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LaCie 6big Thunderbolt 3 review: An ideal storage system for professionals

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The Good The 6big Thunderbolt 3 is super fast and has up to 60TB of storage space, in a relatively compact design. The system supports Thunderbolt 3, USB 3.1 Type-C and can work in all RAID configurations.

The Bad There's no lock to keep the drives from being pulled out by accident and no regular USB ports.

The Bottom Line The 6big Thunderbolt 3 is an excellent storage system for professionals that give them what they need without going overboard.

8.3 Overall
  • Setup 9
  • Features 7
  • Performance 9

As the name suggests, the Lacie 6big Thunderbolt 3 (TB3) is half that of the Lacie 12big Thunderbolt 3. This direct attached storage (DAS) system has literally half of the drive capacity and half the physical size. The 6big also costs half, starting at $3,199 (£2,799, price for Australia currently unavailable) for 24 terabytes of storage space, upwards to $6,799 (£6,149) for 60TB, making it a more comparatively affordable choice for those needing similar performance.

lacie-thunderbolt-3-12big-3047-002.jpg

The LaCie 6big Thunderbolt 3 (left) is a lot more compact than its big brother, the 12big Thunderbolt 3.

Josh Miller

The performance is the only part of the 6big that isn't doubled by the 12big. Instead, the 6big model is just a tad slower than its big brother. In testing, in a RAID-5 setup, via a Thunderbolt 3 connection, the system's sustained copy speed registered at 1096 megabytes per second and 1,060MB/s for read and write, respectively. For comparison, the 12big scored 1,371MB/s and 1,161MB/s for these tests, respectively.

Other than that the 6big shares the same software, setup process, features, amount of ports (two TB3 and one USB-C) and accessories as the 12big. It also supports all the available RAID configurations, including RAID-0, RAID-1, RAID-6, RAID-1 and RAID-50. It's basically the cost, and sizes (physical and storage space) that separate the two.

lacie4.png

The 6big shares the same easy-to-use RAID Manager software as that of the 12big.

Screenshot by Dong Ngo/CNET

While the 6big for the most part is meant to be a lesser product compared to the 12big, I actually find it superior in terms of practicality. It's way less bulky, much more affordable and it still delivers super fast performance and half of what the 12big has to offer is still a massive amount of storage space.

CNET Labs' Thunderbolt 3 performance

LaCie 12Big (RAID5)
1370.59
1160.75
604.27
LaCie 6Big (RAID5)
1096.43
1059.79
428.79

Legend:

Read
Write
Read/Write Combo

Note:

Measure in megabytes per second. Longer bars mean better performance.

Home users need not apply but if you're a professional needing a super fast DAS storage system, without needing to take out a loan, this is the device to get. Just make sure your computer is TB3-ready.

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