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Western Digital Intros My Book Thunderbolt Duo Drive

By - Source: Western Digital | B 23 comments

Western Digital has introduced an external drive using Thunderbolt connectivity.

Macworld/iWorld 2012 is now underway, and Western Digital has decided to use the Apple event to reveal its new My Book Thunderbolt Duo dual-drive storage system. As the name indicates, the external drive connects via the 10 Gbps Thunderbolt port and supports two 3.5-inch hard drives in a RAID 0 striped array.

"Thunderbolt technology is capable of producing up to 10 Gbps per second of throughput on each of two channels in both directions," WD said on Thursday. "Users can experience very fast read/write speeds especially during applications such as video editing, 3D rendering, and other intense graphics projects. To put Thunderbolt's speed into perspective, HD media creators will be able to transfer a standard size full-length HD movie in less than 30 seconds, or backup an entire year of continuous music (approx. 8,600 hours of music) in roughly 10 minutes."

Current hard drive technology will be the bottleneck in Thunderbolt's performance, as a demonstration shown at Macworld revealed a 6 TB Thunderbolt Duo to only have peak transfer speeds of 2 Gbps (250 MBps). Still, that's faster than USB 3.0 even in its present state, and allows users to shuttle a full HD movie back and forth in thirty seconds each way.

Little else is known about the My Book Thunderbolt Duo for now although it will arrive in 4 TB and 6 TB capacities whenever it hits the market. Pricing is also unknown, so stay tuned. Naturally Mac owners will have access to the product first until Windows-based PCs with Thunderbolt begin to emerge later this year.

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  • 4 Hide
    lp231 , January 26, 2012 7:13 PM
    One of Asus's ROG board includes Thunderbolt, but it's just a sound/net card combo.
    And if PCs don't pick up Thunderbolt, then it will go the way of Firewire 800.
  • 1 Hide
    jaber2 , January 26, 2012 7:20 PM
    lp231One of Asus's ROG board includes Thunderbolt, but it's just a sound/net card combo.And if PCs don't pick up Thunderbolt, then it will go the way of Firewire 800.

    At least you could have found them on Sony desktops RIP.
  • 1 Hide
    holyknight1121 , January 26, 2012 7:38 PM
    Wonder how these will compare with the SSD market. Now it's just the wait.
  • 5 Hide
    aftcomet , January 26, 2012 7:38 PM
    I forgot my RAIDs but isn't RAID 0 where if one drive fails, they all do? For backing something up, I think reliability would be preferred over speed.
  • -5 Hide
    bramathon , January 26, 2012 8:00 PM
    Can someone explain to me the point of having faster connections when hard drives only work at like 60 MB/s?
  • 4 Hide
    soccerdocks , January 26, 2012 8:01 PM
    aftcometI forgot my RAIDs but isn't RAID 0 where if one drive fails, they all do? For backing something up, I think reliability would be preferred over speed.


    Yes, that is how RAID 0 works. However, I think the intended usage for this is to quickly copy files from one computer to another. One situation where this would be useful is video editor who has to work both from home and the office.
  • 2 Hide
    inthere , January 26, 2012 8:10 PM
    Point of having faster connections is the My Book is putting 2 drives in a single enclosure in a RAID 0 configuration which allows it to hit speeds of 175+ mb/sec (they actually claim 250) Lacie did the same thing and already have drives out that are getting speeds of 190+ mb/sec (Little Big Disks)
  • -5 Hide
    bramathon , January 26, 2012 8:17 PM
    So wikipedia tells me that usb 3.0 is capable of ~600 MB/s. DOes thunderbolt offer any advantage over a usb2.0 drive?
  • 1 Hide
    CaedenV , January 26, 2012 8:27 PM
    bramathonCan someone explain to me the point of having faster connections when hard drives only work at like 60 MB/s?

    Even slow drives move at 120MB/s these days, and with SSD and RAID available we need something faster than 1000/t ethernet, and USB3 which is already too slow for many applications (just like USB2 was when it came out). Besides, as I understand it, thunderbolt is a daisy-chain style interface (like firewire use to be back in the day), which means that all devices share a common pool of bandwidth. The cool thing about thunderbolt is that it (supposedly) can run multiple simultaneous protocols over the same wire. Meaning you can daisy chain your monitor, external HDDs, network to another PC/mac, or even use adapters to plug in USB, or firewire devices in, and each device will speak in it's original language of SATA, HDMI, etc. The idea is that it would be the 'last' and single interconnect for every device from your monitor to your cell phone. If you had that many devices connected all at once it would quickly become understandable that you need massive amounts of bandwidth.
    Practically speaking it does monitors, HDDs, and some audio protocols (though you would need a thunderbolt amp/receiver/decoder to make that useful, and I dont think they are out yet), with others to come in later revisions. It was also supposed to be over fiber optic cable (thus the name Lightpeak originally), but that was thrown under the bus with all the other disappointments we have had with the interface so far. Still a good idea, just far short of what we were promised.
  • 0 Hide
    nikorr , January 26, 2012 8:36 PM
    Thunderbolt will rule the speedy PC world, one day...
  • 1 Hide
    nikorr , January 26, 2012 8:39 PM
    lp231One of Asus's ROG board includes Thunderbolt, but it's just a sound/net card combo.And if PCs don't pick up Thunderbolt, then it will go the way of Firewire 800.

    It all depends on the royalty fees and the fact that it is already pointed to the PC world.
  • -3 Hide
    back_by_demand , January 26, 2012 8:48 PM
    caedenvEven slow drives move at 120MB/s these days, and with SSD and RAID available we need something faster than 1000/t ethernet, and USB3 which is already too slow for many applications (just like USB2 was when it came out). Besides, as I understand it, thunderbolt is a daisy-chain style interface (like firewire use to be back in the day), which means that all devices share a common pool of bandwidth. The cool thing about thunderbolt is that it (supposedly) can run multiple simultaneous protocols over the same wire. Meaning you can daisy chain your monitor, external HDDs, network to another PC/mac, or even use adapters to plug in USB, or firewire devices in, and each device will speak in it's original language of SATA, HDMI, etc. The idea is that it would be the 'last' and single interconnect for every device from your monitor to your cell phone. If you had that many devices connected all at once it would quickly become understandable that you need massive amounts of bandwidth.Practically speaking it does monitors, HDDs, and some audio protocols (though you would need a thunderbolt amp/receiver/decoder to make that useful, and I dont think they are out yet), with others to come in later revisions. It was also supposed to be over fiber optic cable (thus the name Lightpeak originally), but that was thrown under the bus with all the other disappointments we have had with the interface so far. Still a good idea, just far short of what we were promised.

    Even a top end raided SSD would only need eSATA or USB3, there is no need for this to be used on an external drive until read speeds get even slightly closer.
  • -1 Hide
    memadmax , January 26, 2012 9:05 PM
    "The idea is that it would be the 'last' and single interconnect for every device from your monitor to your cell phone."

    Never gonna happen.......
  • 1 Hide
    bramathon , January 26, 2012 9:13 PM
    caedenvEven slow drives move at 120MB/s these days, and with SSD and RAID available we need something faster than 1000/t ethernet, and USB3 which is already too slow for many applications (just like USB2 was when it came out). Besides, as I understand it, thunderbolt is a daisy-chain style interface (like firewire use to be back in the day), which means that all devices share a common pool of bandwidth. The cool thing about thunderbolt is that it (supposedly) can run multiple simultaneous protocols over the same wire. Meaning you can daisy chain your monitor, external HDDs, network to another PC/mac, or even use adapters to plug in USB, or firewire devices in, and each device will speak in it's original language of SATA, HDMI, etc. The idea is that it would be the 'last' and single interconnect for every device from your monitor to your cell phone. If you had that many devices connected all at once it would quickly become understandable that you need massive amounts of bandwidth.Practically speaking it does monitors, HDDs, and some audio protocols (though you would need a thunderbolt amp/receiver/decoder to make that useful, and I dont think they are out yet), with others to come in later revisions. It was also supposed to be over fiber optic cable (thus the name Lightpeak originally), but that was thrown under the bus with all the other disappointments we have had with the interface so far. Still a good idea, just far short of what we were promised.


    Awesome explanation. Much appreciated
  • 0 Hide
    51l3n5t , January 26, 2012 10:48 PM
    bramathonSo wikipedia tells me that usb 3.0 is capable of ~600 MB/s. DOes thunderbolt offer any advantage over a usb2.0 drive?


    bramathonCan someone explain to me the point of having faster connections when hard drives only work at like 60 MB/s?


    smell like troll
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , January 26, 2012 11:24 PM
    bramathonCan someone explain to me the point of having faster connections when hard drives only work at like 60 MB/s?


    Are you still using an IDE HDD as master with a dvd burner as slave, and using a really old ribbon cable not even rated at Ultra ATA/100 speeds?

    Are you using a SATA green drive at 5400rpm on a SATA I/II controller with a SATA I cable, and it happens to be a nVidia chipset?

    Are you using an IDE laptop HDD?

    ------------------

    USB3 says 600MB/s as its speed but how often does that actually happen? Isn't the bandwidth shared between all of the USB3 connectors that all tie into a controller that may also share that bandwidth with pcie lanes, pci, etc by the time it makes it to the processor and back, etc? YMMV depending on the motherboard manufacturer, its components, and model.
  • 0 Hide
    danwat1234 , January 26, 2012 11:28 PM
    It's too bad these duo drives don't run at 7200RPM. I bet they could achieve the same throughput with just 3 enclosures by using 4TB Caviar Black hard drives, hopefully with the next generation of the peizoelectric wrist that enables faster access times. I hope Western Digital develops the peizoelectric wrist technology for the Scorpio Black as well.
  • 1 Hide
    dragonsqrrl , January 27, 2012 12:21 AM
    "Current hard drive technology will be the bottleneck in Thunderbolt's performance, as a demonstration shown at Macworld revealed a 6 TB Thunderbolt Duo to only have peak transfer speeds of 2 Gbps (250 MBps). Still, that's faster than USB 3.0 even in its present state, and allows users to shuttle a full HD movie back and forth in thirty seconds each way."

    The last I checked, 250 MBps is well within the capabilities of USB 3.0 specs.
  • 0 Hide
    coldtortilla , January 27, 2012 5:04 AM
    nikorrThunderbolt will rule the speedy PC world, one day...

    maybe, but I think eSATA is the way to go thunderbolt will confuse customers because it is an identical port to the display port
  • 0 Hide
    alidan , January 27, 2012 5:28 AM
    bramathonSo wikipedia tells me that usb 3.0 is capable of ~600 MB/s. DOes thunderbolt offer any advantage over a usb2.0 drive?

    yes.

    usb 2.0 should be able to do 60mbps but is usually capped around the 20mbps range because its more for input devices apposed to storage. this is why firewire for a long time was preferred over usb, but usb had such a dominating install base, and apple being apple wont let people say firewire outside of mac...

    thunderbolt is designed i believe ground up for storage solutions.

    caedenvEven slow drives move at 120MB/s these days, and with SSD and RAID available we need something faster than 1000/t ethernet, and USB3 which is already too slow for many applications (just like USB2 was when it came out). Besides, as I understand it, thunderbolt is a daisy-chain style interface (like firewire use to be back in the day), which means that all devices share a common pool of bandwidth. The cool thing about thunderbolt is that it (supposedly) can run multiple simultaneous protocols over the same wire. Meaning you can daisy chain your monitor, external HDDs, network to another PC/mac, or even use adapters to plug in USB, or firewire devices in, and each device will speak in it's original language of SATA, HDMI, etc. The idea is that it would be the 'last' and single interconnect for every device from your monitor to your cell phone. If you had that many devices connected all at once it would quickly become understandable that you need massive amounts of bandwidth.Practically speaking it does monitors, HDDs, and some audio protocols (though you would need a thunderbolt amp/receiver/decoder to make that useful, and I dont think they are out yet), with others to come in later revisions. It was also supposed to be over fiber optic cable (thus the name Lightpeak originally), but that was thrown under the bus with all the other disappointments we have had with the interface so far. Still a good idea, just far short of what we were promised.


    a hdd boot drive, depending on ho fragmented it is, runs around 60mbps, thats what mine clocked at before i moved to an ssd.
    back_by_demandEven a top end raided SSD would only need eSATA or USB3, there is no need for this to be used on an external drive until read speeds get even slightly closer.


    we already have ssds that hit the 1gb read write mark and need pcie slot to support them. thunderbolt will give them more head room for cheaper solutions.

    plus i would rather have to much speed and let some go to waste than plug things into ports that are just good enough.

    51l3n5tsmell like troll


    could be, but im assuming a hdd boot, and writing usb 2 as a mistake.

    dragonsqrrl"Current hard drive technology will be the bottleneck in Thunderbolt's performance, as a demonstration shown at Macworld revealed a 6 TB Thunderbolt Duo to only have peak transfer speeds of 2 Gbps (250 MBps). Still, that's faster than USB 3.0 even in its present state, and allows users to shuttle a full HD movie back and forth in thirty seconds each way."The last I checked, 250 MBps is well within the capabilities of USB 3.0 specs.


    specs dont mean they will run that fast, just it should run that fast.

    ---------------------------

    that said, what is the read write speed of a 4tb hdd?
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