Sonnet Qio E3 (with Thunderbolt Interface Kit)


Professional SxS media reader for Mac and Windows.

20 in stock

SKU: QIO-E3-TB. Categories: , .

Product Description

SxS to the Power of Three

4 CompactFlash Cards Sony’s popular XDCAM EX™ and Arri Alexa professional HD camcorders use high-performance SxS memory cards, which share the same interface and shape as ExpressCard®/34 adapter cards. This shared form factor and connector make ingesting footage from your SxS media a simple task in ExpressCard slot-equipped notebook computers—insert the card and go. If your computer doesn’t have an ExpressCard slot, you could just plug in the camera or a specialized USB SxS reader, grab a cup of coffee, and relax while all those gigabytes of data are transferred at around 30 MB/s. But what if you need faster transfers? Or want to ingest files from more than one card at a time? Sonnet’s Qio E3 is the answer to all of these questions.

This Sonnet pro media reader distills the feature set of the award-winning original Qio universal media reader and is designed specifically for use with SxS media cards. Providing a cost-effective, high-speed multi-slot alternative to stand-alone card readers for videographers and studios alike, Qio E3’s three SxS slots enable you to ingest files faster and more efficiently, with aggregate ingest speed up to 300 MB/sec., much faster than standard USB adapters are capable.

Key Features

Versatile Support—Support for Sony® SxS, and PCIe-based ExpressCard/34 cards

Fast—Uses PCI Express® 2.0 bus interface to deliver superior performance; aggregate available bandwidth of 400 MB/sec.

Choice of Interface—Qio E3 package includes your choice of interface: PCI Express 2.0 card for desktops, ExpressCard/34 for notebooks, or Thunderbolt™ for any Mac with a Thunderbolt port

SxS Aggregate Media Ingest Speed (3 cards concurrently)—PCIe or Thunderbolt interface: 400MB/s; ExpressCard/34 interface: 200MB/s

Mac and Windows Compatible—Qio E3 supports your workflow, regardless the platform you’ve chosen

Built-in SATA Connections—Connect external media readers with an eSATA interface

Small and Rugged—Strong aluminum case measures just 5.9″ x 6.2″ x 1″

Security—Slot for Kensington® and similar security locks to secure the device and deter theft

OS X 10.8.5 Notice


Qio PCIe, ExpressCard/34 & Thunderbolt Interface Options

Choice of Interface

Qio E3 is available with your choice of a PCIe interface card for desktops, an ExpressCard/34 interface for notebooks, or a Thunderbolt interface adapter (with included Thunderbolt cable) for any Mac with a Thunderbolt port. With the purchase of an additional Qio E3 PCIe adapter card, ExpressCard/34 card, or Thunderbolt adapter, you can move your Qio E3 from suite to suite, and then to location and back again without breaking a sweat. No matter where you use it, Qio E3 will quickly become an essential tool in your workflow.

Flexible Power Options

AC Power IconAC Power
For desktop use, a universal 12V output AC power supply (with wall plugs for US, Japan, Europe, UK and Australia) is included.

Battery IconBattery Power
For battery-powered operation during field work, Sonnet’s optional XLR 4-pin adapter cable interfaces Qio CF4 with an external battery pack, such as Tekkeon myPower ALL batteries at an 8-19V setting.

FireWire IconFireWire Bus Power
Alternatively, you can power the Qio CF4 by connecting it to a computer with a FireWire port with Sonnet’s optional FireWire 400-to-3.5mm power cable.

6Gb/s SATA PCIe 2.0 Host Controller Inside

Qio E3 includes two 6 Gb/s eSATA ports, perfect for connecting media readers with an eSATA interface, such as the RED STATION REDMAG 1.8″ and 2.5″.

Qio E3 Connected to RED STATION REDMAG 1.8" Reader

Qio E3 Workflow

Built for the Pro. Whether shooting on location with your notebook, or editing footage in the studio on your iMac®, Mac mini, or Mac Pro®, Qio E3 conveniently connects to your system via an ExpressCard/34 or PCIe 2.0 interface card, or Thunderbolt interface kit, so your projects are always at hand.

Mac and Windows Compatible

Mac & PC LogosSonnet’s Qio E3 offers cross-platform compatibility, extending its usefulness on location and in the studio. Whether you’re using a MacBook Pro®, PC-based HP Z800 or Mac Pro®, or any Mac with a Thunderbolt port, the Qio E3 fits seamlessly into your demanding produciton workflow.

Travel and Desktop Companion

Qio E3 pro media reader is small—about the size of three stacked CD cases—and takes up so little space, you can use it just about anywhere. It’s rugged, too—the robust aluminum case easily withstands heavy use. This pro media reader even incorporates a slot for Kensington and similar security locks to secure the device and deter theft.

Qio E3 Front & Back Panels Overview


 Media cards, computers, and accessories shown in photos for illustration purposes; items sold separately.
See Technical Specifications Tab for footnotes

Part No.  
QIO-E3-E34 Qio E3 (with ExpressCard/34 card interface)
QIO-E3-PCIE Qio E3 (with PCIe card interface)
QIO-E3-TB Qio E3 (with Thunderbolt interface kit)
Warranty 2-year
External Connectors
(Qio E3 Enclosure)
  • Three ExpressCard/34 (SxS)
  • Two eSATA 6GB/s
  • External PCIe 2.0 x1 18-pin
  • Two 12V power
Host Connectors
(PCIe and ExpressCard Adapter Cards)
External PCIe x1 – 18
Host Connectors
(Thunderbolt Adapter)


Bus Interface PCI Express 2.0 x1
Supported Media Sony SxS, SxS-1™, SxS Pro™, SxS Pro+
Supported ExpressCard/34 Cards All Sonnet ExpressCard/34 cards and most third-party ExpressCard/34 cards and devices
Thunderbolt Expansion Expands Sonnet Echo ExpressCard/34 Thunderbolt Adapter to three ExpressCard/34 slots(1)
Drives Supported Two (each of which can be hardware RAIDs of multiple drives)
Drives Type Supported Serial ATA
Firmware Flash-ROM upgradeable to latest firmware version
Hot Plug Qio E3 Supported in MacBook Pro
Dimensions WxDxH: 5.9 x 6.2 x 1 in. (14.9 x 15.7 x 2.5 cm)
Power 12V @ 1.25A input
12V @ 0.5A output to support Sonnet Fusion F2QR
Absolute Maximum Input Voltage 20V
RoHS Compliant Yes
Universal Package Contents
  • Qio E3 professional CompactFlash media reader
  • Universal 12V power supply with 10-foot cable
  • 1-meter external PCIe x1 interface cable
  • Carrying case
  • User’s Guide
Package Contents
  • PCIe 2.0 bus extender card
Package Contents
  • PCIe 2.0 bus extender ExpressCard/34
Package Contents
  • Thunderbolt interface adapter
  • 0.5-meter Thunderbolt cable

Mac Logo Windows LogoeSATA LogoExpressCard LogoSxS LogoroHS Logo


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Mac Compatibility

OS X® Version 10.6.8-10.8.4

Mac Pro
(Order Part No. QIO-E3-PCIE)

MacBook Pro with an ExpressCard/34 slot
(Order Part No. QIO-E3-E34)

Mac with a Thunderbolt port
(Order Part No. QIO-E3-TB)

OS X 10.8.5 Notice

Windows Compatibility

Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista®, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008

Windows desktop PC with a PCIe 1.1 or 2.0(2) slot
(Order Part No. QIO-PCIE)

Windows notebook with an ExpressCard slot
(Order Part No. QIO-E34)

Technical Notes

  1. Supports only cards and devices compatible with Echo ExpressCard/34 Thunderbolt Adapter.
  2. Not compatible with PCIe 3.0 slots.