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Mercury On-The-Go

Tons of reasons to utilize this 11 ounce drive By Ko Maruyama
There are tons of reasons to check out this lightweight drive.   The OWC Mercury On-The-Go drive is a little powerhouse in your pocket.  If you're going to run out an purchase an external drive for your Mac laptop, you already know what you want in a drive: FW 800, USB 2.0 for those other connections you may need to make, and bus powered (no external power supply).

Also, if you're a Mac user, you want something that doesn't look like a generic brick of plastic.  You may argue that it's just a 'bonus' that the thing looks cool, but it's a feature.

Even if beauty is only skin deep, it's not just what's on the inside that matters on this portable external drive.  The 500MB drive spins cleanly and comfortably at 7200RPM, and has excellent data transfer rates.    And as we all know, that extra bit of performance means we get get an extra bit of heat too.   On some larger half-TB drives, you might get a 'free' fan, but on this Mercury On-The-Go drive there is an external heat sync which helps to keep the unit cool.   Like the heat sync on your computer, these slots of metal heat up and transfer that hotness to the surrounding air, so it's important that you keep it on something cooler (even a desktop is okay - just don't bury it)

From the drive's name, you might come to the conclusion that it's for people "on the go", but instead, consider it as a drive that can be "on the go".

With storage capabilities up to 500GB, and lighting fast transfer speeds, it is faster than many LAN solutions that studios have in place.   Moving big files from one part of the studio to another can, at times, be faster when relying on good old sneaker-net.   Additionally, there are times when you need to deliver projects and data to clients, or other members on your project team who aren't part of your network.  This is an excellent way to get that data to go.

This is just as fast as other portable drives I own, but it is much, much lighter than most of the drives of this size.  (Although I do own a couple of monster 1T drives that weigh in at several pounds, I have other sub-500Gb drives that are heavier than the Mercury On-The-Go).

The OWC comes with several accessories and software goodies as well.
A travel case will help prevent plastic scratches when you transport it.

Once the data (in my case video) arrives, the little SATA drives speed the data directly into the edit.  With an optional eSATA configuration, you don't even need to transfer the data locally.  Work directly from the Mercury On-The-Go.   The OWC drive I'm testing has two FW800 i/o which makes it easy to plug directly into any new MacPro.    If you don't have a FW800 connection, the drive comes with an adapter as well.   Alternatively, you can use the USB 2.0 connection.

You can configure your own drive on the OWC site (a href="">  The drive is fast, reliable, and can be formatted to work specifically with your production pipeline.    We all have extra USB 2.0, FW800 and eSATA cables around the studio.  This 11 oz drive can get up and go to another part of the team in an instant.  Without a specific AC adapter tying it to extra bulk, you can truly get On-The-Go with this professional grade drive.

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Ko Maruyama is a freelance animator in Los Angeles.  In addition to working on film and broadcast animations, Ko teaches at Pasadena's Art Center College of Design - focusing on motion design.  When working, writing or testing software allows, you can find him lending a hand in the After Effects board and lurking among the Cinema4D, Visual Effects and Photoshop posts within the DMNForums.
Related Keywords:review, consumer electronics, Apple, portable drive, OWC, Mercury On-The-Go


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