What is a thunderbolt aic header

What is a thunderbolt aic header

Mac and PC users are never going to agree on which platform has the best operating system. But when it comes to hardware, though, the PC world has an undisputed advantage. We have a lot more choice when we pick our processors, graphics cards, and motherboards.

If you're using a Mac, you have to wait for Apple to add driver support for the device you want if it ever happens at all. Thunderbolt violates the rule that PCs get the coolest technologies first.

For almost a year, Mac users have been enjoying the Thunderbolt, which was developed by Intel, because of collaboration from Apple. Power users with PCs were forced to sit and wait, though a dearth of client devices made it more tolerable to watch the Mac guys get their hands wet with Thunderbolt.

If you aren't yet familiar with Thunderbolt or its implications, we definitely believe that the technology is an interface you're going to want on the next system you put together, even if the ecosystem of compatible devices remains fairly small today.

Thunderbolt (interface)

Of course, Thunderbolt is a name for an Intel initiative originally code-named Light Peak—an optical physical layer used to connect peripherals. However, a version employing copper wiring turned out better than expected, allowing Intel to drop costs and deliver up to 10 W of power to attached devices.

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The big objection from most enthusiasts is going to be that we already have USB 3. Why do we need to pay for yet another interface? Thunderbolt isn't just another peripheral interface, though. Systems with Thunderbolt controllers will attached them one of two ways: either it's attached directly to PCI Express links originating from a Sandy or Ivy Bridge-class processor, or it derives connectivity from a Platform Controller Hub's available PCIe.

We suspect that, on the desktop, most motherboard vendors will hook up through the PCH in order to avoid monopolizing processor-based lanes, which are generally needed for add-in graphics. If you have a lot of SATA-attached storage cranking away, it's conceivable that the maximum performance of Thunderbolt could be constrained.

In the image above, you can see that DisplayPort data routes between the Thunderbolt controller and the PCH's Flexible Display Interface, since that's where display connectors attach. The FDI is its own pathway, specifically reserved for carrying display information, and it does not impact the bandwidth available through DMI 2. PCIe and DisplayPort signals enter the Thunderbolt controller separately, are multiplexed, travel through a Thunderbolt cable, and are de-multiplexed at the other end.

Originally, Thunderbolt was going to be enabled using an optical physical layer and optical fiber cabling. Plans for an optical-based implementation are still on the table, and we expect to see optical cables enabling even longer-distance connections in the future.

As we already mentioned, though, copper cabling delivers up to 10 W of power to attached devices.So it seems the Intel USB 3. Stuff I tried without any effect :. I know that this is an unsupported configuration but I hope it can be fixed. Any help is greatly appreciated! Thunderbolt 3 is no longer limited to certain chipset, ASRock is the first motherboard manufacturer to skillfully implement the Thunderbolt 3 technology onto AMD X motherboards.

Thanks So much for posting this. Looking to build the exact same setup and was wondering if the Gigabyte AIC would work with the Asrock board. If you choose to proceed with your build it would be very helpful if you could post your experiences then.

ASRock seems to be the only option for possible Thunderbolt utilization on AMD left right now since Gigabyte pulled its tail between its legs and no longer solders the Thunderbolt Header onto its X motherboards. Got everything set up this evening.

Just a test setup for now. Installed the default drivers. I will get the proper setup going tomorrow and report any glitches, but could not be happier right now!! AMD TB. Does anyone know if there is a new Titan Ridge TB3 firmware version that maybe addresses such issues? So far.

I only have a 1 display port monitor, so no much to go with, But nothing from those ports. USB 3. The only device I have is my phone. But the phone does not connect as a data device. Display Port in?

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What is that for? And why 2? I would have thought that there would be more out, I never even thought that it would have a DP in. Edit: thinking about it more only makes it more only makes it more confusing. If you are doing it to have a 1 wire solution then you still have looping nest of cables going out of and back into your PC, maybe a bit tiboer but this seems like a really strange thing to add to a TB AIC just for the sake of a very odd use case.

Can you just not? I mean can it just do. Seems like a really stupid requirement. I do have an intel PC that has thunderbolt but it is alpine ridge. It can do the DP and all that but being built in I never thought about it being required as it will be wired up anyway internally.

I always just assumed it was mostly output so seeing the card with dedicated ins was very odd, I would have assumed at the very least they would have been bidirectional.Go to Solution. I too am a user. View solution in original post. Thunderbolt isn't really and add in card. There are no thunderbolt upgrades.

The Thunderbolt header goes to a header on the motherboard. They use the card to hold a bracket but there is no PCI-E specification for thunderbolt card because it does not exist. Therefore it is NOT an expansion card but rather a bracket to hold the thunderbolt port and provide power to the Thunderbolt Transceiver.

The card is essentially a mounting bracket for the thunderbolt port.

what is a thunderbolt aic header

Its NOT an expansion card that will go into any machine. And such cards are not interchangeable between vendors.

what is a thunderbolt aic header

Thunderbolt goes to the card and Display port wraps into the card via cables. People see this card and think that if they have a PCI-E bus they can upgrade to thunderbolt. This is not the case. Yes we do have a Dell Precision Thunderbolt 2 Add-in card customer installation kit available. Unfortunately it is not showing up on any website that I am aware of. I am talking to the internal sales team to get that fix. I will update this response once i hear back form them. Dell does have a Precision Thunderbolt 2 add-in card that mechanically and electrically plugs in to a PCIe slot.

You are correct that it is not a standard PCIe bus, but only with a minor modification. That was not my question. A complete Kit has 3 pieces its not ronco plug in card set it and forget it. There are 2 cables just like with the Asus Card. Thanks to everyone who replied.If you are reading this message, Please click this link to reload this page. Do not use your browser's "Refresh" button. Please email us if you're running the latest version of your browser and you still see this message.

Sold and Shipped by Newegg. Pros: JHL - at least it's not the older controller It has blue LEDs which indicate things, which can be useful for diagnostics Dual-port which is better than the Asus one.

Cons: No JTAG for recovering from NVM firmware failure No firmware updates or even stock firmware available from Asrock - basically non existent track record of updating No documentation of what the blue LEDs indicate although from my observations, the block of four are showing voltage presence from PCIe slot, and the leftmost four of the block of five are controller activation state.

There is the rightmost LED in the block of five that I cannot figure out. Difficult to obtain in some parts of the world - may as well use the Gigabyte one which works on the Asrock motherboard, which is readily available.

Although the Gigabyte has older DSL controller. Not many devices use that. They should have gone to 15 or 20V and added a connector to the PSU.

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My laptop can charge off 12V, but it complains and sometimes decides to refuse. Either way, it is slow. It works for smartphones, but they are using the plain 5V 3A mode which is mandatory of any Thunderbolt 3 port.

Along with almost no chance of firmware updates from Asrock. Overall Review: Let me start by saying that I believe thunderbolt 3 is amazing when it workshowever I never tried to use the card in the PCH controlled x4 slot I have because I am already using an x1 soundcard in that slot. Had I used the x4 slot in x4 mode which is required for the AIC to function it would have disabled 2 usb 3.

So I never did try this card in the x4 slot I need the usb 3 headers and rear usb 3. I suspect if I had used the x4 port and configured everything, the card would have worked. So the lesson here is that thunderbolt 3 cards are extremely picky about which ports and controller they want to use.

My advice, if you need thunderbolt 3 functionality, is to just use a motherboard that already has 1 or more ports.

what is a thunderbolt aic header

These add-in-cards can be rather troublesome to deal with, which may be why there is such a low adoption rate. Cons: I installed this add-on card to my Asrock Z Taichi which is in the compatibility list.A wide range of peripheral types can connect to your computer through a Thunderbolt 3 port.

As the name implies, Thunderbolt is fastbut more importantly, a Thunderbolt 3 port is versatile and uses the common USB-C connector to connect to most devices. Here, we examine the top six ways you can use a Thunderbolt port to enhance connectivity, speed, and convenience. Thunderbolt 3 supports connecting multiple displays to your computer by sending video through the Thunderbolt cable using DisplayPort 1.

This allows you to connect any monitor that uses DisplayPort or one of the compatible types of connections, such as mini DisplayPort. Thunderbolt 3 supports connecting two 4K displays at 60 fps, one 4K display at fps, or one 5K display at 60 fps.

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To use a single Thunderbolt connection to connect multiple displays, you'll need a Thunderbolt-enabled monitor with the ability to pass through the Thunderbolt connection it will have a pair of Thunderbolt-labeled ports or a Thunderbolt 3 dock. In all of its forms, Thunderbolt supports Ethernet networking protocols.

This not only means you can use a Thunderbolt to Ethernet adapter cable to connect to a 10 Gb Ethernet networkbut also that you can use just a Thunderbolt cable to connect two computers at up to 10 Gbs in a super-fast peer-to-peer network. Using the peer-to-peer networking option is a great way to quickly copy a large amount of data between the two computers, such as when you upgrade to a new computer and need to move your old data over.

This means there's no more waiting overnight for the copying to complete. Thunderbolt 3 provides data transfer speeds of up to 40 Gbps, making it a very attractive technology for high-performance storage systems. Thunderbolt-based storage systems are available in many formats, including single bus-powered devices that can be used for booting your computer. This typically provides a nice increase in disk performance over what is natively available with internal boot drives.

Multibay enclosures using SSDs and various RAID configurations can boost disk performance beyond the speed needed for producing, editing, and storing multimedia projects.

Perhaps your needs have more to do with amount of storage and reliability. Thunderbolt 3 allows you to use of a large number of relatively inexpensive disk drives to create a large mirrored or otherwise protected data storage pool.

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When your computing needs require highly available storage, Thunderbolt 3 can help meet them. USB 3. This, along with an overall lower cost of USB 3.

The 6 Best Uses for Thunderbolt 3

We tend to think of Thunderbolt 3 as just a simple cable that can perform at high speeds. But the technology behind the Thunderbolt port is based on the PCIe 3 Peripheral Component Interconnect Express bus system that's used to connect computer components. One component that commonly uses this form of connectivity is the graphics card or GPU inside your computer.

It connects via the PCIe interface within the computer, so it can also be connected externally using a PCIe expansion chassis with a Thunderbolt 3 interface. Having the ability to connect an external graphics card to your computer allows you to easily upgrade your graphics. This is especially convenient with laptops and all-in-one computing systems that are notoriously difficult, if not actually impossible, to upgrade. Adding an external graphics card is just one way this technology can be helpful; another is the use of an external graphics accelerator that works with pro apps to speed up certain complex tasks, such as rendering in 3-D modeling, imaging, and filmography.

Think of the Thunderbolt Dock as a port breakout box. It makes all of the port types supported by Thunderbolt available in one external box. Docks are available with various numbers and types of ports. In most cases, a Dock has a number of USB 3.

Dock manufacturers have their own blend of ports.Register Now! Login Register. Please login or register. Home Help Search Login Register. Read times. Hi All! I just installed my new MSI x Tomahawk and it's working great. Does anyone know of a Thunderbolt AIC that is compatible with my motherboard and will allow me to use my old Apple Thunderbolt Displays?


I can't seem to find this information anywhere. Just make sure all your motherboard drivers are up to date and installed especially the Intel drivers. It's been working great. The x Tomahwak does actually have thunderbolt 3 headers. And also, I saw and used them. Oh sorry, you asked about the port. Can be found on NewEgg. Has any one sucessfully managed to get an addon card working? Tech support said they both should work as there is not restriction.

Board explorer can seem to detect that there is a card plugged into the board. Mine is still working strong. Here's what I did to get it to work: Make sure your motherboard has thunderbolt headers and they are plugged in correctly. Should be listed as TBT on the motherboard. Connect your AIC card to your video card I also downloaded and installed the Thunderbolt Intel Bus Drivers though when I launch the app it doesn't list my monitor so I'm not sure it's doing anything.

Hope that helps. I don't see Thunderbolt Headers port listed in that overview of components. You need to make sure your motherboard has them. If you go to MSI's page for your exact model it will tell you if it has Thunderbolt headers. If it doesn't, then you won't be able to connect a thunderbolt AIC. Quote from: sergio on February, I just bought a Precision workstation that was delivered.

I would like to add a thunderbolt 3 card. It was an option for this computer that I didn't take. It needs a TBT header which is a 5 pin socket on the motherboard. It looks like there is a place for one on the motherboard in a similar position to the Precision It is marked TBT and the solder holes are there but no socket is installed??? Dell tells me that you can't install Thunderbolt card after purchasing. Why is this? Is this true? Go to Solution.


Sounds like they use a slightly different motherboard with that header when you accept the TB option. If you're within the 21? View solution in original post. I would like to thank Alasdair the moderator of this page and Justin, both from Dell, for their expert assistance. They provided fantastic customer service and were a pleasure to work with!

what is a thunderbolt aic header

All their information was accurate and to the point. And better yet, I now have two working Thunderbolt 3 ports on my new Dell Precision ! The boards that have this use a PCI-E card as a mounting bracket. The actual Thunderbolt is a chip and header on the board. You cannot ADD thunderbolt to a system that does not have the actual thunderbolt 2 or 3 controller onboard with internal GPIO connector. This is also why its not a universal add on.

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Thunderbolt 2 looks like mini display port. Thunderbolt 3 uses USB C type connector. This further confuses people. USB 3 is not thunderbolt and vice versa. There are no standards for GPIO thunderbolt from the motherboard. Thunderbolt goes to the card and Display port wraps into the card via cables.