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Old Jul 20, 2012, 04:17 PM   #1
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Drobo Releases Pricing for Thunderbolt Storage Devices, Preorders Start Monday




Drobo has announced pricing for its two Thunderbolt and USB 3.0-capable storage devices, expected later this month. Units will be available for preorder at a number of resellers including Amazon and Drobo's own online store, starting Monday July 23.




The Drobo Mini starts at $649 with the Drobo 5D starting at $849. Prices include a Thunderbolt cable and 2-year warranty. These are US prices only, with pricing for the rest of the world being announced on Monday.

The company notes that initial demand for the Thunderbolt units have been twice what they've seen for similar product introductions.

Article Link: Drobo Releases Pricing for Thunderbolt Storage Devices, Preorders Start Monday
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 04:21 PM   #2
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$650 for that? The joke that is thunderbolt just gets funnier and funnier. Not even firewire had this kind of early adopter penalty...
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 04:22 PM   #3
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About twice as much as i am really willing to pay for something like that right now.
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 05:17 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by kwikdeth View Post
$650 for that? The joke that is thunderbolt just gets funnier and funnier. Not even firewire had this kind of early adopter penalty...
The real joke is failing to grasp that brand-new technology costs a lot and that the price drops over time. The other joke is ignorantly being dismissive of it based on the initial high price, despite the fact that Dell is about to bring supporting devices to market, and pretending that everything won't change after that.
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 05:49 PM   #5
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The price on the 5D is actually relatively reasonable, even if you completely ignore the Thunderbolt interface on the 5D.

The Drobo 5D is a 5-bay "smart" RAID box that can do the equivalent of both RAID5 and RAID6, can hot-swap drives, can do live array resizing, has an additional SATA slot for an SSD drive for caching (big deal if it actually works, software-wise), AND a built-in battery back-up to avoid the write-hole (very big deal). That's a full set of enterprise-grade features for $850, which really isn't unreasonable, or out of line with the pricing of Drobo's other products. That it comes with a Thunderbolt port as an option is just a bonus.

Depending on how fast the 5D is in real-world tests, I'm at least considering one for my home server's main drive (also backed up) or nearline storage of "not quite critical" data--working files for video editing on an SSD-only Mac that I'd want to protect from a drive failure but isn't worth maintaining a full backup of. If they're as slow as some of the older Drobos, no go. If they actually turn out to be as fast as a good, cached RAID box, though, I might fork out for it.

Of course, there's always the question of whether it's worth $850 + ~$850 of drives (cheap 5x3TB drives + 100GB SSD) for 12TB of usable, slightly-protected data versus just getting two cheap 4-bay RAID0 enclosures and mirroring them or backing up one to the other, which would theoretically run you about $100 less for the works and be at least as fast, and more secure data-wise, although somewhat more prone to drive failures and more labor-intensive to rebuild and generally messy physically.
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Old Sep 22, 2012, 05:35 PM   #6
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Drobo 5D ordered:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Makosuke View Post
The price on the 5D is actually relatively reasonable, even if you completely ignore the Thunderbolt interface on the 5D.

The Drobo 5D is a 5-bay "smart" RAID box that can do the equivalent of both RAID5 and RAID6, can hot-swap drives, can do live array resizing, has an additional SATA slot for an SSD drive for caching (big deal if it actually works, software-wise), AND a built-in battery back-up to avoid the write-hole (very big deal). That's a full set of enterprise-grade features for $850, which really isn't unreasonable, or out of line with the pricing of Drobo's other products. That it comes with a Thunderbolt port as an option is just a bonus.
I took the plunge and ordered everything from amazon.com:
Drobo 5D
5 x HGST Ultrastar 3.5-Inch 3TB 7200rpm Enterprise 24x7 Duty Cycle
Crucial m4 128GB mSATA

Never owned a Drobo before, but I think the concept is really cool, especially the mSata SSD cache. I'm intrigued by this unit and am looking forward to setting it up and seeing how it works. I have seen more negative Drobo reviews than positive ones, so I know this is a gamble.
I will attach this to my iMac and share out the drive in a few different ways throughout my home. I plan on putting all my movies/T.V., fcpx media/scratch, and my softcopy installs media on the drive. The drive will be backed up to a OWC 8TB drive I already have.
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Old Sep 22, 2012, 06:57 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by kennyap View Post
I took the plunge and ordered everything from amazon.com:
Drobo 5D
5 x HGST Ultrastar 3.5-Inch 3TB - Enterprise 24x7 Duty Cycle
Crucial m4 128GB mSATA

Never owned a Drobo before, but I think the concept is really cool, especially the mSata SSD cache. I'm intrigued by this unit and am looking forward to setting it up and seeing how it works. I have seen more negative Drobo reviews than positive ones, so I know this is a gamble.
I will attach this to my iMac and share out the drive in a few different ways throughout my home. I plan on putting my movies, fcpx media/scratch, and installs on the drive. The drive will be backed up to a OWC 8TB drive I already have.
Looking forward to reading your thoughts on the Drobo.
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Old Sep 23, 2012, 05:20 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by kennyap View Post
I took the plunge and ordered everything from amazon.com:
Drobo 5D
5 x HGST Ultrastar 3.5-Inch 3TB 7200rpm Enterprise 24x7 Duty Cycle
Crucial m4 128GB mSATA

Never owned a Drobo before, but I think the concept is really cool, especially the mSata SSD cache. I'm intrigued by this unit and am looking forward to setting it up and seeing how it works. I have seen more negative Drobo reviews than positive ones, so I know this is a gamble.
I will attach this to my iMac and share out the drive in a few different ways throughout my home. I plan on putting all my movies/T.V., fcpx media/scratch, and my softcopy installs media on the drive. The drive will be backed up to a OWC 8TB drive I already have.
Please do post back when you get it, and once you've set it up and tinkered with it for a while. I'm really interested in this as a long-term storage solution for tons of family pictures and some videos. Not a lot of data (maybe 2Tb total), but absolutely priceless.
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 06:30 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Kaibelf View Post
The real joke is failing to grasp that brand-new technology costs a lot and that the price drops over time. The other joke is ignorantly being dismissive of it based on the initial high price, despite the fact that Dell is about to bring supporting devices to market, and pretending that everything won't change after that.

New technology? The early adopter window for Thunderbolt ended about a year ago, and also for responses like this. This would have been a fine retort on 7/20/11.
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Old Sep 23, 2012, 02:11 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaibelf View Post
The real joke is failing to grasp that brand-new technology costs a lot and that the price drops over time. The other joke is ignorantly being dismissive of it based on the initial high price, despite the fact that Dell is about to bring supporting devices to market, and pretending that everything won't change after that.
It's all FireWire again just worse. With such pricing an availability of options it will still be a new technology and DEAD, because no one will use it. Just like it is now to find a good external drive with FireWire 800. You basically have 4 or 5 good options.

Does that make any sense to you?

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by gnasher729 View Post
Just saying: My 2010 MBP copies large files from one USB drive to another at precisely 34 MB per second. It doesn't matter one bit how full the disks are. And it reads at 34 MB per second from ony USB port, while simultanesouly writing to the other port at 34 MB per second.
The key being "large files" which is not what everyone is using external disks for.
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Old Nov 20, 2012, 02:22 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaibelf View Post
The real joke is failing to grasp that brand-new technology costs a lot and that the price drops over time. The other joke is ignorantly being dismissive of it based on the initial high price, despite the fact that Dell is about to bring supporting devices to market, and pretending that everything won't change after that.
then why weren't usb3 devices priced this high by that logic?
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 05:37 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by kwikdeth View Post
$650 for that? The joke that is thunderbolt just gets funnier and funnier. Not even firewire had this kind of early adopter penalty...
What's with the whining? These prices seem more or less comparable to Drobos older, non-TB products.
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Old Jul 21, 2012, 02:29 AM   #13
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I'll wait with curiosity to see what the speeds are like on the new Drobo's.

I have the Drobo 2nd Gen and while I did have some initial issues with the hardware it has been fine since (though I wish the fan was quieter than it is, particularly as it's back in my study ATM). It may not be the fastest machine for reading / writing but I wanted it because:

A) I can put whatever disks I wanted into it
B) it's easy to expand the storage by swapping a disk (though 5 disks would be nicer for extra redundancy)
C) there is no fiddling or futzing, it takes care of everything.

After 4-5 years of use I'm overall happy with it and when I end up with a mac that's USB 3 / TB compatible I'd certainly consider upgrading to a new Drobo.
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Old Jul 21, 2012, 11:21 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by kwikdeth View Post
$650 for that? The joke that is thunderbolt just gets funnier and funnier. Not even firewire had this kind of early adopter penalty...
The Drobo S starts at 799. Not sure I see the penalty. The device looks awesome to me. Yeah, its expensive. If you just want a backup drive, or a place to store your movie collection, this isn't for you.

On the other hand, if you want fast, available, dependable, failsafe datastorage on the fly well beyond what your Mac Pro SSD can handle, then this might be a good choice.

I'm looking forward to pricing a fully equipped model and comparing it to other business-grade solutions, on a price vs benefits basis.
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Old Jul 23, 2012, 04:58 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by kwikdeth View Post
$650 for that? The joke that is thunderbolt just gets funnier and funnier. Not even firewire had this kind of early adopter penalty...
Thunderbolt is pretty funny. I giggle in delight and sometimes laugh out loud when I see how quickly I can get my work done.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by jcpb View Post
$599 (not including the price of TB cable) for a Drobo Mini (no drives)

vs

$350 for a NAS that runs off 4x 2.5" 9.5mm-height HDD/SDD just like the above (no drives)
http://ncix.com/products/?sku=59754

Drobo needs to drop their pricing by at least $200 before I'd consider getting one of these.
I am not one to like or defend Drobo, but it's a DAS so comparing it to a NAS is a pointless exercise since they serve very different purposes. It remains to be seen though what kind of speeds the Drobo can reach and whether they match the performance of the Pegasus or even the Lacie TB.
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Old Jul 23, 2012, 09:03 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by kwikdeth View Post
$650 for that? The joke that is thunderbolt just gets funnier and funnier. Not even firewire had this kind of early adopter penalty...
thunderbolt port connector isn't cheap in the first place. the cable itself cost more than $50 and that is also the case for 3rd party cable. just look at china online store, most of them is more expensive than what apple is selling.
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Old Sep 24, 2012, 07:16 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by kwikdeth View Post
$650 for that? The joke that is thunderbolt just gets funnier and funnier. Not even firewire had this kind of early adopter penalty...
This price quote has absolutely nothing to do with a Thunderbolt connector. The Drobo system is very expensive all by itself, regardless of the connector type. Just do a search for drobo and you'll see the prices.
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Old Sep 24, 2012, 09:33 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by doctor-don View Post
This price quote has absolutely nothing to do with a Thunderbolt connector. The Drobo system is very expensive all by itself, regardless of the connector type. Just do a search for drobo and you'll see the prices.
I don't think the Drobo pricing is too high considering what the device offers, compared to, for example the Synology DS1512+. I've ordered both these units (the Drobo 5D) and compare them as follows:
1. Both are 5-bay units
2. Both offer 'upgradeable features' - Drobo the SSD mSata cache module, Synology the 2gb ram module to bring it to 3gb total.
3. Both offer a few enterprise-grade features (though the features are different for both units). I won't list these here.

Granted they are functionally different (thunderbolt and NAS).
prices (without drives)
Drobo 5D - $849
Synology DS1512+ $799

Making the assumption the Drobo is a quality product, I foresee using this as my primary and backing up to the Synology. Then, as a plus utilizing some of the Synology features (cloud services, multimedia apps, etc).

Here's an observation I've made, but you decide for yourself: looking at the reviews on amazon.com, the drobo units are rated fairly high for these mid-range units, which is what I've been shopping for, the avg. reviews are higher than other DAS and NAS products such as Buffalo, Iomega, Netgear (of course Synology is sparkling). This is contradictory to what I've seen on various forums, but over time I've found the reviews on amazon.com to be reliable. Take this for what it is I guess.
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Old Sep 25, 2012, 12:03 AM   #19
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:-)

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Old Sep 26, 2012, 08:27 PM   #20
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The last time I read a Drobo review, it sounded as if the device is so freaking SLOW that a Thunderbolt connection is completely unnecessary. I think even USB 2.0 may be too fast for it.

This is an older review of the Drobo FW800, but the 25MB/sec transfer speed says it all (that is less than USB 2.0 throughput on a FW800 device).

http://geraldbrandt.com/2010/02/25/d...x-raid5-speed/

Another commentary:

http://gdgt.com/question/what-causes...w-speeds-189m/

The new versions (particularly with SSD drives) may be faster, but I think the Drobo itself appears to be a massive bottleneck. Unless I needed one giant drive from many smaller drives (even then I'd go RAID 5), I'd just assume use multiple 3TB USB3.0 drives and save myself a small fortune (even with the extra backup drive needed, it'd STILL cost less and operate far faster).

Maybe the new versions are night and day better, but I have yet to find a review to prove it so I'll just assume things are only somewhat better at best for now (just found a claim by Drobo themselves that they've updated the hardware and that this new model is 3-5x faster than the old model. That still wouldn't even saturate FW800, let alone USB 3.0 or Thunderbolt (i.e. 75MB/sec isn't even in the same realm as a single Sata drive from 2009, let alone the potential benefits you could get from RAID 5 multiple high speed Sata 3 drives, which could potentially saturate USB 3.0 in short order with multiple SSD units). Thunderbolt is overkill here.
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 04:22 PM   #21
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If apple wants to update their iMacs anytime soon I would consider buying a drobo mini. Too bad it's useless right now with my Mid 2007 iMac...
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 04:23 PM   #22
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Oh great! More affordable Thunderbolt products!
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Old Jul 20, 2012, 04:26 PM   #23
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I'll stick with my Synology NAS thankyouverymuch. Works with everything.
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Old Jul 21, 2012, 03:25 PM   #24
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I'll stick with my Synology NAS thankyouverymuch. Works with everything.
100% agree!
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Old Jul 21, 2012, 09:32 PM   #25
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100% agree!
Again, which model of the Synology has Thunderbolt built in? Really. I'm curious.
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