Wednesday, March 12, 2014

LaCie's 1TB Little Big Disk offers over 1GB/s in an external drive

Just the other day we saw some SSDs using the PCIe bus in order to escape the speed limits of the SATA interface. Now, I bring you a device that shows you can also achieve over 1GB/s transfers... using an external hard drive.

As you might imaging this Little Big Disk by LaCie isn't a common external USB hard drive. To achieve this kind of performance, this device uses the latest Thunderbolt 2 - while inside it you'll find a pair of 500GB SSD drives. That's the secret to achieve speeds of up to 1375MB/s allowing to zip through its 1TB of data in under 7 minutes - don't even dare trying to figure out how long it would take for that to happen in a regular USB external drive.

If that's not enough, you can always add a second hard drive and double that transfer rate (provided you have multiple Thunderbolt 2 ports - like in the new Mac Pro). And once you do that, you'll probably never want to look to a computer relying on a regular hard drive - or even a common SSD.

By now you're probably imagining what's the "catch"... and predictably so, it's its price. The Little Big Disk comes with a not so little $1300 price tag (so, roughly about $1 per MB/s transfer). Unless you do need a high-performance external drive, you might be better off paying roughly a third of that and getting two 1TB SSD and using them in RAID 0 for extra speed.

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