What you need to know
- OWC's ThunderBay 8 is now on sale.
- It sells for $699.99 as a standalone unit.
- Or you can fil it with 128TB of enterprise storage and pay $5,999.
When you need as much storage as possible, spinning disks are the only way to go. And when you need it to be fast, you need some sort of RAID configuration and you need Thunderbolt 3. The new OWC ThunderBay 8 has those things, and it looks pretty sweet as well.
OWC first announced this thing at CES earlier this year and I took note to keep an eye out for its arrival. It's now here, and it looks like it's going to deliver on all the promises that were made.
The specifications cover all of the bases. It holds eight 2.5 or 3.5-inch drives, meaning it can take up to 128TB of spinning platters. It also has two Thunderbolt 3 ports. Oh, and not to forget the DisplayPort 1.2 connection just in case you want to hook a monitor up, too. But you don't care about any of that, right? You want to know how fast this thing is.
OWC claims that you can expect "pro-grade" transfer speeds of up to 2,586MB/s, which is pretty fast. And with 128TB of storage on offer, I'm sure it will offer plenty of storage for most people. If not, multiple ThunderBay 8 devices can be hooked up together to give you a possible 768TB of capacity. That's....a lot.
And then there's the price. If you max this thing out you're looking at $5,999 but that gets you enterprise drives. If you just want normal consumer-grade drives, you pay $5,299.99 and there are tons of different storage options for those who don't need to go full bore. Or you can just buy the enclosure for $699.99 and your own drives later. It's completely up to you.
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Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.
Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.