Mac Mini and Thunderbolt - Connectivity Advice

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by james*b, May 25, 2013.

  1. james*b macrumors regular

    Jan 2, 2011

    I am on the verge of ordering a 2012 mac mini but I am getting a little confused about what I can connect at once, as I have..

    - An old 20-inch Apple Cinema Display (A1081, with DVI-D connection plus mini display port adapter).
    - A thunderbolt SSD (Lacie Rugged, only one thunderbolt port, but also USB3).
    - I am also looking at buying a larger thunderbolt hdd (undecided, but probably two thunderbolt ports and no usb).

    Will I be able to connect these devices simultaneously straight out of the box or what adapter(s) would be recommendable? I would rather connect both hard drives by Thundebolt rather than USB3 for speed, if possible.

    Thanks in advance..
  2. opinio macrumors 65816

    Mar 23, 2013
    you need a pass-through (2 ports on the device) to daisy chain any device like T-bolt. So do the math I guess.

    The T-bolt port is the mini display port so if you have a T-bolt device with a pass-through you can have the mini display plugged in as the second device in the chain.

    As the rugged only has one T-bolt port it will either take up the T-bolt on the mini and completely end the daisy chain right there, or it could be plugged into a new T-bolt device if that port has a pass-through.

    USB 3.0 is going to be ample for the drive. There may be a slight difference in read/write speeds but the drive will not even come close to saturating the bandwidth in USB 3.0.

    I would suggest you run the rugged in USB 3.0 and the display on the T-bolt. When you get a new larger T-bolt drive make sure it has pass-through and you can plug the display into it. Rugged stays in USB 3.0.

    Basically there is no T-bolt splitter/hub/switch yet so you can only daisy chain.

    Another option is to get a new display with HDMI as they are pretty cheap, then you could use the Rugged as T-Bolt.

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