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Sonnet Announces Four Thunderbolt™ to PCIe® Card Expansion Solutions Offering Doubled Bandwidth, Supporting Up to 2x Performance

Sonnet Technologies offers Thunderbolt technology products and interface cards for audio, video, and broadcast industries, including docks, media readers, and PCIe card expansion systems, enhancing computer performance and connectivity.

Sonnet Technologies has introduced new products in their Echo II DV lineup, including Echo II DV Desktop, Echo II DV Rackmount, Echo II DV Module, and xMac Studio/Echo II DV.

These new products are important because they cater to the needs of professionals in video and audio workflows, particularly those using laptops or compact desktops without native PCIe slots. By leveraging Thunderbolt connectivity, these expansion systems provide a cost-effective and space-saving solution for adding PCIe cards to enhance I/O, digital signal processing, video capture, and playback capabilities on their computers.

What’s New:
Sonnet Technologies today announced the launch of Echo™ II DV Desktop, Echo II DV Rackmount, Echo II DV Module, and xMac™ Studio/Echo II DV, the newest members of the company’s award-winning family of Thunderbolt™ to PCI Express® (PCIe®) card expansion systems. Each of these products enables the use of two high-performance, bandwidth-hungry PCIe cards at maximum performance at the same time (up to 2,880 MB/s PCIe bandwidth for each card) with computers equipped with Thunderbolt ports, doubling the available bandwidth compared to what was previously offered in multislot PCIe card expansion chassis.

All four products support the use of full-height, full-length, single-width PCIe cards. Echo II DV Desktop is a full-size desktop chassis, while Echo II DV Rackmount features a rack-mountable 2U enclosure with space for expansion. Echo II DV Module is offered as an upgrade for use in Sonnet DuoModo™ modular desktop and rackmount enclosures as well as the xMac™ Studio pro 3U rackmount and Thunderbolt expansion system for Mac Studio® computers. xMac Studio/Echo II DV is a preconfigured system including the module.

What They Do:
Echo II DV Module — the heart of all Echo II DV products — enables users to connect two PCIe cards to computers lacking PCIe card slots. The module features two x16 PCIe 3.1 slots, each equipped with its own Thunderbolt interface; accommodates up-to full-height, full-length (up to 12.28 inches long), single-width PCIe cards; and connects them to a computer’s Thunderbolt ports via included Thunderbolt (40Gbps) cables. The module integrates a universal 400W power supply and includes two 75W auxiliary power connectors for non-GPU cards that require extra power.

“ToolsOnAir has realized many successful projects using Sonnet’s innovative products, enabling us to provide state-of-the-art software solutions for the broadcast industry. We are very pleased to continue this partnership with their new xMac Studio/Echo II DV product. Its dual independent Thunderbolt connections, one to each expansion slot, doubles the available Thunderbolt PCIe bandwidth to installed cards, important especially when working with highly demanding UHD/4K workflows.”
– Manuel Grund, COO at ToolsOnAir

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“The game-changing Echo II DV Module is the ideal companion for Softron broadcasting and video production software solutions, effectively doubling the number of inputs MovieRecorder captures in the same footprint and offering users a much cleaner solution to capture or play out multiple 4K channels on the Mac.”
– Pierre Chevalier, CTO, Softron

Why They’re Important:
Computers generally lack the unique ports and specific data processing capabilities needed for pro video and audio workflows, requiring users to add internal or external interfaces to support I/O, digital signal processing, and video capture and playback. While desktop workstations can be outfitted with PCIe adapter cards to add what’s needed, the laptop, mini desktop, and all-in-one computers (such as the MacBook Pro®, Mac Studio, and iMac®) often favored by pro users, require the use of Thunderbolt connected expansion. Sonnet Echo II DV expansion systems enable users to save space and money by mounting two up-to full size PCIe cards, each supported through its own Thunderbolt interface, in a single transportable desktop or rackmount enclosure and connecting them to their computer through Thunderbolt cables.

How They’re Distinctive:
M series Mac® computers and some Thunderbolt 4 PCs have two or more 40Gbps Thunderbolt ports, each providing 2,880 MB/s of PCIe bandwidth, while Intel® Mac computers and Windows® PCs with three or four Thunderbolt ports have two Thunderbolt controllers, each providing 2,880 MB/s of PCIe bandwidth. By employing a separate Thunderbolt interface for each card slot, Echo II DV is designed to provide full PCIe bandwidth to each slot when connected to two computer Thunderbolt ports that also have independent PCIe bandwidth. This enables users to exploit two cards’ full potential performance at the same time, which is ideal for cards with high-bandwidth requirements such as DV I/O, NVMe SSD storage, and 10 and 25Gb Ethernet adapters.

When You Can Get Them:
The new Sonnet products are available now and soon from channel partners worldwide at the following suggested retail prices:

  • Echo II DV Desktop (part number ECHO-2DDV-TB3) $999.99
  • Echo II DV Rackmount (part number ECHO-2RDV-TB3) $1,099.99
  • xMac Studio/Echo II DV (part number XMAC-STD-IIDV) $1,449.99
  • Echo II DV Module (part number DM-MOD-E2DV) $899.99

 

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