Hard drive connectivity is undergoing not one but two revolutions. The first is the migration to USB Type C, which not only improves transfer speeds and power delivery but universalizes the connector pin so that both sides of a USB cable are the same. Now there’s Thunderbolt 3, which uses the same Type C-sized connection but is way faster—clocking in at 40Gbps. One of the first drives to take advantage of Thunderbolt 3 is LaCie’s 12big. This 12-bay RAID unit can be ordered in capacities up to 96TB and boasts transfer speeds of 2600 MBps in RAID 0 and 2400 MBps in RAID 5. The 12big has a hardware RAID controller and uses 7200RPM Seagate enterprise-class drives rated for 8,760 hours of operation per year. The drives are housed in a heat-dissipating aluminum enclosure with four fans to keep things cool. The 12big can stay running even if a fan fails. LaCie’s RAID Manager software has also been redesigned to make it simpler to use, the company said. The new software will also be available to download for free for owners of older big-series drives. The 12big ships with a USB-C to USB-A cable and will be available in 48TB, 72TB and 96TB capacities. You can daisy chain up to six 12bigs together using Thunderbolt 3 for a maximum capacity of 576TB.
See the story in the digital edition (for PDN subscribers; login required).