Free Shipping available on most orders $49.00 & up.

Get Details. »

We're sorry, but this item is no longer for sale. However, there may be more Thunderbolt » Thunderbolt Expansion Chassis » Thunderbolt to PCIe » Desktop PCIe Chassis » PCIe Single Slot Chassis items available.

OWC Mercury Helios 2

Thunderbolt™ 2 Dual Slot Expansion Chassis For PCIe Cards

Thunderbolt 2 / Mac / PC
  • Features one x16 PCIe 2.0 double width card slot, and one x8 PCIe 2.0 single width card slot *
  • Daisy-chain support for up to five additional Thunderbolt peripherals
  • Near-silent operation
  • Plug and Play - no drivers needed.**
Use PCIe Expansion Cards with any Thunderbolt Equipped Mac or PC
Helios 2 is the ideal way to access up to two PCIe cards and is perfect for video capturing, video editing, media transcoding, audio processing, ultra-fast networking, data storage, and more via its Thunderbolt interface. Get empowered with the flexibility to upgrade the capabilities of almost any workflow and workstation.
Install Two PCIe Cards + Daisy Chain
Helios 2 features one half-length (up to 7.75"), full-height, double-width x16 PCIe 2.0 slot and one half-length (up to 7.75"), full-height, single-width x8 PCIe 2.0 slot to provide a vast array of expansion options.
  • Two PCIe card slots + daughter card support
  • Two Thunderbolt 2 ports
  • Thunderbolt daisy-chain six devices plus a display
Thunderbolt Performance Juggernaut
The Helios 2 is the perfect solution to enhance and expand the computing capabilities of any Thunderbolt or Thunderbolt 2 equipped Mac Pro, iMac, Mac mini, Mac laptop, or PC. Utilizing Thunderbolt high-performance technology, Helios 2 is a tour de force that provides the flexibility to use a multitude of PCIe cards with the bandwidth to support their capabilities.
  • Up to 20Gb/s performance
  • Perfect for HD/4K video workflows
  • Perfect for 10Gb/s networking interfaces
  • Perfect for Pro Audio workflows
  • Perfect for Ultra-Fast Datasets + Storage
Durable, Cool, and at the Ready
A whisper quiet variable speed fan keeps the inside of the Helios 2's durable aluminum ventilated chassis running cool. It automatically powers on/off with your computer, so it's at the ready whenever you are.
Lock It Up
Let's face it, you have PCIe cards because they serve an important workflow need. Helios 2 comes with a Thunderbolt cable lock that prevents accidental cable pulls from stopping your work in progress — ensuring your PCIe cards and daisy-chained Thunderbolt devices stay connected.

* Thunderbolt limits PCIe x8 and x16 cards to x4 data lanes.

Includes

  • OWC Mercury Helios 2 PCIe Thunderbolt Expansion Chassis
  • High-Quality, Certified, Double-Shielded 1 Meter Thunderbolt cable
  • Helios 2 Thunderbolt cable locking bracket (not compatible with optical Thunderbolt cables)
  • External auto-switching 100/240v 50/60Hz power adapter 12V/7A
  • Mercury Helios 2 Assembly Manual & User Guide (View PDF 4.04 MB)
  • OWC 3 Year Solution Warranty with 48-Hour Turnaround Time

Gallery

Product Specifications:

System Requirements

  • Software
    • OS
      • OS X 10.9 or later
      • Windows 7 SP1 or later
      • Note: Boot Camp is not supported
    • Driver
      • Driver not required
  • Hardware
    • Minimum Requirements
      • Mac or PC featuring Thunderbolt interface
    • Recommended (Best performance)
      • Mac or PC featuring Thunderbolt 2 interface
  • Bootability
    • OS X (requires installed PCIe card be bootable)

Interface

  • (2) Thunderbolt 20Gb/s

Device Interface

  • PCIe (PCI Express)

PCIe Card Support

  • (1) PCIe 2.0 x16 (x4 mode) half-length (up to 7.75"), full-height, single- or double-width
  • (1) PCIe 2.0 x8 (x4 mode) half-length (up to 7.75"), full-height, single-width
  • Note: PCIe card must operate with no driver or have a Thunderbolt-aware driver. Please see the OWC PCIe Thunderbolt card compatibility chart for more information.

Performance

  • Thunderbolt 2 - 20Gb/sec
  • Note: Speeds will vary based on setup, configuration, and other environmental factors

Power

  • PCIe card minimum guaranteed power
    • 25W (slot)
  • Power Supply
    • External UL-listed, universal auto-switching
    • AC input: 100 ~ 240V, 2.0A, 50-60Hz
    • DC output: 12V, 7A
    • Adapter plugs for international use sold separately

Product Manual

Dimensions

  • Height: 4.6 in (11.7 cm)
  • Width: 6.0 in (15.2 cm)
  • Length: 11.0 in (27.9 cm)

Weight

  • 3.7 lb. (1.7 kg)

Operating Environment:

Environmental (Operating)

  • Temperature (°F) 32° to 95°
  • Temperature (°C) 0° to 35°

Environmental (Non-Operating)

  • Temperature (°F) -40° to 149°
  • Temperature (°C) -40° to 65°

Warranty

3 Year OWC Helios Limited Warranty

The best warranty is one you never have to use, but should the need occur, we're proud to provide a superior level of support and service coverage to our customers. OWC and NewerTech storage solutions come fully backed by an Industry-leading 48-hour turnaround time, for complete peace of mind ownership confidence.

View more information about the 3 Year OWC Helios Limited Warranty

  1. Windows requires a Thunderbolt 2 interface in the computer and in the expansion chassis to support more than two PCIe controllers. Note that some PCIe cards have a bridge to multiple controllers, so it is possible for a single dual-controller PCIe card to reach the limit if not connected via Thunderbolt 2. Not all Mac-compatible PCIe cards are also compatible with Windows. See the PCIe Card Thunderbolt Compatibility Chart for details.

Compatability:

Compatible with the following Thunderbolt and Thunderbolt 2 equipped computers:
Learn how to find your Mac's model ID
Mac Pro
Mac Pro
(December, 2013)
Model ID: MacPro6,1
2.7GHz 3.0GHz, 3.5GHz, 3.7GHz
iMac Intel
iMac w/Retina 5K display
(27-inch Mid 2015)
(May 2015)
Model ID: iMac15,1
3.3GHz i5, 3.5GHz i5, 4.0GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac with Retina 5K display (27-inch Late 2014)
(October 2014)
Model ID: iMac15,1
3.5GHz i5, 4.0GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (27-inch Late 2013)
(September, 2013)
Model ID: iMac14,2
3.2GHz i5, 3.4GHz i5, 3.5GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Late 2013)
(September, 2013)
Model ID: iMac14,1; iMac14,3
2.7GHz i5, 2.9GHz i5, 3.1GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (27-inch Late 2012)
(November, 2012)
Model ID: iMac13,2
2.9GHz i5, 3.2GHz i5, 3.4GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Late 2012)
(November, 2012)
Model ID: iMac13,1
2.7GHz i5, 2.9GHz i5, 3.1GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Late 2011)
(August, 2011)
Model ID: iMac12,1
3.1GHz i3
iMac Intel
iMac (27-inch Mid 2011)
(May, 2011)
Model ID: iMac12,2
2.7GHz i5, 3.1GHz i5, 3.4GHz i7
iMac Intel
iMac (21.5-inch Mid 2011)
(May, 2011)
Model ID: iMac12,1
2.5GHz i5, 2.7GHz i5, 2.8GHz i7
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (15-inch Retina Display 2013)
(October, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookPro11,2
2.0GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (13-inch Retina Display 2013)
(October, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookPro11,1
2.4GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.9GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (15-inch Retina Display 2013)
(January, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookPro10,1
2.4GHz, 2.7GHz, 2.8GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (13-inch Retina Display 2013)
(January, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookPro10,2
2.5GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.9GHz, 3.0GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (13-inch Retina Display 2012-2013)
(October, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookPro10,2
2.5GHz, 2.9GHz
MacBook Pro Retina
MacBook Pro (15-inch Retina Display 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookPro10,1
2.3GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.7GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (17-inch 2011)
(October, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,3
2.4GHz, 2.5GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (17-inch Early 2011)
(February, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,3
2.2GHz, 2.3GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (15-inch 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookPro9,1
2.3GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.7GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (15-inch 2011)
(October, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,2
2.2GHz, 2.4GHz, 2.5GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (15-inch Early 2011)
(February, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,2
2.0GHz, 2.2GHz, 2.3GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (13-inch 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookPro9,2
2.5GHz, 2.9GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (13-inch 2011)
(October, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,1
2.4GHz, 2.8GHz
MacBook Pro Unibody
MacBook Pro (13-inch Early 2011)
(February, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookPro8,1
2.3GHz, 2.7GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (13-inch Mid 2013)
(June, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookAir6,2
1.3GHz, 1.7GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (11-inch Mid 2013)
(June, 2013)
Model ID: MacBookAir6,1
1.3GHz, 1.7GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (13-inch Mid 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookAir5,2
1.8GHz, 2.0GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (11-inch Mid 2012)
(June, 2012)
Model ID: MacBookAir5,1
1.7GHz, 2.0GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (13-inch Mid 2011)
(July, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookAir4,2
1.7GHz, 1.8GHz
MacBook Air
MacBook Air (11-inch Mid 2011)
(July, 2011)
Model ID: MacBookAir4,1
1.6GHz, 1.8GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Late 2014)
(October, 2014)
Model ID: Macmini7,1
1.4GHz, 2.6GHz, 2.8GHz, 3.0GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Late 2012)
(October, 2012)
Model ID: Macmini6,1 & Macmini6,2
2.3GHz, 2.5GHz, 2.6GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Late 2012 Server)
(October, 2012)
Model ID: Macmini6,2
2.3GHz, 2.6GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Mid 2011)
(July, 2011)
Model ID: Macmini5,1 & Macmini5,2
2.3GHz, 2.5GHz, 2.7GHz
Mac mini Intel
Mac mini (Mid 2011 Server)
(July, 2011)
Model ID: Macmini5,3
2.0GHz
PC Desktop
PC Desktops
Compatible with Intel / AMD Process based PCs capable with the specifications listed above.

Customer Ratings

Write a Review 4.5 / 5 3 out of 4 (75%) reviewers would recommend this product
Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Age: 55-65 Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 3/5 It is what it is and does what it does June 1, 2015 This functions as described and seems to be built well. The only reasons I gave it 3 stars instead of 5 is because it's quite noisy and surprisingly expensive. Having said all that, it is working perfectly after a few months of constant use and I'm fully satisfied that I got exactly what was described to me on the website. I'm sure the price of these things will fall dramatically once the blush is off the rose of the new peripheral-free Power Macs.

Verified Buyer Top 50 Contributor
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Star Prairie, WI Age: 35-44 Experience Level: IT Professional Owned Product: 5-6 months
Rating: 5/5 Fantastic Idea April 17, 2015 Increasing you system's capabilities, through an external device, is much less of a concern these days, thanks to Thunderbolt and Thunderbolt 2. Adding any compatible PCIe device, which would traditionally have to be installed inside a computer, is a very nice feature, especially for graphics cards and storage options.

I would recommend this item to a friend!

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Allen, TX Age: 45-54 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: 1-3 months
Rating: 5/5 PCIe slots for the Late 2013 Mac Pro September 7, 2014 Upgraded to a Mac Pro and was looking for a way to add fast, external SSD storage. Bought this along with one of the Mercury Accelsior PCIe SSDs (already had another one from my previous Mac Pro tower). Put them in the Helios 2 in a RAID 0 config, and now I have 2TB of screaming fast external storage for my 2013 Mac Pro. It has worked flawlessly, with no issues whatsoever. Not even any sleep issues. It's just been fast, reliable, and I don't have to think about it. What more could you want?

I would recommend this item to a friend!

Verified Buyer
Reviewer: Anonymous Location: Brooklyn. NY Age: 55-65 Experience Level: Power User Owned Product: less than a month
Rating: 5/5 Easy installation, superb performance July 11, 2014 I bought the Helios 2 once I migrated from a 2009 MacPro in which I had installed a OWC PCI 960 GB card to a 2013 MacPro. Installation was painless and easy. And everything worked. I added another 1 TB OWC PCI card, and using a 3M Thunderbolt cable tucked the Helios 2 under a cabinet. So it is out of sight. The fan makes a slight audible hum which did not bother me, but now I don't hear that anymore. This is superb quality. It was all packaged well and does the job it needs to do.Prior to my purchase I wanted to make sure that the cards were compatible so I email support. I always get prompt replies, sometimes even over the weekend and the replies are accurate. Highly recommended. Highly appreciated.

I would recommend this item to a friend!

OWC Mercury Helios 2 Mfr P/N: HELIOS2TB2 OWC SKU: OWCHELIOS2TB2 Thunderbolt™ 2 Dual Slot Expansion Chassis For PCIe Cards with Dual Thunderbolt™ 2 Ports. 1M High Quality Thunderbolt™ 2 Cable Included. 3 Year OWC Limited Warranty
Sold Out