Thunderbolt is USELESS for hard drives since they can't exceed 125 MB/s at best. USB 3.0 is good enough for these. And actually, even for most [affordable] SSDs.Thunderbolt started off as a beacon of hope to FINALLY have external graphics cards. It was bastardized to yet another interface to connect external drives (for which it's unsuitable because it's too expensive and rare) and screens (I DO believe that HDMI and DisplayPort are quite enough for that!). It's very sad to see that people are BSd into buying that useless stuff.
Thunderbolt started as a nice idea, but at this point it's shaping up to be a solution in search of a problem since Intel seems to have restricted direct Thunderbolt to PCI Express adapters, making external graphics cards unfortunately very do-it-yourself.
Just why would you use thunderbolt for external graphics ? it is way to slow for that.10Gb/s is 1192MB/s that is almost only the same as a single pcie v3 lane 986 MB/s that will slow down a graphis card, they nomally have a band with of 15.75 GB/s to play with in a 16 lane slot.
Why in the hell is it over $300? the tray price for that controller is $5.Hell even the brand new Thunderbolt 2.0 controller has a tray price of $10http://ark.intel.com/products/76721/Intel-DSL5520-Thunderbolt-2-ControllerThey could pack in 4 of those bad boys in one of these enclosures and sell it for $100 and still make plenty of money.Someone needs to buck the trend and end this madness
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8RTkNJDMzugActually, Gigabyte has shown an external enclosure using a pair of Thunderbolt 2 links. That brings the speed up to beyond where a PCIe 2.0 x4 link would be, which has been shown to only hinder performance by about 5% in most single card cases. Just because graphics cards are given 16 lanes at PCIe 3.0 speeds, doesn't mean they have a use for all of that bandwidth yet. The point is to allow a wider array of configuration options for people who purchase laptops or low powered desktops, but as jasonelmore pointed out, Thunderbolt is hardly being used to make cost-effective devices.The majority of Thunderbolt connectors are on Apple devices, and from the look of the device pictured, I would suspect the manufacturer wants to take advantage of that crowd.
Thunderbolt 2 simply gangs the two bi-directional 10 Gb/s channels of the original Thunderbolt together so it has enough bandwidth to carry 4k video, it doesn't actually bring a bunch of new features or speed to the table, and there is no way a spinning platter storage device could come close to saturating Thunderbolt of any kind, so there is no need for Thunderbolt 2.