USB 3.0 instead of T-bolt in new MBA refresh

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by islanders, Jun 28, 2011.

  1. islanders macrumors 6502

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    #1
    Just USB 2.0 is lagging and there is nothing available for t-bolt. :apple:

    Wouldn't USB 3.0 be much more useful?
     
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #2
    No, because if you have an actual need for USB 3 or Thunderbolt you won't be on a Macbook Air in the first place.
     
  3. Cali3350 macrumors regular

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    Feb 16, 2009
    #3
    Yes, I think it would be more useful, but it wont happen. Besides the fact Apple wants to push thunderbolt everywhere Intel chipsets dont natively support USB3 yet, so apple would need to use a third party chip, which apple really REALLY hates doing.
     
  4. axu539 macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    This. The MacBook Air isn't exactly big on storage either, so you won't really be transferring files that are THAT large in the first place. If you need a faster means of media transfer, the MBP is probably a better bet.
     
  5. islanders thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #5
    Will the Air be limited to the 512 SSD drive? USB 3 wouldn't help backing up the drive?
     
  6. simsaladimbamba

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    #6
    The MBA's flash storage capacity will be depending on economic viability and availability. Look at OWC for MBA flash storage upgrades, they offer up to 480GB for 1400 USD (link).
    USB 3 would be nice, but why would Apple jump on an unsupported interface (Intel's chips do not have USB 3.0 support yet), especially after introducing its own interface, which is twice as fast and is NOT CPU dependent?
     
  7. islanders thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #7
    FW 400 was years ahead of USB 2.0 and lost that battle because so many PC used USB 2.0.

    If USB 3.0 becomes the standard. It is very fast. Would it be worth 3 party vendors to supply t-bolt? So in several years Apple will be forced to include USB 2.0.

    If there isn't a device that is affordable and supported why take the chance when you know USB 3.0 will be everywhere in a few years?
     
  8. simsaladimbamba

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    #8
    Because TB offers much more than just an interface to connect HDDs, as you can daisy-chain (which is quite good, I hate to have USB hubs) several devices (which can be other things than HDDs). And it doesn't use CPU power due to its own chip. Anyway, there will be a TB to USB 3.0 adapter eventually, so if you don't want TB due to its vicinity to Firewire, you can get USB 3.0 devices then.
    TB is merely four months old, give it some time. There are still computers out there with no USB 3.0 and even many devices without USB 3.0. TB will take its time. If not, then at least they tried. And hopefully will try again. USB is just faeces anyway.
     
  9. axu539 macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    Just because you didn't use FW doesn't really mean it lost the battle. FW 400/800 are still the preferred interfaces for professional use.

    USB 3.0 is affordable now, but it's also been around for like a year and a half. TB was introduced like 3 months ago. I highly doubt USB 3.0 will become standard either, since the fact it is on many PCs really says nothing. PC manufacturers jump on every bandwagon (not necessarily a bad thing), so basically every new technology eventually gets adopted by PC manufacturers. TB is no different; Sony is already coming out with their own TB stuff. I'd say, give it some time, and TBs success will be more apparent.

    The original argument still stands, though, if you really need such a fast interface, the MBA really is not the way to go, since it's much more of a portable, personal machine, than a powerhouse.
     
  10. Cynicalone macrumors 68040

    Cynicalone

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    #10
    USB 3.0 is backwards compatible with 2.0 so the port would look the same right? So they could just leave the two existing ports and upgrade them to 3.0. Or am I totally wrong on the connector?

    Apple could do it if they wanted to, but they are pushing ThunderBolt so there will be no USB 3.0 at this time.
     
  11. afireintonto macrumors 6502a

    afireintonto

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    #11
    Hopefully in the next 2 maybe 3 years, as both USB 3 and thunderbolt take off the air and all macs will include both.
    The air wouldn't even need a redesign to include both. USB 3 looks the same as USB 2 and thunderbolt uses the mini port.
    I think it's plausible. The white book I bought in '08 had both USB 2 and fw400.
    Why can't we have both?
     
  12. islanders thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #12
    I do use FW 400. It's one of the reasons I didn't upgrade my computer for such a long time. The newer MBP didn't even have FW 400!

    Now that external storrge is so inexpensive I'll pick up a FW 800 with my soon to be delivered MBP.

    I just thought it would be a good idea to include USB 3.0.

    Thanks for the info! I'm fine with FW 800 and USB 2.0 for my use.

    If the new refresh Airs included usb 3.0 it would be more compatible, altough it is already a great machine and t-bolt is exciting.
     
  13. firestarter macrumors 603

    firestarter

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    #13
    The MBA can easily benefit from faster external storage, or faster network connection than it's current USB 2 expansion allows.

    I doubt we'll see USB 3, but Thunderbolt docking stations for laptops are an attractive prospect and would greatly expand the usefulness of the Air.
     
  14. OllyW Moderator

    OllyW

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    #14
    USB 3 would be more useful at the moment as there are plenty of hard drives already available at reasonable prices. Thunderbolt has a lot more promise but I don't think we'll see many products released this year which are likely to attract the average buyer.
     
  15. budafied macrumors member

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    #15
    Exactly. Sony is thinking ahead by making the Thunderbolt port in a USB interface. Apple could benefit from doing something similar. USB 3.0 is already standard on many external hard drives. Besides ridiculously high-end external storage rigs, Thunderbolt is currently COMPLETELY useless.

    I don't get why some of these Apple users are against USB 3.0. What is there to lose? It offers a faster transfer rate for things that are all over the marketplace. Thunderbolt is years behind USB 3.0 in terms of consumer-grade products that actually use it.

    Sure, Thunderbolt has higher potential, but there's really no reason to give USB 3.0 the shaft now, especially when it is becoming standard for the rest of the industry.
     
  16. neteng101 macrumors 65816

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    #16
    USB 3.0 is coming in the next next revision of the MBA - all the more reason to wait for Ivy Bridge.
     
  17. striker33 macrumors 65816

    striker33

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    #17
    Wrong. You can use TB to TB connection between Macs in target disk mode.

    People like me with a main 15" used as a desktop w/ SSD will make good use of it once the new MB Air gets TB for transferring large apps and what not as well as speedy document syncs.
     
  18. striker33 macrumors 65816

    striker33

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    #18
    Why wait? Buy SB then re-sell before IB is released.

    Most people buying into Macs will have more than enough money to lose the 10-15% value in a year's time.
     
  19. jdechko macrumors 68040

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    #19
    Just to clear up a few points you made in your post.

    1) Sony's implementation of LightPeak wasn't their smartest idea. The USB group didn't certify the use of their port. Notice, too, that Sony doesn't call it a Thunderbolt port, I believe because they used a non-standard port. The technology calls for the use of the Mini DisplayPort. I also think it was really a boneheaded move on Sony's part because most Thunderbolt peripherals are going to use the standard port. Apparently Sony only wanted it for their external media dock anyway, so I'm not sure it's that big of a deal. At least with Sony's iLink (IEE1394/FW400), it was a simple 4-pin to 6-pin adapter (there's no power over iLink).

    2) Although USB has been expanded to mass storage devices, it's much better suited for low(er) bandwith peripherals, like input devices and printers. Yes, the standardized connector means its easy to use for hard drives, flash drives and iPods, but the throughput is dependent on the CPU. That means that the real world speeds will never come close to the theoretical speeds, and connectors like Thunderbolt and Firewire will be faster (assuming that they're rated for similar speeds, ie: USB 2.0 vs FW400).
     
  20. Icaras macrumors 603

    Icaras

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    #20
    Transferring files between hard disks isn't the only need for a high speed connection, you know?
     
  21. neteng101 macrumors 65816

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    #21
    There's more to life than having the latest/greatest Mac out there - upgrade when there's a need to, not just cause. Right now Thunderbolt is rather specific in usage and the high-end storage we're seeing will require the processing capabilities of top-end MBPs at the very least to make TB really useful.
     
  22. sjinsjca macrumors 68000

    sjinsjca

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    Oct 30, 2008
    #22
    Who said anything about media transfer? This is actually an argument for TB on the Air.

    Example: Today, with my MBP, I run virtual machines off an external drive which I velcro to the back of the display. I connect via FireWire 800, which is a significant and perceptible improvement over USB2. But it's still bandwidth-limited, meaning there's a limit on how many virtual machines I can have running at any given time.

    I would not want to store the VMs on the internal disk-- there are too many of them, and their files are too large, and contention issues in a mechanical drive mean a VM stored externally can actually be faster, if the interface doesn't choke it. The situation is similar for folks doing heavy-duty image processing, video editing, etc.

    I'd be off like a shot to buy a high-end Air and a nice, fast, capacious Western Digital Passport if I could Thunderbolt the two together. (And yes, I'm using Thunderbolt as a verb-- deal with it.)

    That's coming, and my credit card is ready.
     
  23. gpat macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    Why don't you get an Optinay and store the VMs on the 2nd HDD?
     
  24. Duke15 macrumors 6502

    Duke15

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    #24
    Any chance of a TB->USB 3.0 adapter you think?
     
  25. halledise macrumors 65816

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    #25
    very good point ;)
     

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