Fastest ThunderBolt Hard Drives : Multi-Drive Storage Arrays

RAID Storage Solutions For Mac

Apple Compatible ThunderBolt RAID Drives

Multi-drive storage arrays deliver the fastest ThunderBolt RAID external backup drive performance for Mac or PC's. By combining multiple HDD or SSD drives in striped RAID 0 arrays of two or more disks, these ultra-fast ThunderBolt drives can take full advantage of the interface's potential 10Gbps, 20Gbps or 4Gbps bandwidth.

Fastest ThunderBolt SSD RAID Array

LaCie's PCIe based pair of SSD modules set a new standard of ultra-high speed ThunderBolt 2 storage that exceeds 1400Mbps transfer rates in a drive that fits in the palm of your hand. It points to the future where solid-state mass storage speeds far exceed SATA interface.

Fastest ThunderBolt Hard Drive RAID

Promise Technology and LaCie initially kickstarted the market for high-capacity hard disk based RAID drive arrays. But many other top-tier drive manufacturers have joined in including Western Digital, Akitio, G-Tech and CalDigit.

Mac ThunderBolt RAID External Hard Drives

The highest-capacity ThunderBolt backup drives on the market are hard drive RAID storage arrays targeted to professional and enterprise markets. Far more affordable ThunderBolt RAID drives are now available. Apple and Amazon list quite a few shipping high-speed and high-capacity drives and ThunderBolt storage accessories.
Western Digital RAIDG-Drive TBolt RAIDBuffalo SSD RAID
WD MyBook Duo RAID

Dual 2TB Drives
GDrive RAID Drive

4TB and 8TB Storage
ThunderBolt SSD RAID

512GB or 1 Terabyte

Following on the heels of Pegasus 4/6/8 module series TBolt drives from Promise Technologies, Western Digital countered with the high-capacity and far more affordable My Book Thunderbolt Duo. Western Digital recently acquired Hitachi's drive division and is also offering the TBolt G-RAID Drive series as well. Both deliver exceptional RAID 0 HDD performance AND high-capacity in the $500-$800 range.

The latest dual harddisk offering from LaCie is the 2Big ThunderBolt Series. All the drives linked above are proof that to deliver on the performance of Intel and Apple's new high-speed data interface, two or more drives in a striped RAID 0 config are needed to fill the ThunderBolt pipeline and deliver peak Read/Write performance.

Solid-State ThunderBolt RAID Drive Arrays

Even more exciting and with excellent performance, silent operation, AND data reliability - ThunderBolt SSD RAID 0 drives offer the best ThunderBolt data transfer speeds and performance imaginable. With no moving parts and low-latency NAND flash memory, SSD drives make a ThunderBolt Solid-State RAID drive the pinnacle of performance. The LaCie 512GB Little Big Disk Thunderbolt Series SSD uses dual 256GB SSD's in a RAID 0 configuration, and we're now seeing 1 Terabyte SSD solutions reaching the market.

The past year has seen tremendous improvements in SSD drive technology. Improved Firmware, more intelligent drive controller chipsets, ever faster NAND flash chips running at higher clockspeeds with more data channels have led to great speed gains in the Solid-State hard drive arena. But even more notably is how prices have fallen, making SSD ThunderBolt RAID drives far more affordable. While one of even the best performing SSD's falls short of filling a TBolt channel, when paired, it's a worthy match to 3 or more HDD drives in an array.

Spinning Platter ThunderBolt RAID Hard Drive Arrays

The advantages of conventional spinning-patter hard drives is clear: High drive storage capacity at a very low cost. With full size 3.5" hard disk drives costing under $100 USD for 1-2 TeraByte capacities readily available you can have a ton of disk storage space at a very low cost per Gigabyte. When striped together in a RAID 0, 4 or 5 configuration, Reads and Writes are simultaneously split across multiple disks for very fast data access. A ThunderBolt port's insanely high-bandwidth can gobble up bits of data as fast as multiple drives can dish 'em out.

Don't underestimate the latencies and limits of spinning platter drives. However, when you combine three or more in a striped array, they're delivering some of the fastest ThunderBolt performance benchmarks seen to date at a far more affordable cost per gigabyte than solid-state SSD drive technology.