Thunderbolt or USB 3?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by ViperDesign, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. macrumors 6502a

    ViperDesign

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Location:
    Utah
    #1
    So I am considering moving away from my HP MediaSmart Server to one of those when my new iMac gets here.

    I know thunderbolt is more expensive but will I see a big speed difference between my gignetwork which gives me around 50 to 70 MB/sec? Or even USB3 for that matter.

    Thanks
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Menge

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2008
    Location:
    Amsterdam
    #2
    Thunderbolt is 10Gb/s
    SATA III (current fastest consumer disk interface) is 6Gb/s
    USB 3 is 5Gb/s
    Gigabit Ethernet is 1Gb/s

    Whichever interface you choose, your bottleneck will always be the network. If you're transferring files over the network.
     
  3. macrumors 68000

    53x12

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    #3

    To add to that, external USB 3 drives are significantly cheaper than TB. Balance of speed vs size vs cost. What is the saying, you can only have 2 of the 3?
     
  4. macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #4
    USB 3 has a lot of CPU overhead compared to Thunderbolt.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    ViperDesign

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Location:
    Utah
    #5
    So USB 3 should be faster than a gig network, but in reality is it?

    I like my HP MediaSmart Server, just didn't know if there was something better and faster than what I have.
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Menge

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2008
    Location:
    Amsterdam
    #6
    According to benchmarks by members of this own forum, a proper USB 3.0 enclosure that uses SATA III internally with an SSD in it will do ~400MB/s.

    Keep in mind, though, that a lot of USB 3.0 enclosures use SATA II - which will limit you to 300MB/s tops, even though USB 3.0 can do more.

    I have a 1TB Seagate GoFlex (5200rpm HD) which easily does 65MB/s on USB 3.0 (just for comparison).
     
  7. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    ViperDesign

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Location:
    Utah
    #7
    good information. Yeah it would have to be a drive in the 4 to 6TB range to supplant my Media Server.

    Thunderbolt seems like the future proof, but USB3 is the cost savings choice
     
  8. macrumors 68030

    CrAkD

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2010
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #8
    if its going to be a spinning drive theres no reason not to get USB3. Way cheaper and the mechanical drive wont saturate even USB3 nevermind Thunderbolt.
     
  9. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2003
    Location:
    California
    #9
    I went usb 3.0 enclosure primarily due to so few TB choices and high cost. When choices go up and cost goes down I'll switch to TB.
     
  10. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    ViperDesign

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2007
    Location:
    Utah
    #10
    So I think I am going with the Seagate 4TB USB3 that Costco sells in their stores. I figure that if If and when I want thunderbolt I can just purchase the adaptor they sell.

    The 4TB at costco sells for 174 (3TB is for 119 right now).
     

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