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OWC Mercury Extreme Pro 6G SSD review: Good deal for big spenders

CNET editor Dong Ngo gives his take on OWC's new series of solid-state drives, the Mercury Extreme Pro 6G.

The Mercury Extreme Pro 6G solid-state drive from OWC.
The Mercury Extreme Pro 6G solid-state drive from OWC Dong Ngo/CNET

When it comes to 2.5-inch SATA solid-state drives (SSDs), prices are so high that so far it only makes sense to buy those with lower capacities, 256GB or less. However, with OWC's new series of Mercury Extreme Pro 6G drives, it seems you only get a good deal when you buy the top capacity.

The drive's 480GB version gives you the most storage for your money, at just $1,280. If you think that's still high (and you're right!), look at the prices of some competing products; the 480GB OCZ Vertex 3, for example, costs somewhere between $1,800 and $2,200.

Meanwhile, the lower capacities of OWC's Mercury Extreme Pro 6G SSD are noticeably more expensive than their peers. For example, the 240GB Mercury Extreme Pro 6G SSD is priced at $550, and the 240GB OCZ Vertex 3 is just around $500. Similarly, the 120GB version of the Mercury Extreme Pro 6G SSD is also about $50 more expensive than competing 120GB SSDs.

Related links
• OCZ Vertex 3 SSD review: Fast is in
• Full review of Plextor PX-256M2S solid-state drive - 256GB
• Full review of OCZ Vertex 3 Series SSD - 240GB

Pricing aside, the Mercury Extreme Pro 6G SSD offered mixed performance in our testing. On one hand, the drive did very well when used as a secondary storage device in a computer, offering real-world sustained copy speeds of 262MBps (compared with 260.71MBps from the Vertex 3). On the other hand, when used as the main drive of a computer that hosts the operating system, the drive is clearly slower at just 128.77MBps, compared with the Vertex 3's 150.01MBps.

Nonetheless, the Mercury Extreme Pro 6G SSD is still very fast, even among SSDs, and will make a very good investment, especially for those who want to upgrade their SATA 3 (6Gbps)-ready computers. For more information on how the drive performs, check out our full review of the Mercury Extreme Pro 6G SSD.