Sonnet Echo Express SEL
Thunderbolt 2 Single-Slot Expansion Chassis for Low-Profile PCIe Cards


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Today's ultra-light notebooks, mini, and all-in-one desktop computers now have tremendous processing power—power that many thought would only be possible in full-size workstation or large desktop computers. Smaller in size and more portable, they're very desirable. For pros in the creative fields, processing power alone is not enough. A prime example is the new Mac Pro®. Reviewers love its performance, but make a point of mentioning its lack of internal expansion capabilities compared to the old towers the new model replaces. If you want to add more capabilities, think external—the new Pro is loaded with Thunderbolt 2 and USB 3.0 ports, but it lacks the PCIe expansion slots necessary for you to install specialty high bandwidth NIC cards, or HBAs and RAID controller cards for high-performance storage. With the Echo Express SEL, Sonnet has created a solution that leverages the paradigm shift enabled by Thunderbolt technology, allowing PCIe expansion slots to be connected outside a computer. This very compact desktop Thunderbolt 2-to-PCIe card expansion chassis is ideal for connecting one professional 16Gb or 8Gb Fibre Channel, 10 Gigabit Ethernet, SAS/SATA host bus adapter or RAID controller PCIe card to any Mac® with a Thunderbolt port.

Featuring 20Gbps Thunderbolt 2 technology that provides sufficient bandwidth to support many of the highest performance and most demanding PCIe cards, the Echo Express SEL delivers maximum performance when connected to a computer with Thunderbolt 2. The SEL is also fully compatible with computers with 10Gbps Thunderbolt technology, supporting most cards at full-performance.

The Echo Express SEL is small, light, and perfect for use in situations where only a single low-profile PCIe card is needed. Measuring a scant 4" wide by 8.4" long by 2.8" tall, the SEL was designed specifically to house one low-profile PCIe card. Many of the most popular Thunderbolt-compatible high-speed networking and storage controller cards are a perfect fit. The SEL's small size doesn't limit its performance; installed in this system, a card will perform the same as when installed in an Echo Express SE II, Echo Express III-D, or Echo Express III-R. And like the other Echo Express models, the SEL includes two Thunderbolt ports to support daisy chaining of up to six devices from a single port on your computer.

Constructed of rugged and lightweight aluminum, the outer shell of the Echo Express SEL securely protects the PCIe card installed inside. The variable-speed, temperature-controlled fan automatically speeds up as necessary to ensure that even a hot-running card and the chassis' components remain reliably cool. Because the fan automatically speeds up and slows down as needed, there is no guesswork in setting a switch position, and no need for tools to change settings. Since Echo Express products automatically power on and off with your computer, there is no power switch on the chassis.

The Echo Express SEL was designed to be ultra-quiet so that it can be comfortably used in noise-sensitive environments. The airflow path within the chassis has been specially designed to quietly and efficiently cool the installed card with a temperature controlled, variable speed fan. The SEL is Sonnet's quietest expansion chassis yet.

The Echo Express SEL supports one half-length (up to 6.6"), low-profile, single-width PCIe card. PCIe 1.1, PCIe 2.0 and PCIe 3.0 cards are supported.

Sonnet includes a lock that secures Thunderbolt connectors(3) plugged into the Echo chassis. It is easy to install and prevents accidental cable disconnections.

Sonnet Echo Express SEL Includes:

  • Echo Express SEL chassis (1)
  • Power adapter
  • Power cord
  • Thunderbolt cable lock (3)
  • Documentation

Sonnet Echo Express SEL Features:

  • Use PCIe Expansion Cards with Computers Lacking Slots—Use high-performance PCIe cards with any Mac with a Thunderbolt port
  • Thunderbolt 2 Interface—Maximum performance with computers with Thunderbolt 2 technology, backward compatible with host computers and other devices equipped with 10Gbps Thunderbolt technology
  • Small and Light—Most compact Thunderbolt 2-to-PCIe expansion system available, designed to fit the most popularThunderbolt-compatible high-speed networking and storage controller interface cards
  • One PCIe Slot—Supports low-profile card
  • Two Thunderbolt Ports—Daisy chain up to six devices to a single port on the host computer
  • Remarkably Quiet—Temperature-controlled, variable-speed fan automatically and quietly cools the card 
  • Energy Saver Mode—Powers on/off automatically with the computer
  • Rugged Aluminum Housing—Provides robust and secure protection for any environment

Sonnet Echo Express SEL Specifications:

  • Warranty: 1-year
  • Dimensions (WxDxH):  4" x 8.42" x 2.82" (10.16 x21.39 x 7.16 cm)
  • Weight: 1.75 lbs (3.4 kg)
  • Form Factor: Desktop
  • External Connectors:  
    • Two Thunderbolt
    • Power
  • Expansion Slot: One x8 mechanical (x4electrical) PCIe 2.0
  • PCIe Cards Supported(1): One low-profile PCIe card
  • Compatible PCIe Cards(2):  Up-to-date PCIe cards listed on Sonnet's website
  • Power Supply: Universal 80W, 100-240V AC, 50-60Hz
  • Operating Temperature: 32° F to 95° F (0° C to 35° C)
  • RoHS Compliant: Yes
  • Mac Compatibility:
    • Any Mac with a Thunderbolt 2 or Thunderbolt port
    • OS X 10.8.5+
    • OS X Server and OS X Mavericks compatible
  • PC Compatibility
    • Any PC with a Thunderbolt 2  or Thunderbolt port (4)
    • Windows® 8, 7
  • PCIe Card Compatibility: For up-to-date PCIe card compatibility see Sonnet's website.

1. PCIe cards sold separately; requires Thunderbolt cable.
2. Compatibility requires the installation of Thunderbolt technology-aware drivers, available from the manufacturer.
3. Thunderbolt cable lock is compatible with Apple and Sonnet Thunderbolt cables.
4. Windows requires a Thunderbolt 2 interface in the computer and in the expansion chassis to support more than two PCIe controllers. Note that some PCIe cards have a bridge to multiple controllers, so it is possible for a single dual-controller PCIe card to reach the limit if not connected via Thunderbolt 2. Not all Mac-compatible PCIe cards are also compatible with Windows.

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