Thunderbolt Stories May 13

In 2022, there’s more variety of Thunderbolt monitors than ever. While Apple is back in the game, its displays at $1,600-$5,000+ won’t be the right fit for everyone. Luckily there are some great choices that are more affordable from LG, BenQ, and more. Below we’ll cover the best Thunderbolt monitors for Mac as well as what you get with a Thunderbolt monitor vs a USB-C monitor.

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Thunderbolt Stories May 4

Alongside the Studio Display and Mac Studio announcement last month, Apple also started selling a new 1.8-meter Thunderbolt 4 Pro cable. The company also said it would release a 3-meter version of that cable soon, and now it’s officially available to purchase. Apple’s 3-meter Thunderbolt 4 Pro cable will set you back a cool $159…

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Thunderbolt Stories January 21

As I explained in my latest episode of Back to the Mac, the M1 Mac mini is my main desktop computer, but where necessary, I also use a 16-inch MacBook Pro in clamshell mode. In either case, I’ve found the OWC Thunderbolt Hub to be a great addition to my setup.

When using the M1 Mac mini, the hub expands the amount of Thunderbolt connections, which is a huge improvement since M1 Macs sport just two physical ports. For my M1 Max MacBook Pro, it allows me to maintain a connection to all of my Thunderbolt peripherals, including the Pro Display XDR, with just a single cable connection. Watch my hands-on video for the details.

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Thunderbolt Stories January 12

Whether you’re an independent creative professional or an IT admin for a business or organization, fast and secure data is always a top priority. Without compromise, the all-new iodyne Pro Data stands out as the fastest RAID storage for M1 Macs with amazing 5 GB/s speeds, eight Thunderbolt ports, daisy-chain expandability, enterprise-grade encryption, and more.

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Thunderbolt Stories August 2, 2021

Future Macs will benefit from Thunderbolt 5 bandwidth of 80Gbps, according to a photo accidentally tweeted by an Intel exec.

This isn’t a complete surprise – Intel’s director of I/O said back in March that the company was expecting to roughly double the 40Gbps speed of Thunderbolt 4 – but this has seemingly now been confirmed …

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Thunderbolt Stories January 11, 2021

LG is expanding its line of UltraFine monitors at CES this year with a new UltraFine OLED Pro. This UltraFine display measures in at 31.5-inches and features a 4K resolution, and it marks a notable expansion of OLED display technology from smartphones and TVs to mid-size displays such as monitors.

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Thunderbolt Stories July 8, 2020

There was much confusion earlier in the year when Intel first touted Thunderbolt 4 as the successor to Thunderbolt 3, implying that it would be faster. It quickly transpired that this is not the case: the new standard will offer exactly the same 40Gb/s maximum speed as Thunderbolt 3.

But Intel today released the full specs, and the company says that while it isn’t faster, it does have better specs in several ways …

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Thunderbolt Stories May 11, 2020

Update: Intel comment added at end.

No fewer than seven serious Thunderbolt security flaws have been discovered, affecting machines with both standalone Thunderbolt ports and the Thunderbolt-compatible USB-C ports used on modern Macs.

The flaws allow an attacker to access data even when the machine is locked, and even when the drive is encrypted …

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Thunderbolt Stories August 22, 2018

In theory, all USB-C cables should be the same: that’s the whole point of having a standard. In practice, there are different versions of the standard. More worryingly, many cables being sold as USB-C don’t fully conform to that standard – and that can be seriously bad news …

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Thunderbolt Stories January 8, 2018

Other World Computing has made a name for themselves among professional Mac users with their line of powerful and fast external hard drives and adapters. This year at CES, OWC is showing several new products, all featuring Thunderbolt 3 connectivity.

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Thunderbolt Stories June 4, 2016

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In this week’s top stories: iPhone 7 leaks, more on the rumored upcoming MacBook Pros with OLED touch bar, what’s in store for WWDC 2016, and much more.

Apple also launched its Back to School promo for 2016, and designer brand Coach started preparing for a launch of its Apple Watch bands next week. Head below for all of the handy links to these and our other top shared Apple stories this week.

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Thunderbolt Stories November 30, 2015

Intel Presentation Template Overview

Apple’s decision to equip the 12-inch MacBook with just a single port was a controversial one, but the USB-C port Apple chose just got a whole lot more powerful. Intel announced back in June that it was integrating USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 to create “one compact port that does it all” – and that port just hit the market in the form of the revamped Dell XPS range.

That means that a single port combines superspeed USB, Thunderbolt, DisplayPort, PCI Express and power. The DisplayPort channel can simultaneously handle two 4K monitors.

Dell has opted to include two of the new ports, and this is an approach I think we can expect Apple to take with the new MacBook Air models (whatever they are actually called) and, in time, the MacBook Pro …  expand full story

Thunderbolt Stories June 23, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: Incase mega sale, iPad Air 2 $399, 11″ MacBook Air (newest) $749, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

Last Call Updates:

Incase up to 40% off sale + extra 15% + free shipping: Icon Compact Pack $51, MacBook Air Hardshell Case $30

Save $100 on Apple’s iPad Air 2 Wi-Fi 16GB in Gold or Silver: $399 shipped (Reg. $499)

Daily Deals: 11.6-inch Macbook Air 128GB (newest version) $749, Anker 40W 5-Port USB Charger $17, more

Amazon Echo smart speaker now available for purchase for $180 shipped

Giveaway: Grovemade’s latest wooden creation provides a luxurious home for your Magic TrackPad

More new gear from today:

WD My Passport Pro 2TB portable storage w/ Thunderbolt cable $200 (Reg. $300)

$50 Toys R Us gift card for $40 shipped (20% off): save on video games, LEGO, amiibo, dolls, more

More deals still alive:

iPhone 5 & 1-Yr Unlimited Talk/Text, 500MB LTE/m $300 shipped

The best deals to really take advantage of Microsoft’s Xbox One free game promotion

…and even more great iPhone 6 dock options

New products & more:

Jabra’s new in-ear Bluetooth headphones track more than 40 exercises

GameStop launches vintage games store and prices are all over the place

E3:

Thunderbolt Stories June 18, 2015

9to5Toys Last Call: car jump starter/power bank $60, DJI Phantom drone $299, Bluetooth headphones, more

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

Last Call Updates:

Daily Deals: Anker Car Jump Starter and Portable Power Bank $60, TaoTronics iPhone 6 Car Mount $5, more

DJI Phantom 1.1.1 Quadcopter with GoPro Mount $299 shipped (Orig. $349)

Bluetooth headphones: Sol Republic Tracks Air $75 (Reg. $150), JBL J56BT on-ears $44 (Reg. $149), more

The 5 biggest iOS and Android games announced at this year’s E3 Expo

Beats by Dr. Dre Powerbeats2 Wireless Bluetooth Headphones in multiple colors: $150 shipped (Reg. $200)

Ondesoft Mac Bundle with X-Mirage, iTunes Converter, Audiobook Converter and more: free ($146 value)

The Big Deal photography bundle with training tools, memberships for $99 ($4,000+ value)

Quick Review: Kano’s Raspberry Pi 2 computer kit shines as a learning tool for kids and DIYers alike

More new gear from today:

More deals still alive:

ZAGG Folio/Profolio+ iPad Bluetooth Keyboard Cases: $28 shipped (Orig. $90+)

Belkin Thunderbolt 2 Express Dock HD w/ 1-Meter Cable: $205 shipped (Reg. $300

New products & more:

Simple Station Dock is an industrial all-in-one charging solution for Apple Watch & iPhone

Super Smash Bros. updates, Star Fox rolls onto Wii U, more

New games & hardware announced at E3 make Xbox One deserving of a second look

Sony shows Last Guardian, Final Fantasy VII remake, Uncharted 4, Star Wars, more

Microsoft unveils new hardware, 360 compatibility + Forza 6, Halo 5, more

Bethesda’s real life Pip Boy for iPhone/Android, Dishonored 2, Doom, more

Xbox Live Gold Members can enjoy EA Access for free this week

Thunderbolt Stories June 2, 2015

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The USB-C port first introduced by Apple in the new 12-inch MacBook looks likely to be used across the MacBook range as Intel has adopted the standard for Thunderbolt 3.

Thunderbolt was developed to simultaneously support the fastest data and most video bandwidth available on a single cable, while also supplying power. Then recently the USB group introduced the USB-C connector, which is small, reversible, fast, supplies power, and allows other I/O in addition to USB to run on it, maximizing its potential. So in the biggest advancement since its inception, Thunderbolt 3 brings Thunderbolt to USB-C at 40Gbps, fulfilling its promise, creating one compact port that does it all. 

Apple was an early adopter of the Thunderbolt standard, which allowed a single port to be used for both high-speed data transfer and DisplayPort monitor connections. Intel’s integration of the two standards would allow Apple to replace the Thunderbolt port in the MacBook Pro range while still maintaining full compatibility with existing peripherals …  expand full story

Thunderbolt Stories April 13, 2015

CalDigit USB-C Tuff

USB-C is the sole port on Apple’s new 12-inch MacBook, and CalDigit today announced a version of its durable external drive that takes advantage of the new reversible USB 3.1 port. CalDigit Tuff features a USB-C port and cable for connecting the portable drive to the Apple’s ultra-thin notebook, and an included adapter cable ensures compatibility with the USB port that you’re used to seeing on your hardware as well. Since the new MacBook’s thin and light profile intends for it to venture out of your office and into the wild, CalDigit Tuff is ruggedized to endure drops, splashes, dust and other extreme environments.

CalDigit Tuff starts at $139.99 for 1TB HDD with availability starting in July (new MacBook orders currently deliver in 4-6 weeks). A solid state drive version with up to 1TB of storage will also be available while a higher capacity 2TB HDD option will be offered. expand full story

Thunderbolt Stories April 7, 2015

LaCie-Rugged-4TB-USB Plug-Thunderbolt-2

LaCie announced its new 4TB Thunderbolt/USB 3 Rugged RAID portable hard drive ($420 list, $399 Amazon) today, and I’ve had some time to take it for a little ‘spin.’ There are two speedy 7200RPM 2TB portable hard drives RAID-ed together inside to give the device very impressive, almost SSD-like speeds but with the cost savings and huge storage of portable hard drives. At the same time, the package isn’t much bigger than a regular portable hard drive and better yet, it can take a serious beating…

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Thunderbolt Stories March 26, 2015

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As I noted in Part 1 of How-To: Decode Apple’s Tech Specs pages before buying a new Mac, Apple has designed the Mac purchasing process to be easy: pick a model, pick the good, better, or best configuration, hand over your cash, and enjoy your computer. Since most people get confused by tech specs — bullet points filled with numbers and acronyms — Apple downplays them in its marketing materials, leaving customers to sort through the details and figure out what most of them mean.

But these specs are really important when you’re shopping for the right Mac for your current and future needs. So I’ve created this How-To guide to walk you through each of Apple’s Tech Specs pages using clear explanations, hopefully enabling you to properly understand what you’re about to buy. Part 1 focused on the “big 5″ Mac specs you really need to know about, and this Part 2 looks at the rest — generally things that remain the same in a given model, regardless of the configuration you choose…

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Thunderbolt Stories February 3, 2015

Seagate-Thunderbolt-drive

Seagate will discontinue its lineup of Thunderbolt storage products in favor of pushing Thunderbolt under its premium LaCie brand, 9to5Mac has learned.

A company spokesperson confirmed the move noting that the product life cycles for the company’s USM technology, which allowed integration of interfaces like Thunderbolt through adapters, is “coming to a conclusion.” expand full story

Thunderbolt Stories January 22, 2015

caldigit-1

Despite USB 3.0’s growing popularity with consumers, Thunderbolt remains a viable alternative for professional users, particularly video makers willing to pay a premium for guaranteed high speeds. Over the past year, several Thunderbolt 2 hubs have come to market — boxes with one Thunderbolt 2 connection to a computer, one for a Thunderbolt accessory, and multiple ports to connect USB, audio, video, and Ethernet accessories. The idea: keep all of your gear hooked up to the hub, then use a single cable to connect it all to your Mac.

Known for large, heavy, professional-grade Mac accessories, CalDigit has just released Thunderbolt Station 2 ($199), which squeezes the same functionality offered by Belkin’s $300 Thunderbolt 2 Express Dock HD and Elgato’s $230 Thunderbolt 2 Dock (review) into a smaller, denser-feeling enclosure, at a lower MSRP — sort of. In reality, Thunderbolt Station 2 has some very specific benefits and one limitation that place it on par with its competitors, making the choice between them a more personal decision…

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Thunderbolt Stories January 4, 2015

Mirror_UseCase_Cord_PenOn

Seagate and its LaCie subsidiary have announced five new hard drives just ahead of this week’s 2015 CES, including two new iOS-compatible wireless models and three new Mac-only disks. All except one will be available in January from the company’s web sites.

For iOS, the 500GB Seagate Wireless ($130) is an economical and portable, battery-powered hard disk designed to compete with G-Technology’s G-Connect and Western Digital’s My Passport Wireless. Just under 4″ on each side and less than an inch thick, Seagate’s version is designed to look fun, with your choice of green, blue, gray, red, or white matte housings, and uses integrated Wi-Fi to connect with iOS devices and Macs for media playback as well as Android/Windows/Chrome. It runs for nine hours between charges and can connect to 3 devices simultaneously.

Seagate Seven ($100) is a Mac-only alternative that promises to be the world’s thinnest portable hard drive. Made from 100% stainless steel, the enclosure is only 7mm thick and includes a USB 3.0 cable for connecting to a computer, giving up wireless in order to achieve its small size. In a break from traditionally boxy or rounded hard drives, Seven is actually slim enough to let you see the contours of the traditional hard disk mechanism inside. Three additional drives are discussed below…

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Thunderbolt Stories December 12, 2014

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As “really good Mac accessory ideas” go, Thunderbolt docks are high on the list. It’s hard to overstate the sheer convenience of connecting a bunch of peripherals to a central hub, then running one Thunderbolt cable from the hub to your Mac — a huge time-saver if you’re frequently bringing any Thunderbolt-equipped MacBook in and out of an office full of hardware.

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Earlier this year, Elgato’s original Thunderbolt Dock brought that convenience to Macs with first-generation Thunderbolt Ports. For the same $230 price, the just-released Thunderbolt 2 Dock ramps up the speed using twin Thunderbolt 2 connectors, and also boosts the performance of integrated USB 3.0, HDMI video, and analog audio-out ports. The under-the-hood changes make it a solid pick regardless of whether you have a newer Mac with Thunderbolt 2, and even if you’re using an older Mac with Thunderbolt.

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Thunderbolt Stories December 2, 2014

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Improving on the last generation Elgato Thunderbolt dock (review), today the company is announcing a refreshed model that includes Thunderbolt 2 technology and more at the same $229 price point of the last-gen model. expand full story

Thunderbolt Stories November 26, 2014

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Apple has updated its support document detailing 4K displays with Mac support to add LG’s recently announced 31-inch 4K monitor (31MU97). expand full story

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