diglloyd Mac Performance Guide

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Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD with Hardware RAID

Related: SSD
Last updated April 16, 2012 - Send Feedback
OWC Mercury Accelsior
OWC Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD card

The OWC Mercury Accelsior is a PCIe-based solid state drive (SSD) for the Apple Mac Pro (or for PCs) utilizing hardware RAID striping.

The Accelsior can be used in a Mac Pro, or by installing in the OWC Mercury Helios enclosure on any Mac with Thunderbolt.

As an added bonus, the April 2013 Accelsior E2 variant includes dual eSATA ports, which frees up one PCIe slot on a Mac Pro and/or offers eSATA connectivity on any Mac via the Helios Thunderbolt enclosure.

The Accelsior delivers performance exceeding that required by even very demanding programs. For those rare applications with exceptionally demanding requirements, two or three Accelsiors can be striped together for up to 1800 MB/sec performance.

Available in capacities of 120GB, 240GB, 480GB or 960GB*, the Accelsior is a solution for the ultimate in performance in your Mac Pro or PC, without using up any drive bays.

Some models are slightly faster than others in certain cases, so users looking for peak performance should study the test results that follow.

ThunderBay 4 - The Speed To Create. The Capacity To Dream.

Bypassing the SATA speed limitation in the Mac Pro

One of the handicaps of the 2010 and earlier Mac Pro (still current as of May 2012) is that the SATA ports are limited to 300MB/sec, even if a 6G SSD SATA III is used.

The OWC Mercury Accelsior neatly sidesteps that performance limitation by installing in a PCIe slot, which has up 1000MB/sec bandwidth (actual performance doesn’t hit that level, but it is far faster than the SATA ports).

* Most vendors would call the capacity 256GB, 512GB, 1TB as per the amount of flash memory, but the figures quoted here are the actual user-accessible capacity.

OWC Mercury Accelsior
OWC Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD card
(a compelling reason to favor a Mac Pro over an iMac!)
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