Since the last Retina MBP ditched the firewire and ethernet ports, I have been forced to use dongles to gain access to these connections. The rub there is that there are only two USB3 ports, and two Thunderbolt2 ports. Take one TB port for Firewire and one USB for ethernet and it becomes harder to connect everything.
Enter Other World Computing’s new Thunderbolt2 dock. It offers 5 USB3 ports including two that offer power for higher draw devices, ethernet, analog audio in/out, Firewire800, and HDMI – all off 1 TB2 port. Sounded perfect for what I needed, so I ordered immediately.
It was nice to see a new product being offed that is actually available at that time. No need to pre-order. I received it in about 2 days and set it up right away.
My first task for the dock was to offload some content on an OWC SSD bus powered drive to a Pegasus raid. No problem, I thought, just plug the drive into the high-power USB3 ports and away we go. The copy started, and then about one minute later the drive ejects without warning and I get a low-power on USB message. I think this can’t be right, as I plugged into one of the two powered ports. I double check my connections, and make sure the power is connected. I try again with the same result.
After plugging the drive in directly to my Mac, I was able to copy, so a call to OWC was in order.
The call was answered after about a 5 minute hold, and after a brief conversation, the tech tells me that the OWC
SSD drive pulls too much power for the port, and that it will not work unless I buy a power supply for the drive.
This to me seems like a major mistake. Since OWC includes a power supply with the dock, I do not see a logical reason to have a low power warning. The tech did say that other devices should work, but for my needs, a big fat NO.
Aside from this issue, the dock does provide a useful array of connectivity, and will likely stay in my bag.