Fastest cable option for Pro?

kat.hayes

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Oct 10, 2011
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im using an OWC enclosure with USB3 and would like to get a faster enclosure for an iMac Pro. Would a newer OWC enclosure with thunderbolt 3 result in much faster data transfer speeds? Is thunderbolt3 just usbc?

Thanks
 

mikehalloran

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Oct 14, 2018
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im using an OWC enclosure with USB3 and would like to get a faster enclosure for an iMac Pro. Would a newer OWC enclosure with thunderbolt 3 result in much faster data transfer speeds? Is thunderbolt3 just usbc?

Thanks
You don't say what you are using and it makes a huge difference.

If the external does not have an NVMe 3x4 blade inside or a RAID equivalent, it won't matter since a SATA III SSD in any enclosure or dock won't be as fast as the USB-C connection. TB3 cannot make that any faster.

The Samsung X5 series is a TB3 enclosure housing an NVMe 3x4 blade. That is currently as fast as it gets and TB3 allows you to maximize its speed.
 
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xgman

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I use a TB3 Akitio loaded with ssd's. If that isn't fast enough the next jump would be raid, and then would be blades style TB3 drives. The TB3 enclosures are expensive in comparison and not widely available. basically Akitio and OWC.
 
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SecuritySteve

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The OWC Thunderblade v4 has nearly the same speeds as the internal iMac Pro drive. If you need speed and bandwidth of Thunderbolt 3, I recommend that option.
 
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mikehalloran

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Oct 14, 2018
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The OWC Thunderblade v4 has nearly the same speeds as the internal iMac Pro drive. If you need speed and bandwidth of Thunderbolt 3, I recommend that option.
The only real difference is that it's loaded with Intel instead of Samsung. Although more expensive than the Samsung, the base model has 4 bays allowing you to expand by purchasing additional NVMe blades.
https://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/TB3TBV4T01/

The X5 is less expensive. It has a single blade only in the 500G–2TB versions.
https://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Portable-SSD-Thunderbolt-MU-PB1T0B/dp/B07GBTY82P?th=1

Both are good.

Back to the OP, if this is not the OWC setup you have, a 'better cable' won't make a bit of difference.
 
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kat.hayes

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I currently have a OWC Thunderbay IV that is connected via USB3 and TB2. I think it is currently connected via USB3 and it is configured in JBOD mode. I use it to store photos and videos, and I need to edit in Lightroom, Photoshop, and Premiere. I'm wondering if the newer version with Thunderbolt3 will make a big difference with speed with what I'm doing?

Thanks.
 

xgman

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Aug 6, 2007
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I currently have a OWC Thunderbay IV that is connected via USB3 and TB2. I think it is currently connected via USB3 and it is configured in JBOD mode. I use it to store photos and videos, and I need to edit in Lightroom, Photoshop, and Premiere. I'm wondering if the newer version with Thunderbolt3 will make a big difference with speed with what I'm doing?

Thanks.
It probably is more a matter of whether you are exceeding the usb bus bandwith./ if not I wouldn't bother. If you feel the constraints, yes TB3 would offer more room and maybe better overall performance with less bottleneck concern. The trade off is cost.
 
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kat.hayes

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By exceeding the USB bus bandwidth, do you mean at any given time pushing more data through the drive/cable to the iMac than it can support?

If so, what is that amount of the bus bandwidth limit?

I typically might copy lots of files from a small external USB 3 7200rpm drive to more than one drive inside of the enclosure, folders containing lots of images, files to another drive, and videos to another drive, simultaneously...this doesn't happen all the time, and I wouldn't have a clue as to how much data is being pushed at any given time.

Thank you.
 

kat.hayes

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 10, 2011
1,076
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By exceeding the USB bus bandwidth, do you mean at any given time pushing more data through the drive/cable to the iMac than it can support?

If so, what is that amount of the bus bandwidth limit?

I typically might copy lots of files from a small external USB 3 7200rpm drive to more than one drive inside of the enclosure, folders containing lots of images, files to another drive, and videos to another drive, simultaneously...this doesn't happen all the time, and I wouldn't have a clue as to how much data is being pushed at any given time.

Thank you.
I think I just overloaded my bus bandwidth...I had a small USB3 drive connected and was transferring gigs and gigs of files to a drive located in my Thunderbay Encosure. I also have a small USB 3 dock connected and I had a 7200 RPM bare bones drive in it that was using Carbon Copy Cloner to clone a drive that was also in the enclosure. As soon as I started cloning, the data transfer speeds from the small USB3 drive became very slow....

Would I still have this same issue if I had the newer Thunderbay enclosure or is this something else going on?

Thanks.