Any indication or hints of Thunderbolt 4 (80Gbps)?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Woodcrest64, Nov 30, 2016.

  1. Woodcrest64 macrumors 65816


    Aug 14, 2006
    We've seen quite a progression of the Thunderbolt interface in a short period of time and I'm wondering if 'you' think in your own opinion if we will see Thunderbolt 4 at (80Gbps) arrive as quickly as we've seen the jump from Thunderbolt 1 to 2 to 3.
  2. Woodcrest64 thread starter macrumors 65816


    Aug 14, 2006
    The only article I could find on the topic was on Wikipedia saying to drive 8K displays at 60hz they will need to go to 80Gbps with a new display port. Considering there are only a few displays capable of 5K now my guess it will be 3 years for Thunderbolt 4 and 8K displays.
  3. T'hain Esh Kelch macrumors 601

    T'hain Esh Kelch

    Aug 5, 2001
    A bit of an old thread, but I was wondering the same thing. Found this on a Linux forum:
    Of course, that only means that we are at the earliest timepoint for a realistic TB4 announcement. Personally I think we'll see it late 2018 at the earliest.

    But top end eGPU's are already maxing out the TB3 connection, so it would be nice to see something faster soon, so you can buy an eGPU box that is just a little bit future proof.
  4. Anonymous Freak macrumors 603

    Anonymous Freak

    Dec 12, 2002
    There are already 8K displays. They use two DisplayPort cables.

    I doubt we'll see Thunderbolt 4 until quite a while after PCI Express 4.0 is released. Which will probably be next year. But there are also rumors that manufacturers may skip PCIe 4.0, since the PCIe 5.0 spec is due to be finalized right about the time PCIe 4.0 is ready to release. They may just delay upgrading from PCIe 3.0 for an additional six months and go straight to 5.0.

    Thus, Thunderbolt 4 might very well be based on PCIe 5.0.

    That said, DisplayPort 1.4 is available now, just not in Thunderbolt 3, and DisplayPort 1.4 is capable of running 8K displays over a single connection. The next version of DisplayPort should come out this year, allowing even higher bandwidth.
  5. ZapNZs macrumors 68020


    Jan 23, 2017
    If eGPU support takes off, I think either a TB3 revision that improves bandwidth or TB4 will not be far off - maybe 3-ish years? An update to DisplayPort and the increasing popularity of PCIe external storage solutions could further motivate future developments.

    USB IF's announcement of 20 Gbps USB 3.2 is exciting, and I think it could act as considerable motivation to push TB even further than it is now (given the higher pricing of TB components.)
  6. dyn, Aug 6, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2017

    dyn macrumors 68030

    Aug 8, 2009
    That's something they can only improve if the foundation improves. The CPUs first need to be equipped with the newer PCIe version as well as having enough lanes. Only then can they increase the bandwidth of Thunderbolt. This also applies to DisplayPort. This is all due to the fact that Thunderbolt is just a transportation protocol which transports other protocols.

    Right now the 40Gbps bandwidth comes from the 18Gbps for DisplayPort and the 22Gbps for PCIe. Looking at the Dell XPS line it becomes quite clear that this exceeds what the notebook can offer in terms of available PCIe bandwidth. Something similar can be seen with the 13" MBP Touch Bar (it simply doesn't have enough PCIe lanes compared to its bigger brother for the 2 Thunderbolt controllers).

    It is not going to have any effect at all on Thunderbolt for the very simple reason that Thunderbolt and USB are very different protocols used for very different appliances. USB-IF only increased the bandwidth of USB3.2 by simply making it use 2 lanes instead of 1 (which is what TB did with version 2 as well). It still isn't a low level protocol like Thunderbolt and it still hasn't got the same kind of latency and thus still isn't suited for workflows that require these.

    Thunderbolt has never been meant as a high bandwidth transfer protocol but as a protocol to carry other protocols in order to allow the user to only use a single cable instead of having to deal with multiple (different) ones. USB-C in that regard is a much bigger threat to them and as Thunderbolt 3 shows, they embraced it (iow they are not seeing it as a threat but as a way to fulfil their vision). What we are going to see with TB4 is probably a higher bandwidth (they still want to grow to 100Gbps) as well as additional features and maybe it being integrated into the CPU.
  7. inkhorn macrumors member


    Oct 8, 2009
  8. ManuelGomes macrumors 68000

    Dec 4, 2014
    Aveiro, Portugal
  9. iMacDragon macrumors 68000


    Oct 18, 2008
    That's just referring to four different thunderbolt interfaces..

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