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Matrox Thunderbolt dock turns MacBooks into desktops for $249 - Page 3

post #81 of 101

EDIT: Replied to the wrong person.


Edited by HKZ - 6/5/12 at 7:59pm
post #82 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crunch View Post

The Belkin has the all-important 2nd Thunderbolt port for chaining in other TB devices. I also prefer having the HDMI port (Belkin) vs. that ugly (and huge) DVI port in this Matrox dock and it just looks better. However, it doesn't have USB 3.0 (grrr...otherwise, it'd be the perfect dock!), which this one does have. Fortunately, Belkin can still do the right thing and incorporate USB 3.0 into its as yet unreleased docking station. :)

 

A lot of it depends on what the new Macs will look like. Intel's new "Ivy Bridge" CPUs support USB 3.0 at the chipset level, so Apple would have to disable it, which, quite frankly, would be outrageous considering that Macs are becoming more common. I also read that we might get two Thunderbolt ports on the 15" MBP, which could be helpful in several scenarios, too.

 

 

Sweet! My wishes that I had expressed less than 24 hours ago came to fruition today, as Belkin has significantly upgraded its Thunderbolt dock solution with a price tag of a slightly higher $399, but it now is set to include a 1m (3.3 ft.) Thunderbolt cable as well as a miniDisplayPort-to-HDMI adapter. So instead of 3 USB 2.0 ports, they will ALL be USB 3.0 ports and there will even be an eSATA port. With that, it will be the most complete Thunderbolt dock by far.

 

Here's a full list of the revised Belkin dock:

 

Features:
● Instant access to up to 9 desktop devices with one cable
● Cable-clutter-free design for a cleaner workstation
● Compatible with both Mac and PC
● Connectors: 3 USB 3.0 ports
● 1 FireWire 800 port
● 1 Gigabit Ethernet port
● 1 eSata port
● 1 3.5mm-out port
● 1 3.5mm-in port
● 2 Thunderbolt ports (1 upstream, 1 downstream for daisy-chaining up to 6 additional Thunderbolt devices)
● Includes MiniDP to HDMI Adapter


Edited by Crunch - 6/5/12 at 8:00am

(Mid-2012) 15.4" MacBook Pro w/ IPS Retina Display | Quad Core i7-3720QM 2.6GHz / 3.6GHz Max. Turbo | 16GB DDR3-1600MHz RAM | 256GB Samsung 830 SSD-based NAND Flash ETA 9/5

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(Mid-2012) 15.4" MacBook Pro w/ IPS Retina Display | Quad Core i7-3720QM 2.6GHz / 3.6GHz Max. Turbo | 16GB DDR3-1600MHz RAM | 256GB Samsung 830 SSD-based NAND Flash ETA 9/5

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post #83 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crunch View Post


Sweet! What I expressed less than 24 hours ago came to fruition today, as Belkin has significantly upgraded its Thunderbolt dock solution with a price tag of a slightly higher $399, but it now is set to include a 1m (3.3 ft.) Thunderbolt cable as well as a miniDisplayPort-to-HDMI adapter. So instead of 3 USB 2.0 ports, they will ALL be USB 3.0 ports and now there will be an eSATA port and with that, it's the best Thunderbolt dock by far. 1smile.gif

Here's a complete list of the revised Belkin dock:

[...]

A couple things stand out. First of all, people on this forum will be livid about the $100 price bump. You can account for every dollar in additional cost and engineering and make a great argument that it's a better value now than yesterday but it won't matter. Most people, even those in technology, seem to see only the port and not what connects the ports, they see only a copper wire of the cable and now what it takes to make the cable, they see only their desire for budget products and not quality products, or companies making products for the sole reason to make a profit.

Second, does the mDP-to-HDMI allow for audio to pass through the mDP or is it just video? I know Apple has yet to enable audio over mDP but perhaps Belkin has routed it internally to allow for a single cable solution.

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

Goodbyeee jragosta :: http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/160864/jragosta-joseph-michael-ragosta

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

Goodbyeee jragosta :: http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/160864/jragosta-joseph-michael-ragosta

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post #84 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crunch View Post


Sweet! My wishes that I had expressed less than 24 hours ago came to fruition today, as Belkin has significantly upgraded its Thunderbolt dock solution with a price tag of a slightly higher $399, but it now is set to include a 1m (3.3 ft.) Thunderbolt cable as well as a miniDisplayPort-to-HDMI adapter. So instead of 3 USB 2.0 ports, they will ALL be USB 3.0 ports and there will even be an eSATA port. With that, it will be the most complete Thunderbolt dock by far.

Here's a full list of the revised Belkin dock:

Looks pretty nice, though I noticed that the DC input jack requires 12V 5A, making it 60 watts. I hope most of that is just to provide power sourcing for attached devices. I don't know about putting one thunderbolt on the front face, seems a little odd, makes daisy chaining and stacking a little awkward.
post #85 of 101

Excuse me for not reading about all of this thread (just most of it), and posting a potentially inflammatory question. 

 

 

Why is it that this thunderbolt break-out box costs MORE than many $200-$250 nettops? A whole computer with a case, Atom CPU, SSD drive, RAM, power supply, wifi, 6 usb ports, gigabit ethernet, at least one display output, eSata, audio input/output, a full blown pre-installed OS and a warranty costs LESS than this. 

 

 

How can this thing's price even come close to being justified? I'm not trying to troll, I'm generally curious.

post #86 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by brucethemoose View Post

Excuse me for not reading about all of this thread, and posting a potentially inflammatory question. 


Why is it that this thunderbolt break-out box costs MORE than many $200-$250 nettops? A whole computer with a case, Atom CPU, SSD drive, RAM, power supply, wifi, 6 usb ports, gigabit ethernet, at least one display output, eSata, audio input/output, a full blown pre-installed OS and a warranty costs LESS than this. 


How can this thing's price even come CLOSE to being justified? I'm not trying to troll, I'm generally curious.

Sometimes peripherals cost more the machines they connect to. Consider what this is doing. It's one of the devices that can convert Thunderbolt into multiple different port interfaces. There is no netbook that can do that. Try finding a netbook that support DL-DVI and you'll be paying a lot more than $200-250 you quote, if you find one, and that's just for display.

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

Goodbyeee jragosta :: http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/160864/jragosta-joseph-michael-ragosta

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

Goodbyeee jragosta :: http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/160864/jragosta-joseph-michael-ragosta

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post #87 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


Sometimes peripherals cost more the machines they connect to. Consider what this is doing. It's one of the devices that can convert Thunderbolt into multiple different port interfaces. There is no netbook that can do that. Try finding a netbook that support DL-DVI and you'll be paying a lot more than $200-250 you quote, if you find one, and that's just for display.

http://www.antarespro.com/6655440-item-ZOTAC-ZBOX-AD04-U--816264012303-+Zotac+ZBOX-AD04-U+Nettop.aspx?sgd=330d316d312d312d313

 

Displayport to DL-DVI adapters are common. Passive adapters are dirt cheap, active ones are $90 or less. 

 

A simple USB to gigabit adapter is 30$. Thunderbolt to DVI adapters are 10$-15$, and displayport can break out into MANY displays if necessary. USB breakout adapters are cheaper than dirt, and USB soundcards are cheap too.

 

 

Of course that takes up an extra USB port on your computer in addition to the thunderbolt... but how it worth 3x-4x as much money for the matrox adapter with the same, arguably inferior, functionality?


Edited by brucethemoose - 6/5/12 at 3:51pm
post #88 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by brucethemoose View Post

http://www.antarespro.com/6655440-item-ZOTAC-ZBOX-AD04-U--816264012303-+Zotac+ZBOX-AD04-U+Nettop.aspx?sgd=330d316d312d312d313

Displayport to DL-DVI adapters are common. Passive adapters are dirt cheap, active ones are $90 or less. 

A simple USB to gigabit adapter is 30$. Thunderbolt to DVI adapters are 10$-15$, and displayport can break out into MANY displays if necessary. USB breakout adapters are cheaper than dirt, and USB soundcards are cheap too.


Of course that takes up an extra USB port on your computer in addition to the thunderbolt... but how it worth 3x-4x as much money for the matrox adapter with the same, arguably inferior, functionality?

I can buy a pound of aluminum, a few grams of silicon and an ounce or two of copper for under $20. Just what makes a computer worth 20-40 times as much?

If you're happy plugging in a bunch of devices into your computer all the time, feel free. No one is making you buy this device. I just can't figure out why so many people are offended that it even exists or that Matrox has a price that they don't like.

As I've pointed out, for at least one group of people, this would be a great device. I travel a lot with my laptop but want to use the same laptop in my office with a discrete keyboard and monitor and Ethernet access. With this device, I plug in one cable when I get to the office and everything is set up - keyboard, mouse, monitor, ethernet, and Time Machine hard disk. No need to mess around with a bunch of cables - 2 seconds and I'm done (OK, 4 seconds if you cound plugging in the power cable).

It's not meant to be a super-uber-killer-geek device. It's a modern replacement for a docking station. It's not unusual to see docking stations with even less capability than this going for $200-300, so why is everyone so offended by a $250 docking station device?

If you don't like it or it's more than you want to pay, don't buy it. That's it.
"I'm way over my head when it comes to technical issues like this"
Gatorguy 5/31/13
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post #89 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by brucethemoose View Post

Thunderbolt to DVI adapters are 10$-15$

Look again. You're probably looking at a mini DisplayPort to DVI adapter. A Thunderbolt chip costs about $30 by itself.

Quote:
and displayport can break out into MANY displays if necessary.

What do those splitters cost?

Quote:
USB breakout adapters are cheaper than dirt, and USB soundcards are cheap too.

Of course that takes up an extra USB port on your computer in addition to the thunderbolt... but how it worth 3x-4x as much money for the matrox adapter with the same, arguably inferior, functionality?

What about the Firewire port?

Actually, I would go with the new Belkin one. Forget the Matrox, it's nowhere nearly as good. And the Belkin gets you USB 3 ports.

The price pays for the convenience of having *one* connection fan out from *one* box. Your solution is frankly, a mess of parts and a mess of cables to do the same thing, with at least three connections, and everything gets native speed rather than having to share a USB port. Sometimes it's worth spending money on the more elegant system.

It's serving a niche, and also, it's still early in the adoption cycle for Thunderbolt. I think these will go down in price considerably as time goes on.
Edited by JeffDM - 6/5/12 at 5:14pm
post #90 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Actually, I would go with the new Belkin one. Forget the Matrox, it's nowhere nearly as good. And the Belkin gets you USB 3 ports.
The price pays for the convenience of having *one* connection fan out from *one* box. Your solution is frankly, a mess of parts and a mess of cables to do the same thing, with at least three connections. Sometimes it's worth spending money on the more elegant system.

 

Yes, it may cost more but has much more value than the Matrox.  The Matrox DVI is only single-link.  I'm hoping the mDP in the belkin can handle a larger monitor.

 

I like the design, it's well thought out including the port on the front.  Many folks will want to plug in mobile HDDs into the dock so it makes sense to put it there rather than fumble around trying to plug your cable into the back of the box.   Wait, maybe the port on the front connects to the laptop?

 

But at $399 we're getting close to the point where I'd just get a mini for a few hundred more to go along with the MBA and share via dropbox or something...

post #91 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by HKZ View Post

 

Ha! Trolling. That's what you get branded around here when you don't agree. Pointless commentary? I'm the only one in the back and forth that has pointed out what a dismal failure this product is in taking full advantage of what TB offers.

I was referring to jragosta because he was trying to argue with nearly every single person posting in the thread about our opinions. Earlier I pointed out that his criticism doesn't even hold any water since his argument against my opinion was that my solution didn't work for everyone while supporting this device that does not work for everyone. When someone's just arguing to argue I feel like that's trolling. I quoted you because you were responding to him so I was suggesting we should move on instead of giving him any more attention. Sorry if you felt I was singling you out because that wasn't my intention.

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


Look again. You're probably looking at a mini DisplayPort to DVI adapter. A Thunderbolt chip costs about $30 by itself.

Jeff,

 

What are the functional differences between the adapter I'm using and a Thunderbolt one? If I simply want to connect a DVI/HDMI monitor to the port does it matter?


Edited by bizzle - 6/5/12 at 6:24pm
post #92 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by bizzle View Post

I was referring to jragosta because he was trying to argue with nearly every single person posting in the thread about our opinions.

No, I didn't. Not even once.

I don't care about your opinions - you're entitled to any opinion you wish. I simply objected when you (and others) stated your opinion as if it were fact and the entire world had to be bound by your opinion.

If you had said you didn't like it or it was too expensive FOR YOU, there would have been no objection. Instead, you said it was worthless and NO ONE could possible like it. That's just plain wrong.
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Gatorguy 5/31/13
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post #93 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


No, I didn't. Not even once.
I don't care about your opinions - you're entitled to any opinion you wish. I simply objected when you (and others) stated your opinion as if it were fact and the entire world had to be bound by your opinion.
If you had said you didn't like it or it was too expensive FOR YOU, there would have been no objection. Instead, you said it was worthless and NO ONE could possible like it. That's just plain wrong.

I suggest you re-read the thread because you apparently have me confused with someone else as I never said any such thing.

 

This is the first comment I made in the thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by bizzle View Post

I have the apple bluetooth keyboard and magic trackpad along with a $3 cable connecting my thunderbolt port to an external monitor.

Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


That's nice.
So as soon as you prove that your solution is perfect for everyone else in the world, then you might have a point.

 

As far as I can tell that's me simply stating what I use at home. I didn't even make a comment about this device. Your response that I should have to prove that it's a solution for everyone is your own straw man argument. I never claimed it was or should be. It's also hypocritical since this matrox device isn't a solution for "everyone" so why should my or anyone else's opinion be held to that standard?

 

Your behavior is trollish in that rude response and in all the rest since. The fact you keep defending your poor behavior is indicative that you're either doing it intentionally or don't care to behave cordially. Therefore I asked another member to quit responding to you because you're too immature to carry on a polite conversation as evidenced by your behavior toward me and a number of other people you personally insulted. I'm not sure why a moderator hasn't addressed it but I've only been here a short time and I certainly hope you aren't indicative of the kind of behavior that's tolerated around here or I won't be here much longer.

 

I certainly don't feel I or anyone else should endure being berated over a span of a few days now for simply stating our opinions on an internet forum.

post #94 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by bizzle View Post

I was referring to jragosta because he was trying to argue with nearly every single person posting in the thread about our opinions. Earlier I pointed out that his criticism doesn't even hold any water since his argument against my opinion was that my solution didn't work for everyone while supporting this device that does not work for everyone. When someone's just arguing to argue I feel like that's trolling. I quoted you because you were responding to him so I was suggesting we should move on instead of giving him any more attention. Sorry if you felt I was singling you out because that wasn't my intention.

 

You're right, I'm very sorry. Fixed.

post #95 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


No, I didn't. Not even once.
I don't care about your opinions - you're entitled to any opinion you wish. I simply objected when you (and others) stated your opinion as if it were fact and the entire world had to be bound by your opinion.
If you had said you didn't like it or it was too expensive FOR YOU, there would have been no objection. Instead, you said it was worthless and NO ONE could possible like it. That's just plain wrong.

 

Go read this thread on MacRumors. Fact is, most people hate the price and the functionality of this and the more expensive Belkin option. So it does look like the vast majority of people think both of these products are complete ripoffs. Looks like you can stop telling people what to think and say, you're very much on the wrong side of this argument.

post #96 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by HKZ View Post

Go read this thread on MacRumors. Fact is, most people hate the price and the functionality of this and the more expensive Belkin option. So it does look like the vast majority of people think both of these products are complete ripoffs. Looks like you can stop telling people what to think and say, you're very much on the wrong side of this argument.

No, I'm not on the wrong side. You and others have been claiming that no one could possibly like it and it's worthless. All I need is one person who could like it and you'd be wrong. And I've already demonstrated a group that would find it attractive (and I would use it myself).

There are additional problems with your argument.

1. People complaining to MR or here are not representative of the population as a whole. Even if every single person on MR and AI hated it, that doesn't mean that EVERYONE does.

2. The argument wasn't that most people didn't like it. The argument was that it was useless and NO ONE could possibly like it. That argument is just plain wrong.

People here (and at MR) tend to believe that just because they don't like a product that no one possibly could (or, conversely, that if a product is right for them that it must be right for everyone else on the planet). That logic is just plain wrong - no matter how many people you find who might not like this product.
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post #97 of 101

You must be real fun at parties.

post #98 of 101

Oh Matrox, how I've missed thee. But like a siren back from the ashes, thou art not as pretty as I remember.

post #99 of 101

With those 3 USB ports you are surely spoiling us Matrox. Also, where's the HDMI port? or the DisplayPort pass-thru.

 

I see that it mandates a wall-wart to power it too. Ugh.

post #100 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by dubston View Post

HDMI and DVI are the same except DVI doesn't carry audio. (and of course the connectors look different). A simple DVI to HDMI adapter is all that's needed to connect this box to an HDMI display.

 

Ugh, cable mess and lumpy adaptors handing out the back of a large glorified adaptor. Why not put a HDMI port and have the audio present on the cable automatically?

Also needs two USB ports on the front. Maybe four. Printer, memory sticks, mouse, keyboard, tablet, USB headset...

post #101 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post

Oh Matrox, how I've missed thee. But like a siren back from the ashes, thou art not as pretty as I remember.

See PM. You'll love this one.

melior diabolus quem scies
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