Thunderbolt stick makes USB flash drive look bad - speed wise

Thunderbolt stick makes USB flash drive look bad - speed wise.

[newsimage][/newsimage]Intel showcased a flash drive connecting to the computer over  Thunderbolt interface instead of the usual USB port.

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So this will be an improvement, eh? Speeds up Windows by 50%?

I’m still loading up my 64Gb PNY that I’ll send to Cholla.

It’s been building for 2 steady months, dribbling in byte by byte - it’s already up to 18Mb. I figure that, by the end of 2014, I’ll be ready to mail to him so he can start downloading it, and return it to me by 2018.

What a bunch of hooey. No mention of the actual speed of the drive, just regurgitating of the theoretical speeds of the interface.

It could actually wind up being slower, by far, than some of the current USB-3 flash drives. The fact that no actual speeds are mentioned suggests this may be the case. Its only as fast as the memory that’s inside it.

So how much are they charging just for the Thunderbolt connector on the flash drive and the motherboard? I’m curious because they were charging $50/Thunderbolt connector for a while. That would be a good racket. Charge once for the port and once for the connector.

CDan, its a prototype and they’re not even selling it. Proof of concept. It has potential to be much faster. Maybe this actual prototype is not faster than a USB3 if the memory is a bottleneck but that isn’t the point here. The point was its the 1st TB flash drive in the world supporting a 10 GBs interface. I’m willing to believe its faster. I’m also considering Intel makes both USB3 and Thunderbolt technologies and they were showing it in action.

The last time I looked 128GB was less than 1TB.

Maybe you meant first 1Tb drive?

I’ll go along with CDAN’s “it’s the speed of the memory chips that count” argument. We’ve all got enough USB thumb-drives to prove that.

I’m sure the connector IS providing faster thru-put. My bigger question is, “Why wasn’t this done, say, 20 years ago? Or even 10? Have they just discovered a brand new alien metal that transmits signals THIS fast?” Of course, asking “Why not in earlier versions?” begs so many Win8 load-times, too… how DID they discover a way to load in sequence so many drivers and services so much faster NOW?

I guess I shouldn’t wait for the original USB promises to be delivered - promises that included “one cable will have all devices daisy-chained and transmitting signals and power along that one cable…”

Oh. And it would make Windows 50% faster too.

Prototype or not, there is no flash memory in existence that even comes close to maxing out a USB-3 interface, much less Thunderbolt. Being that this has a Sandisc SSD inside, even the concept is massively flawed and has no value or “speed” beyond any other flash drive. Calling it the “fastest drive” does not make it so.

This is simply not true. While speaking of theoretical speed is interesting we can really only practically go with Real world.

For starters most Memory sticks do not use best quality (durable) or speed rated/chipset that produce the best speeds.

There are plenty of Flash based 2.5 inch drives and other form factors that hit 550 mega bytes a second depending on what you are measuring.

Until recently USB3 drives of any kind had trouble hitting 100 mega bytes a second, there are now quite a number that are in the 250 to 450 mega bytes a second range.

Thunderbolt can do better but most of the thunderbolt based drives also had trouble achieving the kind of speed it should. Someone can provide a correction but I do not believe there are not too many drives TB drives that have hit 500 except arrays of SSD and and those are around 900.

In short the devils in the details.

The best USB 3 sticks hit around 150, Even expensive sticks are cheaply made relatively speaking generally. If TB sticks can be mass produced and hit speeds above their USB3 counterparts great. In the meantime I agree with the general sentiment in this thread that not even giving the speed obtained is silly, but is basically a press release.

Oh where, Oh where has firewire gone?
Is a pity that development stopped on this.

It’s always to late that the world realises that a slightly more expensive solution that works for problem “a” and can work for problem “b” is better than a crap solution for “b” with continual upgrades.

Firewire 400 stomped all over usb2, and I have no doubt that Firewire 800 stomps all over usb3 in its native form (without all the recent additions to support “ncq” type extensions).
If the world had used Firewire in the first place, we’d be on Firewire 1600 by now, and heading towards firewire 3200 …

But it’s al ok, the world works with all these standards fragmentation with usb2, usb3, Firewire, esata & thunderbolt, and hdmi, and display port, and dvi … Have I missed anything.

One interface to rule them all! Bring on thunderbolt, or lightning, or whatever stupid name that Apple has renamed it in their marketing techno babble today.

Who developed Firewire in the first place? Apple. So who holds the patents? Most likely… Apple. So who controls pricing, licensing, and development? Probably Apple or whomever they deem worthy. So if they really wanted to develop a USB 3.0 killer generation of Firewire, they would have done so instead of going for Thunderbolt.

Frankly I’m all for the highest speed transfers. But I don’t want to be stuck into a limited market niche with pricey gadgets because of a specialized transfer setup. Hence, I’d rather have USB 3.0 than Thunderbolt, until Thunderbolt becomes ubiqitous. Job’s pissing contest with USB 3.0, insisting on not allowing any Mac’s to have it, including the high end Mac Pro workstations, was one of his more jerky and short sided views, along with not supporting Blu-Ray players.

FW 400 was great and around 35 percent faster then USB 2. FW800 was the best for a long time. Firewire 1600/3200 never really saw the light of day. USB 3 took a bit to hits its stride but is better then FW800 assuming your hardware supports it.

Thunderbolt is better still but prices have to come down.

To answer the questions posited. If I remember correctly FW was an Apple/Sony creation. I do not believe licensing was prohibitive. Like USB 3 it took a long time to hit the motherboard. From this Apple learned. The next iteration TB and TB2 they partnered with Intel. The issue with thunderbolt is that the cables contain electronics making them much more expensive.

If prices remain hight they will used for Hubs, Storage arrays, break out boxes etc.

Only Time will tell.

I know this is simply a proof of concept.

Regardless: I just don’t know when/why you would waste Thunderbolt on a simple flash drive? Yes, the drive is fast, but what does that matter to the average consumer?

I believe I would prefer them to show a simple system where they connect multiple PCIe devices to a motherboard via Thunderbolt, emulating all the power of a low/mid-end desktop for gaming, audio/video/photo production, and other situations that would appreciate the capabilities of a bandwidth-hungry device hanging off of the PCIe bus. Apple is going to be pushing such an idea with its newest “desktop”, where it has more TB ports than USB 3.0 ports; as such, I wouldn’t waste the TB port on anything like this.

But in a way, it does signify that the future is now, even if the future is a (theoretically) expensive copy of the past, hacked together in a relatively small enclosure.

I have a USB 3.0 SSD. The same SSD should be faster on Thunderbolt. I have tried a few USB 3.0 “stick” products. The one I still own and use is rather fast, but still much slower than USB 3.0 SSD. It’s only a matter of time before some manufacturers design and produce SSD natively on Thunderbolt. USB was invented for things like mouse and keyboard. Thunderbolt was designed for digital high-resolution display and mass storage. One thing I like about these new Haswell-compatible motherboards is some of them support four or more USB 3.0 ports onboard. I own and use three USB 3.0 devices and have only two USB 3.0 ports on the back panel of this PC.