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OWC

ThunderBay 4 mini
8.0TB Professional Grade 4-Drive SSD Thunderbolt 2 Solution For Mac and Windows PC

Big RAID System Performance in a Compact Design
The ThunderBay 4 mini SSD equipped solution is big on performance and flexibility yet sized about the length of a pencil. The rugged heat-dissipating aluminum enclosure features two Thunderbolt 2 (Thunderbolt 10Gb/s backward compatible) ports for up to 1346MB/s real-world speeds, so you have more than enough bandwidth to handle personal and business backups — all the way up to today's highest resolution audio, photo, and video formats. If you are seeking big RAID performance that's small enough to fit on a desk, in a rack, or on a DIT cart, your wish is now a reality.
A New World of Drive Flexibility
With four hard drive populated bays, you can use the drives independently or combine drives as a RAID with the included SoftRAID setup and management software. The ThunderBay 4 mini is also perfect for repurposing or maximizing bare 2.5-inch HDDs and SSDs you already own.
Expand production capabilities in industry-leading creative platforms like Final Cut X, Avid Pro Tools, Apple Pro Logic, and Adobe Lightroom, edit large images, manage massive photo and audio libraries, store drone videos, use it as a transport drive…whatever the day or project demands, the ThunderBay 4 mini is the perfect workflow solution.
Install or Swap in Minutes
Want to access another drive or expand your storage capacity? Simply open the front panel security lock to access the four individual bays. Drives mount to a tray that slides back in and automatically plugs into a drive connector so you can get back to work in minutes.
Store More, Go Faster
With the ability to daisy-chain you can add up to five additional ThunderBay 4 mini solutions to create massive storage capacities. Merge them with SoftRAID for even more flexibility, capacity, and capability. Or if speed is what you’re after, connect multiple ThunderBay 4 mini solutions to multiple Thunderbolt 3 ports on your Mac or PC to achieve exponential speed capabilities.
Includes SoftRAID XT: Easy and Complete Drive Management
SoftRAID XT is the most powerful, intuitive software RAID utility on the market. Multiple RAID levels let you select the RAID level that fits you or your project’s needs best. If you need maximum volume capacity, optimum drive performance, data protection, or a combination of attributes, SoftRAID has you covered.
Packed with features like drive validation, verification and failure prediction—SoftRAID includes features you simply don’t get with hardware RAID. It’s like having a datacenter on your desktop! From home users looking to protect photos and documents to professionals needing to protect and quickly access projects, SoftRAID is the perfect solution.
  • Compatible: Works with macOS 11 Big Sur, M1 Macs and Windows 10
  • Advanced: Create RAID 0/1/4/5/1+0 (10) with Macs, RAID 0/1 with Windows machines
  • Protected: SoftRAID Monitor constantly watches your disks and alerts you if problems are detected
  • Validated: Volume validation ensures sectors can be read and parity is correct
  • Certified: Checks disks before use to ensure they are safe for data storage
  • Vigilant: Error prediction helps protect against unexpected failure
  • Universal: Move SoftRAID arrays seamlessly between Macs and PCs with built-in OWC MacDrive technology

SoftRAID provides a level of performance that you simply can’t get with hardware RAID. Learn more about the power of SoftRAID XT.
Professional Grade = Ready to Work
We understand having confidence in gear reliability is paramount to creative professionals. That’s why every ThunderBay 4 mini SSD solution a multi-step performance certification prior to shipping. This ensures your ThunderBay 4 mini arrives operating properly and immediately ready for demanding use.
Support You Can Trust
Like all OWC products, the ThunderBay 4 mini is fully backed by OWC's award-winning support team.
Speed, size, and convenience — the OWC ThunderBay 4 mini provides everything a demanding workflow requires.
Your Digital Life…Protected for FREE
Backing up and protecting your data is critically important. But all too often it’s a task that falls to the bottom of the “to do” list, and you don’t realize it until it is too late. That’s why OWC has partnered with Acronis to give you 1 full year of the #1 personal backup and antivirus software to integrate into your workflow.
Acronis Cyber Protect Home Office safeguards you from today’s data threats—from accidents to failures to attacks. With easy, intuitive backup and Ai-enhanced antimalware technology, your digital life is protected—photos, files, applications, systems, and the devices they are on.
  • Complete Backup and Fast Recovery: quickly restore your files or entire system at any time
  • Easy Disk Cloning and Full Image Backup: just two clicks to start a full disk image backup
  • Cloud, Local or Hybrid Cloud: back up locally, to the cloud, or both. It’s your choice

Learn more about Acronis Cyber Protect Home Office
SoftRAID XT works with macOS 10.12 or later and Windows 10. M1 Macs require macOS 11.3 or later. SoftRAID is licensed per computer.

Product Specifications

Specifications
  • Total Capacity
    • 8.0TB
  • Standard Mechanism
    • (4) 2.0TB OWC Mercury Extreme Pro 6G SSDs
    • *OWC reserves the right to replace or upgrade to equivalent or better components.
  • Bootable
    • Independent volumes bootable in macOS.
  • Chipset
    • Thunderbolt 2: Intel JHL5520
    • SATA Controller: ASMedia ASM-1062
  • Drive Interface
    • SATA
  • Certifications
    • CE
    • FCC
    • VCCI
    • RCM
    • BSMI
  • Data Transfer Rate (Maximum)
    • Thunderbolt 2 : 20 Gb/s (or 2500 MB/s)
    • Thunderbolt : 10 Gb/s (or (1250 MB/s)
RAID
  • RAID Capable
    • Yes
  • Default RAID Level
    • RAID 4
  • RAID Levels Supported
    • RAID 0
    • RAID 1
    • RAID 4
    • RAID 5
    • RAID 10
    • JBOD
  • RAID Features
    • Software RAID
Compatibility
  • Mac OS Compatibility
    • macOS 10.12 Sierra
    • macOS 10.13 High Sierra
    • macOS 10.14 Mojave
    • macOS 10.15 Catalina
    • macOS 11.x Big Sur
  • PC OS Compatibility
    • Windows 7 32-bit Edition
    • Windows 7 64-bit Edition
    • Windows 8 32-bit Edition
    • Windows 8 64-bit Edition
    • Windows 8.1 32-bit Edition
    • Windows 8.1 64-bit Edition
    • Windows Server 2012
    • Windows 10 32-bit Edition
    • Windows 10 64-bit Edition
    • Windows Server 2016
  • Other Requirements
    • SoftRAID is compatible with Windows 10, or macOS 10.12 or later. Apple Silicon M1 Macs require macOS 11.3 or later. SoftRAID is licensed per computer. Additional seats available.
  • Host Port Requirements
    • Thunderbolt ™ 2 port
  • Driver Required
    • SoftRAID Only
Power
  • Power Supply
    • External UL-listed universal auto-switching power supply
  • AC Input
    • 100-240V, 50-60Hz, 2.0A
  • DC Output
    • +12V, 6A
  • Wattage
    • 72 Watts
  • External Power Adapter
    • Yes
Physical
  • Number of Bays
    • 4
  • Device Ports
    • (2) Thunderbolt 2 Ports
  • Cooling
    • (1) 60mm cooling fan
  • Security Slot
    • Yes
  • Power/Activity LED
    • Yes
  • Housing Color
    • Black
  • Housing Material
    • Aluminum
  • Dimensions
    • Height: 11.7 cm (4.6 in)
    • Length: 19.1 cm (7.5 in)
    • Width: 9.6 cm (3.8 in)
  • Weight
    • 1.1 kg (2.51 lbs)
Environmental
  • Ambient Temperature
    • Operating: 41°F to 95°F (5°C to 35°C)
    • Non-Operating: -4°F to 140°F (-20°C to 60°C)
  • Altitude
    • Operating: -304.8 m to 3,048.0 m (-1,000 ft to 10,000 ft)
    • Non-Operating: -304.8 m to 12,192.0 m (-1,000 ft to 40,000 ft)
  • Humidity
    • Operating: 8% to 90% non-condensing
    • Non-Operating: 5% to 95% non-condensing

Notes

  • macOS 10.12.6 or later required
  • Will work with Macs that have 10Gbps Thunderbolt and support 10.12.6 or later, at slower speeds.
Manufacturer provided specifications for OWC p/n OWCTB4MSRSSD08T

Gallery

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This product is compatible with... Learn how to find your Mac's model ID
Mac Pro
Mac Pro
(December, 2013)
Model ID: MacPro6,1
2.7GHz 3.0GHz, 3.5GHz, 3.7GHz
iMac Intel
iMac w/Retina 5K display
(27-inch Mid 2015)
(May 2015)
Model ID: iMac15,1
3.3GHz i5, 3.5GHz i5, 4.0GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac w/Retina 5K display
(27-inch Late 2014)
(October 2014)
Model ID: iMac15,1
3.5GHz i5, 4.0GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (27-inch Late 2013)
(September 2013)
Model ID: iMac14,2
3.2GHz i5, 3.4GHz i5, 3.5GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (27-inch Late 2012)
(October 2012)
Model ID: iMac13,2
2.9GHz i5, 3.2GHz i5, 3.4GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (27-inch Mid 2011)
(May 2011)
Model ID: iMac12,2
2.7GHz i5, 3.1GHz i5, 3.4GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Mid 2014)
(June 2014)
Model ID: iMac14,4
1.4GHz i5
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Late 2013)
(September 2013)
Model ID: iMac14,3
2.9GHz i5 or 3.1GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Late 2013)
(September 2013)
Model ID: iMac14,1
2.7GHz i5
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Early 2013)
(March 2013)
Model ID: iMac13,1
3.3GHz i3
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Late 2012)
(October 2012)
Model ID: iMac13,1
2.7GHz i5 , 2.9GHz i5, 3.1GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Late 2011)
(August 2011)
Model ID: iMac12,1
3.1GHz i3
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Mid 2011)
(May 2011)
Model ID: iMac12,1
2.5GHz i5 , 2.7GHz i5, 2.8GHz i7
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Late 2014)
(October, 2014)
Model ID: Macmini7,1
1.4GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.8GHz, 3.0GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Late 2012)
(October, 2012)
Model ID: Macmini6,1 & Macmini6,2
2.3GHz, 2.5GHz, 2.6GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Late 2012 Server)
(October, 2012)
Model ID: Macmini6,2
2.3GHz, 2.6GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Mid 2011)
(July, 2011)
Model ID: Macmini5,1 & Macmini5,2
2.3GHz, 2.5GHz, 2.7GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Mid 2011 Server)
(July, 2011)
Model ID: Macmini5,3
2.0GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (15-inch Retina display Mid 2015)
(May, 2015)
Model ID: MacBookPro11,4; MacBookPro11,5
2.2GHz, 2.5GHz, 2.8GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (13-inch Retina display Early 2015)
(March, 2015)
Model ID: MacBookPro12,1
2.7GHz, 2.9GHz, 3.1GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (13-inch Retina Display 2013 - 2014)
(October, 2013 - July, 2014)
Model ID: MacBookPro11,1
2.4GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.8GHz, 2.9GHz, 3.0GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (15-inch Retina Display 2013 - 2014)
(October, 2013 - July, 2014)
Model ID: MacBookPro11,2
2.0GHz, 2.2GHz, 2.5GHz, 2.8GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (15-inch Retina Display 2013 - 2014)
(October, 2013 - July, 2014)
Model ID: MacBookPro11,3
2.3GHz, 2.5GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.8GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (15-inch Retina Display 2013)
(January, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookPro10,1
2.4GHz, 2.7GHz, 2.8GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (13-inch Retina Display 2013)
(January, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookPro10,2
2.5GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.9GHz, 3.0GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (13-inch Retina Display 2012-2013)
(October, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookPro10,2
2.5GHz, 2.9GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (15-inch Retina Display 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookPro10,1
2.3GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.7GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (15-inch 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookPro9,1
2.3GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.7GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (13-inch 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookPro9,2
2.5GHz, 2.9GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (17-inch 2011)
(October, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,3
2.4GHz, 2.5GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (15-inch 2011)
(October, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,2
2.2GHz, 2.4GHz, 2.5GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (13-inch 2011)
(October, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,1
2.4GHz, 2.8GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (17-inch Early 2011)
(February, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,3
2.2GHz, 2.3GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (15-inch Early 2011)
(February, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,2
2.0GHz, 2.2GHz, 2.3GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (15-inch Early 2011)
(February, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,2
2.0GHz, 2.2GHz, 2.3GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (13-inch Mid 2017)
(June 2017)
Model ID: MacBookAir7,2
1.8GHz i5, 2.2GHz i7
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (13-inch Early 2015)
(March 2015)
Model ID: MacBookAir7,2
1.6GHz i5, 2.2GHz i7
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (11-inch Early 2015)
(March 2015)
Model ID: MacBookAir7,1
1.6GHz i5, 2.2GHz i7
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (13-inch Mid 2013)
(June, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookAir6,2
1.3GHz, 1.7GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (11-inch Mid 2013)
(June, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookAir6,1
1.3GHz, 1.7GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (13-inch Mid 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookAir5,2
1.8GHz, 2.0GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (11-inch Mid 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookAir5,1
1.7GHz, 2.0GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (13-inch Mid 2011)
(July, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookAir4,2
1.7GHz, 1.8GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (11-inch Mid 2011)
(July, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookAir4,1
1.6GHz, 1.8GHz

Benchmarks

Click any of the benchmarks below to view the results.
macOS RAID 0 Test Results
macOS RAID 4 Test Results

Includes

  • (1) ThunderBay 4 mini
  • (1) Thunderbolt 2 cable
  • (1) External power supply
  • (2) Keys for front panel lock
  • (1) Quick start guide
  • (1) SoftRAID XT

Customer Ratings

Write a Review 4.6 / 5 35 out of 41 (85%) reviewers would recommend this product
1 2
Verified Buyer
Reviewer: kraigpritts
Rating: 5/5 Outstanding experience start to finish September 9, 2021 The advertising was clear and complete. The checkout process among the best I have used. Shipping was fast and the product was great and everything advertised.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Response from OWC, Support September 10, 2021 Thank you for providing us with your feedback. Please feel free to reach out to our support team if further assistance is needed.
Verified Buyer
Reviewer: CheerfulCrow-56395
Rating: 5/5 Just what I was looking for May 3, 2021 Perfect home for 4 SSD’s. I even disconnected the fan in order to have complete silence. Working great. No problem with heat, whatsoever.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from (*) OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: RobertBurr
Rating: 5/5 Compact Four Bay SSD drive enclosure is just right April 24, 2021 With a small footprint and the ability to configure RAID volumes across four fast drives, this enclosure is an elegant solution to working with large audio, video and image files efficiently.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Sidley Location: Massachusetts Age: 25-34 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: over 6 months
Rating: 5/5 Love it, has worked perfectly for years August 8, 2020 I love it. I've had mine for over 4 years now, it's been flawless the whole time. The silent operation when loaded with SSDs is a huge deal, many other enclosures either lack active cooling or have noisy fans.

It's blazing fast, it looks great, it has a very small footprint. I dislike most external RAID enclosures, most of them seem to have 3.5" bays. For those of us who've gone 100% SSD years ago, most pro enclosures which are built for 3.5" bays are a waste of desktop space.

I love that I can daisy chain it with other Thunderbolt devices, and I love the various 4-drive RAID options. It also works out-of-the-box with MacOS RAID (either RAID 1 or 0) if you don't want to use SoftRAID.

The only downside is the lack of USB-C support, but that wasn't even a thing yet when this enclosure came out. Thunderbolt-over-USB-C-connector is going to be a bit of a headache as far as future compatibility goes, but nothing an adaptor won't fix.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer Top 250 Contributor
Reviewer: jb606 Location: Chicago, IL. Age: 35-44 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: over 6 months
Rating: 5/5 Fast and works as advertised July 27, 2020 Fast and works as advertised. The only downside was the rapid lack of support for Thunderbolt I/II products once USB-C hit the marketplace. Where are all of the cards and adapters?

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: abacusHex Location: Nashville, TN Age: 45-54 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: less than a month
Rating: 5/5 A flexible and fast must for older Mac systems June 26, 2020 Having a MacPro 2013 model, finding good Thunderbolt 2 accessories can be a challenge, and with the single SSD support of the MP2013, external drives are a must. This little box fits the bill perfectly and is working great for a project to get all of the various 2.5" SATA drives I have (with data scattered here, there and everywhere) into a single location. The TB2 connection speed is guaranteeing that multiple read/write/move activities can happen smoothly, making the most of the SATA interfaces. Far better than trying to do this over USB 3.

The built-in fan is welcome and whisper-quiet. The only improvement that I would suggest are drive trays that don't have to be bolted on and that move a little more smoothly, as I've seen in some recent PC cases. A flexible plastic with pins instead of screws. That will only be an issue while I'm having to do some drive-swapping, however.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: PickyRicky Location: Naples, FL Age: 55-65 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: over 6 months
Rating: 5/5 Solid - Pro Quality April 1, 2018 I like the small footprint of the 2.5" disks. I use mine in a configuration of 2 - 1TB WD Blue SSD in a Raid 0 (Striped) for my photo processing (scratch) then move the finished photos to my OWC Mercury Pro Qx2 with 4 - 4TB Seagate NAS in a Raid5 configuration for picture storage. In the remaining two bays I have 2 - 2TB Seagate gaming disks in a Raid 1 (mirror) configuration for my iMac Photos and iTunes files. It performs without fail for the last 1 year. It fits anywhere on my desk or cabinet.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: pre3 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: over 6 months
Rating: 4/5 Great product, but now dated. February 7, 2018 This is a fantastic enclosure, and is only slightly dated by the inclusion of Thunderbolt 3 on new Mac models. I've achieved over 1GB/s with this enclosure, and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it if you have Thunderbolt 2 connectors.

It is not whisper quiet, however, and for some media rooms will not be acceptable. I'd be 5 stars if it weren't for the fan noise.

This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Loby1
Rating: 5/5 Great Product - Very Quiet! October 17, 2017 Very quiet which was the main reason I selected this unit over other manufacturers. I was using another thunderbolt unit from another company...but the fan and airflow through the other company's unit made too much noise for my taste. I use SSDs that do not require much cooling as does HDDs, so this unit is perfect for me (though HDDs would work well also with the unit), I work with Video and Audio recording using a Mac Pro 2013, so the ThunderBay 4 mini is perfect for the cost and my usage! Highly recommend it!

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Farrow Location: Eastern Time Zone Age: 45-54 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: over 6 months
Rating: 5/5 Excellent product - love it. September 18, 2017 I have been using this product for 2 years now and I love it. I have four 500gb Samsung ssd's in it and it works very well. It is fast enough to run lots of different vm's off it at the same time.

I would buy again in a heart beat. I am hoping owc upgrades it to Thunderbolt 3.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: JohnnyW Location: New Orleans, LA Age: 45-54 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: less than a month
Rating: 5/5 Perfect July 25, 2017 I have been re-configuring my home network and going through the hardware I had laying around and found a bunch of 2.5" drives. So to re-purpose them, I ordered the OWC Thunderbay 4 Mini. I knew it was going to be the perfect piece of hardware I needed for these drives as I have been a loooong time & satisfied OWC customer and have been ordering all my MAC upgrades from them.

I was quite surprised at the small form factor, sleek looks, and very fast performance. The Thunderbay was easy to load the drives into and it was plug & play to connect to my Mac Mini.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer Top 250 Contributor
Reviewer: HenryInFlorida Location: Florida, USA Age: Over 65 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 4/5 Thunderbay 4 + SoftRAID hits the spot for MacBook Pro External Media March 12, 2017 I got this product from OWC (Thunderbay 4 mini drive enclosure 0 drive) as a solution to accommodate a number of (new) SSD's into my external drive plan with a single cable as a DAS for fast external access to my photography raw files. I wanted a device that would be capable of very fast throughput for fast read/write performance supporting the fastest transfer rates but also compatible with both what I have now (MBP 2014) and the future machine I hope to get in the next year (2016+ MBP). A singe drive measures over 300Mbps read/write speed, while the RAID 4 array measures 730 Mbps Read and 1,004 Mbps read using AJA System Test Lite and Blackmagic DiskSpeed benchmarks. That is fast enough for most formats of video on my MBP. Your speeds will definitely vary with source machines, drives, and connection methods.

Works on all counts. I can't say enough about the support I got from SoftRAID pre and post sale. I had lot of configuration questions and expectations on configuring the internal four drives and using it as a RAID array with additional partitioning of a drive larger than others.

First, about the OWC Thunderbay's mechanical assembly. It is a very sturdy black painted aluminum case. It stand on four rubber feet and is very quiet when the fan runs, it is practically inaudible in a quiet room. On the front you have a keyed lock, LED's on the front for power, drive access (4) and ventilation holes for the fan powered assembly.

The front panel completely removes with the key. It removes exposing four drive trays that simply plug in to the rear frame. The front panel secures the drives from becoming disconnected with an integral bumper strip.The drives can "hot-swap", however in the case of a RAID array, that will be rather ineffective to yiour operation if a drive is removed for any other reason than replacing it with the same size and rebuilding an array. If you will use the enclosure to house media as formatted as JBOD then hot swap will work for you, just be sure to dismount the drive before removing. The system will need to be reattached to T2 port to mount on your host computer or re-powered. I usually disconnect the power plug after ejecting the drives. Therefore, this hot-swap feature isn't needed and no power switch is provided.

At the rear, you'll find a 72W DC power connection jack requiring the supplied external power pack, two Thunderbolt 2 jacks used to loop between other devices (multiple drives, monitors, etc. Note that this enclosure is Thunderbolt 2 (20Gbps) and is only downward compatible with Thunderbolt 3 (40Gbps).

The drive trays are metal and well grounded to the case for static control. Your drives screw to the tray with four screws each and are supplied. Spares are available but only as a set.

The overall documentation and product quality is very good. This is a good value for the product provided.

I give it a 4 star rating based on my list of pros and cons below. This is a user's review not paid or in any way compensated by the distributor. Would recommend!

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Gamma Location: Washington State Age: Over 65 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: less than a month
Rating: 5/5 No more beachballs December 16, 2016 With 2.5 million MRI files on a conventional disk using Firewire 800, the repeated seek delays were beyond annoying, despite using a 2013 MacPro and the latest OsirixMD. This hardware has fixed the issue nicely and reduces any worry about data reliability. No beachballs.

This review is from 4.0TB OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID 4 Four-Drive SSD External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Solution.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: ColoradoBound Location: Colorado Age: 45-54 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: over 6 months
Rating: 4/5 Good Unit November 7, 2016 I have been happy with my drive enclosure. It is small and nice and quiet. The only negative I have is that it uses too much power. I was building a low power server based on a Mac Mini and this enclosure and even without any SSD drives installed it uses more power than the Mac Mini.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: EnforcerViper Location: Winnipeg Age: 35-44 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: over 6 months
Rating: 5/5 Very reliable! August 30, 2016 I have two of these, both filled with SSD drives and they have both been flawless and rock solid. The thunderbolt connection is wicked fast.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Reviewer: Anurag Location: New York Age: 35-44 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: over 6 months
Rating: 3/5 Good but quite noisy August 29, 2016 The whole idea of getting an SSD storage array was to get something I can keep on my desk. However, with the Thunderbay 4 mini I cannot do that. The drives are quite but the fan is way too noisy. They rally need a spend a couple more bucks on a quality fan to make this a quality product. What compounds this is that the drives don't sleep when not used but only when the entire computer goes to sleep - which for me only happens at night.

I read others having replaced the fan with a much quieter noctua fan - but unfortunately I could not figure out how to do that.

Highly recommend OWC make a truly quiet device the next time.

This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Response from OWC, Product Development August 30, 2016 In May we moved to a brand new fan solution and reduced/eliminated the noise level from the fan noted. We are always listening to all customer feedback and further working to improve products on an ongoing basis and fan noise was high on the list from the beginning and something that was successfully mitigated with product currently shipping.
Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Foxy Location: Springfield, MO Age: 55-65 Experience Level: Home User Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5 Small sized equals big storage July 23, 2016 This review is from (*) OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Central Texas Age: 25-34 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5 Excellent! June 12, 2016 This awesome little device works exactly as it is supposed to! I took several old hard drives from previous laptops, reformatted them, and put them into this enclosure. They worked immediately! Two of them or solid-state drive, and they read and write almost as fast as if the hard drives when the laptop itself. I recommend this product to anyone! You definitely get what you pay for!

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Fort Worth, Texas Age: Over 65 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5 Exceeds all expectations May 26, 2016 For years I have dreamed of having a RAID 5 array for speed and reliability. This fills the bill nicely and its performance exceeds all my expectations. With 7200 RPM HDs the performance easily exceeds the other external drives I have and although I have not had the "opportunity" to test the RAID 5 data recovery capability, I am confident it will perform as advertised.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Los Angeles Age: 55-65 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5 Fast! May 11, 2016 This thing is beastly fast! Throws 4K files around like they're nothing! Very Quiet too! Two thumbs up!

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from 4.0TB OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID 4 Four-Drive SSD External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Solution.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Seattle, WA Age: 35-44 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: less than a month
Rating: 5/5 Blazing fast March 17, 2016 I purchased this primarily to speed up my Lightroom collection, but it's turning out to be the defacto place to host VMs also. Windows 10 in Parallels doesn't feel virtualized at all. Five stars and well worth the hefty price if you need speed.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from 2.0TB OWC ThunderBay 4 mini Four-Drive SSD External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Solution.

Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Vallejo, CA Age: 55-65 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: less than a month
Rating: 5/5 Goodbye internal drive bays, Hello Thunderbay Mini! February 29, 2016 I put off moving to a new computer for a long time because I didn't want to lose the 4 drive bays on my trusty Mac Pro 1.1. Finally bit the bullet, if getting a gorgeous 27inch iMac can be called "biting the bullet". Thunderbay Mini to the rescue for my data storage.

I've been putting it, (and SoftRaid) through their paces and so far the performance is admirable. I love the small form factor. I am using 2 units with OBR10 (one big RAID 10) across 8 2TB drives, giving 8TB of highly redundant data storage. A 3rd set of disks will serve as offsite storage, to be swapped with one set of mirrors on a periodic basis. Should keep me for awhile, at least until the next bump in drive sizes.

Only 2 nits to pick. One is the markings for the drive lights are practically invisible. Not that big a deal for such a compact device; you can identify the lights positionally. But still, someone did go to the trouble of specifying and implementing markings. I'm at a loss as to why making them actually be visible did not seem to be a concern.

Second nit is with the associated Soft Raid product. The software has been working quite well, and does its job very efficiently. However there does seem to be a lot of promotion of RAID 5 as a storage strategy. In part due to that, my initial direction was with RAID 5. Upon further research I have run across many warnings that RAID 5 is definitely not recommended for modern drive sizes, and considered a bad option. Research RAID 5 and "URE" (unrecoverable read error). Once you get past a certain disk size it is quite likely that the storage array will ruin itself when attempting to recover after loss of any disk. RAID 10 is considered far safer for your data.

In short, a very valuable product for me, 5 stars but make sure to do your research and carefully consider your RAID storage options before finalizing your decision.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Dubai Age: 25-34 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5 extremely useful for my work February 29, 2016 the drive is excellent durable fast light and easy to carry around

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from 4.0TB OWC ThunderBay 4 mini Four-Drive SSD External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Solution.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Bowling Green, OH
Rating: 5/5 Very quiet and unobtrusive January 16, 2016 My new OWC ThunderBay 4 mini has been working perfectly. I've filled it with 4 400GB SSDs. It is absolutely quiet.

This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Ready Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: West Haven, CT Age: 45-54 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5 Great enclosure November 16, 2015 As a working photographer, I'm always on the lookout for faster, quieter storage for terrabytes of data. An all-SSD 4TB RAID 5 setup is still beyond my ability to rationalize, but I recently got the crazy idea to go the Fusion Drive route instead, and it's working beautifully thus far.

I picked up the Thunderbay 4 mini, popped in two 2TB Seagate 2.5" drives and a 480GB SSD and, bar a small setup issue (hint to others: there's no need to buy the RAID5 version of the enclosure if you're going the Fusion Drive route, as SoftRAID won't work with that setup), it has performed exactly as expected. Performance with newly-downloaded photos is lightning-fast, since they get copied to the SSD portion of the Fusion Drive, and if I have to go back to some older data for a job, it usually gets moved to the SSD after a few accesses. My Lightroom catalogs also reside on the SSD pretty much permanently, given how ofter they're accessed. The access lights on the Thunderbay are very helpful in determining which drives are being accessed at any given time.

I'm sure that most will be purchasing this enclosure to create a more standard RAID volume, but I wanted to let prospective purchasers know that it works quite well in a non-standard setup. It was an idea I'd had in my head for a while, and I'm glad I finally pulled the trigger - it has lived up to my expectations, and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend something similar to anyone looking for a brilliant combination of fast access and copious storage in a small, quiet (though not silient) package.

I would recommend this item to a friend! This review is from OWC ThunderBay 4 mini RAID Four-Bay External Thunderbolt 2 Storage Enclosure.

OWC ThunderBay 4 mini 8.0TB Professional Grade 4-Drive SSD Thunderbolt 2 Solution Mfr P/N: TB4MSRSSD08T OWC SKU: OWCTB4MSRSSD08T Powered by SoftRAID. RAID-4 Pre-configured. Thunderbolt cable included 3 Year OWC Limited Warranty Ships: Same Day only $1,999.00
Add to CartOther World Computing TB4MSRSSD08T In Stock, Click to Buy Now
Additional Capacities & Kits: DIY Enclosure
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