1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Previous Next 102 Replies Latest reply: Jun 16, 2014 10:19 AM by Ricks ricks@macgurus.com Go to original post
  • 45. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    a brody Level 9 Level 9 (63,265 points)

    I've been watching the discussion and just haven't had the time to look at it.    There is this card:

     

    http://www.the-cable-store.com/contents/en-us/d40_lightpeak_cards.html

    Only question is are there any drivers? If not, the Open Source community may be interested, and those who have the money may want to put the idea forth to http://www.sourceforge.net/

  • 46. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    unusualmusic Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I am very interested in a TB card for a 3,1 MacPro in order to run one ProTools rig on two platforms, a new MacBook and the 3,1 without having to buy two systems. The link at the end of the discussion is to a presently  unavailable product. Rick or anybody hear of anything in the works?

  • 47. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    Grant Bennet-Alder Level 8 Level 8 (49,250 points)

    Don't hold your breath waiting for it.

  • 48. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    westinmylifeaway Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Interesting find, but the card displayed at the link uses a different connector then the standard Thunderbolt plug. After cruising the net I did find a link to a card with the requisite connector...

     

    http://www.tomshardware.com/news/asus-thunderbolt-Z77-H77-pcie,15925.html

     

    Currently designed as a PC add-on, if it materializes at all maybe an Apple version will appear for older MacPros.

  • 49. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    The hatter Level 9 Level 9 (58,880 points)

    More than just drivers... "Only ten Asus motherboards currently support the add-in card. "

  • 50. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    westinmylifeaway Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    No doubt. It's an interesting solution, it shows that TB as an add-in card is possible with proper vision. Whether or not a solution for an older motherboard architecture like the MacPro is possible will need to be addressed by companies willing to explore making a card. The $200 mentioned suggests it's not overly expensive to build the card, if the card and beta drivers were available I'd take a chance and order one for evaluation.

  • 51. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    Ricks ricks@macgurus.com Level 6 Level 6 (11,515 points)

    Part of the problem with an expansion board is integration to CPU and motherboard. Only a couple processors so far support Tbolt. And the motherboard has to be designed with the capability included. At least that's been true so far.

     

    On another note, Intel is abominable to work with in the development and approval of Tbolt products. I have yet to hear anyone even nearly satisfied, or even less than totally beside themselves while thrashing their way through the expensive, time consuming and arbritrarily run process that Intel has set up to bring a new Thunderbolt product to market.  I do know that most all developers wanting to release products are way behind any reasonable schedule, have spent an order of magnitude more money on said projects, and are crazier by the day since they are in too deep to get out. The uncertainty in the Intel process makes prognostication on possible products releases totally impossible. Even completed approvals can take months just to get official 'approved by Intel' back to manufacturers. Seen a number of times when products have sat in warehouse waiting on 'approved' stickers. It's a mess.

     

    I quit guessing at when anything will happen. Developers that have been reliably able to release components for us in the past are now going silent on even what they are working on. Well, other than their rage. That comes through just fine.

  • 52. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    Laserbeak Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    You can't do it. It's a physical impossibility. All Intel Xeon chips made so far are incompatitible due to their lack of on-chip video capability. Nothing can change that. Even if someone came out with a board that seemed quasi

    -compatible with the devices, by Intel's definition it would not be a Thunderbolt cable/interface/whatever. To reiterate the very design specifications of every Mac Pro built so far and the Thunderbolt interface make them incompatible. There is no way to go around this, fix this, etc.

     

    For there ever to be a Thunderbolt Mac Pro, then either:

     

     

    1. Intel needs to make compatible Xeon chips.

     

    --or--

     

    2. Apple needs to drop the Xeons on Mac Pros, dooming them single chip Core i7s etc.

     

    I certainly wouldn't want the second to happen, so let's hope Intel makes compatible Xeons someday.

  • 53. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    Stygimoloch Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    There will never be an add-on PCI-E card. Its not possible.

  • 54. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    Eddie Mac Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    LordZedd wrote:

     

     

    In reality, there is absolutely no need for TB on a MacPro.

    Need another Ethernet/USB/FireWire/Video port? Add a card.

    Want fast external storage? Get an eSATA-III card. TB won't be any faster because the drive is still limited by the SATA interface in the enclosure.

     

     

    Respecfully, this idealism doesn't have much market play and doesn't matter.

     

    I need thunderbolt in my Mac Pro to accommodate the users I support that bring me thunderbolt drives. I work with many digital asset managers in the same boat. It's utterly unreasonable to tell a client that they're wrong to use this new technology because some of the older alternatives are similar or adequate. Detailing the technical limitations of an internal sata bus in that situation is a comical thought, up to the point where it costs me money.

  • 55. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    Laserbeak Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    Well, Windows servers have same problem, there are no Xeon-based computers with genuine Thunderbolt ports period. All the so-called servers use high-end i7 chips, not  Xeons.

  • 56. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    Warren Heaton Level 3 Level 3 (540 points)

    RE LordZedd's:  In reality, there is absolutely no need for TB on a MacPro.

     

    If you want and/or need to connect a MacBook Pro Retina or MacBook Pro Air via Thunderbolt Target Disc Mode (which is _not_ available via FireWire on these models), you would need a Thunderbolt port on the MacPro.  And, vice versa.  Although, one should be able to use the Thunderbolt to FireWire adapter with no unexpected issue for the reverse.

     

    And, if there really was no need for Thunderbolt on a MacPro... then how is it that this thread not only has thousands of views, but is an ongoing topic to this day?

     

    Certainly, it's accurate to say that one can get by on a tower without Thunderbolt.  I mean, who wouldn't want everything a tower has to offer?  Yet, there's no denying that it's ironic that the one machine you purchase to be able to customize to your needs in most any way can in no way whatsover meet your needs for Thundebolt (if you happen to have them).

     

    Thunderbolt is price-breaking performance that is simply off limits to a MacPro user.

     

    For those that have clients delivering things on Thunderbolt drives, I suppose it's not too much to buy a base Mac mini and access the Tbolt drive over the Gigabit network.  Heck, if the Mac mini could fit inside the MacPro, maybe we could just end this thread.  Lol.

     

     

     

     

    -Warren

  • 57. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    BitterCreek Level 1 Level 1 (100 points)

    For those that have clients delivering things on Thunderbolt drives, I suppose it's not too much to buy a base Mac mini and access the Tbolt drive over the Gigabit network.  Heck, if the Mac mini could fit inside the MacPro, maybe we could just end this thread.

    There is no such client.

  • 58. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    William McMullen Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    In reality, there is absolutely no need for TB on a MacPro.

    Need another Ethernet/USB/FireWire/Video port? Add a card.

    Want fast external storage? Get an eSATA-III card. TB won't be any faster because the drive is still limited by the SATA interface in the enclosure.

     

    For those that have clients delivering things on Thunderbolt drives...

    There is no such client.

     

     

    So tiring... It's actually a bit arrogant for someone to decide that others can't possibly benefit from some feature that they themselves can't. How many times do people come on to forums and type nonsense like that? As though you are WRONG for wanting the common, convenient TB connector that Apple has on EVERY OTHER COMPUTER they make, as well as their new nice monitor.

     

    Thunderbolt is more than simply speed - it's convenient, it's multi-data channeling (monitors/drives/interfaces on the same daisy-chain), and like I just said, it's a common connector on nearly every Macintosh they make. Drives and periphs are coming out every month, and it's a great solution for data storage/display connection. Even if a MacPro with eSATA III is a better solution for you, LordZedd, it's not the answer for someone who travels with their MacBook Pro and uses a TB drive for video media, for instance, and wants to edit that media on a MacPro on the office.

     

    Thunderbolt is most certainly needed, as people work on imagery, video and audio from their laptops and want to head to the office/studio/home where their larger, more robust systems reside, to seamlessly have data/media/sessions available. A great example is the guy who wants to own a single audio recording rig that can connect easily to both his laptop and his tower.

     

    Thunderbolt is most certainly needed on a MacPro - and that is why Apple will add it in their next upgrade of the MacPro. I know this simple solution glosses over the obvious topic here - people want TB on their existing MacPros - but my post is more to suggest that if YOU don't need TB on your MacPro, just move on without some dismissive snide comment for those who do.

  • 59. Re: are there PCI thunderbolt cards for mac pro 3.1?
    BitterCreek Level 1 Level 1 (100 points)

    A USB 3 drive is just as fast. Performance is limited by SATA III, why do you think everyone benchmarks TB with SSDs and RAIDs?