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Apple Thunderbolt LED Display: First impressions

If you think you’ve seen it all, think again. Not surprisingly, Apple has come up with a concept alongside Intel to create what is known as the Thunderbolt Display, which doesn’t only act as a solo display, but also a Thunderbolt hub which can connect up to five separate devices at 20 times the speed of USB 2.0. In this article, we take a closer look at the Thunderbolt Display and see if it is really as impressive as it sounds.

Apple is well known for its innovative stance on all products across the technology world, but with the Thunderbolt Display they really have gone the extra distance in designing something that could blow USB straight out of the water.

Standing upright with a 16:9 display and 178 degree viewing angle, nothing bad can be said about the display itself. But the ports are where the real magic lies. You can think of the display more as a Thunderbolt hub than anything else. It has a standard three USB 2.0 ports, one FireWire 800 port, one Gigabit Ethernet port and an additional Thunderbolt port that will allow the use of daisy chaining five additional Thunderbolt devices. In general, this means that you can connect your new MacBook Air, Mac Mini, or any other Thunderbolt enabled Mac, and then chain other devices on to these that support the Thunderbolt port such as external HDD’s.

Going back to the display briefly, the Thunderbolt Display also houses a built-in FaceTime HD camera, 2.1 speaker system and an integrated MagSafe charger for simple Mac notebook charging. In terms of tech specs you get a 27-inch diagonal, support for resolutions up to 2560 x 1440, a contrast ratio of 1000:1 and 16.7 million colors other specifications can be seen here, we were particularly impressed by its friendliness to the environment and small footprint.

In case you haven’t heard of Thunderbolt yet, think of it more as an extension to what you already have. It adds more functionality, more ports, and at 10Gbps of Thunderbolt data that passes through two channels within the same connector both ways, it’s easy to understand why this could be the connector of choice for the future.

But lets talk about the price. The Thunderbolt display will cost $999 MSRP, so it’s not cheap in any sense of the word. And to use it, you will also have to grab yourself a new Thunderbolt-enabled Mac which will also burn a few holes in your wallet.

Apple say that the device will be made available to the public “within the next 60 days,” so if you are thinking of a couple of early Christmas gadgets, this could be right up your street.

You can find out more information about the Apple Thunderbolt Display via their official Thunderbolt Display website. You can also check it out on their Apple Store.

So, you’ve had a look at Apple’s next innovative technology but how do you think it will do? Are you impressed? Would you buy one?

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Written by Jamie Pert

Jamie has a background in computer repairs and maintenance along with network administration, he now enjoys utilizing the benefits of new technologies and enjoys writing about anything that brings new technology to the world.

He began writing for Product Reviews in mid 2009 and has since expanded his knowledge across a wide-base of devices, he is looking to get more hands-on experience with new devices to gain a better understanding of the latest and greatest technologies.


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