Thunderbolt, the ins and outs

Previously known to the tech world as Light Peak, Intel has just come out with it’s new system called Thunderbolt. With Apple leading off the starting blocks with it’s new Thunderbolt compatible Macbook Pros announced this morning , It looks like a bright future. So with all this hype of the new Macbook pros compatible with Thunderbolt, there is quite possibly a very large chance you’re left wondering what the hell it actually all is about.

First of all, let’s cover the basics. After I order a pizza. So think about USB or FireWire. Thunderbolt is like an extremely fast version of those two, with speeds that make USB and FireWire look like primitive pieces of wire. With ‘the Thunderbolt pipeline is more than 12 times faster than FireWire 800 and up to 20 times faster than USB 2.0’ I’m really getting excited for the possibilities this kind of thing presents. I have a pretty good example I think. About a year and half ago we ditched DVDs, and ripped all of our movies to a massive 16tb external hard drive set up, and now they all reside on a hard drive rather than a million dvds taking up space in the cupboard. Now to move a movie or file of a similar size from the drive over firewire 800 to the iMac it generally takes around a minute to a minute and a half. With Thunderbolt, this would all be over in a matter of seconds.

Now imagine a time a short while in the future. Imagine your iPad, iPhone, iPod or any other portable device also having Thunderbolt capabilities. Syncing would be incredible. You could have all your music stored on your external Thunderbolt drive, and your mobile device connected too. Syncing songs to your iPod now days is pretty speedy, but with Thunderbolt it would be remarkably faster.

What I’ve talked about just there is one of many capabilities Thunderbolt has, and I can see this being huge especially with a company like Apple leading off with the first devices, I’m sure they’ll pull it off with Intel well.

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2 Responses to “Thunderbolt, the ins and outs”
  1. Ducknose says:

    What I like the idea of also is the possibility to daisy-chain your devices together, especially monitors (even though it only allows up to 2 in HD.) Don’t forget that there will be bottlenecks in the system, e.g. speed of flash, and that Thunderbolt won’t run at 10Gbps all the time (if ever.) What would be nice is a raid 0 array of ssds. Now that will be nice, especially for those video editors working in uncompressed out there. A raid 0 of normal hard drives might be better though because of the storage and price. Hopefully this won’t be as big of a flop compared to firewire. Now lets daisy-chain some HD projectors with this 🙂

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  1. […] technologies for syncing would be awesome too, I know this seems very fast but as I mentioned in my post about Thunderbolt last night, iPhone, iPad and iPod syncing would be insane with that sort of […]



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