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Advantages of Thunderbolt interface | disadvantages of Thunderbolt interface

This page covers advantages and disadvantages of Thunderbolt interface. It mentions Thunderbolt interface advantages or benefits and Thunderbolt interface disadvantages or drawbacks.

What is Thunderbolt interface?

Introduction:
• It is hardware interface developed by Intel & Apple which allows connection of any external peripherals to computer/laptop.
• It supersedes Firewire interface.
• There are three types of thunderbolt interfaces viz. thunderbolt-1, thunderbolt-2 and thunderbolt-3.
• Based on these different versions it supports different data rates and cable lengths.

• It is hot pluggable and supports daisy chaining upto 6 devices.

Thunderbolt interface

• Thunderbolt-1 and Thunderbolt-2 support 20 Gbps where as Thunderbolt-3 supports 40 Gbps.
• It supports maximum distance of upto 100 meters (300 feet).

Benefits or advantages of Thunderbolt interface

Following are the benefits or advantages of Thunderbolt interface:
➨The thunderbolt interface muxes/de-muxes PCIe (PCI Express) lane and DP (Display Port) lane using thunderbolt controller over single cable.
➨Thunderbolt-3 supports data rate of two 20Gbps or 40Gbps over two lanes in each directions. This is higher than data rates supported by USB 3.1 type-C and USB 3.0 which is 10 Gbps and 5 Gbps respectively.
➨It supports higher pixel devices upto dual 4K displays with 60Hz.
➨It delivers more power and hence will be used for high rate of charging.
➨It can be used for various applications such as single cable docking, external GPU docks with hot-plug support, data transfer & display output, networking of various systems etc.

Drawbacks or disadvantages of Thunderbolt interface

Following are the drawbacks or disadvantages of Thunderbolt interface:
➨It is more expensive technology compare to well established USB and Firewire interfaces.
➨Fewer peripheral devices are available with thunderbolt interface compare to USB. Hence people need to buy new devices which supports thunderbolt in order to use this technology.
➨Thunderbolt interface supports lesser devices in daisy chaining compare to USB and Firewire. Thunderbolt supports 6 devices, USB supports 127 devices and Firewire supports upto 63 devices.

Refer difference between Thunderbolt-1 vs Thunderbolt-2 vs Thunderbolt-3 >> interface types or versions.



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