Great Two-Disk RAID Unit for Backups

Review by Erik Vlietinck

The OWC Mercury Elite Pro Dual features two Thunderbolt 2 ports, one USB 3.1 Gen. 1 port, and all of the cables you need to start using it immediately. You can set this small-footprint unit to RAID 0, RAID 1, disk spanning, and JBOD modes. It has a minimal design and you can buy it as a bare enclosure or with disks already installed.

First of all, the Mercury Elite Pro Dual is OWC’s simplest Thunder­bolt 2 RAID device. It has room for only two disks inside—my test unit came with two 1-TB Toshiba drives installed—and no ON/OFF switch. To start the unit, you simply plug in the Thunderbolt or USB 3.1 cable and it starts up.

The Mercury Elite Pro Dual has been rated for a maximum throughput of 474 MB/s. My test unit achieved lower figures in RAID 0, but these were still very decent.

The Mercury Elite Pro Dual can have up to 20 TB of storage. The unit has been designed to automatically spin down during periods of inactivity and to power on and off with your Mac, but the single fan at the front was a little loud. Even if it gets to you, it’s easily fixed: you just pull the Thunderbolt or USB cable and the unit is automatically powered off completely.

The Mercury Elite Pro Dual is a flexible external disk drive and a great backup device. I’d certainly recommend it as a Time Machine disk drive. If fan noise isn’t a problem for you, the Mercury Elite Pro Dual is also a great drive to be used as your primary storage unit for any sort of video- or photo-editing task. I wouldn’t use it for audio projects, though. ■