Apple, Companies, Hardware, Memory & Storage Space, VR World

YES – Somebody finally made a decent Blu-ray burner!

I’ve just received word from Woodstock, IL – and this press release is something that I’ve just had to share, because the words that came out of my mouth were “Finally, darn it!”
Karen Thomas sent me an e-mail with press release containing the title “OWC ANNOUNCES INDUSTRY’S FIRST BLU-RAY EXTERNAL DRIVES WITH “QUAD INTERFACE”. Now, naturally, my comment for this spinning paper (press release) would be the bin, but this device actually has some true muscle.

Can this device put Blu-ray on a map as viable backup solution?

Can this device put Blu-ray on a map as viable backup solution?

OWC Mercury Pro is external Blu-ray burner, but it features e-SATA port. Yep, you’ve read it correctly – it does come with FireWire 400 and 800, USB 2.0, but it also comes with e-SATA port, meaning you can burn 50GB of data at a speed of 1GB/min, instead of almost two hours of dwelling through USB connector. I own Sony’s BWU-100A in internal IDE and external USB version, and it is a drag burning 50GB for more than an hour. E-SATA enables burning at the maximum speed of SATA 1.0 spec, which is 150MB/s, so no more 40 MB/s through USB 2.0 (USB 2.0 can do 60MB/s? Yeah, right.), or FireWires which aren’t exactly… fiery.

E-SATA is the way to go, and these guys are offering this piece of hardware for 500 bucks. Given that my Sony cost over a grand a while ago, this is a fair value. And yes, this finally brings decent Blu-ray drive to Mac systems, which are traditionally lagging behind PC in terms of hardware connectivity. Since St. Jobs finally added e-SATA connector on latest series of MacBooks, you can get this device and have decent storage capabilities.

The device supports reading HD-DVD media as well… so time to back up my 100+ HD DVD movies is here. And with a help of Badaboom Pro beta, I might even put the GTX280 to a good use, instead of waiting for weeks on a CPU.There are two models available (, one without Roxio Toast 9 Titanium (MacOS X), and one with. The difference is 80 bucks, so have phun.

If OWC dares to send the device for a review, they can be sure I’ll check their claims of 1GB/min write speed.

  • SDL4N

    I would definitely get this, if it wasnt 500 bucks. If it ever gets down to 250 i might consider it.

  • Well, in all honesty, the $499 is just mandatory since this piece of equipment had to be certified for Apple platform. I am *intimately* acquainted with some of Apple’s shenanigans, and I am not surprised. Now, ideally this would cost $250, but what is the price of regular internal BD burner, plus add the enclosure with two “$1 per IEEE1394 port” royalties etc etc etc. There are reasons, but I think that any european would seal the deal with device costing less than 400 EUR.

    I live between the US and EUrope, and well, in US we’re blessed with low prices. Whatever happens, prices in US are *waaay* lower than in US. Sometimes in 2:1 ratio (just buy any car 😉

  • SDL4N

    Oh, i know. It sucks for europeans.

    But yeah, the mac tax may make sense. I guess.

    Wont be buying one though, right now im happy with just my 95 Dollar LiteONit BD Drive for my PC.

  • Well, BD burners are starting at 209.99 at Newegg. Add e-SATA and that case, and you’re looking at 300.

    The rest – Mac tax, as you’ve said it. Personally, I don’t have anything against apple. It is just hard to justify paying so much more for essentially the same or very similar experience.

  • To help you decide about which system to use with your home improvements, here is some information on the two formats, Blu-ray and HD-DVD, plus some pros and cons of each.

  • Hi Jack, it would have been helpful if you included the link in the body of the message as well…

    Link added.

  • Misha

    Jack, unfortunately HDDVD is a dead format and comparing the two is no longer necessary or useful as all stocks of all media, players, and movies is being liquidated.

  • Well, as far as I am seeing, the site is almost 100% blu-ray.

    My $0.02 is that Blu-ray is a dead standard too. Expect an article really soon.