Thunderbolt 3 extension / Preparing for New Mac Pro integration
This may not be the right place to ask this, but … yeah.
Let’s go back in time.
Our old cheese grater MacPro’s lived in a server closet. Everything was extended via GigE via extenders from Geffen, DVI repeaters were used, DVI repeaters were used :), and all video was routed through patch panels and generally it was great. 80s and 90s analog practices were in full effect.
Along came the Tube. The size and quiet of the Tube allowed us to keep the tubes in each edit room. Optical Thunderbolt 2 cables allowed us to extend the fiber channel back to the server room were we have PCIe enclosures that connect everything together to the storage. Since the computer is in the room, wireless Bluetooth accessories are available (keyboards and such), connecting monitors and video is all done locally per room and not running back to a central patch bay, and back to each room. We junked tons of cable, metal, and overall lightened the load and complication tremendously. We literally have an optical thunderbolt 2 cable and some GigE running to each room and it’s pretty awesome and clean, and you don’t even know the Tubes are there as they are generally hidden behind video or computer monitors.
Enter, the NCGMP, which is the New Cheese Grater MacPro, or NicGimp (it’s a working title). This will be our first foray in to Thunderbolt 3. As far as I know, there is no such things as an optical Thunderbolt 3 cable. So, this leaves us some options.
1) Put the NicGimps in the rooms.
– This will then extend storage back to the server closet over 10GigE or something, and allow Bluetooth keyboard/mouse/tablet interaction in each room. Easy enough as it’s what we are currently doing.
– The downside is that we will now have hulking MacPros in each room. They might be loud(?), definitely are going to be hot (temperature wise, (as well as looks wise)), and most everything will be Thunderbolt 3. We will need new docks and cables and adapters. Ok.
2) Put the NicGimps in the server closet.
– This alleviates the hotness and space requirements for a hulking machine in each room.
– The downside is very limited long run extension of Thunderbolt 3. Bluetooth won’t work. And now we have to run lots of cable to overcome these limitations.
My question. Is scenario 2 even feasible? How do you extend thunderbolt 3 and all the data/video that goes with it? If you can’t, how do you extend wireless keyboards, the video spigot for the new ProDisplay, etc?