Colloidal FePt nanocrystals, 6 nm in diameter, were synthesized and then coated with silica (SiO(2)) shells. The silica shell thickness could be varied from 10 to 25 nm. As-made FePt@SiO(2) nanocrystals have low magnetocrystalline anisotropy due to a compositionally disordered FePt core. When films of FePt@SiO(2) particles are annealed under hydrogen at 650 degrees C or above, the FePt core transforms to the compositionally ordered L1(0) phase, and superparamagnetic blocking temperatures exceeding room temperature are obtained. The SiO(2) shell prevents FePt coalescence at annealing temperatures up to similar to 850 degrees C. Annealing under air or nitrogen does not induce the FePt phase transition. The silica shell limits magnetic dipole coupling between the FePt nanocrystals; however, low temperature (5 K) and room temperature magnetization scans show slightly constricted hysteresis loops with coercivities that decrease systematically with decreased shell thickness, possibly resulting from differences in magnetic dipole coupling between particles.