Sonnet has announced the Echo Express II, the newest member of the company’s Echo family of Thunderbolt expansion chassis for PCIe cards.
Featuring two PCIe slots, the new Thunderbolt-to-PCI expansion chassis enables the use of a variety of high-performance PCI Express cards — originally designed for use in desktop computers — with any computer equipped with a Thunderbolt port.
The Echo Express II was designed for users needing a compact solution to connect two PCIe cards to their computers, and supports the majority of Thunderbolt-compatible PCIe cards. Based on the original Echo Express expansion chassis, the Echo Express II adds a second slot to support two half-length (up to 7.25 inches long), full-height, single-width PCIe 2.0 x16 cards. Like its siblings, the Echo Express II expansion chassis has dual Thunderbolt ports to support daisy-chaining of devices.
The new Echo chassis includes three temperature-controlled, variable-speed fans for cooling the cards and the chassis’ components, and a universal 100W internal power supply. This Sonnet solution also conserves energy by powering on and off with the computer to which it is attached.
The Echo Express II enables iMac, Mac mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro computers equipped with a Thunderbolt port to use Thunderbolt-compatible professional video capture, audio interface, SAS and SATA HBA, 8Gb Fibre Channel, 10Gb Ethernet, and RAID controller cards. The list of compatible cards is available on Sonnet’s website and is continually expanding as more cards are tested and certified.