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Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter

Emiljabo

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 16, 2013
45
13
Hi,

Will the Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter allow me to connect an external NVMe SSD Enclosure to the Thunderbolt 2 port on my Mac?

I have read and seen a few reviews that categorically state that the TB3 peripheral requires its own power source to work because the adaptor does not provide power, but the write-up for the adaptor on the Apple site states the following:

"As a bidirectional adapter, it can also connect new Thunderbolt 3 devices to a Mac with a Thunderbolt or Thunderbolt 2 port and macOS Sierra or later."

It mentions nothing about needing a separate a power source for the TB3 peripheral...

Obviously, an external SSD enclosure is not powered so would it work with this adaptor?

Thanks!
 

vertical smile

macrumors 603
Sep 23, 2014
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You can use the bidirectional adapter to connect TB3 devices to Macs with older TB1 or TB2, but like you mentioned, it does not provide power for the TB3 device via the TB2 port.

You can get around this by using a device that has its own source of power via a power adapter, or you can use a powered TB3 dock to power the TB3 device.
 
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Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
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vertical is right, but his reply kind of dances around the OP's question, which I believe to be:

Can one directly connect a small portable thunderbolt3 drive (like the Samsung X5) to a thunderbolt2 equipped Mac (using the tbolt2-to-tbolt3 adapter)?
Without using "external power"?

I think the correct answer is "NO, you can't".
Folks have already discovered this -- by trying to use the adapter to connect an X5 to an older Mac and -- it doesn't work.

For it to work, you would need a Mac with a USBc/thunderbolt3 port -- then you can plug it in, and get the necessary bus power to run the drive.
 
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vertical smile

macrumors 603
Sep 23, 2014
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but his reply kind of dances around the OP's question

Not sure how my reply "dances around" the question:
it does not provide power for the TB3 device via the TB2 port.

"NO, you can't".
If that was the OP's question then I would completely agree, but I would also add that using something else to power the TB3 SSD, such as a TB3 dock, would allow the use of TB3 SSD on an older Mac with TB2.

If the OP really wanted to use the Samsung X5 or some other TB3 NVMe drive on an older iMac, having all there information is better than just a simple "NO, you can't".


Folks have already discovered this -- by trying to use the adapter to connect an X5 to an older Mac and -- it doesn't work.

For it to work, you would need a Mac with a USBc/thunderbolt3 port -- then you can plug it in, and get the necessary bus power to run the drive.
Or a TB3 dock at a tiny fraction of the price of a Mac with a TB3 port.

To the OP: Like I mentioned, if you use something else to power the drive, such as a TB3 dock with its own power source, you can use TB3 SSDs on your older Mac.
 
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Emiljabo

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 16, 2013
45
13
As way of an update.

I used a Plugable TBT3-UDV hub using the Apple TB3 to TB2 connector into my Mac. Then a Sabrent TB3 to M.2 NVMe SSD enclosure (EC-T3NS) with a Samsung 2TB 970 EVO Plus inside and its mounted fine on the desktop.
 
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vertical smile

macrumors 603
Sep 23, 2014
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As way of an update.

I used a Plugable TBT3-UDV hub using the Apple TB3 to TB2 connector into my Mac. Then a Sabrent TB3 to M.2 NVMe SSD enclosure (EC-T3NS) with a Samsung 2TB 970 EVO Plus inside and its mounted fine on the desktop.
Nice that you gave it a try.

Can you post the speeds you are getting?
 
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Emiljabo

macrumors member
Original poster
Dec 16, 2013
45
13
Thanks!

DiskSpeedTest.png
 
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