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Portability and Reliability

Category: Hardware Published on Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Hard Drives from OWC and Rocstor Combine Compatibility and High Capacity 

New high capacity external hard drives have become as prolific as smartphones, but there are always a few that stand out due to superior performance and reliability.

Two of these drives are the OWC Mercury Elite Pro ($109.99 - $369.99 depending on storage capacity) and the Commander 3F7 series from Rocstor ($355 - $615). Both drives are available in storage capacities ranging from 1TB to 4 TB, with OWC also offering a 500 GB drive, but that's where the similarity ends.

The Mercury Elite is a 7200 RPM drive with multiple interfaces designed to work with either a PC or Mac, The model they sent us to test had eSata, Firewire 400 and 800 and USB 2.0 ports (OWC recently updated the drive to include USB 3.0 connectivity).

The drive also features:

  • It's bootable.
  • It comes with a nice package of software including Intech Hard Disk SpeedTools Utilities OEM (for Mac), ProSoft Engineering Data Backup (for Mac), NovaStor Nova BACKUP for Windows and more than one gigabyte of freeware, shareware and public domain software.
  • It weighs about 2.7 pounds.
  • It's preformatted for Macs but can be reformatted for Windows.
  • All cables are included with the drive.
  • It's quiet.

The Rocstor drive is heavily encrypted and has USB 3.0 and Firewire 800 ports, so it can be used on a PC or Mac.

The drive comes with three encryption keys that give you access to the drive and its data. The drive cannot be used without one of those keys inserted into a port on the back of the unit.

In addition:

  • The encryption is hardware-based, which is the most advanced and secure form of encryption.
  • It offers access speeds of up to 5,000 megabytes per second.
  • All cables and a case are included.
  • It weighs about 3.25 pounds.
  • The casing is ruggedized aluminum.

More information on these drives can be found at and

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