Acer Ditches Thunderbolt for USB 3.0
July 16, 2013 7:36 AM
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Thunderbolt is too expensive for anything other than "premium" machines
Acer is shying away from the
use of Thunderbolt
and will instead focus on USB for future machines.
According to Acer, Thunderbolt is for more high-end PCs and has become much too expensive. USB, on the other hand, has had a performance boost and offers more bang for their buck.
"We're really focusing on USB 3.0 -- it's an excellent alternative to Thunderbolt," said Ruth Rosene, Acer spokeswoman. "It's less expensive, offers comparable bandwidth, charging for devices such as mobile phones, and has a large installed base of accessories and peripherals."
Oddly, Acer became the first Windows PC company to use Thunderbolt back in 2012.
Thunderbolt is an ultra-fast communication technology developed by Intel that offers fast 10Gbps data-transfer rates. It was first commercially introduced in Apple's 2011 MacBook Pro, and is ideal for tasks like video editing.
Intel doesn't seem to be too worried about losing Acer, as many other manufacturers will be releasing "premium systems," which are more ideal for the use of Thunderbolt tech.
"PC adoption is increasing," said Jason Ziller, director of Intel's Client Connectivity Division. "There are more than a dozen new 4th-generation Intel Core processor-based platforms already launched with Thunderbolt, including from Lenovo, Dell, Asus, and others, with more coming throughout 2013. Thunderbolt is targeted toward premium systems. It is not targeted to be on mid-range or value systems in the next couple of years."
One of these PCs is the Dell One 27, which is an all-in-one (AIO) with a 27-inch screen for a starting price of $2,099 USD.
Ziller added that the company wants Thunderbolt to be ubiquitous among most PCs in about three to five years.
However, this could be tough due to the price of Thunderbolt. External hard drives with the technology are much more expensive than USB models, not to mention that Thunderbolt cables cost around $50 USD.
Back in June, Intel unveiled
, which is expected to be available by the end of this year. The second generation uses a new controller chip to merge the uni-directional channels into two 20 Gbps bi-directional channels.
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RE: Tech, tech, tech
7/18/2013 8:55:22 AM
My array at home is 10 drives, 30 TB raw, 27 TB RAID5 on a 12-port SATA 3 Gbps RAID HBA.
Each time I run a FEA case, it generates at 10 GB scratch file (and probably passes much more data than that). Each time I run an internal engine combustion CFD, each of the result files is 275 MB * 720 crank angle degrees = 198 GB. If I run a full vehicle crash sim, it's also multi-GB result files. It all adds up very quickly.
4x Infiniband QDR NICs are $995 a pop. The cheapest 18-port 4x Infiniband QDR switch is about $6k. And the cable is about $100 each.
So uh....yeah....Thunderbolt would be a REALLY cheap optical connection/replacement. Granted, even with TB2, it'd only be HALF the speed of 4x QDR IB, but I wouldn't have to spend thousands and thousands to get the system up and running. And right now, with conventional GbE RJ-45, I'm network limited. With TB or TB2, I will be PCIe limited (and the RAID card might finally get to flex its muscles a little bit).
RE: Tech, tech, tech
7/18/2013 4:36:20 PM
I just checked. Your penis is definitely larger...
But really... I'm amazed at the storage requirements, but you're not a typical use case. So I suppose we can restate the fact that this is great for niche markets, not for the average (or even above-average) PC.
Thunderbolt is overkill for the vast majority of computer users. It's like my Mom having a 100Mb internet connection. The extra cost is never justified. USB2 is just fine for more people. USB3 will do fine. Faster is better, but Mom doesn't care if a file transfer takes 5-10 minutes, and it makes no sense to spend hundreds of dollars for an occasional transfer.
“So far we have not seen a single Android device that does not infringe on our patents." -- Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith
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