IT’S REALLY, REALLY FAST
Thunderbolt 3 clocks in with a data transfer
rate of up to a scorching 40Gbps. That’s
twice as fast as Thunderbolt 2 (20Gbps)
and four times faster than USB 3. 1
(10Gbps). This incredible bandwidth lets
you to swiftly transfer files, and it means
you can connect one or even two 4K
monitors from a single Thunderbolt 3 dock.
This speed also opens the door for
THERE’S NO LONGER A
useful accessories like external graphics
cards. Much like an external hard drive
gives you extra storage space without
having to crack open your PC, an external
graphics card lets you boost your GPU
processing power without taking a
screwdriver to your computer.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN USB
AND THUNDERBOLT PORTS
Thunderbolt 3 uses a Type-C port just
like USB Type-C. That means, in practice,
there’s no physical difference between a
Thunderbolt 3 and USB Type-C cable and
port. And, like USB Type-C, Thunderbolt
3 has identical plugs on either end of the
cable so there’s no longer a “right” way
to plug them in.
Now that USB and Thunderbolt are
migrating to the same physical connector,
you can plug a USB Type-C cable into a
Thunderbolt 3 port. If you do, you’ll only
have USB 3. 1 speeds (10Gbps). Similarly,
you can plug a Thunderbolt 3 cable into a
USB Type-C port where, again, you’ll have
USB 3. 1 speeds.
YOU CAN PLUG IN ALMOST
EVERYTHING ELSE WITH
DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort and VGA displays
will also be supported over Thunderbolt 3
ports with an adapter. Thunderbolt 1 and 2
cables can be plugged into a Thunderbolt
3 port with an adapter, but obviously you’ll
only enjoy Thunderbolt 1 or 2 speeds
when you connect this way. You can daisy-chain up to six Thunderbolt devices off of
a single cable. In fact, you can connect a
laptop to a dock via Thunderbolt 3 and
then run a pair of 4K monitors and an
external drive from that cable.
THREE THINGS YOU NEED
TO KNOW ABOUT
;;; ;;;;;;;;;;; ; ;;;;;;;;;;;;; ;;; ;;;;;;;;; ;;;; ;;;;, but computers and storage
devices that support the new cable and interface are only now trickling into the market.
Much like the introduction of USB Type-C, Thunderbolt 3 means some big changes to how
you work, especially if you’re working with 4K video. ;;;;’; ;;;; ;;; ;;;; ;; ;;;;.
Video, especially 4K video, will put enormous demands on your
storage. One minute of 4K/30p footage shot in ProRes 422 will
take up about 7.9GB of space while the same format in full HD
will use about 1.98GB. One minute of 4K video recorded using
Sony’s XACV codec, on the other hand, weighs in at 750MB. It
will add up quickly.
To adequately store and edit video, you’ll need external
RAID-based drives that aren’t only high capacity, but fast.
For 4K, a Thunderbolt 2 or 3-based drive will have the speed
to support 4K editing (see “Three Things You
Need to Know About Thunderbolt 3” below).
You’ll want a Thunderbolt-based drive not just
for its speed but for its ability to daisy-chain
additional devices (including extra external
drives) together. Daisy-chaining will let you add
capacity as your storage needs grow, as well as
keep cable clutter to a minimum.
A RAID drive will also deliver a combination
of data backup and speed—in fact, drive
performance speeds depend on your RAID
settings. When comparing drives, be sure
you’re comparing their speeds at identical
RAID settings (RAID 0, 5, etc.) for an apples-to-apples comparison.
Other characteristics to consider include the
nature of the RAID controller—a hardware-based
RAID controller will generally be faster and more
reliable than software-based RAID controllers.
In-camera microphones aren’t capable of capturing the quality
audio necessary for a polished video production. They will
often pick up unwanted noise such as the lens’s autofocus
mechanism as it searches for focus. Given those limitations,
most high-end cameras come with microphone jacks to plug in
an external stereo mic. Perhaps the most convenient external
microphones are shotguns that attach directly to the camera
hotshoe. In addition to convenience and ensuring that it won’t
be visible in the shot (handheld and boom microphones
can accidentally slip into the frame when filming), shotgun
microphones are designed to pick up sound from the front and
tend to block out sounds from the side, helping ensure that the
audio and the scene in front of the camera better match.
This isn’t a full list of
accessories, but by adding
some of these essential
pieces to your video kit, you’ll
have a base of tools at your
fingertips and can easily add
others as you expand
your video work.