AMITIAE - Tuesday 1 April 2014

Western Digital Releases 2TB and 4 TB Thunderbolt Disks

apple and chopsticks


By Graham K. Rogers

WD disk

A couple of days after I bought a 2 TB LaCie disk with Thunderbolt connections for faster backups, I see that Western Digital, who have factories here in Thailand, have announced their own entry into this expanding field.

Although Thunderbolt drives still have limited availability, the release of the Western Digital My Passport Pro disk, in 2 TB and 4 TB capacities is a good sign. WD are aiming at "creative professionals and enthusiasts" which uses a two-drive format (like the two Samsung drives in the LaCie). The drives are 2.5".

However, unlike the LaCie, the Western Digital solution has a distinct advantage in that it does not need a separate power supply: like the USB Imation disks I have the My Passport Pro draws power from the connection to the computer, making this a far more portable solution.

In addition, the Thunderbolt cable is integrated into the construction of the casing, so a separate cable is not needed, enhancing the mobile aspect. The company reports transfer speeds of up to 233 MB/s (LaCie claims 635MB/s for the Little Big Disk). My report on speed comparisons of a collection of disks is online.

My Passport Pro2TB
Western Digital - My Passport Pro 2TB

The Western Digital announcement included the comment that the "My Passport Pro will be available immediately at Apple and major consumer electronics retailers" although this is for the US market where the disks are to cost $299.99 (2 TB) and $429.99 (4 TB). The 4 TB disk is currently marked as Out of Stock on the WD website.

My Passport Pro4TB
Western Digital - My Passport Pro 4TB

As yet there is no pricing for the Thai market, but I would estimate the two disks to be priced around 10,500 - 11,000 baht and 15,000 baht respectively, including VAT of 7%.

Graham K. Rogers teaches at the Faculty of Engineering, Mahidol University in Thailand where he is also Assistant Dean. He wrote in the Bangkok Post, Database supplement on IT subjects. For the last seven years of Database he wrote a column on Apple and Macs. He is now continuing that in the Bangkok Post supplement, Life.



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