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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:03 PM   #1
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ThunderBolt Products Starting to Roll Out at NAB






Pegasus R4 RAID w/ Thunderbolt, photo by @josh_diamond
The 2011 National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) trade show is underway. The event is primarily targeted at Audio/Video/Film professionals, Apple fans will be interested to see that companies are starting to finally introduce Thunderbolt-compatible devices into the market. Jigsaw Broadcast posts a brief summary of the some of Thunderbolt solutions introduced so far. They include products from AJA, Blackmagic, Promise, and Matrox. All are targeted at video professionals, but finally shows some industry adoption of the new connectivity standard.

Apple and Intel launched Thunderbolt alongside the new MacBook Pro revisions in February. Thunderbolt promises faster connectivity than USB 3.0 and FireWire and we expect it to be included in all future Mac products.

Promise was one of the first companies that announced support for RAID Thunderbolt drive enclosures back in February. Those enclosures aren't yet shipping, but at least a couple of early prototypes are being demoed on the NAB floor. @sforde reports on one at the Adobe booth:
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Wow! We have 1 of only 2 promise raids in world with thunderbolt at the Adobe booth at #NAB. CS5.5 screams on it.
The other must be at the Blackmagic booth which is pictured above. Meanwhile, the big anticipated news from NAB is Apple's announcement of a new version of Final Cut Pro. That news should arrive tomorrow night if rumors prove true.

Article Link: ThunderBolt Products Starting to Roll Out at NAB
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:06 PM   #2
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wonder what the price is. Actually, not sure if I want to know.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:06 PM   #3
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Future is lookin pretty cool.

Not sure how Thunderbolt works, as I'm sure not everyone does yet. But is this a technology that can evolve on its own? As USB 2.0 and 3.0?
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:07 PM   #4
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Good sign, maybe I'll be able to buy a consumer external hard drive with Thunderbolt by fall.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:13 PM   #5
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What time is the new FCP being shown? Will there be a live or after event stream? I was able to use the current version in a school class two years ago and I'm interested to see how it's going to change... Can't afford it today, but someday I'd like to replace iMovie with it.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:21 PM   #6
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I wonder what the point of this connection is...seriously. I don't connect 20 HDD's at a time in RAID 0. The only use I could see for Thunderbolt over USB3 is when I am trying to use the same connection for a few 30" displays in CONJUNCTION with SSD's in RAID 0....

I just can't see anything using this type of bandwidth...not at least until SSD's completely dominate the storage market.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:22 PM   #7
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Sucks that there will be no PCIe option for Mac Pro owners. I just bought a new 6-Core system. However, "Light Peak" will be better with full system fiber optic integration driving everything from drives to displays, making for less internal parts for one universal control system (as I understand it).

Perhaps in the 2012 Mac Pro's (this would be hugely beneficial in portables and iMacs as well as they could benefit from less hardware with a streamlined "Light Peak/Thunderbolt" system).
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:23 PM   #8
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Could someone clarify this for me: Aren't hard drives too slow to make use of Thunderbolt anyway? In a typical USB 2.0 external hard drive, what is the bottleneck in speed: The speed at which the hard drive spins, or the USB 2.0 connection? If it's the USB, then why do people even care about the RPM of a drive? If it's the RPM, then isn't USB 2.0 fast enough to run a hard drive at its native speed?
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtOfWarfare View Post
What time is the new FCP being shown? Will there be a live or after event stream? I was able to use the current version in a school class two years ago and I'm interested to see how it's going to change... Can't afford it today, but someday I'd like to replace iMovie with it.
I have a feeling the next version of FCP will be more affordable, something a bit more expensive than FCE is. And then Apple will K.O. FCE.

Haven't heard of any official live streams but maybe a rouge one will pop up on Justin.tv or ustream or wait for something official on Apple's site.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:26 PM   #10
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Thunderbolt looks pretty sweet for high-end applications, but I really hope that Apple doesn't try to push this standard INSTEAD of USB 3.0. Future hardware refreshes need to get BOTH of these plugs. As cool as Thunderbolt looks, I'm looking around on my desk and EVERYTHING is USB - my iPhone (OK, I'm sure they will make an adapter for that), my camera, my hard drive, my flash drive, even my PS3 controller.

That, and lack of FaceTime connectivity, concern me.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:28 PM   #11
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I assume the iMacs and air books will get thunderbolt in the next few months. So where does that leave the iPad? Will it always be able to support thunderbolt too? Eventually?
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:30 PM   #12
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Are there any hard drives that can even unleash 1.25 GBps?
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:33 PM   #13
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cool.....I guess we can expect thunderbolt in MBA soon then.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:34 PM   #14
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Apple fans will be interested to see that companies are starting to finally introduce Thunderbolt-compatible devices into the market.
Yeah they're FINALLY introducing products. These peripheral companies have apparently been sitting on their hands doing nothing since this brand-new technology was released 6 weeks ago. I mean how hard is it to procure this new part, redesign the insides of your equipment, recreate your cases to accommodate a new port, and submit it to a battery of tests?
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:36 PM   #15
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Could someone clarify this for me: Aren't hard drives too slow to make use of Thunderbolt anyway?
I haven't read for sure, but I'm guessing these products are RAIDed for speed, not redundancy.

How many drives are in there? It's possible they've got the speeds up pretty high on them.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:37 PM   #16
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This is all well and good.

As long as we don't end up with 50 million 3rd party peripherals using USB3 costing $29.95 each

And 10 Thunderbolt peripherals costing $499.99 each.

A little exaggerated example perhaps, but you get my drift.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:39 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baryon View Post
Could someone clarify this for me: Aren't hard drives too slow to make use of Thunderbolt anyway? In a typical USB 2.0 external hard drive, what is the bottleneck in speed: The speed at which the hard drive spins, or the USB 2.0 connection? If it's the USB, then why do people even care about the RPM of a drive? If it's the RPM, then isn't USB 2.0 fast enough to run a hard drive at its native speed?
http://www.extremetech.com/article2/...2173844,00.asp

The bottleneck is (or can be) USB 2.0. Most people who worry about RPM aren't buying hard drives to be placed in external USB drives. Internal drives run on the faster SATA interface. Also, RAID enclosures makes the difference even greater, as you can access data faster.

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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:40 PM   #18
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external GPU's!
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:41 PM   #19
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I just want a TB-USB 3 adapter. That's all
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:43 PM   #20
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Look forward to thunderbolt hub. USB 3.0, esata and a DisplayPort daisy chain.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:49 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by barkomatic View Post
Good sign, maybe I'll be able to buy a consumer external hard drive with Thunderbolt by fall.
This is more than evident, since TB devices will just start to trickle with the millions and millions of MBP and future iMac users out there. TB is THE future of I/O, especially given Intel's explicit endorsement - USB 3.0 is dead meat in comparison.

I am gonna buy the new iMac with TB, and hope to get an external TB HD by May at the latest.

Quote:
Originally Posted by baryon View Post
Could someone clarify this for me: Aren't hard drives too slow to make use of Thunderbolt anyway? In a typical USB 2.0 external hard drive, what is the bottleneck in speed: The speed at which the hard drive spins, or the USB 2.0 connection? If it's the USB, then why do people even care about the RPM of a drive? If it's the RPM, then isn't USB 2.0 fast enough to run a hard drive at its native speed?
No, not with SandForce SSDs getting in the mainstream market now - with their 6Gb/s speeds (and more to come in the near future), they will easily justify the use of TB...

Last edited by Doctor Q; Apr 11, 2011 at 07:54 PM. Reason: post merge
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:55 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Piggie View Post
This is and good.

As long as we don't end up with 50 million 3rd party peripherals using USB3 costing $29.95 each

And 10 Thunderbolt peripherals costing $499.99 each.

A little exaggerated example perhaps, but you get my drift.
Probably not to far off. what will be funny is all the people who bought a 2011 mbp, I am guessing probably will not choose to pay premium for the drive and will upgrade their laptop prior to buying affordable TB drive for thier machine.

I hope I am wrong, But I think 500 might not be to far off from actual price.
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:57 PM   #23
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Probably not to far off. what will be funny is all the people who bought a 2011 mbp, I am guessing probably will not choose to pay premium for the drive and will upgrade their laptop prior to buying affordable TB drive for thier machine.

I hope I am wrong, But I think 500 might not be to far off from actual price.
This is NOT the case with FW 800 today - not to mention that USB 3.0 peripherals are still far from being mainstream...
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 02:59 PM   #24
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Are any details known on the licensing costs of TB devices?
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Old Apr 11, 2011, 03:01 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baryon View Post
Could someone clarify this for me: Aren't hard drives too slow to make use of Thunderbolt anyway? In a typical USB 2.0 external hard drive, what is the bottleneck in speed: The speed at which the hard drive spins, or the USB 2.0 connection? If it's the USB, then why do people even care about the RPM of a drive? If it's the RPM, then isn't USB 2.0 fast enough to run a hard drive at its native speed?
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Originally Posted by flopticalcube View Post
Look forward to thunderbolt hub. USB 3.0, esata and a DisplayPort daisy chain.
What he said. You can get adaptors for different things, plus daisy chain multiple devices together. One device may not be able to use the whole TB bandwidth, but if you add a bunch of accessories to the same port, it'll add up. Right now, the only single device that might be able to utilize the whole bandwidth would be a RAID array and other high-end stuff. But as SSDs come more common & speed up, we'll see TB being more useful. This definitely won't happen overnight, no matter how much some of us might hope.
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