Connect a Low-profile PCIe Card to Computers with Thunderbolt 2 Ports
Ultra-light notebooks, small form factor and all-in-one Mac®, Windows(1), and Linux® computers are slender marvels of engineering that come with a cost—there’s nowhere to install PCIe cards that provide additional connectivity and processing capabilities. Sonnet’s Echo™ Express SEL is a compact, desktop Thunderbolt™ 2 to PCIe card expansion system that fixes that issue, enabling you to connect a low-profile PCIe card to any computer with Thunderbolt 2 ports.
Through its x8 PCIe 2.0 slot, this little expansion system supports many low-profile PCIe cards (including 16Gb and 8Gb Fibre Channel, 10 Gigabit Ethernet, SAS and SATA host bus adapters, and RAID controllers) and connects to your computer through a single Thunderbolt 2 cable.
Use a high-performance PCIe card with any computer with a Thunderbolt 2 port.
Supports one low-profile PCIe card.
Full Thunderbolt 2 performance; backward compatible with 10Gbps Thunderbolt.
Smallest Thunderbolt 2 to PCIe card expansion system available; supports the most popular low-profile, Thunderbolt-compatible PCIe cards at full performance.
One port connects to computer; second port supports daisy-chaining of up to five additional Thunderbolt peripheral devices.
Temperature-controlled, variable-speed fan automatically and quietly cools the card.
Powers on/off automatically with the computer.
Provides robust and secure protection.
Daisy chain port provides up to 10W of power to connected peripherals.
The Echo Express SEL accommodates a wide variety of PCIe cards. Do you have a card in mind but aren’t sure it’s compatible? We’ve put together a list in our supporting PCIe Card Thunderbolt Compatibility Chart (PDF). There you’ll find cards identified as conforming to Thunderbolt technology requirements, and organized by fit and power compatibility with specific expansion system.
Echo Express SEL supports one half-length (up to 6.6 inches long), low-profile, single-width PCIe card; PCIe 1.1, PCIe 2.0, and PCIe 3.0 cards are supported.
1. PCIe 2.0 x8 slot
Sonnet includes a 1-meter Thunderbolt 2 cable and a Sonnet ThunderLok Thunderbolt connector retainer cli(2) to avoid accidental cable disconnections—just slide it over one end of the cable, and then plug in the connector and secure it to the chassis by turning a thumbscrew. Because of its unique design, ThunderLok remains on the cable so it won’t get lost when not in use.
Echo Express SEL features 20Gbps Thunderbolt 2 which provides ample bandwidth for many of the most demanding, highest performance PCIe cards, and incorporates support for the DisplayPort 1.2 protocol which enables video streaming to a 4K video monitor. While the SEL delivers maximum performance when connected to a computer with Thunderbolt 2 ports, it is also fully compatible with computers with 10Gbps Thunderbolt, supporting most cards at full-performance.
The original 10Gbps Thunderbolt interface provided breakthrough bandwidth for external expansion, more than sufficient to support the maximum performance of most PCIe cards. However, some high bandwidth adapters such as the BlueFish 444 Epoch 4K Neutron video I/O card, or other bandwidth-hungry cards require more than 10Gbps. Thunderbolt 2 removes this barrier by providing more bandwidth for demanding applications.