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During an OS switch at the ComputerUser offices, Mercury became our favorite planet.

Recently, Other World Computing sent a very tasty Mercury On-the-Go 40GB FireWire drive. During an OS switch at the ComputerUser offices, let’s just say that Mercury became my favorite planet. Priced at a wildly affordable $149, the drive looks cool, with a see-through case and the usual array of components, and fits in a pocket at only 11 ounces. Actually, it’s only slightly larger than my wallet. But it’s in how it works that really sets it apart.

The OWC Mercury has transfer rates of up to 400Mbps, plug-and-play connection, and high-level FireWire software. (If you’re an unfortunate soul who doesn’t have a FireWire port, the company offers ways to add that capability to a PCI PowerMac or PowerBook G3.) It comes with a carrying case, Intech SpeedTools, USB cable, and AC adapter.

During the recent OS migration, I used the device to back up files, and thought something must be wrong because it happened so fast. But, sure enough, there they were, nestled safely beneath the blue LED light. In an era of ultra-portable USB drives, some may think the Mercury is just a slightly larger plug-and-store device, but its flexibility, size, and price make it unique in the field.

Such a sweet drive should bring many users to the OWC site, a treasure trove of products that will have both Mac and PC owners raiding their bank accounts. The site is worth noting, because the company doesn’t just feature its own products there; rather, it has a wealth of well-priced goodies from many companies. It offers the usual acceleration, audio, and memory products, but you can also find games, digital cameras, PDA devices, software, and scanners. True, it doesn’t have as many products as sites like Best Buy or Amazon, but sometimes it’s nice to have just a few selections that are well presented, rather than a dizzying array of options that’s impossible to navigate. With OWC’s site, one-stop shopping has never been easier. And, while you’re there, visit Mercury.

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