How to fix “Unable to List Firewire Devices” error in Mac OSX

Are you trying to use any Firewire compatible device and ended up with this error “Unable to List Firewire Devices” in Mac Devices ?. Here some brief explanation which could help you to resolve this issue.

About Firewire :
Apple first introduced the Firewire technology (IEEE 1394) to transfer data at higher speed. And most of the Macs manufactured in year 2000-2011 has an Firewire built in. In 2011 Apple began replacing Firewire with the Thunderbolt interface and, as of 2014, FireWire has been replaced by Thunderbolt on new Macs.


Performance :
FireWire 400 and FireWire 800 are used extensively in professional videography, video and film editing and computer graphics editing and rendering for its high data-transfer speed in real time. The original Firewire came with 400 Mbit/s speed. When USB 2.0 arrived packing a 480 Mbit/s transfer rate FireWire responded with the FireWire 800 with a transfer of 800 Mbit/s

Compatability :
There are lot of hardware devices already in place mostly media professional to record Audio/Video use Firewire for a greater throughput. In the recent years all the Mac Devices has FW-800 9 pins ports. But still its compatible with FW-400 Third party Devices through a FW-400 to FW-800 Cable.

Lets come to the actual issue :
Recently my friend bought a Presonus Studio Live Prefessional Audio Recording Mixer which has a Firewire Interface FW400. When we tried connecting to a MacBook Pro 2012 with Yosemite with Interface FW-800, it throws this error “Unable to List Firewire Devices”. The error retained even after re-installing the required drivers more than 20 times. Presonus came with a Cable with which can be used to connect FW-400 to FW-800. It works good on a OLD Macbook with FW-400. So, something wrong with either the New Macbook or Cable.

Troubleshooting :
We have done the following troubleshooting to fix the issue
1.PRAM Reset
2.SMC Reset
3.Unistall the Universal Access Control and Installed the Latest version of 1.7.2
4.Firewire Link Id in Page 3 of PreSonus set to 0

StudioLiveMixer Presonus
StudioLiveMixer Presonus

Nothing worked. Finally the culprit is the Cable which was bundled with the Presonus Device. So, Please don’t think a New Cable will not fail. It took lot of hours to figure out what went wrong. We bought a new cable for Rs.200 INR and everything worked like charm. Now the New Macbook able to detect the device and we were able to record the audio.


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