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Mini DisplayPort vs Thunderbolt:

Mini DisplayPort and Thunderbolt use the same connector interface but are actually different cables. Thunderbolt cables have a chip built into the connector and run two independent channels at a data-transfer speed of 10Gbps per channel (totaling 20Gbps). Mini DisplayPort is a passive cable which uses 4 channels and runs at a speed of 5.4Gbps per channel (totaling 21.6Gbps).

Our mini DisplayPort cables can be used in the following applications:

  • Mini DisplayPort source to mini DisplayPort monitor
  • Thunderbolt source to mini DisplayPort monitor

Mini DisplayPort cables cannot be used in the following applications:

  • Mini DisplayPort source to Thunderbolt monitor
  • Thunderbolt source to Thunderbolt monitor

A mini DisplayPort source is not compatible with a Thunderbolt monitor regardless of the cable being used. The only cable that can be used to connect a Thunderbolt source to a Thunderbolt monitor is a Thunderbolt cable. Thunderbolt cables are not backwards compatible with any of the other applications mentioned above.