Thunderbolt 3

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'Thunderbolt 3' Reviews

Review: CalDigit's T4 RAID Offers Lots of Fast Storage, Thunderbolt 3, and 85W Charging

Popular storage and dock company CalDigit recently launched a Thunderbolt 3 version of its T4 RAID storage hub, offering demanding Mac users a four-bay setup with capacities up to 32 TB of traditional hard drive or 8 TB of SSD storage. Compatible with Thunderbolt 3 Macs including the MacBook Pro, iMac, and iMac Pro, the T4 connects over a single cable and not only offers a storage array but can also deliver up to 85 watts of power to the host computer and supports downstream displays via Thunderbolt 3, USB-C, and DisplayPort, as well as other standards using adapters. Installation and Setup Setting up the T4 is straightforward, but requires that you first download CalDigit's Thunderbolt RAID Utility Installer from the company's site and get the utility installed on your system. As of macOS High Sierra, this requires an extra authorization step in the Security & Privacy section of System Preferences, but the installer walks you through the process. With the utility installed and your computer restarted, it's just a matter of using the included 2-meter active Thunderbolt 3 cable to connect the T4 to your computer, plugging in the power cord, optionally connecting a downstream display, and starting up the T4. Once the T4 is up and running and the drive showing on your desktop, you're ready to go. The T4 comes pre-formatted in RAID 5 to offer a combination of redundancy and performance. If you prefer a different RAID mode (0, 1, or JBOD/SPAN), you can use the CalDigit Drive Utility menu bar app to reconfigure things. Design The T4 has a rectangular aluminum

Review: CalDigit's 'TS3 Plus' Dock Gives You 15 Ports, 85W Charging, and an SD Card Reader for $250

If you've followed all of my Thunderbolt 3 dock reviews over the past year, you know that in general these docks carry a lot of the same features in slightly different combinations. But usually, there's at least one fairly important feature that's missing in each model, whether it be enough USB ports, an SD card reader, or enough power output to fully support a 15-inch MacBook Pro. Price tags pushing to $300 and beyond are also an issue for many potential customers. So if any of those concerns resonate with you, you're going to want to read on to learn more about CalDigit's upcoming model, the Thunderbolt Station 3 Plus. The TS3 Plus takes the original TS3 dock that I reviewed last May and addresses nearly every concern I had with it and even lowers the price during the promotional pre-order period to $250 with a 0.5-meter Thunderbolt 3 cable included. Packages with a 1.0-meter or 2.0-meter cable are also available for $270 and $280 respectively. Design The general design here is nearly identical to that of the earlier TS3 and even the Thunderbolt 2-based TS2 dock that preceded it. While most Thunderbolt docks have horizontal designs, CalDigit has generally opted for a boxier design that can sit either horizontally or vertically on a desk. Oriented vertically, the TS3 Plus stands just over 5 inches tall, a little under 4 inches deep, and just over an inch and a half wide, and weighs a hint over a pound. That makes it almost exactly the same size as and quite a bit lighter than the TS3. If that's too tall for your desktop, just slide on the included pair of

Review: Promise's $249 TD-300 Thunderbolt 3 Dock Offers Lots of USB Ports and an SD Card Reader

Thunderbolt 3 docks continue to hit the market, and today we're taking a look a recent entrant from popular data storage company Promise Technology, the TD-300 Thunderbolt 3 Dock. I've tested quite a few Thunderbolt 3 docks over the past year, and the TD-300 ranks right up with the best I've seen due to standout features like five USB 3.0 ports and an SD 3.0 card reader. At $249, it's also priced very competitively against other full-featured Thunderbolt 3 docks. Design In the box, you'll find the typical contents for a dock of this type, including the dock itself, an external power brick, and a 0.5-meter Thunderbolt 3 cable. Any other cables such as for USB devices or an HDMI display need to be provided separately, although they frequently come with the devices you'd be connecting. The TD-300 comes in a horizontal form factor similar to many others on the market, and it sits nicely under an external display. It measures just over 9 inches wide, 3.5 inches deep and a little over an inch tall, and weighs just about a pound, so it's a pretty typical Thunderbolt 3 dock from a size perspective. The enclosure is made of black plastic, matte on the top and glossy around the sides, which sets it apart from the silver and gray finishes seen on most of the other docks I've tested. There's a fairly small Promise Technology logo in the rear left corner of the dock's top, but it's not terribly obtrusive, and the top tapers slightly toward the front of the dock. The front of the dock includes a pair of status lights, a green one letting you know there's power to

Review: Plugable's Flagship TBT3-UDV Thunderbolt 3 Dock Offers Lots of USB Ports at a Reasonable Price

I've covered a lot of Thunderbolt 3 docks in recent months, but there's one more upcoming model that's worth taking a look at. The TBT3-UDV is Plugable's upcoming flagship Thunderbolt 3 dock, featuring five USB 3.0 Type-A ports, Gigabit Ethernet, DisplayPort, stereo in/out, and a pair of Thunderbolt 3 ports. The dock isn't available for purchase yet, as Plugable is still awaiting Thunderbolt certification, but the company tells me it's aiming for an early October launch assuming the certification comes through in a timely fashion. In the box, you'll find the typical components including the dock itself, an external power brick, and a 0.5-meter Thunderbolt 3 cable. One nice touch I haven't seen with other docks is an included DisplayPort to HDMI 2.0 active adapter, normally sold separately for $19, which makes it easier to hook up a broader array of displays, televisions, and projectors to the dock. Notably, the TBT3-UDV can be oriented either horizontally like most other Thunderbolt 3 docks or vertically using an included stand. It's a nice feature that the dock has in common with CalDigit's TS3, but differences in their designs mean the Plugable dock is taller and more slender in its vertical orientation compared to the TS3's block-like design. Design While it might have an awful name, the design of the TBT3-UDV stands out on a desk, particularly in its vertical orientation. The enclosure is constructed of a matte aluminum that's fairly close to Apple's Space Gray color and which has a few deep grooves on each side to add some style. The curved front edge of

Review: IOGEAR's Thunderbolt 3 Dock Does the Job, but Comes Up Short on Charging Power

Thunderbolt 3 docks continue to flood the market, and today I'm taking a look at IOGEAR's Thunderbolt 3 Quantum Docking Station. IOGEAR's dock offers many of the same features typically seen on other Thunderbolt 3 docks, including multiple USB ports, a Gigabit Ethernet port, headphone and microphone jacks, a DisplayPort port, and a pair of Thunderbolt 3 ports to allow for daisy chaining, all in a familiar horizontal design used by many other docks. Most notably, the IOGEAR Thunderbolt 3 Quantum Docking Station looks identical to CalDigit's TS3 Lite that I reviewed a few months ago, with the exception of color and finish. While CalDigit's dock has an enclosure of brushed aluminum and black matte plastic, IOGEAR's has more of a satin matte finish that's slightly lighter in color, paired with white matte plastic. In size, shape, and port layout, however, these two docks are identical. Caldigit's TS3 Lite (left) vs. IOGEAR's Thunderbolt 3 Quantum Docking Station (right) The IOGEAR dock looks decent, with its aluminum finish coming close to the silver color Apple uses on its notebooks. A fairly unobtrusive IOGEAR logo is printed on the top of the dock, and it comes with an external power brick and a 0.5-meter Thunderbolt 3 cable for connecting to a host computer at maximum speeds. Meeting the standard for Thunderbolt 3 docks, IOGEAR's version supports up to a single 5K display over Thunderbolt 3 or dual 4K displays over a combination of Thunderbolt 3 and DisplayPort. I experienced no hiccups connecting an LG UltraFine 5K display at up to 60 Hz through one of the

Review: Elgato's $300 Thunderbolt 3 Dock Offers a Solid Set of Ports in a Slim Design

Over the past few months, I've taken a look at a number of Thunderbolt 3 docks that all hit the market around the same time, including models from OWC, CalDigit, Belkin, and Kensington. There's at least one more major player in the market, so today I'm sharing my thoughts on Elgato's $300 Thunderbolt 3 Dock. Elgato's dock has a lot in common with many of its competitors, including a slim horizontal design of brushed aluminum and plastic, an array of ports for expanding the capabilities of your Thunderbolt 3-equipped Mac, and more. The dock looks nice on a desk, with a black matte plastic front and back wrapped by a brushed aluminum enclosure that's rounded around the sides. A small Elgato wordmark is printed in the front left corner of the dock's top, but it doesn't mar the overall look of the accessory, which remains rather unobtrusive. Measuring just under 8 inches wide, Elgato's dock is slightly narrower than some of the other docks, which to my eye makes it look a bit better sitting on the foot of my LG UltraFine 5K display. Belkin's dock at a little over 8 inches also fits pretty well, but wider docks like OWC's and Kensington's overhang a bit. Of course, everyone's desk setup is different so variations of around an inch in the width of all of these docks may not be a deal-breaker, but it's worth noting this is the narrowest of the horizontal designs I've tested. At about 3.15 inches deep and an inch high, Elgato's dock is otherwise pretty much on par with competing docks in terms of size.

Review: Kensington's SD5000T Thunderbolt 3 Dock Packs Some Neat Security and Convenience Features

Earlier this week, Kensington launched its entry into the Thunderbolt 3 dock market with its SD5000T Thunderbolt 3 Docking Station, an enterprise-focused accessory that incorporates a couple of unique features in the form of a Kensington lock slot and the ability to mount the dock to the rear of VESA-compatible displays for "Zero Footprint Mounting" with a separate bracket accessory. I've since had a chance to spend some time with the SD5000T, so I've been able to test it out to see how it stacks up against the competition. The dock arrived in a plain white box with a product label on it, which Kensington tells me is the B2B packaging. Retail units will obviously have fancier packaging. Inside the box was the dock itself, a large power brick identical to ones used by many of the other Thunderbolt 3 docks, and a 0.5-meter Thunderbolt 3 cable. Kensington also includes three separate power cables with compatibility for the major US, UK, and mainland European standards. The SD5000T is fairly attractive, constructed primarily of matte black plastic with a band of brushed aluminum with chamfered top edges around all four sides of the dock except for the two front USB ports. The gap in the aluminum band around the USB ports provides a bit of visual interest without being overly distracting. Kensington's dock has a horizontal design very similar to most other Thunderbolt 3 docks on the market, measuring about 8.5 inches wide by about 3.35 inches deep by just about an inch high and weighing just over three quarters of a pound. A small Kensington word mark is

Review: Belkin's $350 Thunderbolt 3 Express Dock HD Looks Great, but Could Use More Ports

With the flood of full-featured Thunderbolt 3 docks about to hit the market, it's time to take a look at Belkin's Thunderbolt 3 Express Dock HD, one of the major contenders users have been waiting for in addition to the OWC Thunderbolt 3 Dock and CalDigit TS3 that we've also recently reviewed. As with the other docks we've looked at, Belkin's offering includes a variety of ports and even charging capabilities all over a single Thunderbolt 3 cable, making it a great option for turning the new MacBook Pro into a robust desktop setup. Belkin's Thunderbolt 3 Express Dock HD is launching this Monday, June 5 (exact time still to be determined), and will be available directly from Belkin and through Apple, as well as from other select retailers, but we've already had a chance to spend a little time with it to see how it compares to the competition.

Review: CalDigit's TS3 and TS3 Lite Thunderbolt 3 Docks Offer Solid MacBook Pro Expansion Options

While Apple's latest MacBook Pro with support for Thunderbolt 3 has been out for over six months, the first full-featured Thunderbolt 3 docks are only just now starting to hit the market. Last month we took a look at OWC's Thunderbolt 3 Dock that should begin shipping out very shortly, and today we're taking a look at a pair of similar docks from CalDigit that help expand the capabilities of the MacBook Pro. CalDigit actually has a pair of Thunderbolt 3 docks, the $200 TS3 Lite that has been available for a few months now and the upcoming $300 TS3 that is just about ready to begin shipping.

Review: OWC's Thunderbolt 3 Dock Gives Your MacBook Pro 13 More Ports to Work With

Last November, longtime Mac vendor OWC was among the first wave of companies to announce Thunderbolt 3 docks designed to expand the capabilities of the new MacBook Pro. It's taken a while to finalize the product design, testing, and manufacturing, but OWC's Thunderbolt 3 Dock is now just about ready to ship and we've had a chance to spend some time with a production-ready unit. Priced at $299, OWC's Thunderbolt 3 Dock includes an array of 13 ports to allow you to connect a host of devices to your MacBook Pro. It all comes in a package measuring about 9 inches by 3.5 inches and an inch thick, with brushed aluminum around the sides and glossy black plastic on top and bottom. The design is relatively unobtrusive, although the OWC logo and "Thunderbolt 3 Dock" text on the front are fairly prominent. The dock is powered through a decently large external power brick, which cuts down on the size of the dock itself but means there's one more piece of equipment to tuck away with all of your other cords.

'Thunderbolt 3' Articles

2018 MacBook Pros Have New 'Titan Ridge' Thunderbolt 3 Controller, But DisplayPort 1.4 Isn't Truly Supported

Earlier this week, the repair experts at iFixit opened up the 2018 MacBook Pro, uncovering Intel's new JHL7540 Thunderbolt 3 controller, introduced earlier this year as part of its "Titan Ridge" family. While the specifications for the JHL7540 lists compatibility with DisplayPort 1.4 on Intel's product database, it's not as clear-cut as it sounds, as support also relies on graphics, which vary by MacBook Pro model. MacRumors reached out to Apple for clarification. Here's what we learned:The new 15-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar models support DisplayPort at High-Bit Rate 3 (HBR3), a signal standard of both DisplayPort 1.3 and DisplayPort 1.4. Apple says the dedicated Radeon Pro graphics can drive up to two 5K displays at 60Hz, each over a single stream. The new 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar models support DisplayPort at High-Bit Rate 2 (HBR2), a signal standard of DisplayPort 1.2. This is a limitation of the Iris Plus Graphics 655 in these models, as Intel's integrated GPUs do not support DisplayPort 1.4.What that means:The new 15-inch MacBook Pro theoretically supports DisplayPort 1.4, which Apple confirmed, but at least for now, it still can't drive an 8K display. It could be possible with VESA's lossless Display Stream Compression standard, perhaps, but it's unclear if this can be enabled down the road. For now, then, the new 13-inch and 15-inch models have the same compatibility with external displays as the previous-generation MacBook Pro: up to two 5K displays or up to four 4K displays on the 15-inch model, and up to one 5K display or up to two 4K

2018 13-Inch MacBook Pro With Touch Bar Has Four Full-Speed Thunderbolt 3 Ports

Apple has confirmed that the new 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar is equipped with four full-speed Thunderbolt 3 ports. 2018 models ship with Intel's eighth-generation Core i5 or Core i7 processors, which both support up to 16 PCI Express lanes, providing enough bandwidth for maximum data transfer speeds up to 40Gb/s on all four Thunderbolt 3 ports. 2016 and 2017 models of the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar could be configured with sixth- and seventh-generation Intel Core i5 and Core i7 processors, which supported up to 12 PCI Express lanes, limiting full speeds to the two left-side Thunderbolt 3 ports, with reduced bandwidth on the right-side ports. Now, users have the freedom to plug higher-performance peripherals into any Thunderbolt 3 port they desire without compromise. All three generations of the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar have always had four full-speed Thunderbolt 3 ports, while the 13-inch MacBook Pro with function keys has only two Thunderbolt 3 ports, both full

Samsung Announces First QLED Curved Monitor With Thunderbolt 3

Last month, LG announced a new set of Thunderbolt 3 monitors to be officially unveiled at CES 2018. Not to be outdone at the January event, Samsung today unveiled the first curved display with Thunderbolt 3 connectivity. The 34-inch CJ791 monitor features a 3,440 × 1,440 UltraWide QHD resolution with a 21:9 aspect ratio, while the single Thunderbolt 3 cable delivers a connectivity speed of up to 40 Gigabits per second to a range of docks, displays, and peripheral devices, including Macs and external GPUs. The Thunderbolt 3 interface also allows the CJ791 to supply up to 85 watts (W) of charging power to USB type-C compatible MacBooks. The specs can't quite match LG's upcoming 34-inch UltraWide 34WK95U, which has a 5K resolution of 5120 x 2160 pixels, but apart from multi-peripheral connectivity, Samsung is eager to promote the CJ791's QLED display as ideal for gaming and entertainment. With "precise" performance across 125 percent of the sRGB color spectrum, a 4 milliseconds response time, and a sharp 1,500R curvature and ultra-wide 178-degree viewing angle, the CJ791 should still turn some heads at this year's CES. The company is also touting the monitor's built-in Game Mode, with a dynamic gamma setting that allows the CJ791 to adjust the color and contrast of individual scenes as they're displayed. There's no word yet on the price of the 34-inch CJ791, but hopefully more should be revealed when CES opens its doors on January 9 for four tech-filled days at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Stay tuned to MacRumors for all the highlights. Review: LG's $1500

Apple Now Selling 0.8m Thunderbolt 3 Cable for $39

Alongside the iMac Pro, Apple today updated its online store to add an Apple-branded ">0.8m Thunderbolt 3 cable, which is the first Thunderbolt 3 cable Apple has offered that isn't manufactured by a third-party company. The cable is priced at $39, which is more expensive than a similar Belkin Thunderbolt 3 cable also available from the Apple website for $29.95. Apple's Thunderbolt 3 cable offers TB3 data transfer speeds up to 40Gb/s and USB 3.1 Gen 2 data transfer speeds of up to 10 Gb/s, along with DisplayPort video output (HBR3) and charging up to 100W. Aside from a Thunderbolt logo located at either end of the cable, there is no branding. It is, however, designed in the same style as Apple's traditional USB-C and Lightning cables. The Thunderbolt 3 cable is compatible with all USB-C Thunderbolt 3 Macs, including the latest iMac Pro, iMac, and MacBook Pro models.

Sonnet Launches Thunderbolt 3 to Dual HDMI 2.0 Adapter Compatible With Mac

Sonnet Technologies this week launched a Thunderbolt 3 to dual HDMI 2.0 adapter compatible with Mac and Windows PCs. The plug-and-play adapter enables the connection of up to two 4K Ultra HD displays with HDMI 2.0 to a single Thunderbolt 3 port at 60Hz on computers such as the 2016 and later MacBook Pro. The adapter is powered by the computer it is plugged into and also supports monitors with lower resolutions such as 1920x1080 and 1920x1200. The adapter is available now for a suggested price of around $90 in the United States on Sonnet's website and Amazon. By comparison, StarTech and Plugable currently sell equivalent adapters on Amazon for around $110 and $90

Sonnet Launches Thunderbolt 3 to Dual DisplayPort Adapter Compatible With Mac

Sonnet today released a Thunderbolt 3 to dual DisplayPort adapter compatible with both Mac and Windows PCs. The bus-powered device enables users to connect up to two 4K Ultra HD displays or one 5K display with DisplayPort to a single Thunderbolt 3 port, each at 60Hz, including the 2016 or later MacBook Pro. The adapter also works with displays with lower resolutions like 1,920×1,080 or 2,560×1,600. Supported Resolutions 5120 x 2880 4096 x 2160 3840 x 2160 2560 x 1600 1920 x 1200 1920 x 1080 1280 x 720The adapter is also compatible with "active" DisplayPort-to-HDMI, DisplayPort-to-DVI, and DisplayPort-to-VGA adapters. Sonnet's Thunderbolt 3 to dual DisplayPort adapter can be purchased on its website for $79 in the United States, although the company's press release says it has a suggested price of $89. DisplayPort cables are sold separately. StarTech also sells a Thunderbolt 3 to dual DisplayPort adapter for $78.99 on B&H, but it's only compatible with

Kensington's $350 Thunderbolt 3 Dock Features 'Zero Footprint' Mounting, Security Lock Slot

We've already taken a look at several of the Thunderbolt 3 docks all coming to the market right around the same time, and popular enterprise accessory company Kensington is getting into the mix today with the launch of the SD5000T Thunderbolt 3 Docking Station, the company's first foray into Thunderbolt peripherals. Priced at $349.99, Kensington's dock is similar to many of the other options on the market with a horizontal design and an array of ports, as well as a full 85 watts of charging power to support even the 15-inch MacBook Pro over a single-cable connection. The SD5000T offers a number of port options, including dual Thunderbolt 3 ports to enable pass-through connections, a DisplayPort port for additional display connectivity, separate audio in and out ports, and a Gigabit Ethernet port. With the DisplayPort and Thunderbolt 3 ports and any necessary adapters such as for HDMI or DVI, the SD5000T supports up to dual 4K external displays. As for USB, the dock includes one Type-A and one Type-C port on the front and one Type-A port on the rear, all running at 5 Gbps. We'd like to see a couple more USB ports on there for greater expansion possibilities, but three is pretty standard for these types of docks. The USB ports also do not support standalone charging, so a connected computer will need to be on in order for peripherals to charge via the dock. The front USB Type-A port does, however, support up to 2.1 amps for fast charging, while the USB Type-C port offers up to 15 watts of power to drive bus-powered peripherals. Kensington is famous for its

Elgato's $300 Thunderbolt 3 Dock With Dual 4K Display Support Launches June 6

Elgato today announced that its upcoming Thunderbolt 3 Dock, which was first introduced in January at CES, will be available starting on Tuesday, June 6 for $299.95. Elgato's Thunderbolt 3 Dock, designed to work with the new 13 and 15-inch MacBook Pro models Apple introduced back in October, features three USB 3.0 ports, a Gigabit Ethernet port, two Thunderbolt USB-C ports, one DisplayPort with DisplayPort 1.2 support, a 3.5mm headphone jack, and a 3.5mm microphone input jack. The dock is able to provide up to 85 watts of power and can charge a MacBook Pro while also offering multiple ports for connecting displays and accessories. It can drive one 5K display at 60Hz through the Thunderbolt 3 port or two 4K displays simultaneously at 60Hz using the DisplayPort and a Thunderbolt 3 port. - DisplayPort output: up to 4096 x 2160 pixels at 60 Hz - Thunderbolt 3 output: up to 5120 x 2880 pixels at 60 Hz - Dual displays: up to 4096 x 2160 pixels at 60 Hz each - 4K60 over HDMI 2.0 supported using active adapters (not included) via USB-C and DisplayPortUSB-C accessories are powered with up to 15 watts and the dock's USB-A ports can charge an iPhone or iPad at full speed. Elgato's dock is priced similarly to other Thunderbolt 3 docks on the market, with a 1.6ft Thunderbolt 3 cable included in the $299.95 price tag. It can be purchased in the U.S., Europe, and Australia starting on June 6 from the Elgato website.

Intel Looks to Broaden Thunderbolt 3 Adoption by Integrating Into Future CPUs, Eliminating Royalties

Intel today announced that it plans to drive large-scale mainstream adoption of Thunderbolt by releasing the protocol's specification to the industry next year under a nonexclusive, royalty-free license. The move should help expand the Thunderbolt ecosystem by making the protocol more affordable for technology companies and accessory makers alike. Intel expects third-party Thunderbolt-compatible chip development to accelerate a wide range of new devices and user experiences. Intel also revealed plans to integrate Thunderbolt 3 into its future CPUs, but it didn't provide a timeline as to when. The all-in-one design will take up less space on a Mac or PC's logic board, and reduce power consumption by eliminating the need for a standalone Thunderbolt controller.“Apple and Intel have collaborated on Thunderbolt from the beginning, and as the industry leader in its adoption, we applaud Intel’s efforts to integrate Thunderbolt technology into its CPUs and open it up to the rest of the industry,” said Dan Riccio, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Engineering.Intel said Thunderbolt 3 built into the processor could pave the way for thinner and lighter devices, although the current Thunderbolt 3 controller used in Apple's latest MacBook Pro has a package size of 10.7mm×10.7mm, so any logic board space saved would likely be negligible. The greater benefit will likely come from Thunderbolt 3's increased power efficiency, paving the way for longer battery life. Thunderbolt 3 carries power, USB, DisplayPort, HDMI, and VGA over a single port that shares the USB-C

OWC Debuts New Thunderbolt 3 Products: SSDs, PCIe Expansion Chassis, Six-Bay RAID, and External GPU

OWC has announced that it will be debuting a range of new Thunderbolt 3 products at the 2017 NAB Show this weekend in Las Vegas. Envoy Pro EX with Thunderbolt 3 First up is the Envoy Pro EX, a pocket-sized, bus-powered SSD with Thunderbolt 3. Storage capacities will start at 240GB. As it remains a prototype, no release date was specified. OWC's existing Envoy Pro EX with USB 3.0 starts at $199.99. Mercury Helios 3 OWC's new Mercury Helios 3 is a PCIe expansion chassis with a dedicated cooling fan and two Thunderbolt 3 ports. It can accommodate a half-length, full-height, double-width PCIe card. OWC said it will be available in the second quarter of 2017. Pricing was not disclosed. Other products include the Helios FX external GPU powered by Thunderbolt 3, ThunderBay 6 six-bay RAID with Thunderbolt 3, and Mercury Viper portable Thunderbolt 3 SSD suitable for daisy chaining. OWC said the ThunderBay 6 is coming in late 2017, but no word on pricing or availability for the other products. OWC's previously announced Thunderbolt 3 Dock and DEC for the 2016 MacBook Pro will also be on display at the

LaCie Announces 2big Dock With Thunderbolt 3 Connectivity

LaCie today announced its next-generation 2big professional 2-bay RAID storage solution, debuting the LaCie 2big Dock with Thunderbolt 3 connectivity for use alongside the new 2016 MacBook Pro, which supports Thunderbolt 3. The LaCie 2big Dock is a docking station designed for media professionals, offering a wide range of ports for a streamlined creative workflow. There are front-facing SD and Compact Flash Card slots to pull images off of memory cards from cameras and drones, plus it can connect to 1080p and 4K displays. There are dual Thunderbolt 3 ports for driving a compatible laptop while daisy-chaining up to five additional Thunderbolt or one USB-C drive, and included USB-C ports can charge an iPhone or other similar device. An adapter cable is included for use with USB-A devices. LaCie's latest dock offers up to 20TB of storage, a 25 percent increase over the previous version, enabling it to store up to 650 hours of 4K 30fps footage or up to 200,000 RAW images. It supports transfer speeds of up to 440MB/s, for transferring the equivalent of an hour of 4K footage in a minute. The dock features a stylish aluminum enclosure and a thermoregulated fan to keep it cool, and it supports Seagate IronWolf Pro enterprise-class devices and RAID optimization. The LaCie 2big Dock will be available in 12TB, 16TB, and 20TB capacities through LaCie resellers starting this

New iMacs With Up to Xeon E3 Processors, 64GB RAM, AMD Graphics, and Thunderbolt 3 Rumored for Late October

Earlier this week, Apple made the rare move of pre-announcing that it is working on new pro-focused iMac models that will launch later this year. Apple did not share any specific details about what the upgrades will entail, but if the blog Pike's Universum is to be believed, the next-generation iMac lineup could feature several improvements that make Apple's desktop computer a more powerful workstation for professionals and average consumers alike. The blog, citing a "little bird" that is "usually pretty accurate," claims the incoming iMac lineup will be available with up to the following tech specs: • Intel Xeon E3 processors: The new iMac will supposedly have up to a pro-grade Intel Xeon E3-1285 v6 processor. Intel has not released that particular chip yet, but based on previous generations of the E3-1285, the processor could essentially be the E3-1280 v6 coupled with integrated Intel HD Graphics P630. Notably, Xeon processors support ECC RAM. • 16GB to 64GB of ECC RAM: 16GB of ECC RAM, configurable to 32GB or 64GB, in line with the current Mac Pro. iMacs currently have 8GB of non-ECC RAM, configurable to 16GB or 32GB. ECC RAM can detect and repair errors that cause data corruption and system crashes. No word if it will be DDR3L or DDR4. • Faster NVMe SSDs: The rumor claims the next iMacs will have faster NVM Express PCIe-based flash storage with capacities up to 2TB. The current 4K and 5K iMac models are also configurable with NVMe PCIe-based SSDs or Fusion Drives up to 2TB. • AMD graphics: The new iMacs will supposedly have AMD graphics options to

Sonnet Unveils Thunderbolt 3-to-PCIe Card Expansion Systems for 2016 MacBook Pros

Sonnet Technologies yesterday launched its first Thunderbolt 3-to-PCIe card expansion systems for 2016 MacBook Pros, the Echo Express SEL — Thunderbolt 3 Edition and the Echo Express SE I — Thunderbolt 3 Edition. The SEL and SE I are compact and lightweight single-slot expansion systems that differ only in size and enable users to take advantage of the Thunderbolt 3's 2,750 MB/s of PCI Express bandwidth to support high performance adapter cards. The Echo Express SE I — Thunderbolt 3 Edition weighs just 2.6 pounds and measures 5.6 inches wide by 8.6 inches deep by 3.5 inches tall, accommodating one-half length (up to 7.75 inches long), full-height, single-width PCIe 3.0 card with additional mounting space for a daughter card. With its Thunderbolt 3 interface, the SE I delivers ample bandwidth for the majority of Thunderbolt-compatible PCIe cards including pro video capture, digital audio interface, 6Gbps or 12Gbps SAS or SATA host bus adapters, 16Gb or 8Gb Fibre Channel, 10 Gigabit Ethernet, and RAID controller PCIe cards. The Echo Express SEL — Thunderbolt 3 Edition is the smallest and quietest Thunderbolt 3 chassis yet, measuring 4 inches wide by 8.25 inches long by 2.8 inches tall and weighing just 1.75 pounds. The SEL houses one low-profile, single-width PCIe 3.0 card, including the majority of the most popular Thunderbolt-compatible 16Gb and 8Gb Fibre Channel, 40 and 10 Gigabit Ethernet, 6Gbps or 12Gbps SAS and SATA host bus adapters, RAID controller cards, and even low-profile pro video capture cards like the BlueFish 444 Epoch 4K Neutron.The Echo Express

Akitio Launches 2.5" Quad Thunderbolt 3 Storage Device for New MacBook Pro

Akitio has announced the release of the its Thunder3 Quad Mini, a 2.5" four-bay Thunderbolt 3 external storage solution for the latest MacBook Pro. The aluminum storage device has removable trays designed to house up to four 2.5" SATA SSDs or hard drives purchased separately. The device is equipped with two Thunderbolt 3 ports—the first one connects to the MacBook Pro, and the second one can be used to connect or daisy chain Thunderbolt 3 or USB-C peripherals. With Software RAID, Akitio said four striped SSDs can reach data transfer speeds of up to 1375 MB/s, while four striped hard drives max out at around 400 MB/s. Thunderbolt 3 provides sufficient bandwidth to connect dual 4K displays to the latest MacBook Pro and complete other data transfers simultaneously. A dedicated DisplayPort 1.2 video output provides connectivity to the 4K displays at 60Hz, while the device supports Power Delivery up to 15W to notebooks that support charging from a 5V/3A power source. 15W is hardly sufficient wattage for the latest MacBook Pro, which fully charges at up to 85W with Apple's own charger. Akitio said the Thunder3 Quad Mini will be available in March for $329 alongside five other Thunderbolt 3 storage devices it

CalDigit Announces Two New Thunderbolt 3 Docks for the 2016 MacBook Pro

Away from the hullabaloo of CES 2017, Caldigit has quietly announced two new Thunderbolt 3 docks for the 2016 MacBook Pro, one that provides connectivity along with a charging function, and a 'lite' model with simple port expansion, for users who already have a way of charging their laptop. The new TS3 dock provides up to 85W of charging for the 2016 MacBook Pro in addition to a selection of connectivity options: On the rear is a DisplayPort, two USB 3.1 Type-A ports, two eSATA ports, Gigabit Ethernet, and two Thunderbolt 3 ports, one of which provides data, video and power to computers. On the front of the case is an extra USB 3.1 Type-A port as well as Audio In/Out jacks. For users whose setup already accommodates charging their laptop – including owners of the LG UltraFine 5K monitor – the smaller TS3 Lite offers straightforward connectivity: on the rear is a USB 3.1 Type A port, Gigabit Ethernet, a DisplayPort, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, and Audio In/Out ports. Around the front is another USB 3.1 Type-A port as well as a standard USB 3.1 Type-C port for data and charging. Both the TS3 Lite and TS3 can connect a monitor up to 5K resolution. Users also have the option to connect two 4K monitors through the use of a USB-C to HDMI or DisplayPort adapter cable (sold separately). The inclusion of DisplayPort for the video output on both docks means that users have the flexibility to select the monitor they want to attach through the use of a HDMI or DVI cable. The Caldigit TS3 Thunderbolt 3 docking station is available at a pre-order price of $199.99 (regular

CES 2017: Kanex Launches Thunderbolt 3 to eSATA 3 Adapter, Travel Dock, and Cables

Kanex has announced it will be introducing a new lineup of Thunderbolt 3 products for the latest MacBook Pro at CES 2017 this week, including a Thunderbolt 3 Travel Dock, Thunderbolt 3 to eSATA 3 and USB 3.0 Adapter, and 1.6-foot and 6.6-foot Thunderbolt 3 cables that share the USB-C connector design. The compact Travel Dock includes two HDMI ports, a USB-A port, a Gigabit Ethernet port, and a USB-C port for pass-through charging. The dock supports dual 4K video output simultaneously and each at 60 FPS from both HDMI ports. It has a suggested retail price of $149.95 and will be available in April 2017. The Thunderbolt 3 to eSATA adapter enables users to connect the new MacBook Pro to an eSATA storage device. The plug-and-play adapter also includes a USB 3.0 port. Both ports are backwards compatible with older USB and eSATA peripherals. The adapter will be available on Kanex's website soon for $129.95. Kanex's new Thunderbolt 3 cables provide up to 40Gbps throughput, which is enough bandwidth to connect a new MacBook Pro to a single 5K display at 60Hz or dual 4K displays at 60Hz. The cable can be used with up to 6 daisy-chained Thunderbolt 3 devices, and provides up to 100W of charging to notebooks. The cables are compatible with the new MacBook Pro and most other Thunderbolt 3 devices. It is backward compatible with USB-C devices such as the 12-inch MacBook and Google Pixel. Kanex will be selling the 1.6-foot cable for $29.95 on its website, while the 6.6-foot cable will be available for

Lenovo Announces New 'ThinkPad' Docks Equipped With Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C Ports

Lenovo recently announced a pair of docks in its "ThinkPad" accessory line, including one equipped with Thunderbolt 3 and one with USB-C (via Anandtech). The ThinkPad Thunderbolt 3 dock includes a Thunderbolt 3 port, two DisplayPort options, HDMI, VGA, Gigabit Ethernet, a headphone jack, and five USB-A 3.0 ports, with one that is always powered. Both images show the ThinkPad Thunderbolt 3 dock The company said that users can connect as many as three displays to the Thunderbolt 3 dock, with two coming off the dual DisplayPort streams, and another connected to an extra Thunderbolt 3 output. One display will get up to a 3840 x 2160 resolution at 60Hz, while two displays will have the same resolution at 30Hz. In terms of power, the dock comes with a 135W adapter, with up to 65W of power to a connected laptop. The Thunderbolt 3 dock is likely to work with the new Touch Bar MacBook Pro, but Lenovo hasn't specified compatibility yet. The dock ships with a 135-Watt AC Adapter, which provides up to 65W of power to the laptop, and the remainder for powering the accessories. There is also a power button on the dock to control the ThinkPad power state when docked, which is nice since the laptop could easily be closed when docked. The USB-C dock has a similar look and number of ports when compared to the Thunderbolt 3 version. It includes a single USB-C port, three USB-A 3.0 ports, two USB-A 2.0 ports, two DisplayPort options, VGA, Gigabit Ethernet, and a headphone jack. A single display can be driven with 3840 x 2160 resolution at 30Hz, or the dock can power two displays with

USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 Display Buyer's Guide for New MacBook Pro

Apple's new MacBook Pro models feature between two and four Thunderbolt 3 ports that carry power, USB, DisplayPort, HDMI, and VGA over a single cable, creating one standard for connecting most accessories and peripherals. Thunderbolt 3 uses the same connector type as USB-C, also called Type-C, meaning the new MacBook Pros are compatible with a growing lineup of USB-C external displays. USB-C displays can display up to 4K video, transfer data, and charge the new MacBook Pro at up to 60W over a single cable connected between the display and notebook. LG's new UltraFine 5K display, meanwhile, uses Thunderbolt 3 to display 5K video and fully charge the new MacBook Pro at up to 85W. The 15-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar can drive dual 5K displays, while the 13-inch model can drive one 5K display. LG launched its UltraFine 4K and 5K displays in partnership with Apple, which exited the standalone display business after discontinuing its Thunderbolt Display earlier this year. The first USB-C displays from other manufacturers were released just this year, so the current selection remains limited. MacRumors has rounded up most of the options available from LG, ASUS, Acer, and Lenovo below. LG 27UD88 Display size: 27-inch Display resolution: Ultra HD (3,840×2,160 pixels) PPI: 163 Display technology: IPS LED Aspect ratio: 16:9 Refresh rate: 60Hz Color gamut: sRGB (over 99%) Brightness: 350 cd/m2 Ports: 1 input USB-C, 2 USB 3.0, 2 HDMI 2.0, 1 DisplayPort 1.2 Cables included: USB-C to USB-C, USB-C to USB, HDMI, DisplayPort Power delivery to MacBook Pro: Up to

New MacBook Pros May Not Be Compatible With Some Early Thunderbolt 3 Devices [Updated]

Apple's new MacBook Pros appear to be incompatible with Thunderbolt 3 devices that use controller chips from Texas Instruments, meaning some early Thunderbolt 3 products may not work with the new machines. The incompatibility was discovered by Plugable (via 9to5), who found that their TBT3-DP2X and TBT3-HDMI2X graphics adapters were not compatible with Apple's new MacBook Pros because they use a controller chip from Texas Instruments. As a result, Plugable will be postponing its upcoming Docking Station as it works on a compatibility solution.Update 11/1/16: Apple has chosen to prevent Thunderbolt 3 devices using currently available controller chips from Texas Instruments from enumerating and functioning on the 2016 MacBook Pros. All current Thunderbolt 3 peripherals which use this controller chip are incompatible with the new 2016 Thunderbolt 3 MacBooks (To our knowledge, this includes all currently available Thunderbolt 3 devices including our TBT3-DP2X and TBT3-HDMI2X graphics adapters. Our Thunderbolt 3 cables do not require this chip, and therefore are compatible.) Because of this, we've made the difficult decision to postpone our TBT3-UD1 Docking Station as we evaluate what is necessary to make this docking station MacBook-compatible. Our Flagship TBT3-UDV dock with Power Delivery/Charging is using the next generation controller chip from TI, and will be compatible with the 2016 Thunderbolt 3 MacBooks.Because some existing or soon-to-be available Thunderbolt 3 accessories may not be compatible with the new MacBook Pro, customers who are looking to purchase

Thunderbolt 3/USB-C Adapters, Cables, and Hubs for New MacBook Pro

In line with the 12-inch MacBook, Apple has removed all ports on the new MacBook Pro beyond two or four Thunderbolt 3 ports and a 3.5mm headphone jack. Thunderbolt 3 carries power, USB, DisplayPort, HDMI, and VGA over a single USB-C port, creating one standard for connecting most accessories and peripherals. The issue for now, however, is not all devices are equipped with USB-C ports. Apple's very own iOS devices, for example, use a proprietary Lightning port instead. More USB-C accessories will inevitably be released over the coming months and years, but in the meantime, many new MacBook Pro users will need to purchase at least one dongle or hub to use the notebook with their current setup. Own an iPhone? You need a new cable. Own a Thunderbolt Display? You need an adapter. Below, we have rounded up some of the USB-C adapters and cables available from Apple and third-party accessory makers. Apple Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 1/2 Adapter — $49 This adapter can be used to connect the new MacBook Pro to Thunderbolt or Thunderbolt 2 peripherals. Examples include Apple's discontinued Thunderbolt Display and older Thunderbolt external storage drives. The adapter can also be used to connect the new MacBook Pro to Apple's Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter and Thunderbolt to FireWire Adapter. Tip: Belkin sells a direct USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet adapter for $34.95. The adapter is bidirectional, so it can be used reversely to connect new Thunderbolt 3 devices to an older Mac with a Thunderbolt or Thunderbolt 2 port. USB-C Charge Cable — $25 Have