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Old Feb 14, 2013, 05:43 PM   #26
fourthtunz
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Sure if you don't need this it's not interesting!

I've just sold my mac pro and now just have my mac book pro and
one of these docks are going to get my money!
If you've got a lot of stuff to plug in and you want to be mobile this makes more sense than having two MacBooks!
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 05:47 PM   #27
gnurf
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Originally Posted by FloatingBones View Post
Since new Macs have USB 3.0, this sounds like a tough sell for a manufacturer.
My 11 or so USB devices won't fit. At least two are going to need USB3 speeds too (big audio interface, external drive) to make me happy. The rest could work with USB2 hubs, but why settle for less when USB3 is the new standard?

So yes, people exist who would buy pure USB3 hubs over TB.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 06:55 PM   #28
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Why are all these TB adaptors/docks so expensive??! I hope these useless TB ports on the new Macs finally pay off later. FireWire is much more useful ATM.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 07:01 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Imac Sam View Post
I would just like to see a simple Thunderbolt --->> USB 3.0 adapter. Then I would be golden with my Mid-2011 Imac.
Exactly. It surprises me how no one is working on one...
That and an SSD is all I need to make my late-2011 MBP last a couple more years.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 07:39 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Fatalbert View Post
Why are all these TB adaptors/docks so expensive??!
They use older Thunderbolt controllers, which means they need a lot of external components (other ICs). More components = higher costs. And the market is pretty small.
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 07:57 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by oneMadRssn View Post
I would consider buying it at $50, and I would consider asking for it if my employer were to pay for it at $100, but it boggles my mind that they would sell a single one of these at $300.
You know it's too expensive when you'd feel bad asking your employer to buy one FOR YOU....
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Old Feb 14, 2013, 07:57 PM   #32
iCaleb
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Why is the usb 3.0 speed so bad on this dock?
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 01:25 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by Crzyrio View Post
I would much prefer this baby ---> http://hengedocks.com/order_horizontal_dock.php

...If they ever release it. I have always wanted a dock like that for my macbook
What does it use to connect to the mac?
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 02:51 AM   #34
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Early April Fools'!!!
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 03:19 AM   #35
Vidivici
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Originally Posted by iCaleb View Post
Why is the usb 3.0 speed so bad on this dock?
Bad ? It's 2.5Gbps , or over 300MB/s , no hard drive in the world will notice this.
Unless you start with expensive Raid 0 devices or top line SSD's

Normal external drives do not top 150-160MB/s
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 06:58 AM   #36
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Way too much money for a "dock"

Is it even aluminum, or is that silver-painted plastic?
This should cost $50 tops.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 08:05 AM   #37
dma550
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Originally Posted by freediverx View Post
Is it even aluminum, or is that silver-painted plastic?
This should cost $50 tops.
I think it has more going on inside, if you break out the individual component costs, like the ethernet $50, the USB, etc.

Personally I would give up the FW for esata.

Now, when I look at Henge's solution, I see it as something more for not too much more money.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 09:45 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by nilk View Post
Let's say you already having the 30" monitor, buying this to add TB capabilities instead of buying a $999 Apple Thunderbolt Display (which lacks audio out and lacks USB 3.0) may actually make sense.
True, true. There's also monitor spanning, which a lot of people might want to do with their laptop+external setup.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 11:40 AM   #39
theluggage
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Originally Posted by el-John-o View Post
It's a neat convenience product, but it's awfully expensive without adding any real functionality to the machine.
rMBPs and Airs don't have Ethernet or Firewire - this provides it.
2011 MBPs don't have USB3 - this provides it.

If you already have Ethernet, Firewire or USB3, this doubles up your interfaces... note, this provides extra interfaces not to be confused with other 'port replicator' docks.

OK, so having two Ethernet interfaces isn't an obvious plus but you could, for example, turn your Mac Mini server into a firewall/router for your cable modem.

Having said that - yeah, its a bit much for a Belkin. Bring back the eSATA, throw in a thunderbolt cable, include a MagSafe PSU in the box and stick it all in a nice lump of Jony-Ive-esque machined aluminium and I'll take one.

Quote:
I'm still waiting for a thunderbolt dock that will support multiple monitor out.
As I understand it, you only get 1 display per Thunderbolt controller - either built in (as per the Apple Thunderbolt Display) or connected to the TB through port.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 03:36 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by theluggage View Post
rMBPs and Airs don't have Ethernet or Firewire - this provides it.
2011 MBPs don't have USB3 - this provides it.

If you already have Ethernet, Firewire or USB3, this doubles up your interfaces... note, this provides extra interfaces not to be confused with other 'port replicator' docks.

OK, so having two Ethernet interfaces isn't an obvious plus but you could, for example, turn your Mac Mini server into a firewall/router for your cable modem.

Having said that - yeah, its a bit much for a Belkin. Bring back the eSATA, throw in a thunderbolt cable, include a MagSafe PSU in the box and stick it all in a nice lump of Jony-Ive-esque machined aluminium and I'll take one.



As I understand it, you only get 1 display per Thunderbolt controller - either built in (as per the Apple Thunderbolt Display) or connected to the TB through port.
That's true, it does add functionality for certain models.

Anyway, for the thunderbolt; a thunderbolt port contains DisplayPort 1.2 technology. That's why I'm able to use any old miniDP connector or monitor with that port. DisplayPort 1.2 supports daisy chaining or hubs, i.e., multiple monitors on one port. That doesn't mean Apple hasn't done something to make that not work, BUT, the DisplayPort portion of thunderbolt SHOULD, in theory, allow it to happen.

There is already a dock available for pre-order that has THREE miniDP ports on the back of it. They are not thunderbolt, but miniDP. Now, the rMBP has two thunderbolt ports, so it could be using both, but that means at least one of them has to be using the DisplayPort Daisy Chaining or Hub feature. Unfortunately, it's a rMBP only dock (it's a physical dock, not one that just plugs in with a cable) I'd like to see one similar to the belkin dock, but the DisplayPort hub capabilities. Even if not, if someone would FINALLY come out with a DisplayPort Hub, I'd be happy with that too. Some companies have hubs that will stretch a display or use software, but so far NOBODY is building a DP 1.2 compliant hub that supports native multiple monitors through one port. Perhaps there aren't many folks like me who want to use multiple external monitors with their notebook I guess.

Another option for me is to get a thunderbolt display (talk about pricey) which does support daisy chaining to a miniDP display. But, that's another huge expense when I already have two displays, and won't work with my Windows machine. The goal here, is to be able to use either my windows machine OR my mac on both of my displays (27" Cinema and another 23" display)
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 04:34 PM   #41
theluggage
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Originally Posted by el-John-o View Post
Now, the rMBP has two thunderbolt ports, so it could be using both, but that means at least one of them has to be using the DisplayPort Daisy Chaining or Hub feature.
Maybe - but download the photo gallery for the "Henge" dock and look at the top and back views and compare those with pictures of the rMBP from the Apple website: you can clearly see where the dock connects to the rMBP. The three connections on the left would be 2xTB/DisplayPort and a USB3. The two on the right would be a second USB3 port and... HDMI. Yet there's no HDMI on the dock.

So the dock could be using HDMI to get the third signal - which is what other demos of three monitors on the rMBP have done.

Quote:
Another option for me is to get a thunderbolt display (talk about pricey) which does support daisy chaining to a miniDP display.
Unfortunately, its been widely reported that it doesn't - unless you chain another thunderbolt peripheral from the Thunderbolt display and chain the DisplayPort device from that.

As I said - each TB controller extracts 1 display signal and one PCIe bus lane. The TB monitor uses the display signal to drive its screen - to get another display signal you need a second TB controller.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 05:28 PM   #42
ZipZap
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useless without 3 TB ports
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 05:30 PM   #43
Chaszmyr
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Doesn't look available to order to me... It still says they can notify me when it's available.
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 06:33 PM   #44
stevejolly
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Uh, HDMI, anyone?

I'm surprised that there haven't been more loud whines about Belkin's elimination of an HDMI port. It isn't even mentioned in MacRumors's earlier story about Belkin's dropping the eSATA port from its dock. Just kinda slipped away into the dusk...

I'd pay some good money ($300+, easy) to be able to add a second big display to my 2012 MacBook Pro (I already have a nice 27" Samsung using up my one TB port) without popping for an Apple Thunderbolt Display. My MBP is NOT an rMBP, which brings up Apple's decision to not include two TBolt ports or a dedicated HDMI port on the mid-2012 15" MBP; but I digress.

Belkin is leaving a lot of $$$ on the table by not providing for a second external display. FCP users and graphics semi-pros like me could get much more mileage out of our MBP's with an HDMI port in addition to the TB out (and thus two BIG displays) along with the other dock goodies. eSATA I don't miss -- HDMI, I do! And please note my dying breath: "We are NOT going to buy non-upgradable rMBP's!" (Why am I turning blue?)

The current Belkin configuration won't help us any -- obviously, the dock, as now configured, just moves the existing limitation (and problem) one TB cable's length away. Whine, whiiine, whiiiiiiine...!
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Old Feb 15, 2013, 11:13 PM   #45
el-John-o
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Originally Posted by theluggage View Post
Maybe - but download the photo gallery for the "Henge" dock and look at the top and back views and compare those with pictures of the rMBP from the Apple website: you can clearly see where the dock connects to the rMBP. The three connections on the left would be 2xTB/DisplayPort and a USB3. The two on the right would be a second USB3 port and... HDMI. Yet there's no HDMI on the dock.

So the dock could be using HDMI to get the third signal - which is what other demos of three monitors on the rMBP have done.
Ohhh, I forgot about the HDMI port. Well that WOULD explain it then. Hmm. Still though, since it's DisplayPort 1.2 compatible, doesn't that mean it HAS to support all DP 1.2 features in order to use the standard? Maybe I'm grasping at straws but I'm really hoping that if DP hubs ever do come out, that they'll be compatible through my Mac's thunderbolt port.

Quote:
Unfortunately, its been widely reported that it doesn't - unless you chain another thunderbolt peripheral from the Thunderbolt display and chain the DisplayPort device from that.

As I said - each TB controller extracts 1 display signal and one PCIe bus lane. The TB monitor uses the display signal to drive its screen - to get another display signal you need a second TB controller.
Ah, I recall reading that, that's right. The TB display sure is funky. For example, I've always understood that the video is carried by DisplayPort. I've always seen the diagrams showing something like this;

DisplayPort -->
Thunderbolt
PCI-Express -->

So, one thing I never understood, is why the TB display is not compatible with MiniDP? Even with reduced features. I would own one, except they aren't compatible with DisplayPort or anything BUT thunderbolt. I would be perfectly fine with losing all of the 'dock' features when plugging it in to my desktop PC's graphics card. Then I could use those features with my MBP when it's plugged into it. But I ordered the Cinema Display instead because of it's compatibility with my other machines. Simple cheap adapters will make it work with anything. In my mind, in order for thunderbolt to carry 'video', there'd basically have to be a GPU at the other end (in the display) which there's not.

iFixIt did a teardown and it seems like, from what I understand, the TB display does in fact use miniDP for video, but creates some sort of a 'handshake' with thunderbolt, and requires it (which we already know) to work. But, I just don't understand why Apple decided not to allow a 'legacy' mode where it could work as a Cinema Display?

I dunno. Still crossing my fingers for DP hubs that will work with a MBP, so I don't have to resort to a USB 'video adapter' for my other monitor.

Edit: Re-read it. Actually, the panel itself connects to the logic board via displayport. So it is, in fact, a DisplayPort monitor. But the thunderbolt logic board lacks the ability to 'pass through' displayport signals from a graphics card (like my 7970 in my desktop with miniDP). Too bad!
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Last edited by el-John-o; Feb 15, 2013 at 11:21 PM.
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 05:58 AM   #46
theluggage
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Originally Posted by el-John-o View Post
So, one thing I never understood, is why the TB display is not compatible with MiniDP? Even with reduced features. I would own one, except they aren't compatible with DisplayPort or anything BUT thunderbolt.

The thunderbolt chip in the computer takes 2 PCIe 'lanes' from the CPU, 2 DisplayPort outputs from the GPU and encodes them into a single Thunderbolt 'signal'. That signal is incomprehensible to DisplayPort devices.

I think people misunderstand what happens when you plug a MiniDP device into the Thunderbolt socket on your computer. The MiniDP device doesn't take the Thunderbolt signal, ignore the PCIe bits and just use the DisplayPort data. What happens is that the Thunderbolt controller detects that you've connected a legacy device, and switches into MiniDP mode - routing a video signal straight from the GPU into the MiniDP device.

A TB peripheral controller chip can extract one PCIe lane and one video channel from the TB signal. If you daisychain a MiniDP device to the peripheral, the 'thru' port has to morph back into a MiniDP port and output a video signal - but the only video source it has is the video channel extracted by the controller chip. If the peripheral is a disc drive or something that's fine, but if its a display then its already using that signal. Add a second peripheral, with its own TB chip extracting the second video channel, and you can hang a MiniDP device off of that.

As for the ATD using DisplayPort internally - part of the idea of DisplayPort was that it could replace both the external DVI/HDMI connection and the internal LVDS interface previously used to connect display panels.

Having said that, every other high end monitor offers a choice of connections so I don't think there's any just cause or impediment why Apple couldn't produce a display with Thunderbolt, DisplayPort, DVI and/or HDMI inputs or, for that matter, produce 'proper' Thunderbolt-to-DVI/HDMI/DisplayPort adapters rather than recycling the old MiniDP ones.
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 11:12 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by theluggage View Post
The thunderbolt chip in the computer takes 2 PCIe 'lanes' from the CPU, 2 DisplayPort outputs from the GPU and encodes them into a single Thunderbolt 'signal'. That signal is incomprehensible to DisplayPort devices.

I think people misunderstand what happens when you plug a MiniDP device into the Thunderbolt socket on your computer. The MiniDP device doesn't take the Thunderbolt signal, ignore the PCIe bits and just use the DisplayPort data. What happens is that the Thunderbolt controller detects that you've connected a legacy device, and switches into MiniDP mode - routing a video signal straight from the GPU into the MiniDP device.

A TB peripheral controller chip can extract one PCIe lane and one video channel from the TB signal. If you daisychain a MiniDP device to the peripheral, the 'thru' port has to morph back into a MiniDP port and output a video signal - but the only video source it has is the video channel extracted by the controller chip. If the peripheral is a disc drive or something that's fine, but if its a display then its already using that signal. Add a second peripheral, with its own TB chip extracting the second video channel, and you can hang a MiniDP device off of that.

As for the ATD using DisplayPort internally - part of the idea of DisplayPort was that it could replace both the external DVI/HDMI connection and the internal LVDS interface previously used to connect display panels.

Having said that, every other high end monitor offers a choice of connections so I don't think there's any just cause or impediment why Apple couldn't produce a display with Thunderbolt, DisplayPort, DVI and/or HDMI inputs or, for that matter, produce 'proper' Thunderbolt-to-DVI/HDMI/DisplayPort adapters rather than recycling the old MiniDP ones.
Right and that makes sense, but I just feel like (futily, I know that's not Apple's way) being that the LG display inside the monitor is in fact a DP enabled display, some sort of a passthrough is more than possible. Then they wouldn't have to maintain two lines. A DisplayPort passthrough capability would work with the Mac Pro as well.

I don't so much mind the lack of multiple connections because miniDP is easily adaptable and compatible with just about anything. But the thunderbolt display having legacy backwards compatibility is more than possible. Oh well, pointless rant I guess. Apple doesn't hang on to old technologies, they only support technologies in the acendency. All for that. But, sometimes, when they are 99.9999% the way there to backwards compatibility (Such as already having the technology build in), it seems sort of silly.
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 05:25 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by el-John-o View Post
That's true, it does add functionality for certain models.

Anyway, for the thunderbolt; a thunderbolt port contains DisplayPort 1.2 technology.
No it doesn't. Thunderbolt carries the previous versions of both protocols. PCI-e v2.0 ( not v3.0) and DisplayPort 1.1 (not 1.2 ). It is focused on moving more legacy/mature protoctols, not stuff on the bleeding edge.

It mimics 1.2 in that can get up to two streams out of a port, but it isn't 1.2 protocol.





----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by theluggage View Post
The thunderbolt chip in the computer takes 2 PCIe 'lanes' from the CPU, 2 DisplayPort outputs from the GPU and encodes them into a single Thunderbolt 'signal'.
It is actually four PCI-e v2.0 lanes.

And it is up to 2 DisplayPort outputs. Some TB controllers only have one and some of the smallest ones don't have any DisplayPort inputs. The last primarily oriented toward dongle use (e.g., TB -> FW , TB -> Ethernet ) which end the chain anyway.
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Old Feb 16, 2013, 05:59 PM   #49
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No it doesn't. Thunderbolt carries the previous versions of both protocols. PCI-e v2.0 ( not v3.0) and DisplayPort 1.1 (not 1.2 ). It is focused on moving more legacy/mature protoctols, not stuff on the bleeding edge.

It mimics 1.2 in that can get up to two streams out of a port, but it isn't 1.2 protocol.

Oh okay. I just remember seeing VESA using some of the DP 1.2 hubs (that have yet to exist in the outside world) with a MBP, and saying that thunderbolt-equipped Apple notebooks would be 'compatible' with these hubs. I suppose that doesn't necessarily mean it's 1.2, but at least that it would support those two signals coming out of the hub.
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Old Feb 17, 2013, 02:05 AM   #50
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All I'd care about is a simple thunderbolt to eSATA converter since my external disk has that technology in it. Would make it a whole lot faster than firewire 800!
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