Sonnet And Archiware To Preview Long-Distance Thunderbolt 3 Optical Cable At IBC

Sonnet Technologies (Stand 7.D41) and Archiware GmbH (Stand 7.D35) will team up at IBC 2019 (Sept. 13-17, RAI Amsterdam) to demonstrate a Mac-based media asset management backup and archive system using Sonnet hardware and Archiware software. The twist? A Mac mini computer with Archiware software running in Sonnet’s stand will be controlled from Archiware’s stand over 50 meters of yet to be released Corning optical Thunderbolt 3 cable.

Available in lengths up to 50 meters, optical Thunderbolt 3 cables from Corning will provide users the ability to connect two Thunderbolt 3 devices together up to 25 times the maximum distance allowed using copper cables (2 meters), without loss of performance.

Housing the computer in Sonnet’s stand is the xMac mini Server Thunderbolt 3 Edition, a Thunderbolt 3 to PCIe card expansion system/1U rackmount enclosure that securely mounts a Mac mini inside, and enables the user to connect and harness the power of two full-height pro video capture, audio DSP, 10 Gigabit Ethernet, or other high-performance PCIe cards.

The computer will be running Archiware’s P5 software suite, with P5 Backup and P5 Archive. P5 Archive, with its media asset management-like features, enables users to migrate offline and data-to-disk, LTO tape, or cloud storage. P5 Backup and 5 Synchronize offer backup to disk tape and cloud and replication for failover. Archiware staff will control the system from their stand with a keyboard, mouse, and display connected to a Sonnet Echo 11 Thunderbolt 3 dock.

Optical Thunderbolt 3 cables will be ideal for use in situations requiring a computer to be segregated from other equipment without a loss in functionality or data-transfer speed. One example is when a computer and other peripherals must be remotely located in a secure equipment room, with the cable running out to a desktop with a Thunderbolt 3 dock that supports a display, mouse, keyboard, and other peripheral devices. Another example might be an audio production workflow that requires a particularly quiet operating environment. The longer optical Thunderbolt cable allows devices with fans to be located in another room and out of earshot.

Optical Thunderbolt 3 cables will be surprisingly thin, lightweight, and durable, with performance equivalent to copper Thunderbolt 3 (40Gbps) cables.


This is a working preview of the Corning Optical Thunderbolt 3 Cables; they are expected to ship in the not-too-distant future.

Sonnet’s xMac mini Server Thunderbolt 3 Edition (part number XMAC-MS-A-TB3) and Echo 11 Thunderbolt 3 dock (part number ECHO-DK11-T3) are available now through Sonnet and select Sonnet resellers worldwide.

For more IBC 2019 coverage, click here.

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