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ricks
11-14-2012, 04:36 PM
Hey all, just wanted to let you in on my favorite complaint - Intel and Apple controlling Thunderbolt. They have made it virtually impossible to get products though approval. We keep seeing things like Belkin, a company that knows how to create and release gadgets, announcing a Thunderbolt hub last spring, supposed to ship late spring for $299. Perfect product, great timing, But then delayed until summer, then fall and now winter. And the cost has risen until it is near $400. Miserable working with Intel.

Now, we finally have an ARECA hardware RAID - in stock. Have spent over a month in testing, spent thousands to get inventory. Bought Apple Thunderbolt cables for them. Put them up for sale. Having tons of conversations with our customers about how useful they will be. I personally have weeks of labor in testing and evaluations. Learning all the ins and outs, breaking them, fixing them and so on. So what happens? Intel and Apple says they haven't approved the product yet for release, we have to send them back. Maybe mid december they'll let us sell them.

If you ever wonder why the state of the Thunderbolt world is so screwed up, wonder no more. this is even worse for ARECA. They have have to have HUGE money in these.

Rick

rwm
11-14-2012, 04:48 PM
Maybe a refurbished 27" iMac's a better idea for me. :(

unclemac
11-14-2012, 05:31 PM
So sad.

There has to be a reason, even if politics within companies, good ol boy deals to protect contracts.....something.

This is so sad. Such great potential for a new universal standard being hoarded and squandered.

Guess it goes to show that we (as consumers) will almost always suffer when large corporations can dominate a market with no real competition. Because if anybody wanted to challenge TB, it would not be hard to beat to the market. Not for Apple gear sure, but for everything else? Forget about it. USB 4 might beat TB at this rate.....

M.Brane
11-14-2012, 06:47 PM
You'd think that 2 companies the size of these could do better. It's almost like they're trying to screw the indies. Hmmmmmm.......

ricks
11-14-2012, 09:27 PM
The worst part is, they need everyone making Tbolt products. Otherwise it will die on the vine, just another wanna be expensive alternative to what everyone chose instead..

They'll drive us nuts. We've been waiting seemingly forever for our Tbolt products - the need is great. Apple dropped everything else.

R

yeungfeng
11-14-2012, 10:39 PM
RWM . . . . Nooooooooooo! Don't do it. The new iMacs have USB3. Though the Thunderbolt process leaves me dissapointed, If I had USB3, I'd be happy. Slow backups drive me nuts. FW800 is too slow.

I feel your pain Rick. That's why I've resisted to ask when, about TB. Thanks for the update.

unclemac
11-14-2012, 11:55 PM
I wonder if Intel is actually trying to hurt Apple at this point......with the tension over netbooks, ultrabooks, and BIG money in mobile and tablet CPUs.

One way to keep the ultabooks up with MBAs is to not have much to plug in to a MBA via TB. Cuts down on differentiating tech that people want and need......keeps the "me too" brands closer.

ricks
11-15-2012, 08:16 AM
I don't think there is a problem between them. They were both pissed that this product was on the market for end users. And both Apple and Intel absolutely require that the products have Apple and INtel stickers on them.

Just control.

What it all boils down to.

R

rwm
11-15-2012, 10:37 AM
@ yeungfeng, No I won't. I waited this long - got to wait now. But the top 27" refurb has a faster processor speed and 1GB Graphics memory. But new looks so sweet. I'll adapt to a with USB 3 and a TB/FW adapter now and without a CD/DVD :)

I'll wait for the new... and by then maybe the TBolt will be easy for the home user to buy and use.

Greentree_uk
11-15-2012, 10:47 AM
Damn it rick,

I was eyeing that box for our next store...

unclemac
11-15-2012, 03:41 PM
Heh, me to.

I have an Xserve RAID that needs to be replaced. Oh well, no funding this year.......maybe I have money next year, and you have something to sell? :rolleyes:

wmarsh
11-16-2012, 06:04 PM
Great, I have been waiting to convert my box of 5 drives from eSATA to Thunderbolt so I can get my G5 offline and connect straight to my Mac mini. The box is not a Burly but the port multiplication bridge board and associated hardware is (just for the record). Should I go ahead and convert it over to Firewire 800 and be done with it? The waiting is wearing me out. Thoughts?

ricks
11-16-2012, 06:31 PM
Probably better off with USB 3 and eSATA port multiplier boards. That is, if you have the newer USB 3.0 model Macs.

Firewire does work, and we do have the boards for that.


Thunderbolt is pretty tough at the moment for multiple drives.
Rick

MsNikon
11-25-2012, 11:54 AM
Hi Rick,

Just wanted to say Thanks for keeping us up to date with your experiences and thoughts on Thunderbolt! I'll be buying a new computer soon, looks like an iMac, but not certain at this point. Was looking forward to a blazing-fast MacGurus Thunderbolt backup/storage system; but it now appears USB 3 will be more viable.

I own a Nikon D800, with RAW files coming in at 36.3 megapixals. Once a bit of time is spent in Photoshop, my files reach huge proportions and my existing 2 TB drives are eaten up quickly. Will look for Gurus advice when setting up the new system.

Cheers!
MsNikon

ricks
11-26-2012, 10:29 AM
Thanks for the feedback. Sure been an interesting year in Apple hardware.

Hopefully everything gets on track soon.

Rick

ricks
11-28-2012, 02:30 PM
A little progress. In their infinite wisdom, Intel allows that we can market and sell these as long as we state any one of the following words on the description: Demo, eval or test. I figured to state, in the second line of the description: 'Intel requires us to call this an Evaluation Unit until they get us stickers', or something to that effect.

Lost several sales already because the manufacturer sells them through their own distribution. I hate twiddling my thumbs.

Domanchuk
11-29-2012, 04:14 PM
Hi Rick, We got a nice quad Burly drive a year or two ago and I have set it up on our older Mac Pro and everything has been great. Well this week we got a brand new 12 Core Mac Pro and unfortunately it does not have Thunderbolt or an external SATA port. I was wondering what my best options would be. Should I get a SATA card from you to be able to plug in our existing Burly Drive or just keep that attached to our older system for FCP 7. Or Should we wait for a Thunderbolt card and get a thunderbolt type drive for the new system which we will probably use for FCP X. I might be nice to be able to use the old drive to access video on that drive if we have a SATA card in the new computer. As it is we are going to back up the new System drive with an internal drive using SyncronizeProX and have two other 2 terabyte drives in the other slots also backed up the same way. I know that that will not be enough in the future but we may be able to wait for a while until the thunderbolt becomes available.

ricks
11-29-2012, 04:48 PM
Thunderbolt really serves no great purpose on a Mac Pro - or at least little purpose. The 4 PCIe slots on a MacPro are much more capable than a Thunderbolt bus, and cheaper to implement the same kind of performance.

What Thunderbolt is, is PCIe and Display Port through a Thunderbolt cable. If you attach something similar to the Burly to a Thunderbolt computer, all you are doing is taking that eSATA PCIe card and putting a Thunderbolt chip between it and your computer. It is far simpler just to slap an eSATA PCIe card in your MacPro and have the same thing for 1/4 the cost and more speed.

Thunderbolt is pretty awesome for a small computer that only has a couple ports to hook things to. For a MacPro, which has 4 PCIe slots and a bunch of ports as well, it is a little redundant.

As well, while there may someday be a Thunderbolt card for the MacPro, I wouldn't hold my breath that it be soon. Thunderbolt is spec'd to combine PCIe and Display Port over a single cable. And with Intel closely guarding the gates against any developer releasing any product that doesn't fully meet Intel's specification (and authoritarian desires) I would not expect any developer to get the full go ahead to build a PCIe card that only supplies the PCIe side of the bus. In my opinion, only nVidia and AMD can build a card that is both a graphics card and a PCIe protocol card with Thunderbolt output and meet Intel's specification. I am not sure there is any incentive for them to do so. As well, the way Thunderbolt was designed incorporates both PCIe and Display Port on the motherboard through the CPU. Tough to do and meet spec on a board not designed for it.

That is just my current take on it. I could be off base and a couple developers have mentioned the desire to build a PCIe Thunderbolt expansion card without the display port. I just don't think Intel will currently support that and they control the entire technology closely.

For now, I would recommend putting an eSATA PCIe card (http://www.macgurus.com/store/ecom-prodshow/LYCeSATA4e.html) in the new MacPro and moving onward without regard to new technology that you arguably don't really need.

Rick

unclemac
11-29-2012, 05:48 PM
I've read the same from other sources. Don't expect any TB cards. Ever.

I had actually thought we would see them as I would expect Intel would like to sell them to the PC tower crowd. And, once out there (one would hope, like with eSATA cards), it might make sense to have them Mac compatible too for all the pre 2013 Mac Pros.

Who knows, maybe someday a new MacPro might have TB and still have slots....if there was a reason to have onboard video (not on a PCIe card). But I doubt it, unless Apple decided it made since to make the Mac Pro very small and compact. But that is what the rest of the line is for....smaller, thinner, lighter.

ricks
12-26-2012, 03:42 PM
Whooohoo!!

Got our Thunderbolt Stickers!!

ARC-8050, with its sticker, is now officially blessed by Intel Thunderbolt sticker shipping department!!!

http://images.apple.com/thunderbolt/images/icon.jpg

sun didn't change color. earth didn't shake. I thought when Intel spoke that life would change. ..... damn..... anyway, we got our stickers. exciting, huh?


R

M.Brane
12-26-2012, 07:04 PM
For some reason that just reminded me of this:

http://www.ppcmla.com/press/wp-content/uploads/2009/09/sluggo.jpg

unclemac
12-27-2012, 12:22 PM
Whooohoo!!

Got our Thunderbolt Stickers!!

ARC-8050, with its sticker, is now officially blessed by Intel Thunderbolt sticker shipping department!!!



Look on the bright side: they might require a "Intel Inside" sticker too.

ricks
12-27-2012, 01:17 PM
Only difference between the eval models and the blessed ones is the blue Thunderbolt stickers like in this photo:

http://www.areca.com.tw/products/images/ARC-8050.jpg


Just amazing how long after product was finished and through the Intel development process before Intel got the stickers and official approval out.

Glad it is done.

R

babbkutz
12-27-2012, 06:31 PM
isn't that what we'll be usin'

ricks
12-27-2012, 11:25 PM
USB 3 is pretty good, not in the same class. Max bandwidth through any of the new USB 3 ports on Macs is 205MB/sec. Each port is good for that. We can put a 1000 MB/sec through a Tbolt port, but at a lot higher cost since the development is still new and it is stil getting a premium compared to the common USB 3. USB 3 has some funky behaviors at times on Macs as well, especially Retinas. In seeing the types of problems users have it makes me think Apple did it on a rush and on the cheap. Works, but with a number of limitations, like hotswapping doesn't work well. And hubs are almost always unpredictable.

MsNikon
12-28-2012, 11:22 AM
[QUOTE=ricks;131076]

http://www.areca.com.tw/products/images/ARC-8050.jpg

Hi Rick,

This looks GREAT!!! How does the noise level of this thunderbolt enclosure compare to the FW 800 Burly 4 drive enclosure?

Regards,
MsMikon

ricks
12-28-2012, 12:04 PM
The ARECA box has 2 thermostatic controlled 120 MM fans. They are HUGE. And they barely spin during normal use. I have never gotten the RAID unit warm enough to get the fans to spin up faster. Generally speaking it is close to silent. I suppose in a hot location under heavy load it could ramp up some. Haven't been able to accomplish that in testing though. Always ran it with plenty of airflow to keep the drives cool.

Rick

MsNikon
12-28-2012, 12:41 PM
Thanks for the info Rick, just what I had hoped to hear!

Regards,
MsNikon