Why isn't a Thunderbolt > USB 3.0 Adapter available en masse?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Hustler1337, Aug 5, 2014.

  1. Hustler1337 macrumors 68000

    Hustler1337

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2010
    Location:
    London, UK
    #1
    Hi guys,

    So i've been trying to find a Thunderbolt to USB 3.0 converter so that I can hook up my external 3.0 hard drive to my 2011 MBP, as transferring over USB 2.0 is painfully slow.

    I thought it would be available easily on the mass market and probably I could pick one up on-the-cheap on eBay, as with many other I/O converters that are available. However, I could only really find about 2 manufacturers offering a converter and the cheapest I could find was around £80, so not cheap.

    Why is a Thunderbolt to USB 3.0 so expensive and not-so-freely available? Is it difficult to manufacturer because of the technological differences between Thunderbolt and USB 3.0?

    Thanks
     
  2. cube macrumors G5

    Joined:
    May 10, 2004
    #2
    Thunderbolt is Intel stuff, what do you expect?
     
  3. waw74 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 27, 2008
    #3
    also, think of the market,

    computers with thunderbolt, and without USB3
    so only about a 2-3 year run of macs, that are now at least a year or so old.
    a "small" number and one that is shrinking every year.


    The docks with multiple ports have a wider appeal.
    as people with both thunderbolt and USB3 would be likely to purchase for their desks to get the other ports.
     
  4. bennibeef macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 22, 2013
    #4
    I think you are right on there. its not just a 2-3 year run its almost only a 1 year run. Just 2011 Macbooks have a Thunderbolt port and no USB 3.0. Even the "classic" mid 2012 Macbook Pro has USB 3.0


    And yeah thats really the market. No one wants to serve a market of computers of 1 year. Its sad yes but as a business owner I would do the same. And if I have USB 3 ports on my mac, I wouldnt bother to buy a Thunderbolt to USB 3 adapters because well I will just buy a hub.

    Its bad I know and I feel you I also have a 2011 Macbook with no USB 3.0 and back then I thought yeah man doesnt mather I will just buy an adapter. And yeah that didnt work out. And meh I dont really need it right now anyway all my file transfers and backups are over the network and I would throttle at 1Gb anyway for the network. Even if I had USB 3.0 I wouldnt change that my files are in the network so what. I learned to live with it :D
     
  5. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #5
    Seen this?

    http://www.kanexlive.com/thunderbolt-esata
     
  6. cube macrumors G5

    Joined:
    May 10, 2004
    #6
    The problem with the kanex stuff is that the chipset on which it is based does not support Thunderbolt passthrough, otherwise I might have bought one.
     
  7. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #7
    It would have probably doubled the price... that's a factor why docks are so expensive...
     
  8. rboy505 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2012
    #8
    Blame Intel. They set the prices on the chips. As I mention in the other thread, the only chip low power enough for an adapter and inexpensive enough for an $80 product is the Port Ridge Thunderbolt chip, which is what Kanex uses. It doesn't allow for passthrough. That's that : ) I have one and it rocks for USB3 (and I commute with it and use it on several MBPs so it's pretty cost effective) but I don't yearn for passthrough on the Macs I use it on.

    This basic scenario won't change with newer coming Intel chips, as far as I know, hence there won't be a sub $80 adapter with passthrough any time soon if ever.

    A dock, with a power supply, is currently the only way to get passthrough. Just get one.
     
  9. ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Location:
    NH
    #9
    Dock prices seem to be slipping. You can get a nice TBDOCKHDPBC Startech dock with 3 USB3 ports that rock and pass through TB, GB ethernet, USB audio, and a bunch of cables for less then $180 now. Caltech is around $200 without cables... perhaps because they want to clear inventory for TB2 products?
     

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