as good or better than any hub I have used in the past. With it’s professional design, and superior level of functionality, as well as it’s unique and affordable position in the consumer market, I award the Moshi iLynx 800 4.75 out of 5 start – the highest rating I have given to date.
For more information, or to purchase the iLynx 800 ($75), visit Moshi online.