The OWC Mercury Elite-AL Pro Dual Mini is aimed at the mobile market, for users who need to transport large amounts of data quickly, and with a number of easily accessible means to access that data. It really fills that need easily as it has a number of connection options available.
Two FireWire 800 connections allow teaming of connections for ultra fast data transfers. An addtiional FireWire 400 port allows for file transfers with older systems that might not have the full 800 specification. The USB 2.0 port is a guaranteed connection that is universal in its application. eSATA rounds out the data connections, and is a wonderful means of connection. With many laptops sporting easily accessible, and quick, eSATA ports, this is sure to be one of the more often used connections.
A power button and power jack occupy the end of the device. The Elite Pro Mini has the capability of being a bus-powered device. This means that under certain connection schemes there is no need to plug the device into a wall power plug. For many purposes the user can utilize the included FireWire 800 to 12V connector, or the standard FireWire connector, to power the device. With eSATA and USB connections, however, if the FireWire connection is not also connected the user will have to use and optional AC power plug that can be purchased separately.
The enclosure can be purchased in several capacities and configured for different types of RAID out of the box. There is also the option for the user to configure the RAID levels and to also swap out different types of HDD and SSDs.
Both the tasks of changing hardware and altering the RAID settings are very easy for the end user. Simply removing the two screws on the rear panel of the device allows the entire unit to be opened and slid out.
The user can change the internal drives very easily, and the RAID settings can be changed from the factory configured settings easily by using the blue switches that are along the rear of the internal unit.
The internals really couldn’t get simpler to access, with only two screws needed. This assures the type of ease-of-use that is important for this type of enclosure.