USB 3.0, 3.1, Gen 1, Gen 2 explained

usb 3 0, 3 1, gen 1, gen 2
USBs (short for Universal Service Bus) have connected the whole world. Its popularity brought it to the world market just over a decade ago, when the introduction of USB 3.0 made the technology accessible and extremely useful for personal and professional use, unlike its previous incarnation, which had very limited potential.

Nowadays, the best flash drives are all USB 3.0 and higher, ie USB 3.1 from USB 3.1 Type A, Type C, etc. It is difficult for you to find a good USB 2.0 that is useful for you.

What is USB 3.0?

The USB 3.0 was first introduced to the world in 2010 after its availability was announced in 2008. He improved the game for portable devices as well as for data transfer and communication between different device types.

While even USB 2.0 was the world’s best-known interface for connectivity, the best USB hubs today hardly support USB 2.0 for a reason.

With the way technology and the Internet have grown over the past decade alone, we now have dozens of devices under each roof that need to combine multiple things for a single user with multiple things. Laser fast speeds are required to enable a quick and easy connection to send data between them.

The USB 3.0 transfer rate is impressive enough to meet all of these requirements of the modern world. While USB 2.0 had a bandwidth of 40 Mbit / s (definitely an increase compared to the 1.5 / 12 Mbit / s transfer rates of USB 1.0 for subchannel or full-speed channels), USB 3.0 has a bandwidth of 400 Mbit / s or more .

Therefore USB 3.0 is also called SS USB or SuperSpeed. This transfer mode made the USB 3.0 transfer rate ten times faster than any other USB mode before. up to 625 Mbit / s per second.

The USB 3.0 differs from the blue colored connections and the SS initials at the ends of the cable.

USB 3.0 VS 3.1

A newer standard was introduced in July 2013 on the way to USB 3.0. Called USB 3.1 with SuperSpeed ​​+, the USB standard could now transfer up to 1.25 GB per second due to the USB 3.1 speed.

This has been replaced by USB 3.2. Similar to the infamous Star Wars prequels, the naming conventions have been updated for each additional USB generation number that replaced the predecessor. All previous versions finally became known with reference to USB 3.2.

How to identify USB naming conventions

Under USB 3.2, USB 3.0 was referred to as USB 3.2 Gen 1 and USB 3.1 as USB 3.2 Gen 2. The actual USB 3.2 is then referred to as USB 3.2 Gen 2 × 2.

It may seem a bit confusing, but they run parallel and can easily be memorized or noted. And since they are all SuperSpeed, they are referred to as SuperSpeed ​​USB, SuperSpeed ​​USB 10 GBit / s and SuperSpeed ​​USB 20 GBit / s.

To put it in a shape that is easier to see:

  • USB 3.0 / USB 3.2 Gen 1 / SuperSpeed ​​USB
  • USB 3.1 / USB 3.2 Gen 2 / SuperSpeed ​​USB 10 GBit / s
  • USB 3.2 / USB 3.2 Gen 2 × 2 / SuperSpeed ​​USB 20 GBit / s

There is another confusion that we would like to clear up. You see, the USB 3.1 had its own naming convention … you would hear confusing things about the USB 3.1 Type A or USB 3.1 Gen 2 etc. The USB 3.1 generations are best and easier to forget, since older naming conventions are now outdated. However, it is helpful and interesting to learn more about this system.

Finally, one of the most interesting discussions is the pairing and understanding of USB 3.0 and USB Type C.

The USB Type C.

At this point you have heard a lot about Type C cables. It is compact and works well with all types of ports. What’s more – and really amazing – is that it’s reversible and can be used from both sides up. It has been hailed as a truly universal port and is widely used by phones, cell phones and laptops.

Based on what we’ve learned so far in this article, the question may arise: is a Type C USB SuperSpeed? USB 3.2 Gen 2 × 2? Or a brand new thing?

It can be helpful to understand types A and B first. Type A is the traditional rectangular connector we’ll see, and Type B is the more block-like, almost square (and Type C is more like a rounded rectangle).

Since the different USB types such as USB 3.0 and USB 3.1 only represent differences in the data transfer capability, we must now discuss the merging of USB types with the cable types.

The most powerful combination so far seems to be the USB 3.1 Type C. There is 100 watts of power available, four data tracks, which means that DisplayPort and HDMI signals can be transmitted, which means that the correct AC connections are unnecessary. The full potential of a USB Type-C port is unlocked if it has Thunderbolt 3 functions. With a Thunderbolt 3 port, the USB Type-C port is powerful enough to power an external GPU. Truly an amazing innovation.

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