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LaCie pushes back Thunderbolt Little Big Disk to fall [U]

updated 09:15 pm EDT, Fri July 15, 2011

Promise drive still available; no reason for delay

(Update: response) LaCie has quietly pushed back the arrival date of its anticipated Thunderbolt-enabled Little Big Disk to late fall/early winter of this year with no explanation. It had originally been planned for this summer. Originally announced in late February shortly after the announcement of Thunderbolt and Apple support, the drive was demoed in April at the NAB show and again in June for tech site Slashgear.

Other Thunderbolt-equipped peripheral manufacturers, such as Promise, BlackMagic Design and Matrox, have pushed ahead with their products, which are available now -- but aimed squarely at the pro video segment, where Thunderbolt will do well. The loss of the LaCie Little Big Disk until later this year is seen as a blow to the swift consumer adoption of Thunderbolt, as it was one of the few announced peripherals that was aimed at and priced for the general public. The drive was said to be retailing for $299 with two 1TB hard drives inside the enclosure, with higher prices for SSD-equipped models.

Thunderbolt surpasses its connection rivals -- even high-end and expensive professional cabling such as Fibre Channel -- by offering two independent, low-overhead bidirectional channels of 10 gigabit-per-second traffic, far more than most current uses call for, at very low costs. Demonstrations routinely showed off the power of the bandwidth of Thunderbolt by passing multiple uncompressed 1080p video streams between Macs and Thunderbolt-connected peripherals in which each could be copied, played, scrubbed and otherwise manipulated with no detriment to the other streams, even at extremely high copy rates.

In the Slashgear demos (video below, Flash required), the LaCie drives achieved read speeds of 825MB per second, and write speeds of more than 350MB per second (using SSD drives inside the enclosure).

Update: LaCie has since responded and said the claims of a Little Big Disk delay were due to confusion over Australia, where winter takes place mid-year. It should still ship in summer.


by MacNN Staff



  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969


    LaCie joins the cloud: vaporware

    Thunderbolt is not as simple as it turned out. Multiple monitors and other devices have to be fully tested before they can go to production with it.

  1. ricardogf

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Seems like MacNN is as STUPID as the average American, who doesn't even know that when the Northern Hemisphere has SUMMER, the Southern Hemisphere has WINTER.

    The reference to WINTER 2011 (which means the SAME as SUMMER 2011 for the North) refers to AUSTRALIA, while the reference to SUMMER 2011 is the SAME as before for the US.


    Comment buried. Show
  1. slboett

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Effin' Eurotrash...

    Or wherever you're from "richardogf"
    Keep your US-hatin' a$$ off the site, or just close your trap. You probably are one of those who bashes then holds your hands out for help from us. Pi$$ off.

  1. tliszt

    Joined: Dec 1969



    The U.S. site still shows a Summer 2011 release. (
    This posting is referring to their Australian website information.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    still waiting

    6 months after the grand announcement, and there's barely anything out there for thunderbolt. Not even something simple like an eSATA adapter. If it didn't use the mini display port and been adapted to also work with apple's monitors, it'd be as useful as an LPT port.

  1. paulvail

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Bad bricks

    After years of failed power bricks (the four pin kind with 12Vdc and 5Vdc) eating far more than a handful of lacie drives, to the point where Lacie themselves sell replacement bricks on their website, I've had to discontinue recommending Lacie equipment for any purpose. These power supplies dropping voltage on the 12V side create far too much havoc to trust to anything business or enterprise-related. It's the low-hanging fruit, but Lacie hasn't changed to a more reliable supplier or design. Thunderbolt won't restore my confidence, since it is the simple stuff that Lacie gets wrong. Much to the cost of my clients. Until there is a return to robust engineering (or at least better vendors), I'll go elsewhere.

  1. PTPro225

    Joined: Dec 1969


    bad LaCie drives,... bad, bad, bad

    Agreed. Having 2 of my 3 LaCie drives of various designs go catastrophically bad, I cannot recommend LaCie drives either. Yes, LaCie may seem like a good deal initially, but getting any decent tech support or ordering replacement parts from them is non-existent. Forget it. Don't trust your data or time to LaCie.

    I will never buy or recommend LaCie to anyone (except my worst enemy).

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