Akitio Thunder2 Duo Pro

Akitio Thunder2 Duo Pro

Akitio Thunder2 Duo Pro

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Product Highlights

  • 2 x 3.5"/2.5" SATA III Drive Bays
  • 2 x Thunderbolt 2 Ports (up to 20 Gb/s)
  • 2 x USB 3.0 Ports (up to 5 Gb/s)
  • 1 x HDMI 1.4b Port (up to 3 Gb/s)
  • 4K Workflow
  • RAID 0, 1, SPAN, Non-RAID
  • Built-in Fan for Active Cooling
  • Tool-less Drive Installation
  • Supports Drives 80GB - 8TB
  • Windows and Mac Compatible
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Akitio AK-T2DP-THU3IAA-AKTU overview

  • 1Description

The Thunder2 Duo Pro from Akitio is a dual-bay storage enclosure that supports 3.5" and 2.5" drives in a tool-less installation ranging in capacity from 80GB - 8TB. The Thunder2 Duo Pro is equipped with dual Thunderbolt 2 ports with bi-directional speeds up to 20 Gb/s, one USB 3.0 port with speeds up to 5 Gb/s, and one HDMI 1.4b port with speeds up to 3 Gb/s. While one Thunderbolt 2 port is used the connect to your system, the other one can be used to daisy chain up to five devices to your system. The Thunderbolt 2 ports are also DisplayPort 1.2 compatible, which allows for video streaming to a single 4K display. Additionally, the HDMI 1.4b port will allow you to add a second 4K display to your system, provided that your primary display is already 4K.

Whether you are a photo or video professional or just someone who requires Thunderbolt storage, the Thunder2 Duo Pro supports RAID 0 (striping), 1 (redundancy), SPAN (disk spanning for large storage capacities), and non-RAID (independent volumes) configurations. The Thunder2 Duo Pro supports Windows and Mac operating systems and includes a 3.3' / 1.0m Thunderbolt cable, a 3.3' / 1.0m USB 3.0 cable, and a power adapter.

Please bear in mind that this Thunderbolt product is not compatible with Apple's Boot Camp. Also, in order for your computer to access volumes larger than 2TB, it must be running Windows Vista, 7, or Mac OS 10.4 and above and be updated. Lastly, the Thunderbolt cable is not included with all models or in all regions.

Thunderbolt 2 for enhanced transfer speeds up to 20 Gbps
Dual interface featuring Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 connectivity
Hardware RAID controller (RAID 0, RAID 1, SPAN, Non-RAID)
Tool-less drive installation for 2.5" and 3.5" drives
Built-in fan for active cooling with power switch
Dedicated HDMI 1.4b port for 4K displays
Kensington security lock slot
High-Speed I/O Performance and Dual Interfaces
By incorporating the Thunderbolt 2 interface, Akitio's Thunder2 Duo Pro is ready to deliver fast throughput performance. For systems without Thunderbolt connectivity, the USB 3.0 interface guarantees flexibility and compatibility
Dual Thunderbolt Ports and HDMI Output
The second Thunderbolt 2 port lets you daisy chain up to five Thunderbolt devices together. You can attach additional external drives and even a display, all connected to your computer through a single cable. With the dedicated HDMI 1.4b connector, you can easily connect your 4K display without the need for an additional adapter
4K Workflow with Thunderbolt 2 Technology
Thunderbolt 2 technology incorporates DisplayPort 1.2 support, which allows for video streaming to a single 4K video monitor. With the dedicated HDMI 1.4b connector, you can even add a second display, assuming that the first display is a Thunderbolt display
Hardware RAID Controller
This storage enclosure is designed to house up to two SATA drives, either the smaller 2.5" or the larger 3.5" drives. With the built-in hardware RAID controller you can mirror the drives with RAID 1 as a reliable backup for your important data, you can stripe the drives with RAID 0 for improved performance and speed, or you can select SPAN to combine the drives for large storage capacities. Even individually, the SATA III 6 Gb/s interface allows each drive to run at full SATA III speeds. In case of a drive failure, the tool-less design makes installing and replacing the drives quick and easy
In the Box
Akitio Thunder2 Duo Pro
  • Thunderbolt Cable
  • USB 3.0 Cable
  • Power Adapter
  • Limited 2-Year Manufacturer Warranty
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    Akitio AK-T2DP-THU3IAA-AKTU specs

    Number of Bays 2 x 2.5"/3.5"
    Connections 2 x Mini DisplayPort (Thunderbolt 2)
    1 x USB Type-B (USB 3.1 Gen 1)
    1 x  
    Compatible Drive Interface SATA III
    RAID Modes RAID 0, 1, JBOD
    Operating System Support Windows, macOS/OS X
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    Power Source AC Adapter
    AC Input Power 100 to 240 VAC, 50 / 60 Hz
    DC Input Power 12 VDC at 6 A
    Security
    Environmental
    Operating Temperature 41 to 95°F / 5 to 35°C
    Operating Humidity 5 to 95%
    Storage Temperature 68 to 140°F / 20 to 60°C
    Physical
    Material of Construction Aluminum
    Noise Level 14.5 dBA
    Dimensions (W x H x D) 9.4 x 5.6 x 3.7" / 23.8 x 14.3 x 9.4 cm
    Packaging Info
    Package Weight 6.25 lb
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 13.1 x 10.2 x 4.9"

    Akitio AK-T2DP-THU3IAA-AKTU reviews

    Thunder2 Duo Pro is rated 4.7 out of 5 by 11.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Solid housing for a pair of SSD drives Purchased the Drive housing and installed some SSD drives. EASY. I purchased a pair of separate 2M Thunderbolt cables to facilitate the convenient placement of the external drive. The Thunder2 also comes with a 0.5M Thunderbolt cable, as well as a USB 3.0 cable, so you may not need to purchase a separate cable, the Thunderbolt cables are expensive compared to the ubiquitous USB cables. Note the rotating switch position on the back case,it has 4 positions: non-Raid, Raid 0, Raid 1, and SPAN. Be careful if you are installing your existing drive into this case and you want to keep your dataset, be sure and set to non-Raid.
    Date published: 2017-01-16
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Just purchased another one! I bought one of these enclosures last year to plug into a Mac Mini for recording 50 audio tracks simultaneously at a music festival. It work flawlessly in a RAID 1 configuration for four straight critical days as well as subsequent post event processing. Additionally, I had a second monitor plugged into the HDMI port without issue. Another Mac was used as a backup recorder but with a USB3 enclosure; it dropped ready several times. Just purchased a second unit to replace the USB enclosure. These units are well designed and built - solid metal chassis and cover. Thunderbolt rocks!
    Date published: 2016-05-04
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Solid Dual Bay Enclosure. Very Competitive SSD Solution! Excellent Product! Especially for those interested in an SSD RAID setup, it strikes a nice balance between flexibility and speed on a budget. It seems this cannot be beat!Stepping back a bit, I express my enthusiasm for this enclosure tentatively, for I have only had it running for a couple hours. But so far, it seems to be one of the better enclosures I have ever owned, and I've owned quite a few. I bought this Akitio Thunder2 Duo Pro based on the following attributes:1. Hardware RAID enabled for RAID 0, RAID 1, or JBOD2. Both Thunderbolt 2 and USB 3.0 connectivity3. Ability to accept both 2.5 and 3.5 drives4. The ability to control the cooling fan with an ON/OFF switch. Since I am running SSD's, I don't always need that fan on, although it is very quiet : )5. The potential for matching the throughput performance of a 6 or 8 drive HDD RAID, with only two SSD's in RAID 06. The ability to achieve a 2 TB capacity (2x 1 TB)Overall, my objective with this Akitio product was actually to build a replacement for this: LaCie Little Big Disk Thunderbolt-2 Portable Hard Drive 1TB SSD (9000477)I needed a high performing drive to store my media, project, cache, and preview files for editing on Premiere Pro CS6. Since I planned on completing daily backups, I had no problem configuring this drive to RAID 0.At first, the LaCie Little Big Disk seemed like the perfect solution. The two blade style PCIe SSD's (rather than SATA) really let the SSD's fly over the Thunderbolt 2 connection, as evidenced by read/write speeds of over 1200 MB/s with BlackMagic and AJA benchmarking. Although the drive was only 1TB, I could buy two of them and split up my files. I ended up going a different route for these reasons:1. Hardware RAID - Although it's been shown that Software RAID setups have very little effect on modern CPU's, especially when run in non-parity setups like RAID 0 and RAID 1, I wanted a Hardware based controller as they allow for a more reliable (in my opinion), flexible, and mobile storage solution. I work on several different Macs and collaborate with other editors, and although their systems would presumably be able to run a SoftRaid drive with Disk Utility, I wanted the ability to guarantee quick setup and compatibility. With Apple's latest OS X El Capitan dropping RAID support from Disk Utility altogether, I was even more sure that I wanted Hardware RAID.2. Cost/TB - LaCie's newest Little Big Disk is very fast and very expensive (it's funny how often those things go together). At $$/TB cost, I thought I should at least look at other options.3. Fit for Purpose Speed - I primarily edit on a Late 2012 iMac. Although it has proven to be a beast of a machine for what I need to do (3.4 GHz i7, 32 GB RAM, NVIDIA GTX 2048 MB video card, 3 TB Fusion drive), it only sports Thunderbolt 1 ports. This means that my maximum throughput on an external drive is only is only 700 - 800 MB/s (vs. the 1375 MB/s practical upper limit of Thunderbolt 2). Although I am getting a MacBook Pro later this year with Thunderbolt 3 ports which are backwards compatible with Thunderbolt 2 (I've been holding out for the Skylake chips), why purchase a drive that so outperforms the capabilities of my current video-editing workhorse?THE SOLUTION - Build itI knew a SATA based RAID 0 array with SSD's could easily achieve the needed speeds. Although I don't recommend running a RAID 0 SSD setup for a boot disk, as there is very little actual real world gain (see Tom's Hardware: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ssd-raid-benchmark,3485.html), they are great external drive configurations for video editors given the increasing demands made by 2k and 4k footage.FINAL SOLUTIONGiven the Akitio Thunder 2 Duo Pro met most of my criteria, this enclosure was combined with two 1 TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD's at a total cost of $1000 ($300 for the enclosure and $700 for the two 1 TB SSD's). Even before the RAID 0 array was configured, the drives by themselves provided around 500 MB/s on AJA (tapping on the ceiling of SATA, I believe). When configured in RAID 0, benchmark Read/Write readings came in at 766 MB/s and 728 MB/s. That's fast, even considering these are only synthetic benchmarks! Not bad performance for $500/TB.FUTURE PLANS1. Given the proximity of the benchmarks to Thunderbolt 1's ceiling, I won't really know for sure what the drive is capable of until I hook it up on Thunderbolt 2. I'll follow up with a review on this once I get my Macbook Pro in Q1 2016. I really wish AKiTiO had a Thunderbolt 3 enclosure, as my Macbook Pro will be equipped with Thunderbolt 3 ports.2. I'd like to review this Duo Pro AKiTiO enclosure or a similar Dual Bay Hardware RAID enclosure from another company, but as a 12 TB RAID 1 backup setup, daisy chained to my current RAID 0. Since my current drive is in RAID 0, it is imperative to perform regular backups (daily at least) to a good RAID 1 or RAID 10 system. Given all of the positive attributes of the Duo Pro, I'm optimistic that it could provide a great back-up solution as well.3. Review one of the Thunder 2 Quad enclosures, either by Akitio, OWC, or another company. Although most of these setups are Software RAID driven, they are capable of speeds just as fast as the LaCie drive, but at higher capacity and lower cost. The quad enclosure ($$) plus 4x 500GB SSD ($$total), comes out to just $1000.In summary, using the AKiTi0 Thunder 2 Duo Pro enclosure, combined with two (2x) 1 TB Samsung 850 EVO SSD's in RAID 0, allowed for Read/Write readings of over 700 MB/s at a cost of $$/TB.UPDATE 1/22/2016-Less than 1 week after my purchase, 1TB Samsung EVO 850 SSD's$ We are now looking at $$/TB cost for RAID 0 setup.
    Date published: 2016-01-23
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Super quiet. Very very happy. I had the OWC mercury elite pro with 2x10TB=20TB RAID 0, and the sound it made was driving me nuts. The fan was quiet, but it amplified the popping sound that the drives themselves make. So now I got this one. Tried to find reviews about sound level, but couldn't find any that directly related to how it translates the sound of the drives themselves. I must say I'm super pleased. You can barely hear the drives at all while it's reading and writing. It's an amazing difference. Same drives. I also love that you don't need a screwdriver to install the drives. Because I'm using this on the road, I was concerned that it was slightly larger and heavier than the OWC, but it's a minimal difference, and whatever difference there is, is made up by this unit using a smaller power supply.
    Date published: 2016-12-06
    Rated 2 out of 5 by from Easy to Install but CHECK Settings! Installation was a snap. Screw attachments are held in place, and I was able to get my two drives installed within minutes. Amazingly easy. Unfortunately things went so smoothly that I didn't take time to read the instructions or check the settings. The default switch setting for this drive is RAID (unlike my previous enclosure). If you install drives with data on them before switching to NON-RAID you will destroy your data as I painfully and expensively found out as my primary work drive, and my backup drive, were simultaneously and instantly rendered unreadable. Obviously my mistake, but a change in the factory default setting to NON-RAID could save another careless user a lot of money, while only minimally inconveniencing someone who wants to use the RAID feature. I haven't gotten my original drives back from the recovery service yet, but the the blank drives I installed have impressive transfer speeds. Unfortunately the drive in the lower bay is identified as unreadable every time I reboot the system. (A second new drive exhibits the same behavior, so I don't think it's the drive.) Unplugging and plugging in the enclosure allows the drive to function normally until the next reboot. If the manufacturer doesn't have a solution I'll be returning the enclosure.
    Date published: 2015-09-13
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Product I use this product for storage and backup. Added two 4-TB hard drives to use one as a master disc to save high res photos and projects and the second one to make a clone of the master. I use a third party software called ChronoSync in Non RAID mode to make copies of files. Very easy setup and when the disks are full, simply remove and replace with new disks. On thunderbolt-1 it took 40 minutes to transfer 1TB data simultaneously on both disks. With Thunderbolt 2 the speed is probably double. Its a huge relief to save files properly and have a backup. The setup allowed me to create over a TB space on the computer to work on current projects. Upon completion of projects or downloading new photos all I do now is drag new folder to one disk and it automatically copies to the both disks. Only using Time Machine with Airport to back up current projects and files that live temporarily on the computer's internal drive.
    Date published: 2017-01-24
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Very happy with this product. I use it in the Non-Raid mode with a 1TB SSD and 750GB HDD. I use the 1TB SSD as the boot disk to my Macbook Pro. Excellent speed. Only one complaint and that is B&H did not list that it comes with both a Thunderbolt cable and USB 3.0 cable. I bought those items separate so incurred an unnecessary cost.
    Date published: 2016-06-14
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great! Exactly what I wanted. Hardware RAID controller is seamless. Thunderbolt 2 just flies. Easy super easy install. Love it! Only improvement I'd like to see is temp based fan control, though the fan is so silent it almost doesn't matter.
    Date published: 2016-12-18
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