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Print 39 comment(s) - last by Flunk.. on Jul 30 at 7:19 PM

A more cost effective Blu-Ray disc recorder

Sony has released its BWU-100A Blu-ray disc drive for computer systems. The BWU-100A is a standard 5.25" PATA disc drive with playback and recording support for Blu-ray discs. Playback of Blu-ray movies will be supported with the BWU-100A, however, an HDCP compliant graphics card and display is required to playback protected AACS content. A high definition display is also required to experience the full 1080 lines of high definition goodness.

The BWU-100A is a multi-format disc drive that supports recording to Blu-ray, DVD-R, DVD+R and CD-R/RW discs. Blu-ray discs up to 50GB are supported with the BWU-100A. Sony claims a 50GB Blu-ray disc can accommodate approximately 4 hours of 1080i video. Recording speeds of up to 2x are supported with Blu-ray media which is typical for a first generation drive. DVD recording is limited to a maximum of 8x with DVD+R and DVD-R media while CD recording is limited to a maximum speed of 24x.

Pricing for the BWU-100A will be around $749 which is a little less than the recently announced BenQ BW1000, LG GBW-H10N and Pioneer BDR-101A. Sony BWU-100A Blu-ray recorders will be available starting late July to make use of the previously announced TDK Blu-ray media.



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RE: getting cheaper...
By dome1234 on 7/18/2006 7:08:10 PM , Rating: 2
the lower price is certainly attractive to some, but the cost of the media is still rather prohibitive. Personally, i wouldn't mind spending a grand on the burner, but the media cost hasn't been very economical.


RE: getting cheaper...
By Spoonbender on 7/18/2006 8:43:49 PM , Rating: 4
You wouldn't? I just can't see the point
If I want to take backup, buying another HD is more economical. Also a hell of a lot faster and more reliable.
How much disk space could you get for $750?

If I want to transfer data, this would be useless as well, because, well, where would I transfer anything *to*? If I were to buy one, I'd be the only one I knew who had a compatible drive, so I could, uh... Burn stuff, and then read it again on my own computer?
Not worth $750.
Not even worth $75. I might give it a shot for $7.5.

So, no point in using it for my own data. I guess I could use it to read other people's data then. Except... No one else has one of these.
There's hardly any content available for these things. Oh, right, I could buy one of those 5 movies Sony released on Blu-Ray...
And even if there were content, I wouldn't be able to use it meaningfully without HDCP support...

For all practical purposes, optical media is just obsolete.
Optical media crippled by DRM is not just obsolete, but also completely pointless.


RE: getting cheaper...
By TomZ on 7/18/2006 9:43:38 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
If I want to take backup, buying another HD is more economical. Also a hell of a lot faster and more reliable.
How much disk space could you get for $750?

I think this kind of drive would be ideal for some kinds of backup, like off-site backup. We back up our data to RAID HDDs on a separate server, but we still like to take backups off-site periodically. At the moment we are using USB HDD's for this, but I think that a drive like this would be more convenient, compact, and economical.

Other than that, I would have zero use for such a drive.


RE: getting cheaper...
By Spoonbender on 7/19/2006 9:56:52 AM , Rating: 2
How can a drive which costs $750, and where the media has tiny capacity (compared to harddrives) and costs mmuch more per GB than even external harddrives, ever be "economical"?
Other than that, using optical media for backup is a baaad idea.


RE: getting cheaper...
By TomZ on 7/19/2006 1:53:45 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
How can a drive which costs $750, and where the media has tiny capacity (compared to harddrives) and costs mmuch more per GB than even external harddrives, ever be "economical"?

Tiny capacity? BD is 25GB, 50GB, ..., 200GB. Our backup packages are in the 5-10GB range, so the capacity is pretty good. Economical? Probably a bit pricey now, but I would expect the same agressive downward price trend for drives and media as we saw with CD-R's and DVD-RW's.
quote:
Other than that, using optical media for backup is a baaad idea.

It's reliabile, allows random access, it's relatively fast, small to store, etc. Why do you think it's a bad idea? Keep in mind I'm just talking about off-site backup to protect against data loss due to fire, theft, or something else catastrophic.


RE: getting cheaper...
By Trisped on 7/19/2006 12:57:38 PM , Rating: 2
Tapes. The drives are $200-400 the tapes are $5-50 and the size is comparable to optical disks. Plus, you get better TB/$ and longer shelf life (most claiming the tapes can be written for 10 years and read for years even after that). The downside of tape is the seek time, but if you are just backing up data it doesn't matter. When you need the data you just copy it all back onto the hard drives and you are set.


RE: getting cheaper...
By TomZ on 7/19/2006 1:58:11 PM , Rating: 2
I think that BD will be at the same price-point as tape in 1-2 years, and IMO, discs are faster and more convenient, mainly due to the sequential nature of tapes. In addition, if you want to read the data later, it will be easier to find a machine with a BD player than a tape drive, since the latter are more specialized devices whereas disc players are ubiquitous.


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