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Intel Ditches 'Falcon Ridge' Codename for Thunderbolt 2

Intel announced the next generation of Thunderbolt way back in April, at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show. At the time, the controller was codenamed "Falcon Ridge" running at 20Gbs, a doubling of the bandwidth over the original Thunderbolt. Intel this week decided to make things formal and official. In a blog post published yesterday, Intel's Dan Snyder revealed that the next generation of Thunderbolt will (rather imaginatively) be named 'Thunderbolt 2.'

 

Snyder says Thunderbolt 2 will enable 4K video file transfer and display simultaneously by combining two previously independent 10Gbs channels into one 20Gbs bi-directional channel that supports data and/or display. What's more, DisplayPort 1.2 support means it's possible to stream video to a single 4K monitor or dual QHD monitors. There's also full backward compatibility to the same cables and connectors used with today’s Thunderbolt. The current iteration of Thunderbolt is limited to an individual 10Gbs channel each for both data and display, which doesn't meet the required bandwidth for 4K video transfer.

"By combining 20Gbs bandwidth with DisplayPort 1.2 support, Thunderbolt 2 creates an entirely new way of thinking about 4K workflows, specifically the ability to support raw 4K video transfer and data delivery concurrently," Jason Ziller, Marketing Director for Thunderbolt at Intel, said in a statement. "And our labs aren’t stopping there, as demand for video and rich data transfer just continues to rise exponentially."

Intel is showing off  20Gbs Thunderbolt 2 tech at Computex 2013 in Taipei this week. The chipmaker is promising Thunderbolt 2 products by end of year and into 2014.

  • spentshells
    Falcon punch
    Reply
  • de5_Roy
    why doesn't intel rename the unimaginatively named thunderbolt 2 to something interesting like amd's D*ck Port (previously lightning bolt)? at least amd's name leaves something up to people's imagination....
    Reply
  • christop
    It is cool and all but will usb 4.0 be just as fast? Reminds me of Apples fire wire connection..
    Reply
  • itsnotmeitsyou
    "reminds me of Apple's fire wire connection..."

    which was an industry tested solution and used by people in the audio-video arena *still*. Thunderbolt is largely intel, fortunately we are starting to see PC motherboards with TB links. As problematic as my experiences are with USB3.0 I am looking forward to getting my hands on Thunderbolt hardware.
    Reply
  • vertigo_2000
    I don't have it on my MB so I'm not in the market. How widespread are Thunderbolt peripherals? And price-wise, how do they compare to USB3.0 (ie. external HDD)?
    Reply
  • thundervore
    Um yea sure.
    I can wait 5 years for these to be as cheap as the USB 3 alternative which is pretty cheap at the time of this post. All i see from Thunderbolt are hardware that turn the port into other ports or enclosures that cost an arm and a leg when compared to the USB3/Esata alternative. If its all just the same ill stick with current technology that proven true.
    Reply
  • vertigo_2000
    I don't have it on my MB so I'm not in the market. How widespread are Thunderbolt peripherals? And price-wise, how do they compare to USB3.0 (ie. external HDD)?
    Reply
  • itsnotmeitsyou
    Thunderbolt peripherals are on the rise, but until the port becomes a standard feature on consumer grade PCs, its not going to be prevalent. It is a niche tool, and if you don't want it, its likely you don't need it. If you are a video pro, transferring large video archives frequently, or in my case, an IT pro who uses external storage for machine images >30gb ea, Thunderbolt becomes a very attractive option. FWIW my expectations for USB 3.0 were high, but I cant image a machine from a USB 3.0 device without consistency errors, which I could do on USB 2.0 no problem.

    A quick newegg search shows cheap USB 3.0 on-sale at $60 ("normally" $80), while the cheapest TB drive is $160, so more than double. As I said, my experience with USB 3.0 for robust external storage has been less than favorable. You determine your own needs, but search Toms for reviews and benchmarks on TB storage and the data is consistently promising. More-so than USB3.o, and the less common eSata.

    No doubt average consumers, Performance gamers, etc aren't in a hurry to get something they dont need. Industry pros dealing in sizable data chunks that need to be portable however are "all ears."
    Reply
  • jurassic1024
    TB is for techies obsessed with backups, that's it. AKA, a niche market. Enjoy it while you can. TB does 4K support? pfft, HDMI 1.4a can do that, and everyone is already using it, but TB?... Garbage. TB is about as useless as tablets. I see 1 tablet for every 50 people I see with their eyes on their phones.
    Reply
  • Chris Rodinis
    Powered by Intel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmsp6uAHCwg
    Reply