It sounds like CES is turning into a bit of a Thunderbolt coming out party. Both Elgato and OCZ have announced external solid-state Thunderbolt hard drives.
First up, Elgato, the fine makers of those TV Tuners, is releasing an SSD that will be on sale this February, but given the price of solid-state hard drives today, the price is a little bit hefty. A 120GB version will cost $429.95, and the 240GB version will weigh in at $699.95. Not exactly cheap, or priced at a point where consumers can easily get their hands on them. The drive can reach transfer speeds of up to 270 MB/second, which isn’t exactly much to write home about considering the speed that Thunderbolt can push.
On the other hand, OCZ has also unveiled the Thunderbolt OCZ LightFoot external SSD drive that will be available in 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB, and 1TB capacities. Unlike the Eglato device, the OCZ drives can reach speeds up to 750 MB/second. OCZ has yet to announce pricing information on its drives.
Thunderbolt may be available in Apple’s entire consumer level lineup, but if peripheral prices continue to be the price of a car payment, it may be a while until it really catches on at this point. What’s bizarre is that the Mac Pro, Apple’s professional level desktop computer, has yet to see an update that brings Thunderbolt to the system. The price of these external drives screams professional level devices currently, and yet there’s no professional machine to run them, unless you count the MacBook Pro.
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