OWC released the first Mac bootable PCI SSD card, and it is called the “Mercury Accelsior.” The Accelsior features dual SandForce SF-228X controllers and a choice between a 120GB, 240GB, 480GB, or 960GB capacity.

AnandTech explained the technical aspects best:

The actual design is pretty interesting. OWC has opted to build the SSD out of two blades, each with their own controller and NAND running. The blades run in RAID 0 by default but they can also be configured in RAID 1 mode. Oftentimes everything is intergrated on one PCB but OWC’s approach is different, and there is actually a big advantage todoing things this way. Using blades allows the capacity to be upgraded without buying a totally new card. OWC does not sell the blades separately yet, but manufacturing new blades should be somwhat cheaper than manufacturing the whole PCB, so down the road this could result in a lower total upgrade price.

You can purchase the Mercury Accelsior over on OWC’s website. You can also check out the full press release below:

–Other World Computing today introduced the OWC Mercury Accelsior, the industry’s first both Mac-bootable and PC-bootable, fully supported PCIe SSD card. By utilizing the fastest data interface available in a Mac Pro or PC—the PCIe slot—the Mercury Accelsior offers nearly 3x the performance vs. an SSD in a SATA 2.0 3Gb/s drive bay with well beyond even 6Gb/s speeds of up to 780MB/s. Now owners of PCs and Apple Mac Pros can stop waiting for I/O-intensive apps like Photoshop, Final Cut Pro, or Avid Pro Tools to render, capture or process; and can experience near instantaneous booting and application launches. The Mercury Accelsior will be highlighted along with other OWC storage solutions in booth #SL14110 during the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show being held this week in Las Vegas.

Fully Bootable, No Drivers Needed

The OWC Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD card is AHCI compliant, so no drivers are required for a truly Plug and Play solution. Besides turning a computer into a speed demon, this high-performance SSD is bootable on PCs and is the only Mac-bootable, Mac supported PCIe SSD available.

A More Efficient and Reliable Computing Experience

Massively boosting data transfer rates is only one of the benefits to the Mercury Accelsior. With its custom SandForce Driven Accelsior SSD blades, the Mercury Accelsior card enables Mac and PC users to enjoy a more responsive and productive computing experience along with cooler, quieter, and more energy efficient operation compared to standard hard drives. Those benefits don’t come at the expense of reliability, however, as SandForce RAISE technology provides RAID-like data redundancy protection and reliability.

Boosts Entry Level Server Applications and Gaming Too

In addition to video-editing and multimedia creation / management deployment, the Mercury Accelsior takes entry level servers and even gaming to entirely new levels of performance. With up to 100,000 IOPS, business-critical applications like online transaction processing databases are given an instant boost. For gamers, the Mercury Accelsior’s extreme performance speed dramatically reduces game level-loading, object streaming, and save times for more play time and less waiting.

User-Friendly, Professionally Robust

As easy to install as a memory module, yet robust enough to handle the rigors of professional multimedia production environments, the half-height Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD card is the clear choice for pro audio and video studios producing HD-quality work. This game-changing, high-performance upgrade is designed and built in the U.S. from domestic and imported parts and backed by a three-year warranty.

Upgrade as Your Capacity Needs Grow

With OWC factory configurations from 120GB (2 x 60GB) up to 960GB (2 x 480GB) and the ability to upgrade to larger Mercury Accelsior SSD blades in the future, the Mercury Accelsior is future-ready for growing capacity needs.

Pricing, Availability

The Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD card is available for immediate ordering in the following dual Mercury Accelsior blade SSD capacity configurations:

240GB model (2 x 128GB for 256GB total flash) priced at $549.99 will be available in early May.

Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSD Features

  • The only Mac-bootable, Mac-supported PCIe SSD available
  • Easy, no drivers required installation
  • Dual LSI SandForce SF-2281/82 processors
  • Data transfer rates of 780MB/s read and 648MB/s write
  • Features 24nm Toggle-Synchronous high-performance NAND
  • Performance Hardware RAID up to 960GB (1TB total flash)
  • 3-year warranty
  • SandForce DuraClass technologies:
  • DuraWrite for extended SSD endurance
  • Intelligent Block Management & Wear Leveling automatically distributes data evenly
  • Intelligent Read Disturb Management spreads reads/writes across flash components to eliminate data corruption caused by constant use
  • Intelligent “Recycling” for advanced free space management gradually re-writes data across the SSD over time to ensure data never gets corrupted
  • RAISE (Redundant Array of Independent Silicon Elements) protects the data similar to a RAID setup
  • Best-in-Class ECC Protection for longest data retention and drive life

“The performance boost Mercury Accelsior offers is just staggering,” said Larry O’Connor, Founder and CEO, Other World Computing. “Adding well beyond 6Gb/s speeds to a Mac Pro or PC with proven OWC SSD technology completely transforms the machine’s capabilities. Then, when you consider its Plug and Play, yet future-ready design to enable adoption of emerging SSD technology developments, it simply is a ‘must-have’ for any PCIe-equipped computer user.”

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