OWC ThunderBay Flex 8

flexible 8-bay storage + 8-port connectivity + PCIe expansion

OWC ThunderBay Flex 8

The industry’s first Thunderbolt 3 all-in-wonder

Tame your workflow with this highly configurable productivity platform for digital imaging, VFX, video production, and video editing professionals. With unrivaled FLEXibility, you can choose drive type(s), enjoy docking convenience, and expand your capabilities with PCIe cards.

NAB Best of Show Awards Spring 2020 VideoEdge Winner, CES Innovation Awards 2021 Honoree, TechLeadership Awards 2021 Nominee



Drive Bays



dock + 85W charging




up to



X4 lane


Expansion Slot







Future Forward



<span class="text-highlight text-upper">FLEX 8</span> DIY ENCLOSURE <span class="text-highlight text-lower">MAX CONFIGURABILITY</span>


Add your own drives and PCIe card for the flexibility to configure, and reconfigure, for a solution as unique as your project and data needs.


<span class="text-highlight text-upper">FLEX 8</span> 8 x HDD <span class="text-highlight text-lower">Maximum Flexibility</span>

FLEX 8 8 x HDD Maximum Flexibility

Ideal for taming the voracious drive space appetite of RAW, 4K, large format, and VR workflows. Arrives pre-set with RAID 5 speed and protection. Plus, select a recommended PCIe card or add your own


<span class="text-highlight text-upper">FLEX 8</span> 4 x SSD + 4 x HDD <span class="text-highlight text-lower">Maximum Flexibility</span>

FLEX 8 4 x SSD + 4 x HDD Maximum Flexibility

Get the best of both worlds: a blazing-fast, high-capacity SSD RAID 0 project drive for large-format, multi-stream workflows along with the added long-term storage capacity of an HDD RAID 5. Plus, select a recommended PCIe card or add your own.


<span class="text-highlight text-upper">FLEX 8</span> 1 x SSD + 7 x HDD <span class="text-highlight text-lower">Maximum Workflow</span>

FLEX 8 1 x SSD + 7 x HDD Maximum Workflow

Ingest and edit live on a hyper-fast U.2 SSD or use the drive as a swappable transport for fast lab processing while being able to edit and store entire projects on the ultra-capacity HDD RAID 5 array. Plus, select a recommended PCIe card or add your own.


OWC ThunderBay Flex 8 with open drive bays


Eight Universal 3.5/2.5-inch Drive Bays
Use SATA/SAS1 and U.2/M.22 NVMe drives for up to 144TB of capacity and real-world speeds up to 2750MB/s.

The top four bays can utilize U.2 SSDs...the emerging M&E industry storage standard.

Powerfully Easy RAID
Create, manage, and monitor advanced RAID sets with SoftRAID, the world's most advanced RAID management solution with easy setup, e-notifications, and drive integrity monitoring.

OWC ThunderBay Flex 8 front ports detail


Connect More
Convenient front mounted USB-C and (2) USB-A 10Gb/s ports for peripherals and mobile devices.

See More
DisplayPort 1.4 for connecting up to an 8K display3

Fast Media Ingest
Frontside SD 4.0 and CFexpress card readers with up to 985MB/s speed

OWC ThunderBay Flex 8 rear ports detail

FLEXpandable for Unique Needs

Do More
A second Thunderbolt 3 port4 for daisy-chaining devices or additional display(s).

Play Your Card
PCIe x16 connector/x4 lane slot for audio/video capture, networking, SSD storage, hardware RAID card, or I/O card


Whether you call it a workflow workhorse, a productivity platform, or a configurable command center, one description of the ThunderBay Flex 8 says it best. It’s a groundbreaking workflow solution for digital imaging, VFX, video production, and video editing professionals from the world’s leading Thunderbolt accessory manufacturer.

ThunderBay Flex 8 offers eight drive bays that support a mix of SATA/SAS and U.2/M.2 NVMe drives for up to 144TB of storage capacity. Next, there’s a plethora of ports including two Thunderbolt 3, one USB-C, and two USB-A for device docking and charging.

See your work in greater detail by adding up to an 8K display via a built-in DisplayPort 1.4 connection. Ingest hi-res images and video via front-side SD 4.0 and CFexpress card readers. And when you want to expand your desktop capabilities, there’s a PCIe slot waiting for your specific project needs.

ThunderBay Flex 8 is the one Thunderbolt 3 desktop device that rules them all. With an irresistible economy of scale, this consolidated solution is ideal for anyone waiting for the right moment to invest in Thunderbolt technology.

Video Workstation

At the heart of the ThunderBay Flex 8 capabilities are two cutting-edge technology standards: NVMe and PCIe. Non-Volatile Memory Express (NVMe) optimizes the performance of modern flash technology over the Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe) standard. It enables significantly faster SSD performance with a more direct and optimized path to a computer’s processor.

Tying both of these technologies together is the Thunderbolt 3 interface which uses the PCIe bus. This interface offers the fastest data transfers possible on a single cable between computers and peripherals like storage solutions, docks, and expansion devices while also supplying 85W of power to keep your laptop ready to go at a moment’s notice.

Four 8TB SSD

The future standard of storage available today

Right out of the packaging, all eight bays can utilize SATA 6Gb/s 2.5-inch SSDs or 3.5-inch HDDs. To take advantage of 40Gb/s PCIe technology, the top four bays are NVMe U.2 SSD ready. These emerging super-fast SSDs enable ThunderBay Flex 8 to meet the future storage needs of content creators and video production pros.

OWC ThunderBay Flex 8 with drives


Are you a video pro working with 4K/8K and even Phantom high-speed files? The ThunderBay Flex 8 offers a variety of drive configurations that deliver real-world read/write speeds of 2750MB/s that saturate the Thunderbolt 3 speed threshold. Try any of these options:

  1. A single U.2 NVMe SSD in Bay A
  2. Multiple U.2 SSDs installed in top four bays (A-D) in RAID 0
  3. Six or more SATA SSDs in any bays in RAID 0
  4. Swap out the built-in SATA drive controller card with a SATA/SAS hardware RAID card and configure 8 x SATA/SAS drives in hardware RAID 0
OWC Dock Ejector

Done with the drives but need the docking connectivity?
Eject the ThunderBay Flex 8 drives and any external drives in a single click with the free OWC Dock Ejector app. It ensures all data has been written before any drive is unmounted to protect against data loss. It will even warn you from accidentally ejecting an in-use drive


A virtual buffet of productivity-enhancing possibilities awaits you with the docking connections built into ThunderBay Flex 8. Power your notebook with up to 85W power delivery while capturing multi-stream hi-res footage at full frame rate. Connect audio and video mixers, digital camera, keyboards, and other peripherals and charge mobile devices via one USB-C and two USB-A 10Gb/s ports. Ingest and work with 4/8K RAW video and RAW photo files immediately at speeds up to 985MB/s with frontside SD 4.0 and CFexpress card readers. Add more viewing space with up to an 8K monitor via the DisplayPort 1.4 interface. And if all that’s not enough to satisfy your project needs, daisy-chain up to five additional Thunderbolt 3 devices!

Cables and Cards
OWC ThunderBay Flex 8 PCIe card slot


By removing the enclosure’s side panel, you can expand your capabilities by installing a half-length, full-height, single-width expansion card in the PCIe x16 connector/x4 lanes slot. Add a 4K video capture card for direct ingest of multi-stream high-res footage. Record high-quality tracks with an audio card and then edit and archive tracks.

Create a powerful file server with a high-speed networking card. By replacing the built-in SATA drive controller with a SATA or SAS RAID card, you can turn ThunderBay Flex 8 into a hardware RAID storage solution while keeping a PCIe slot open for other cards.

A FLEXtraordinary Platform

ThunderBay Flex 8 is a user-configurable platform that you can use to launch into projects with a new realm of time and money-saving results. To get you started, we suggest three sample configurations that make the most of the extraordinary highlights that have made OWC solutions the choice of performance enthusiasts and cinematographers around the world:

  • Plug and play with no drivers needed and Thunderbolt 3 cable included
  • Free lifetime expert support
  • Worry-free ownership with up to 5 Year OWC Limited Warranty5
OWC ThunderBay Flex 8 front and back view
SoftRAID Logo

Easy and Complete Drive Management with SoftRAID XT

SoftRAID XT is the most powerful, intuitive RAID management software on the market for macOS and Windows. SoftRAID’s RAID creation and management technology has been finely tuned to perfection with over 20 years of development to provide rock solid protection of your data and optimize drive performance. It is packed with features like multiple RAID options, validation and verification of drives, and predictive disk failure with SoftRAID Monitor. SoftRAID provides a level of performance that you simply can’t get with hardware RAID.

Multiple RAID Levels

Create advanced RAID 0/1/4/5/1+0 (10)1 volumes for higher performance and/or redundancy.2

Disk Health

SoftRAID protects your data by alerting you to issues before anything happens, ensuring you’re protected when you’re on a critical deadline.


Built-in MacDrive technology lets you read/write SoftRAID RAID 0/1 arrays and use them interchangeably between Windows and macOS.

Flexible, Upgradeable

With SoftRAID you’re not locked to expensive hardware. SoftRAID is upgradable and portable.

Easy License Management

New license management enables quick activation or deactivation so your license can move moved between computers.


Works with macOS 10.12 or later (including Big Sur), M1 Macs, and Windows 10.3

SoftRAID is ideal for anyone who needs to safely store and backup massive amounts of data, including video editors, audio producers, photographers and graphic designers.

SoftRAID Pro Tip: Need even more power and flexibility? Upgrade to SoftRAID Pro to spread volumes over two or more disk enclosures for incredible performance! (Impossible with hardware RAID.)

  1. RAID 4/5/1+0 (10) is available for Mac only at this time.
  2. Data protection requires RAID 1/4/5/1+0.
  3. SoftRAID XT and SoftRAID Pro work with macOS 10.12 or later and Windows 10. M1 Macs require macOS 11.3 and later. SoftRAID serial numbers work on both Mac and Windows. SoftRAID is licensed per computer. In order to use SoftRAID on multiple computers you will need a valid license, which can be purchased anytime.

A Protective, Economical Post-Production Solution

Sending a drive from set to post-production typically entails tedious and time-consuming drive enclosure disassembly to access the storage drive or costly shipping of the entire enclosure to the post lab. But ThunderBay Flex 8 offers a flexible option.

By installing an OWC U.2 NVMe Interchange System carrier tray (sold separately) with a built-in U.2 connector into a ThunderBay Flex 8 drive tray, you can protect the U.2 SSD drive’s connector from repeated install/removal wear for improved drive longevity and investment. When done with your shoot, just ship the lightweight protective carrier and drive to the lab where the carrier can be installed into an OWC Helios 3S equipped with the OWC Interchange System. It’s a complete solution to safeguard your data while lowering shipping costs.

OWC NVMe Interchange Tray
OWC U.2 NVMe Interchange System Workflow

End-to-End Workflow Possibilities

OWC U.2 NVMe Interchange System with OWC ThunderBay Flex 8


  • + OWC Interchange System Carrier Tray with SSD
  • + OWC ThunderBay Flex 8

Protects U.2 SSD drive connectors from install/removal wear to improve drive longevity and extend your drive ROI.

OWC U.2 NVMe Interchange System for safe, cost-effective transit to post-production

Transit To Post

  • + OWC Interchange System Carrier Tray with SSD
  • + Small and economical. Ship only what you need.

Lightweight protective carrier safeguards data while lowering shipping costs vs shipping the entire enclosure.

OWC U.2 NVMe Interchange System with OWC Mercury Helios 3S for Post-Production

Post-Production Lab

Desktop U.2 NVMe SSD swappable storage for fast processing of footage.

Your Digital Life...
Protected for Free

Your data is irreplaceable, and we take protecting it seriously. That's why this OWC Solution includes Acronis Cyber Protect Home Office – the world's only combination backup and antimalware solution that keeps your data protected from accidents, failures, and malware/ransomware attacks.

  • 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 Backup - Back up locally, to the cloud, or both. With 250GB of cloud storage, it’s your choice.
  • Integrated Protection from Malware - Behavioral heuristics stop ransomware and cryptojacking.

Learn more about Acronis Cyber Protect Home Office »

Acronis Logo
OWC ClingOn

Secure Your Workflow with OWC ClingOn

Greatly reduce — if not eliminate — cable strain and accidental disconnects with the OWC ClingOn (sold separately). These custom cable stabilizers screw onto the ThunderBay's housing to secure your Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C connections to prevent work session interruption and possible data loss.

Professional Grade

Professional Grade = Ready to Work

We understand having confidence in gear reliability is paramount to creative professionals. That’s why every ThunderBay undergoes OWC's multi-hour "burn-in" performance certification prior to shipping. This ensures your ThunderBay arrives operating properly and immediately ready for demanding use.

OWC Thunderbolt 3 Cable

OWC Thunderbolt 3 Cable Included

OWC ThunderBay solutions come with a certified 0.7 meter OWC Thunderbolt 3 Cable. But if your workflow demands a different length to make the connection, OWC Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) Cables are the perfect choice.

OWC, Trusted by Pros & Enthusiasts the World Over

OWC, Trusted by Pros & Enthusiasts the World Over

We build our hardware to the highest standards of reliability and performance. Because 100% reliability is always the goal, we rigorously quality test and back our hardware with up to a 5 Year OWC Limited Warranty and award-winning customer support.

Learn More
  1. SAS drives are supported with SAS drive controller card (available separately).
  2. Up to four U.2 drives are supported. M.2 drives are also supported with M.2 to U.2 adapter (available separately).
  3. Full DisplayPort 1.4 capabilities depends on host computer support of DisplayPort 1.4 specification through its Thunderbolt 3 connection, host computer GPU capabilities, and connecting cable capabilities.
  4. Apple Mac models with Thunderbolt 2/Thunderbolt ports can be connected using an Apple Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter (available separately). This configuration provides data transfer at up to 20Gb/s but does not support notebook charging.
  5. 5 Year OWC Limited Warranty for Enterprise Hard Drive and SSD solutions. 3 Year OWC Limited Warranty for enclosure only.