Sonnet Intros Echo ExpressCard Adapter for Thunderbolt

| Product News

Sonnet announced its new Echo ExpressCard/34 Thunderbolt Adapter on Friday. The adapter adds ExpressCard/34 support to Macs that include the new high-speed Thunderbolt port.

Echo ExpressCard/34 Thunderbolt AdapterEcho ExpressCard/34 Thunderbolt Adapter

The adapter supports Sonnet’s own ExpressCard-based eSATA adapters, FireWire 800 adapters, USB 2.0 and 3.0, Gigabit Ethernet, SDXC and CompactFlash cards, and more. ExpressCard/34 products from other companies can use the adapter, too, assuming manufacturers write their own driver.

The Echo ExpressCard/34 Thunderbolt Adapter is priced at US$149.95 and should be available at the end of October.

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“write their own driver” This statement says it all. I know people have ExpressCard devices and want to keep their investments but spending another $150 and requiring third-parties to write more drivers just to keep them operating is a little tight. I would rather have seen Sonnet release a Thunderbolt breakout box or two with multiple I/O devices that wouldn’t require additional drivers. I still haven’t seen what a TB chip costs to determine what a native TB-equipped breakout box would cost. The ExpressCard hardware can’t be cheap, probably being one of the more expensive components of this device. The Echo adapter isn’t exactly small. It looks like you could fit multiple ports of various kinds in the same box. Of course, there are plenty of USB and card extenders available for a whole lot less money.

Pashtun Wally

Works for me!  I have a 4-bay SATA tower that holds 7T & is connected via a Sonnet Express/34 card - the main tech reason I’m still rockin’ an ‘06 CoreDuo MBP.

Buying this gizmo will be much less extra expense than finding some other solution & replacing all the gear in the chain (again).  It also means I can jump to an ‘11 Mac fairly soon.

Thank you, Sonnet!

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