Monday, January 9th 2012

VIA Labs Unveils USB2Expressway Dedicated Bandwidth Technology

VIA Labs, Inc., a leading supplier of USB 3.0 integrated chip controllers, today announced its proprietary USB2Expressway Dedicated Bandwidth Technology for USB 3.0 Hubs which dramatically improves USB 2.0 performance when multiple devices are utilized. USB 3.0 Hubs featuring the technology eliminate USB 2.0 bandwidth limitations by providing full, dedicated bandwidth per port, allowing multiple USB 2.0 devices to be connected and operated at their maximum capabilities.

USB 2.0 provides 30-40MB/s of actual throughput, and this is shared across all connected devices. When multiple devices such as external hard drives, flash drives, and webcams are connected, they share available bandwidth which results in severely degraded performance. Compared to USB 2.0, USB 3.0 offers 10x more bandwidth and allows transfers as fast as 300-400MB/s. VIA Labs USB2 Expressway Dedicated Bandwidth Technology allows USB 2.0 devices to utilize USB 3.0 bandwidth, eliminating bandwidth bottlenecks and freeing each connected device to reach its maximum performance potential.

"VIA Labs unveiled the world’s first USB 3.0 Hub at CES in 2010, introduced the VL811 second-generation USB 3.0 Hub controller with USB Battery Charging support in 2011, and for 2012, we are bringing true innovation in the form of USB2Expressway" said Terrance Shih, Product Manager, VIA Labs, Inc. "Even when copying files between two USB 2.0 drives, USB2Expressway can cut transfer times by 5x or more since we support simultaneous reading and writing of data. It breathes life back into your existing USB devices."
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5 Comments on VIA Labs Unveils USB2Expressway Dedicated Bandwidth Technology

so basically by sticking a usb 2.0 hub to a usb 3.0 port, each port from the hub can deliver data at max usb 2.0 speed all at the same time because usb 3.0 has much high bandwidth. right?
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Editor & Senior Moderator
FAQ #1: lolwut?
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good tech, in fact i'm surprised this wasnt part of the original USB 3.0 design as a requirement.
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Señor Moderator
Same as using a separate USB controller for each port. Nothing revolutionary, but still not a bad development.
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The reason it wasn't in the spec is that that isn't how USB 3.0 handles backwards compatibility. To borrow a page from the USB 3.0 spec,


USB 3.0 has additional contacts that handle SuperSpeed connectivity, USB 2.0 devices don't have those contacts. Each USB 3.0 hub has an additional USB 2.0 hub within, and the system can't connect the USB 2.0 hub to the SuperSpeed contacts. The USB 2.0 hub goes to the USB 2.0 contacts, which in turn go to a USB 2.0 controller that can do no more than 480Mbps.

Considering the separation of SuperSpeed and legacy signals, has VIA added an in-hub device that converts each USB port's 2.0 contacts' signal into a native 3.0 signal that then gets exported as an additional USB 3.0 device on the hub? Is that possible?
(i.e., USB 3.0 Host <- USB 3.0 Hub <- USB 2.0 to 3.0 Converter <- USB 2.0 Device)

Or does the hub host an additional USB port than is indicated externally, and this port in turn hosts a virtual EHCI(i.e., USB 2.0) controller(or four?) that finally hosts your USB 2.0 devices? Did I overlook an option?
(i.e., USB 3.0 Host <- USB 3.0 Hub <- USB 3.0 Virtual EHCI <- (<=4x)USB 2.0 Device(s))

I guess I'm just begging to know if device manager will show a single new EHCI controller hosting 1xDevice(or <=4xDevices?), or if it'll rather show your USB 2.0 devices as if they were USB 3.0 devices :laugh:.

It's vague how it works, but it's regardless awesome so long as it works. Very nice use of USB 3.0 throughput.
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