Buffalo Ministation Thunderbolt to USB 3.0?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by WillSR20, Nov 27, 2013.

  1. WillSR20 macrumors newbie

    Mar 18, 2011
    I've been searching around everywhere but can't find an answer, probably because not many Mac users even encounter this problem. I have an early 2011 MBP (8,2), so I only have USB 2.0 ports and no USB 3.0. So here is the question:

    Will the Buffalo Ministation or Lacie Rugged (or any other external hdd enclosure) that has both TB and USB 3.0 give me USB 3.0 functionality on my MBP?

    For example, if I want to copy files quickly from a friends USB 3.0 drive with full USB 3.0 speed, can I connect it to my MBP using a Buffalo (or any other) hdd as a USB 3.0 to TB adapter?

  2. ColdCase, Nov 27, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2013

    ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Feb 10, 2008
    Typically these drives won't daisy chain as you suggested. They simply convert the internal drive (SATA) to the protocol. They do not offer translation between ports. The ports are strictly for connecting to your host computer, not other devices.

    Some drive enclosures have dual TB or FW ports and these can be daisy with other devices of the same kind as your host port connection.

    Now there may be drive enclosures with built in conversion circuits and hubs (a docking station) but I don't know of one off hand beside what are called RAID boxes. There are so called docks that have USB 3.0 ports that they convert to the TB connection (I think Belkin makes one). The drives appear on your desktop as any other drive would and offer full 3.0 speed.

    Sonnet is suppose to be coming out with a $$$ dock where you connect the dock to your computer via TB and your other devices to the dock. The dock would have USB3, FW, eSATA ports as well as an internal optical drive and hard drive options.
  3. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Apr 22, 2003
    Thanks ColdCase.

    The simple answer is no, neither the LaCie nor the Buffalo will convert Thunderbolt to USB, nor vice versa.

    Only one interface may be used at a time.

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