Elgato Thunderbolt SSD

If you own a 2011-vintage Mac, you’re probably still trying to find super-fast accessories to use with its new Thunderbolt port. Elgato’s ready to wow you with a new option: the plainly-named Thunderbolt SSD ($430-$700). Completely portable, made from dark metal, and silent, the Thunderbolt SSD promises speedy and reliable data storage in your choice of 120GB or 240GB versions—small capacities for the prices because they use solid-state memory rather than disks, but the speeds may justify the expenditure.

While Elgato’s name isn’t synonymous with storage solutions—the company is best known for its Mac video capture accessories—the company notes that it actually was quietly responsible for early FireWire and flash drive drivers, too. Relative to currently available external Mac SSD drives, Thunderbolt SSD’s major selling point is a promised 270MB/second transfer rate, nearly eight times the speed one would expect from a “typical” USB 2.0 hard drive or over three times the speed of a FireWire 800 drive. Shaped much like a larger iPod mini, the accessory weighs 9.5 ounces and measures a larger 3.3” by 0.8” by 5.2”, with one Thunderbolt port on one edge and no other connectivity; your Mac supplies the power through the port. All you need to worry about is the Thunderbolt cable, which as with all of the other drives we’ve seen thus far is not included in the package. Expect Thunderbolt SSD to be available in February.

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