Up to 597MB/s read / 566MB/s write RAID 5 performance 1
Exponentially faster rebuild times than hardware RAID
Experience the first and only software RAID 5 technology developed for the Mac with the SoftRAID XT. Empower your workflow with up to 35% faster RAID 5 performance and exponentially faster rebuild times than comparable hardware based RAID arrays.
Activate advanced features, such as drive monitoring, e-mail notifications, and more when you install the included SoftRAID XT for macOS.
Conventional wisdom turned on its head.
Hardware RAID has long been thought to be superior to software RAID, but we've now combined the massive performance and capacity of ThunderBay 4 with a robust, proven software RAID engine to provide breathtaking performance, flexibility, and reliability.
Software RAID + ThunderBay = WHOA!
Over a year ago, OWC partnered with SoftRAID to bring enhanced storage capabilities to the Mac, and we're now seeing that dream become a reality. SoftRAID 5 XT combines advanced RAID modes, fast performance, monitoring, e-mail notification, and fast rebuild capabilities that only software RAID can deliver.
OWC award-winning U.S. based support for both the ThunderBay 4 drive and SoftRAID software is included with your purchase.
SoftRAID XT lets you easily setup drive monitoring and e-mail notifications to keep you informed about your ThunderBay's performance and drive health. Helping you to maintain mission critical workflows.
Better than Hardware RAID Performance
ThunderBay 4 and the SoftRAID engine offers faster performance than many competing 4 or even 5-bay hardware RAID external drives – benefiting from modern processors that are both fast and designed for exceptionally high-performance RAID management with no real-world impact on apps or tasks.
Flexible + Robust
SoftRAID 5 XT is extremely flexible and can easily be updated, reconfigured and used across multiple enclosures to provide an amazing amount of robust options to empower you to make the most of your ThunderBay workflow.
Backed by OWC
Should you ever have a question or troubleshooting need, you can rely on OWC's award-winning U.S. based support for both the ThunderBay 4 drive and SoftRAID 5 XT software.
Empower your workflow with RAID 5 performance and up to 40TB capacity.
Edit, view, stream, and produce more with ThunderBay in your 2K, 4K, and audio production workflow.
The RAID 5 Advantage
RAID 5 merges the four drives inside ThunderBay together for exponential performance gains over a single drive, the combined capacity of three of the drives, and data redundancy that allows the array to still work even if one drive were to fail!
Edit, Experiment, Create, Design
With ThunderBay's performance capabilities you can complete projects faster, have more time to experiment, and push your creations to the next level.
Enhance editing capabilities in video apps like Apple Final Cut Pro, Adobe Premiere, and Avid Media Composer. Empower greater audio production capabilities in audio apps like Avid Pro Tools and Logic Pro X. Edit large photos in apps like Adobe Photoshop, and browse large photo libraries in apps like Apple Aperture and Adobe Lightroom. Simply put, you can do more with a ThunderBay 4 enhanced workflow, and with a RAID 5 array you get data redundancy on top of great performance!
Certified and Tested
Each ThunderBay undergoes OWC's multi-hour drive "burn-in" performance certification procedure prior to shipping. This ensures your ThunderBay arrives operating properly and ready for demanding use.
4 drive bays plus so much more.
Time-Tested Cooling Built on OWC's time-tested enclosure cooling technology, ThunderBay utilizes an open "flow-thru" vented design with an oversized 92 mm, low-turbulence, noise-quieting fan to keep the drives running cool and reliably.Multi-Drive Daisy-chain up to six ThunderBays for massive storage capabilities and increased performance, or connect multiple ThunderBays to multiple Thunderbolt 2 ports to achieve exponential speed capabilities.Vibration Dampened ThunderBay's drive isolating design reduces sonic resonance, and is aided by over-sized, rugged, vibration-absorbing, non-skid feet.DisplayPort 1.2 Support Dual Thunderbolt ports let you connect the display of your choice that your computer can support, including 4K displays.OWC Thunderbolt Cable ThunderBay comes with an OWC one-meter certified Thunderbolt cable, with other lengths from 0.5 meter to 30 meters available separately.
1. Read and write speeds of sequential, incompressible data.
1GB = 1,000,000,000 bytes. Total accessible capacity varies depending upon operating environment (typically 5-10% less). The actual total capacity will depend on your own defined file settings/preferences.
In terms of standard gigabytes, 1GiB ≈ 1.074GB and refers to the actual formatted capacity of shown under Mac OS 10.5 or earlier and Microsoft Windows OS.
Specific application environments such as temperature and duty cycle will affect the overall reliability rates.
*1GB = 1,000,000,000 bytes. Total accessible capacity varies depending upon operating environment (typically 5-10% less).
The actual total capacity will depend on your own defined file settings/preferences.
**OWC reserves the right to replace or upgrade to equivalent or better components.
Drive Rotation Speed
Drive Cache Size
32MB per drive, 128MB total for the solution
Thunderbolt – (2) Thunderbolt 2 ports
Comes pre-formatted for SoftRAID and configured as a RAID 5 volume.*
*If utilizing on a Mac with OS X 10.8.5 or earlier, the SoftRAID software must be installed prior.
Max Data Transfer Rate
Thunderbolt 2 – 20Gb/sec
It can be used as a Thunderbolt startup drive on Macs running Mac OS X.
Any Mac with a Thunderbolt port running OS X 10.9 or later.
Boot Camp is not supported. The Thunderbolt certification process does not include Macs running Windows through Boot Camp.
Internal UL Listed U.S./International Auto Switching 100 ~ 240v, 50/60Hz input, 12 Volt 16.66 Amp output Power Supply (power cords for International use sold separately).
Includes OWC's award-winning U.S. based support for both the ThunderBay 4 drive and SoftRAID software.
3 Year OWC Solution Limited Warranty
The best warranty is one you never have to use, but should the need occur – OWC is proud to provide a superior level of support and
warranty coverage to our customers. Even when not used, we understand the peace of mind afforded by a longer warranty period. OWC's industry
leading coverage is a testament to our confidence in the reliability of the solutions that we offer. OWC solutions are engineered to demanding
quality standards in order to deliver the most reliable, highest performance available on the market in each storage category.
Note: Do not disassemble or otherwise open your OWC solution prior to the conclusion of the 3 Year OWC Solution Limited Warranty period. Doing so will void the
remainder of the OWC warranty.
Manufacturer provided specifications for Other World Computing p/n TB2SRT20.0S UPC#: 812437020588
SoftRAID 5 for ThunderBay
OWC has partnered with SoftRAID to bring software RAID 5 to the Mac. SoftRAID combines advanced RAID modes,
fast performance, monitoring, e-mail notification, and fast rebuild capabilities that only software RAID can
deliver. ThunderBay 4 models with drives come preconfigured in RAID 5, and are plug and play ready with OS X 10.9 or later.
Advanced features such as drive notification and monitoring require SoftRAID installation.
Click any of the benchmarks below to view the results.
Reviewer: AnonymousLocation: CaliforniaExperience Level: IT ProfessionalOwned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5Using as main HD Raid5 to brand new iMac with SD and LOVE IT!!!March 20, 2015I am using this hard drive as the main drive for my brand-new 2015 iMac. It works very very well and I have had zero issues with this drive. I definately recommend this set up. I currently have the drive set up as a Raid5 configuration with 12 TB of storage. I have moved all of my programs my home folder and all large files to this drive and it didn't slow down the Lightning speed of my new computer. An extremely solid drive for a fantastic price. Again I would HIGHLY recommend this drive to anyone I repeat anyone with an Apple computer. I would recommend this item to a friend!This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4, four-bay drive enclosure with dual Thunderbolt 2 ports, RAID 5 Solution.
Response from MacSales.com, MarketingMarch 11, 2015
Although the physical components are made in China, the final assembly and testing is performed in the USA.
To boot, the ThunderBay’s development and support is also 100% US-based.
The SoftRAID software is 100% coded, designed, and supported in the USA as well.
We aren't able to do everything in the USA... Yet... But more more than you may be aware of we do here including now the manufacturing of our SSDs and Memory outside Austin, TX.
And we are bringing home more and more everyday .
Reviewer: AnonymousLocation: Los Angeles, CAAge: 35-44Experience Level: Power UserOwned Product: 3-4 months
Rating: 5/5Great form and function so farMarch 2, 2015Love this raid. It's very simple and seems well built. I have had multiple lacie raids die over the last 3 years and I've sworn them off. With all of these raids, it's time that will tell, but so far I like this set up. I am using it in Raid 5 for 9TBs of space. It's very very fast and relatively quiet. I would recommend this item to a friend!This review is from 12TB OWC ThunderBay 4, four-drive HDD with dual Thunderbolt 2 ports, RAID 5 Solution.
Reviewer: AnonymousLocation: San Diego, CAAge: 35-44Experience Level: Power UserOwned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 4/5Great product, software limitedFebruary 21, 2015Let me start by saying this is a great product. I've used Drobos for years and, after switching to the ThunderBay 4 RAID5, will never look back. Faster, quieter, and confidence knowing that the data isn't stored in a proprietary format that means I may or may not be able to recover my data if the unit itself fails instead of just a drive.
With that said, I do have one big complaint. I don't recall reading in advance that I am only able to use this External RAID on one computer. I have multiple external hard drives as well as multiple Drobos. I have been a Mac user since the late 80s. Never have I had a problem plugging any of my drives into any of my computers. I have 3 computers and was planning on using a portion of it as a redundant backup location for these computers. However, SoftRAID's license included with the ThunderBay only allows access by one computer. Long story short, unless I pay an additional $179 (per computer!) for additional licenses I have no way to use it with my other computers. The exception to this is if I'm running Mavericks on the other computers. I'm not, so I was given the choice of using a hobbled drive accessible by only one of my computers or pay over $300 to use it with all of them.
Overall, this is a fantastic hardware product (hence 4 stars). But the SoftRAID licensing limitation is a major negative that cannot be ignored nor can it not be mentioned until after you put up so much money to purchase the product. It's not sufficient to say after the fact "that's the way this type of software license works." One reason I love the Mac so much is that hardware and software just works seamlessly. I've used RAIDs for years (using the Disk Utility setup) and those have all just worked. Why would I suspect that a product advertised as a more advanced, more feature packed competitor to Apple's RAID utility (and designed by some of the same people) would not allow me to use it across all of my computers when my other RAIDs using the "inferior" product always have?
Response from MacSales.com, MarketingFebruary 23, 2015
There seems to be a little confusion over how the SoftRAID licensing works. The license governs the SoftRAID volume itself, and does not relate to the number of computers you can use the SoftRAID volume with.
You can definitely install SoftRAID on each of your computers and move your ThunderBay amongst them, you just cannot take that one license and use it in multiple set-ups concurrently.
Rating: 5/5OWC goes beyond the call....February 17, 2015So I ordered this as one of the things you have to understand doing video with a new Mac Pro... you will probably order dozens of these within a couple of years. With 4K video, the amount of space files take is insane. First, I bought a DROBO 4 drive bay, Thunderbolt and USB3. That was a H U G E mistake. Everything is so proprietary, with some giant buggy, loud power adapter. Wow. HUGE mistake. Did you know if you want to make room and add more drives at some point you'll need to buy another one, the exact same one, to feed your old drives in to access. That is lame. Next I bought the uber expensive Promise Pegasus R4. Wonderful drive, comes with 2TB stacked in there, but very expensive. I buy spare drives all the time so OWC's ThunderBay is EXACTLY what I should've bought in the first place. Fast, comes with cables, put in whatever size drives you want, comes with SoftRaid (which is awesome). It's one third the price of the Pegasus, half the price of the DROBO. HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS DRIVE BAY! I would recommend this item to a friend!This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4, four-bay drive enclosure with dual Thunderbolt 2 ports, RAID 5 Solution.
Reviewer: AnonymousAge: 45-54Experience Level: Power UserOwned Product: 1-3 months
Reviewer: AnonymousLocation: Hong KongAge: 35-44Experience Level: Power UserOwned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5Stable, Versatile, and FastJanuary 13, 2015I did a lot of research on external RAIDs, and this ThunderBay 4 seemed to provide the best price/performance. It's also very quiet. I configured 3 Bays as a RAID 5, where the 4th Bay is a single drive as a backup of the RAID - all in one unit! Also running SoftRaid from the bundle package from OWC. I would recommend this item to a friend!This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4, four-bay drive enclosure with dual Thunderbolt 2 ports, RAID 5 Solution.
Rating: 5/5This thing is fastJanuary 12, 2015I've got a 2011 iMac that was lagging in speed, so I purchased an SSD to replace the hard drive. It was FAST again. Faster than I ever imagined it could be. It was like I stuck a new computer on my desk.
My problem? the SSD wasn't nearly large enough to hold all my junk collected over the last so many years.
So I bought one of these and moved my home folder to it. Now I've got all my system, library, and applications on the SSD, and my home folder can grow to 6TB.
The best part? the stinking 6TB drive connected via Thunderbolt is FASTER than my SSD!
Rating: 5/5ThunderBay4 with SoftRAID5 is surprisingly goodJanuary 8, 2015Bought the ThunderBay4 and tried creating RAID 0 arrays with one disk, two disks, three disks and four disks. Naturally each faster than the previous. Then I added Softraid to the mix for a RAID 5 volume spanning the four disks and I expected it to be no faster than maybe three of the four disks in RAID 0, or even a bit slower.
What I saw was that RAID 5 with Softraid was very close to the speed of a four disk RAID 0 volume. Almost identical. I was very impressed.
So impressed I may buy another Thunderbay and span the two chassis.
Rating: 5/5Fast, Reliable and AffordableNovember 12, 2014I moved to the OWC ThunderBay 4 with Softraid 5 from my Drobo system and haven't looked back. It has been under heavy use for almost 6-weeks now, and I've really come wonder how I functioned prior to owning it. I really love this drive. I can access all of my Lightroom catalogs quickly and efficiently, in addition to being able to quickly edit current and access past Adobe Premiere projects faster than ever before.
The drive is well made and feels very solid. I had a photo assistant pick it up the first time and remark how sturdy it felt.
I hope that OWC has a Thunder Bay 8 in the works as my needs continue to grow.
Reviewer: AnonymousLocation: CaliforniaAge: 45-54Experience Level: Power UserOwned Product: 3-4 months
Rating: 5/5Extremely happy with this purchaseNovember 11, 2014The ThunderBay 4 has been a lifesaver. I was having huge issues with my old NAS device running SUPER SLOW under Mavericks on my network. Thunderbolt is super fast on my iMac, and sharing on my network it is also very fast. What a difference!!! The ThunderBay is an excellent solution for a fast, high capacity device with the added security of data redundancy with RAID 5. It is working very well as a shared network drive for me as well. I would recommend this item to a friend!This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4, four-bay drive enclosure with dual Thunderbolt 2 ports, RAID 5 Solution.
Reviewer: AnonymousLocation: Foster City, CAAge: 45-54Experience Level: IT ProfessionalOwned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5Fast, stable, and silentNovember 1, 2014I have now used the ThunderBay for more than a month and can speak from experience. I really like it. I was using a Pegasus R2 before and had constant issues with it not waking up. And when it was awake, it was pretty noisy. Conversely, the ThunderBay is rock solid, never fails to wake up, and never shows any signs of stress. Also, the SoftRaid software that I got with it is easy to use. I highly recommend the combination. I would recommend this item to a friend!This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4, four-bay drive enclosure with dual Thunderbolt 2 ports, RAID 5 Solution.
Reviewer: AnonymousLocation: Central New JerseyAge: 55-65Experience Level: Power UserOwned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5Easy to Setup and Works GreatOctober 26, 2014I've had this RAID5 enclosure for about a month now, and so far it has worked flawlessly.
I populated it myself with four 4TB Western Digital Black drives. Installing the drives and configuring the software was very straightforward, and everything worked as expected from the start. No special technical expertise is required, and the instructions are very clear.
The unit seems well designed and carefully manufactured. It is solid, and the fit and finish is excellent.
I'm using it for a large collection of high-res photos, and it has been wonderful to consolidate everything in one place, with the speed of Thunderbolt and the security of RAID5.
Based on my experience, I recommend this solution without hesitation.
Reviewer: AnonymousLocation: MalibuAge: 45-54Experience Level: IT ProfessionalOwned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5Very pleased.September 16, 20141. Packaging was amazing. I don't think the individual disk drives could have been better protected.
2. Much quieter than I expected. Very much appreciate that it detects when the Mac is shutdown and the drives go into a sleep mode.
3. Using a RAID 5 configuration and still very pleased with the BlackMagic disk speed test results. Disturbingly better than the cheap little SSD drive I bought. That purchase probably would have worked out better if I had purchased the OWC SSD drive.
Reviewer: AnonymousAge: 35-44Experience Level: Power UserOwned Product: less than a month
Rating: 5/5Solid build, easy setupAugust 8, 2014We purchased the 16 TB ThunderBay 4 to replace a several-years-old Qx2 model whose power supply started to go bad after a power surge hit our house. The ThunderBay unit itself is very solid and it was a snap to get the drives in and everything set up. The noise level from the fans is minimal and we definitely appreciate the data redundancy that the RAID 5 array gives us; the SoftRaid software was useful and easy to install as well. In terms of speed we are seeing anywhere from 150MB/s to about 190MB/s in everyday use - but as we currently only have Thunderbolt "1" machines we're not realizing the full potential of the array. The fact that the ThunderBay should perform even better as we upgrade computers in the future was a selling point for us as we expect to use the unit for many years.
I'd definitely recommend the Thunderbay 4 to others (and already have!)