Asus' ROG Thunderbolt SSD to arrive in Q3

The big reveal at the end of Asus' Republic of Gamers (ROG) press event was the Raidr, a Thunderbolt-compatible SSD. That was all we knew, until we tracked it down at the company's Computex booth in the convention halls.

The matte-black appearance of this ROG-branded SSD fits the look of Asus' gaming laptops.
(Credit: Vincent Chang/CNET Asia)

This external SSD shares the design DNA of Asus' ROG products, which means you can't miss the prominent ROG logo. The angular-looking device is unlike any external storage drive you're likely to see. It's matte black, and, from the rear, reminds us slightly of headlights on a supercar. Basically, it's the ultimate accessory for your ROG gaming laptop, which includes Thunderbolt support on some of its latest models.

The Asus logo with a glimpse of the red design at the back of the SSD.
(Credit: Vincent Chang/CNET Asia)

According to the Asus rep at the booth, the SSD comes in 128GB and 256GB capacities, and will be configured as RAID 0 out of the box. Coupled with the support for the Thunderbolt interface, it should be pretty fast.

The Raidr is expected to be available in one to two months. Asus hasn't decided on the pricing yet.

The ThunderboltEX adds the Thunderbolt feature to selected Asus motherboards. A two-port version was also on display.
(Credit: Vincent Chang/CNET Asia)

In case you're wondering what other things you could do with an external Thunderbolt SSD, the Taiwanese company also showed off its Thunderbolt upgrade kit — ThunderboltEX — an add-on card that slots into the PCIe x4 slot. It only works with Asus motherboards, and there are 10 compatible motherboards at the moment.

Do note that since this is not a native integration of the Thunderbolt feature, which is available on Asus' highest-end board; you'll need a separate cable to transfer the display and audio portion to the add-on card. It's an unsightly workaround, but we suppose it doesn't matter, since it's hidden at the back.

Asus refused to commit to a launch date for this product, and told us that it will depend on the ThunderboltEX getting official Intel certification.

Via CNET Asia

Check out more stories from Computex 2012.



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