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A Present from Santa?

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Category: Hardware Published on Monday, 10 December 2012

A New, Faster Velocity Solo 

Dear Santa:

Please send me a device that will make my computer run faster. No cleanup utilities, please! I'm holding milk and cookies hostage until you deliver.

Sincerely,

Mike

Sound familiar? Almost everyone I know suffers from fingertapamania while waiting for their computers to boot or programs and files to load.

Well, it seems my letter was forwarded to the elves at Apricorn who sent me the Velocity Solo x2 ($99).

About a year ago I reviewed its predecessor, the Velocity Solo and was amazed at how easy it was for me to use it to install a faster SATA III boot drive for a fraction of the cost of a system upgrade or a new computer.

Now, enter stage left, the Solo's faster offspring - - - the x2.

As with its predecessor, the Velocity Solo x2 was extremely easy to install. All I needed to do was pop the top off my computer's case and install the device into any empty PCIe 2.0 (x2) slot on my motherboard. This drive can't be installed in an older PCI x1 slot, but is compatible with x4, x5 and x16 slots that usually handle larger cards.

The device will hold any 2.5-inch solid state drive, so there's no cables to fiddle with. Apricorn sent me a Vertex 4 128 GB drive so I could see how easy it was to install and use, and it worked perfectly.

For those interested in such things, here are the specs:

  • It delivers data transfer speeds of up to 550 MB per second, versus 300 MB per second for the older model.
  • You can add a second SATA III drive via cable and increase the speed to 800 MB per second.
  • It's backwards compatible with older SATA I and SATA II drives.
  • It includes EZ Gig Cloning Software for Windows. Mac users can use their built-in hard disk utility.
  • It's TRIM compatible, which, according to Wikipedia, "allows an operating system to inform a solid-state drive (SSD) which blocks of data are no longer considered in use and can be wiped internally." This also allows you to install SSDs of up to 2.2 TB.

Check out Apricorn's website at www.apricorn.com for more information.

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