I have a LaCie 2big, connected via Thunderbolt 2.
When I select as a disk-partition MacOS Extended (Journaled, Encrypted), does that uses some type of hardware encryption or is it all software?
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Using this option, you'll endup with a whole disk encryption.
It uses OSX CoreStorage volume management technology and XTS-AES 128-bit encryption, so it's software.
Edit : As pointed Alan Shutko, since 2011 Intel added an Intruction set to intel processor to do AES encryption.