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  • godDLL - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Can't one chain two 2big units, so as to utilize RAID-{2..5}? How would that perform against Pegasus R4? Reply
  • ggathagan - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Given that it's not hardware-based RAID, any limitation to the flavor of RAID would be in the hands of the OS.
    That's RAID-0 and RAID-1.

    Support for RAID5, 10, 20 is only available in hardware-based RAID.
    Intel's RST is the sole exception, and even that is dependent on the firmware capabilities of their I/O hubs.

    Given that Intel is the developer of both Thunderbolt and Rapid Storage Technology, I'm interested to see if they will make combined use of both technologies when Thunderbolt starts showing up on PC motherboards.

    It will also be interesting to see if any of the RAID controller manufacturers produce a RAID card with a Thunderbolt interface to use in conjunction with these external arrays.
    That usage, of course, would defeat the main purpose of Thunderbolt as a method of daisy-chaining various devices to your computer, but its interface is also attractive from a mass-storage perspective.
  • ThreeDee912 - Sunday, February 26, 2012 - link

    I looked into it, and OS X supports software 0, 1, and 10, but not 5.

    I wonder how much this impacts performance...
  • BiggieShady - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    I believe the drive configuration for LaCie Little Big Disk 2TB in the first table is wrong. Reply
  • Ryan Smith - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Unless another editor fixed it, I'm not seeing any issues. Could you please expand a bit on what's wrong? Reply
  • Torrijos - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Can we hope to see an increase in speed (and maybe lose the Pegasus sound issues) with the arrival of Ivy Bridge and PCIe v3?

    Logically the available throughput for TB, for a given number of lanes used, should more than double, with the doubling of PCIe bandwidth and the improved overhead.

    I imagine the controllers should be adapted but still isn't the evolution towards PCIe v3 part of the promise of 100Gb/s made by Intel down the road (not only the use of fiber)?
  • tipoo - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    TB doesn't use the full bandwidth of PCI-E 2.0 (its like a 4x connections speed rather than the full 16x) so I don't think a new PCI would change its speed. The limitation is elsewhere. Reply
  • InsaneScientist - Sunday, February 26, 2012 - link

    I don't think he was talking about an increase in speed by feeding the Thunderbolt controller with PCIe3 (at least not just that), I think he was talking about the Thunderbolt controller (and devices, presumably) running at PCIe version 3. Remember, Thunderbolt is basically just a simultaneous connection for DisplayPort currently 1.2 and PCIe 2.1 x4. If, theoretically the actual connection could be allowed to run at PCIe3.0 specs, then you could double the bandwidth on the PCIe side of the line. Reply
  • repoman27 - Monday, February 27, 2012 - link

    The Thunderbolt controllers we've seen thus far are limited to DisplayPort 1.1a connections (8.641 Gbps max) and would appear limited to 10 Gbps total PCIe throughput (equivalent to PCIe 2.0 x2.5). Reply
  • repoman27 - Monday, February 27, 2012 - link

    There's several factors at play here. Current Thunderbolt controllers appear to have a single PCIe to Thunderbolt protocol adapter which can handle 10 Gbps of PCIe packets. In order to feed this, the controller has a PCIe 2.0 x4 connection which is good for 16 Gbps. If Intel were to produce a Thunderbolt controller with a second PCIe to Thunderbolt protocol adapter, they would be choking it a bit with only a 4 lane PCIe 2.0 connection to the host, and would have to bump it up to PCIe 2.0 x8 or PCIe 3.0 x4.

    Two PCIe protocol adapters would be able to max out the current Thunderbolt cable design, and thus more bandwidth on the back end would be useless until they can come up with an even remotely affordable PHY that can handle more than 20 Gbps, full-duplex.

    Thus far we have only seen Thunderbolt on LGA1155 Sandy Bridge systems which are very limited in terms of PCIe connections. The only real way to provide more than a PCIe 2.0 x4 connection is to split the x16 connection for the dGPU. Ivy Bridge systems with PCIe 3.0 capable dGPUs and PCIe 3.0 enabled Thunderbolt controllers would definitely allow for setups with fewer compromises.
  • repoman27 - Monday, February 27, 2012 - link

    Way to start off my last comment with a grammatical error—"There's" should be "There are". Reply
  • rodster111 - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Is there any obstacle to replacing the dual 500 gig drives with your own 3 TB drives in a Little Big Disk 1TB ?

    Some manufacturers have built in preventative measures against doing this.
  • Death666Angel - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    The Little Big Disk has 2.5" HDDs in there (not sure if 9.5mm or 12.5mm, but likely the former). So you cannot add 3TB drives because they don't exist. As to adding 1TB 2.5" HDDs, sorry, don't know. :-) Reply
  • repoman27 - Monday, February 27, 2012 - link

    They are not locked to any particular hardware. It would appear to void your warranty, but you can swap in any SATA devices that will fit in a bay designed for a standard 2.5-inch, 9.5mm z-height drive.

    Unfortunately, the SATA controller used is not yet fully supported by Mac OS X and thus it only appears as an "Unknown AHCI controller", with a maximum negotiated link speed of 3 Gbps.
  • ThomasA - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    The LaCie drives appear nicely designed. How's their power-supply survival history been doing? Reply
  • digital_dreamer - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Yeah, I'd also like to hear the latest about the power supplies. I have lots of failed adapters. Reply
  • tipoo - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    I was wondering that, I've heard bad things about their power adapters from lots of different people. Hopefully they've made these more reliable. Reply
  • Strulf - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Why does this MBA 11" have a white keyboard? Looks awesome. Reply
  • solipsism - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Looks like it's only $1.99 on Amazon: Reply
  • tipoo - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Its a cover, you can see it extends past the keys. Reply
  • Sahrin - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    That Anand hadn't abandoned the PC Hardware community that built his fortune. Niche storage device on a niche interconnect that will never become mainstream on a niche platform? Keep it up, buddy. I know the Apple user is worth ten PC users to advertisers, and you have to go where the money is...but maybe through PC hardware users a bone every once in awhile. Reply
  • ggathagan - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    I wish that you were a little more intellectually honest.

    Anandtech has always and continues to review technology.

    There was a time when virtually all technology developments were in the PC world.
    There was also a time when there were more than 2 or 3 serious contenders in the motherboard and graphics arenas.
    Those days, for better or worse, are gone

    When Apple got wise and started using the same hardware as PC vendors, their technology development became interesting as well.

    When smartphone makers started developing devices that did more than make calls, AT started covering those developments as well.

    Apple was the first adopter of Thunderbolt.
    Sony is the only PC vendor that has made use of Thunderbolt and AT reviewed that product last week:

    All of the major board makers are going to produce boards with Thunderbolt, but they're not here yet.

    Your post sounds more like a "shoot the messenger" attack than an honest view of AT.
  • KoolAidMan1 - Saturday, February 25, 2012 - link

    Apple is pushing the high end in nterconnects, laptops, and mobile devices like smartphones. Why shouldn't Anand cover them? What Apple does in these areas almost always trickles down to the rest of the PC industry, so even if you don't use their devices you should at least look at these articles like a sneak preview. Reply
  • InsaneScientist - Sunday, February 26, 2012 - link

    The others have pretty much nailed it, so I don't have much to add... but I do want to point out: It's NOT even a review of an Apple device. Apple happens to have the only computers at the moment that will connect to them, so, yes, he's using a Mac in the review, but considering that his only other option is to simply not review it... what on earth are you complaining for??? Reply
  • Finally - Sunday, February 26, 2012 - link

    That device needs a red eye:

    Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer, do,
    I'm half crazy all for the love of you.
  • tipoo - Sunday, February 26, 2012 - link

    That would freak me out Reply
  • neil poulton - Monday, February 27, 2012 - link

    The product design of the 2Big, the LBD and many other LaCie products is by Neil Poulton.
    The 2Big was always based on HAL from 2001, and the eye does in fact go red if you've got a problem.
  • gseguin - Monday, February 27, 2012 - link

    Raid 0 scares me, especially with SSDs.

    I read a DROBO article a few years back, and I was wondering how Drobo was evolving, if they have any Thunderbolt aspirations, and if they were worth considering on the Mac platform for new Macs, Any chance someone from Drobo could see this post and send Anand a review unit of what they see competing with the thunderbolt storage in this lineup?

    DROBO's ability to scale should be good with SSDs since $/GB keeps changing and new drives appear... how well does drobo plahy with SSDs?

    Hope I'm not too far off topic.
  • MobiusStrip - Monday, February 27, 2012 - link

    How much does a Thunderbolt controller cost, anyway? These prices are ridiculous. Reply
  • MadMacMan - Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - link

    Have the prices come back down to $399/$499 for the 1/2TB drives Little Big Disk drives? They were $499 and $599 respectively for the longest time. Yes, that's right, $500 before tax for a 1TB "drive". lol...My Pegasus R4 looks like a bargain next to those babies. Reply
  • eddiet - Monday, March 05, 2012 - link

    Pardon my ignorance, but I'm kind of new. This product looks good to me, but I am concerned about the lack of redundancy. Is there no way to work it, through some RAID setup, so that each disk is treated separately. In other words, keep the performance by NOT setting up RAID 1, but set it up so that you can, manually perhaps, just copy stuff over from one disk to the other to backup. RAID 0 is not a choice here, right? That spreads stuff across both disks, right? Just seems to me there ought to be a way to treat each disk completely separately, and the shell of this thing as just a convenient shelf to put them on. What do you think? How misguided am I? Reply
  • mark3785 - Friday, September 07, 2012 - link

    Just a word of warning, while LaCie drives look beautiful and look like they could survive being run over by a truck, I have found them to be unreliable. A Big Disk I owned had the fan go out. While LaCie warrantied the drive mechanisms they did not warranty certain components of the case. I had to replace the fan myself (thereby voiding the rest of the warranty).

    A rugged portable had a mechanism go south so I replaced it myself with a larger one. Upon opening the drive I found that the only rugged aspects of the drive were the plastic bumper around the perimeter and that the drive and electronics were held in with pieces of foam rather than screws and that the rest of the case is rather flimsy.

    There are far less expensive and more reliable storage solutions available.
  • Mr. Schienen - Tuesday, September 11, 2012 - link

    1. My new 2 Big Lacie wont power on. How can I find the problem? What options do I have.

    2. Does the Imac 2009 work with 2Big lacie?
  • bpawlak - Wednesday, November 28, 2012 - link

    The author wrote:

    "If you are looking to run most of your applications off of the drive however, I would recommend looking at something SSD based instead."

    Does anyone have any recommendations? I'd like to hookup an external driver over Thunderbolt and run apps from that drive.
    Windows 8 or Mac OS based, doesn't matter.

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