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  • mediajediX - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Based on the information I have from Lacie all 1TB units are 7200 rpm drives while all 2TB units are 5400 rpm drives. There should be a little bit of an increase in performance on the 1TB units compared to the 2TB ones. Reply
  • Grizzlebee - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    You might have a copy/paste error on the first table under drive configurations for the 2TB LaCie. Reply
  • fic2 - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Agree. Pretty sure that the second row is incorrect. Says:
    LaCie Little Big Disk 2TB 2 2 x 500GB sw RAID-0 2TB $499

    but should probably be 1 x 1TB sw RAID-0
  • gevorg - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    LaCie prices are like its 2009! Reply
  • xeizo - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    The word "affordable" may be even more obsolete in this case, considering the prices for hdd:s are rising sky high after the flood in Thailand ... Reply
  • descendency - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that. Reply
  • Meaker10 - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    I can tell you why the 1TB drives are all 5400rpm, because normal height 7200rpm 1TB drives dont exist yet. Reply
  • repoman27 - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Precisely. It would be cool if they offered a 1.5TB model based on 7K 750GB drives though, seeing as how it would be a tad quicker than the 1 and 2 TB offerings. Reply
  • GotThumbs - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Interesting review and I'm glad to see the use of smaller drives in a central storage system. an NAS with 2.5 drives would be a welcome product IMO.

    BUT...........When can we expect the lawsuit against Apple? Microsoft was sued for having a web-browser integrated into their OS, but Microsoft NEVER Locked Down the OS to prevent anyone from installing/using another web-browser.

    Why is this product ONLY available through Apple stores? NewEgg sells apple accessories, why are alternative retailers locked out of the distribution?

    Apple has built/established an ecosystem/empire so restrictive, I can't even draw a comparison. I gladly welcome the date when Apple is FINALLY called out for the controlling/repressive methods it continues in its daily operations.
  • ananduser - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Apple has exclusivity on the TB port until 2012, exclusivity granted by Intel. It is how Apple works. The whole tech world must stop and wait for them to get their money's worth from their exclusivity contracts, and then are supposed to adopt the format or they are branded against Apple.

    I am surprised that all the other PC manufacturers do not go to Intel and tell it not to treat Apple(a competitor for the same chips) with exclusivity periods on fresh server/consumer chips/chipsets that Apple gets from Intel. It is working against their products from a marketing point of view. I would like to see that the non-Apple tech world turns 180 on Intel's plans and decide to adopt Sony's TB over USB-like port implementation.
  • hoochen - Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - link

    Given that everyone's chasing USB3 the exclusivity deal was probably the only way Intel could get Thunderbolt out of the labs and into the spotlight. Reply
  • Nelmat - Saturday, November 26, 2011 - link

    Well, considering the fact that this technology was a joint development between intel and apple, with apple footing most of the bill, i can't see how anyone would consider this unreasonable. Reply
  • mediajediX - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Alternative retailers are not locked out from selling this Lacie Thunderbolt drive. Any Lacie authorized dealer has access to these units. Supplies are very short right now and some retailers are choosing not to promote the product till they can get stock but as far as I know no one is "locked out".

    Here in Toronto, Canada almost every Lacie dealer (at least the ones who carry Apple products) has at least listed pricing for these drives even if they don't have stock yet.

    Also I don't understand the quote about locking out other web browsers. I've currently got 4 different browsers running on my Mac (the same number as my PC) and on IOS I've got a 3 different browsers (one less than my Android Tablet).
  • GotThumbs - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Thanks for the clarification on Lacie availability.

    Regarding my MS Reference, I'm addressing the fact that MS was sued for the simple fact of integrating IE in the OS, yet Apple has not been sued (Yet) regarding the CLOSED network it runs regarding many of its products. Try installing an application on an IProduct without going through ITUNES or the App store. Even upgrading your MAC OS HAS to go through Apples APP store...NO OTHER CHOICE. This method of operation is restrictive and anti-competitive in nature. Anyone wishing to sell to Apple consumers using IProducts MUST submit to the control/whim of Apple and dole over ~30% of their retail cost directly to Apple. IProduct consumers are being restricted in how and what content they can load on the IProduct they OWN.

    Currently all applications MUST PASS APPLES TOLL BRIDGE. Freedom of choice is restricted from Apple product owners. That to me is a means of control and manipulation. Apple uses this controlled collective of consumers at its whim and at extorting higher fees from vendors who which to gain access to Apples hostages.

    Apple creates fashionable products,but consumers give up more of their freedoms then they understand. Just think about the real control/power Apple has over its product owners...after the purchase.
  • repoman27 - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Most people don't care too much for freedom. It usually comes with personal responsibility attached, and they sure as hell don't want anything to do with that. Reply
  • Penti - Tuesday, November 01, 2011 - link

    Well it's hard for Apple to discriminate themselves, Microsoft sell their software to the OEMs not the end-customers but did forbid them to bundle other browsers and stuff in place of their own for a good while. That was ruled anti-competitive. It's largely been corrected now and OEMs can pretty much do as they please and say include Google Chrome as the default browser. So can Apple if they like of course. OS X doesn't limit you from installing software no matter the source, it's still just a matter of .pkg package even if you submit it via the Mac App Store a file you can distribute directly to the user if you like.

    Microsoft will ship an app store with Windows 8 too and just as Apple uses a restricted model for Windows Phone with no side-loading. Microsoft will not get into trouble about this. An app store is not anti-competitive behavior in off itself. Neither will Microsoft ever be forbidden from bundling their software with Windows, it simply needed to give OEMs the choice of other software in it's place. Browser choice-update is hardly revolutionary and Apple do carry alternative browsers in the Mac App Store if you like to use something else, even though only Opera is there right now. Sure they might be able to make a deal with Apple to provide a browser choice screen too, but that would hardly do any difference. But of course a computer supplier is always free to bundle whatever.
  • Nelmat - Saturday, November 26, 2011 - link

    I have yet to buy a single app using the app store or itunes, and i've been a mac user since 1987. I have purchased software from microsoft and adobe, both direct. I think u may need to correct your ill informed post.

    And as far as buying the latest version of OSX on the app store, microsoft are to do the same with windows 8' additionally, if you don't wish to purchase the OS from the appstore, you can purchase it from apple for postal delivery on a usb memory stick. More FUD. Where else do you buy an operating system than from the software developer?!

    All applications do not have to pass any 'toll bridge' any developer can sell their software independantly or through a reseller, or via their web site. You are talking nonsense.
  • schenkus - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    I'm very surprised there still are no thunderbolt to USB-3 adapaters. It seems that you would currently have to go through some thunderbolt to expresscard adapter and an USB-3 expresscard to get a USB-3 adapter. (even that kind of contraption might work out cheaper than this)

    Is apple somehow preventing companies from offering this kind of connector ? I can't imagine that preventing thunderbolt to USB-3 hubs is somehow helping to spread thunderbolt devices..

    It seems kind of ridiculous that there is no way to connect reasonably priced external storage with decent speed to most apple hardware.
  • KPOM - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Apple wants to promote Thunderbolt, and Intel has repeatedly said that TB and USB 3.0 are complementary, not competing technologies.

    I'm guessing the real reason we haven't seen many TB devices yet, and no direct TB to USB 3.0 devices right now is that Macs are the only PCs with TB ports right now. Also, I'm guessing most Macs will get USB 3.0 when they refresh to Ivy Bridge chips next year, so there might not be much demand for them. Ultrabooks will likely start getting TB ports next year after the Ivy Bridge refresh, too, so that's when we'll start to see more peripherals.
  • weiran - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    I think the reason could be drivers, there still isn't a stable USB 3.0 driver for OS X. The ExpressPort USB 3.0 adapters have lots of compatibility issues, and they're probably better waiting for official Apple driver support to arrive first. Reply
  • Penti - Tuesday, November 01, 2011 - link

    Well there actually is USB3 drives from Lacie and they could release such a adapter, they have already done both Mac ExpressCard USB3.0 adapters and PCI-e variants for Mac Pro. So it's simply something they haven't prioritized. Of course there is Thunderbolt to Expresscard-adapters around if you like a workaround :) So yes you can actually extend you Thunderbolt Mac to support USB3.0 via an ExpressCard-box. Should set you back about 200 dollars though! Compatibility issues aside with other hardware it wouldn't be hard for Lacie to support TB>USB3 adapter together with their own USB3 disks.

    There's lots of adapters around, Thunderbolt to FibreChannel and such. I'm sure there will be 10GbE adapters, USB3, eSATA etc around eventually. It's however just not suitable really for consumer stuff right now, just the cable is about 50 dollars and it makes the hardware containing TB-compatible components expensive. HDD's will not exactly be cheap no any how when Western Digitals capacity is ruined. I would have liked to see a single-disk solution too rather then some solution trying to force on soft RAID-0. If performance isn't the highest demand you have I would rather see a Thunderbolt drive with a 2TB, 3TB or 4TB drive for less then this 500 dollars. Seagate Goflex 4TB single-drive is 299.99 USD right? Choice should be good and it will get there eventually, I wouldn't like to archive stuff to a software RAID-0 drive any way. Working on that should be fine however.
  • enderwiggin21 - Thursday, November 03, 2011 - link

    I don't know how stable CalDigit's USB3 driver is, but I've had no issues with my CalDigit card in my MacPro under Lion.

    As an aside, I've Bootcamped Windows 7 and captured 10-bit uncompressed video via USB3 using a BlackMagic Intensity Shuttle. Ironic, considering BlackMagic refuses to release an Intensity Shuttle driver because they say Mac USB3 hardware just isn't there yet.

    That may be, but the same hardware under a different OS functions just fine.
  • cptcolo - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    What they need to make is a super small case that would hold two 1.8 inch drives. The case would be designed for 1.8" SSDs in SATA3 in RAID0 and thus would need no fan and no external power supply. It would be fast as hell. Reply
  • Death666Angel - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Just a fyi: the UK is part of the EU. Reply
  • ac2 - Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - link

    Captain Obvious... The point is that the power adpaters required are different... Reply
  • Mordicgka - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    I purchased one LaCie 2TB and one LaCie 1TB LBD. It is very easy to take the LBD apart and install your own drives. I removed the two 500GB drives in the 1TB model and replaced them with two Western Digital SiliconEdge Blue SSC-D0128SC-2100 128GB drives. Using AJA and OS X Activity Monitor I was able to record ~370 GB/s writes and ~480 GB/s reads in Raid 0. Unfortunately, in real world transfers the LBD would often hang up when transferring large file directories (20+ GB) and I had to set the LBD up as two independent SSDs. The transfer rates fell to ~170 GB/s write and 230GB/s write, in line with the WD SSD specifications.

    The was very little difference in the 1TB and 2TB LBD mechanical drive performance, even with the different speed drives.

    Overall, while the non-Raid 0 SSD speeds are not "spectacular" they are still better than anything I can get with any other type of file transfer on my MacBook Air. Overall, the LBDs have been fun to play with and I don't regret the purchase. I don't know if the Raid 0 / SSD problem is a LBD or OS X issue?
  • repoman27 - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    The person who posted the original teardown photos on MacRumors posted some further close-ups of the logic board shortly thereafter. The SATA controller used is a Marvell 88SE9182, which is indeed a 6 Gbit/s controller.

    Several other forum members proceeded to swap out the internal drives with SSD's and experienced mixed success. Apparently the lack of native Mac OS driver for this particular SATA controller results in performance being a bit limited. This is most likely the reason why the SSD version did not ship at the same time as the HDD version, LaCie is still working out the driver issues in order to provide full performance.

    What I found remarkable was the ridiculous amount of silicon required to provide DisplayPort output from this little storage device. I counted some 10 chips:
    2x NXP 6D212
    1x Parade PS161HDM DisplayPort to HDMI/DVI Converter
    1x Parade PS8321 Dual Mode DisplayPort Source 2:1 Multiplexer
    2x Parade PS8301
    2x NXP LPC1114F
    2x PI3VeDP

    Also, I was a bit cnfused by the statement "Power consumption isn't in-line with expectations." How wasn't it?
  • FelixO - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    "Compared to USB 2.0 and FireWire 800 options however, that's not bad at all. Even compared to GigE ..."

    Forget all that, what about a comparison to USB 3.0 real-world performance?
  • Mordicgka - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    The USB 3.0 is not the real world for Macs. Thunderbold, USB 2.0, and to a lesser extent FireWire 400/800 is the Mac World - USB 3.0 is vaporware. Make all the criticisms you want folks, we have to live with what we have. For me, I'm not about to give up on Macs just because USB 3.0 is only available currently in the Microsoft Universe.

    If you want USB 3.0 wait a month or so for the (long delayed) Sonnet Echo ExpressCard/34 Thunderbolt Adapter.
  • FelixO - Monday, October 31, 2011 - link

    Valid point. However, I am interested in buying large and fast storage in the next 6 months so for me the comparison is important.

    Also, not including a comparison with existing products on the market, albeit for a different platform, seems to be a peculiar choice for a review site.
  • repoman27 - Tuesday, November 01, 2011 - link

    Why not just buy one of the LaCie solutions that is available?

    Although the whole point of USB 3.0 is that it's designed to be fast AND cheap. In order to take full advantage of both facets on a Mac, it makes more sense to wait 5 months, at which point it will be shipping already baked into Intel chipsets along with native Mac OS X driver support.

    With a single 2 disk RAID-0 HDD array as the only device connected to the controller, there shouldn't be much performance difference between Thunderbolt and USB 3.0—the disks are the limiting factor. With SSD's, USB 3.0 tops out around 370 MB/s but is usually limited to less than that by the performance of currently available silicon and drivers. Thunderbolt can provide more throughput than a single SATA 6 Gbit/s controller, but in the case of the LaCie TB LBD, the current lack of native Mac OS X driver for the Marvell 88SE9182 limits performance to around 300 MB/s give or take.

    This makes Thunderbolt, as it stands, a considerably more expensive option than USB 3.0 for a single device with similar performance. However, once you hang more than one device off of a single controller, I'm pretty sure Thunderbolt would dominate in a big way.
  • FelixO - Tuesday, November 01, 2011 - link

    Thanks, that's useful.
    I don't have a Mac, but was wondering whether to buy a USB 3.0 drive now or wait for Thunderbird on PC.

    I think I'll go for USB 3.0.
  • joex444 - Tuesday, November 01, 2011 - link

    Fool of you! No way is Thunderbolt the fastest external connection. All your Pegasus R6 benchmark did was show Thunderbolt is fast. I did not see any comparison to an external SAS array, for example, driven by a hardware controller on PCIe x8. Fast, sure. Fastest? Go f* yourself. Reply
  • Penti - Tuesday, November 01, 2011 - link

    Thunderbolt is PCI-e 2.0 x4 of course it will be slower then an internal PCI-express x8 hardware RAID expansion card. If you like to use an internal card with the x4 limitation you can get a Thunderbolt PCI-e cabinet though. Should be able to get you beyond the pegasus in performance. But external SAS-connectors on an Internal PCI-e card isn't the fastest you can go externally either you can have external PCI-e x16 or Infiniband at dual 40Gigabit through a PCI-e 2.0 x8 slot that would have the same (bus) hardware limit as your raid-card. Don't see how all that is relevant though. Reply
  • MGSsancho - Wednesday, November 02, 2011 - link

    If you really wanted to you could compare tunderbolt to various devices in the Direct Attached Storage market but you have to compare products in similar price ranges. I think you are spot on Penti, all of that is irrelevant just as comparing a few thousand dollar Pegasus array to a $70k flash array with 60 Intel ssds

    Last I checked, thunderbolt was not exclusively an interface for storage alone.
  • Penti - Saturday, November 05, 2011 - link

    Well there are Fibre Channel Thunderbolt adapters for storage devices are there for USB 3.0? No. It obviously has it's point and different strengths. Obviously you can't really do anything comparable with any other bus-interface if it's fastest or not is not the point. It's faster then ExpressCard and has found a great space in the professional business area. Connecting professional hardware to a laptop is what they achieve even if this (Lacie) solution would probably work better on USB3.0. Which they will get officially with Ivy Bridge any way. You have to remember that it's an interface for laptops, ultraportables and SFF PC's. Not about the fastest external interface possible. Obviously if that was the goal then laptops would be severely limited by it's internal capacity. While workstations could do like external PCI-e x32. 2x40Gigabit network is possible in servers but count it out in laptops. Reply
  • connor4312 - Tuesday, November 01, 2011 - link

    The image of the hard drive in the hand; Photoshop much? Anyway, ducking out $400 plus $50 for a cable I'll loose within a week, no thanks. Reply
  • Juddog - Tuesday, November 01, 2011 - link

    It's too bad LaCie's support is so shoddy; their products are decent but when it comes to replacing a failed drive it turns into a nightmare. For one thing they won't let you open the case without voiding the warranty (in order to wipe the drive contents, for example). Second failure for their support is that it's terribly slow. I spent literally 28 days arguing back and forth with them and finally they opened up the option to let me send in the drive for replacement. Personally I will never buy another LaCie product again, not because of the performance or form factor (they are very nice looking), but simply because their support is utter garbage. Reply
  • chrisHartwig - Friday, November 04, 2011 - link

    I've own a 2To Little Big Disk and I'm very disapointed... Actually, I'm in touch with LaCie's support, searching for a solution to extreme slow downs. Using Black Magic Design's Speed Test or xBench, I can't get consistent results as they vary from 150MB/s to 10MB/s.

    Seems like it's related to heat, as I've already observed sharp fall of performance at the exact time the fan was blowing faster...

    Powering down the disk solves the problem, but it slows down again in a few minutes.

    It sometimes slows to a crawl, like 10MB/s, rendering it unusable for my usage (pro photography).

    Is someone else experiencing similar problems ? LaCie suggest I should try swapping computer-Power supply-Thunderbolt cable, but I just can't... If others have similar problems, then it's purely a design flaw. If I'm the only one, something is defective...
  • BastaLaCie - Monday, December 19, 2011 - link

    I am also professional photographer, living in Italy with Studio in Nice France.
    I am done with La Cie,
    I bought a 1TB Thunderbolt hardrive at the Brescia (Italy) Aple Store, yesterday sunday (Christmas shopping so it was open) afternoon, 420 euro (including Vat) = 545 US$, and the store did not even know that the cable was not included... I went back today and bought the Aple TB cable for 50+US$, I did try the hard drive: slower than a Fire-wire 800 on a 6TB... La Cie!....
    Out of the fact that having to buy the cable is obscene, I was not impressed at all, and I have a bunch of screen shots to document what I write, do not hesitate to contact me by e-mail to receive copy of these sceen shots. Forget about 10GB/sec!!!!....
    So I went back a third time to the Aple Store, and gave them back the hard-drive and get my money back. End of the story...
    I am done with la Cie... especially with their Rugged 1TB (I had 2 --TWO-- failing), other photographers in Cannes, France, had the same problems with the same 1TB Rugged (Jerome Kelagopian, Franck Spire, Pascal Pronier, I can give their e-mails if needed), La Cie PERFECTLY know that they had problems with their 1 TB Rugged Fire Wire 800 + 400, I have very long communications with their "Support" team in Milan to prove what I write, but they NEVER recall these Hard Drives, as any SERIOUS, HONEST and RESPONSIBLE company would have done.
    Magazines or web pages promoting these hard drives (Rugged 1 TB Fire wire 800+400) should be ashamed... I lost a LOT of pictures by doing the back up of my pictures on these hard drives.... and when I contacted the "Support" through the web, they basically answered that I should NOT have used them for back up!.... That it is clearly written in their warranty that they are not responsible of any failure... etc.. etc...
    What REALLY disappointed me with La Cie is that they are PERFECTLY aware of the problems MANY people had with their Hard Drives, they know that they probably had a good number of bad hard drives mounted in their Rugged, but they did NOTHING to recall them (which would have been easy by checking the serial numbers)...
    And even if I use their 6TB, 3TB, 2TB, which so far did not gave me problems, doing an immediate DOUBLE back up on Western Digital hard drives, I am done with La Cie lack of responsibility, bad support, and lack of seriousness.
    That is why my nickname here is Basta La Cie = Enough with La Cie and I can sign with my real name:
    Marc Paris

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