Other World Computing (OWC), a leading Mac and PC technology company, recently announced the release of two Mercury Pro 8 X Blu-Ray external drives with quad interfaces that write/burn Blu-Ray up to 8X speed, DVDs up to 16X, and CDs up to 32X speed. The two models just released on the market are the only quad Interface Blu-Ray drives on the market and are twice as fast as OWC’s previous Mercury Pro products. They offer the ability to burn, archive, or retrieve large amounts of high-definition video, photos, music, and data files on a single disk at a level that was previously impossible.
The new Quad Interface models are able to burn 50GB of data on a single (dual layer) disc in 30 minutes, which equals about 50,000 JPEG images, 17,500 MP3 songs, 25 DVD quality movies, or almost 4 hours of high definition video. In addition, the Mercury Pro Blu-ray drives read and/or write not only Blu-ray, but also virtually all other optical media, including DVD-RAM, DVD Dual-Layer R/RW, DVD R/RW, and CD-R/RW.
The new models, BDR-203X and BDR-203XT, offer the flexibility of interfaces for both Mac and PC via FireWire 800, FireWire 400, USB 2.0, and eSATA(external serial ATA)for plug and play compatibility. According to OWC, the Mercury Pro Blu-ray quad interface external drive solutions have been fully tested for compatibility with most Apple and Windows DVD/CD tools and players, including Apple iTunes, Apple Disc Burner, Apple iDVD 5, Apple DVD Studio Pro, EMC Retrospect Express, NTI DragonBurn, Roxio Toast, Roxio Easy Media Creator, and Nero Burning.
The OWC 203X is listed at $399 and the 203XT retails at $499 with an added feature of the full version of Roxio Toast 10 Titanium, the latest version of burning and digital media software. Roxio Toast 10 will appeal to consumers who want to quickly and easily move digital media between their Mac and digital devices like the iPhone, TiVo, or use for web-based video content while offline.
There is currently little competition for Blu-ray external drives with quad interface. Although other companies, such as Western Digital, Verbatim, and Fantom Drive, are already offering external DVD drives with a quad interface, external Blu-ray are still fairly hard to come by.
The specs on the Mercury Pro quad interface drives include 2 ports for FireWire 800, 1 port for FireWire 400, 1 port for eSATA and 1 port for USB 2.0. The drives are able to write and read both single layer and double layer BD-R and BD-RE up to 4x; writes up to 24X on CD-RW, 40X on CD-R, DVD-R to 16X, as well as read up to 16X on DVD-R, DVD+R, and DVD-ROM, up to 5X on DVD-RAM, up to 8X on DVD+R DL, DVD-RW, and DVD+RW; up to 32X on CD-RW, and up to 40X on CD-ROM and CD-R.
Judy Duncan holds a B.S. degree in Occupational Therapy with a minor in Psychology. She has over 25 years of experience in the health care field working in a multitude of venues, including acute care, out-patient, home health, geriatric, early intervention and pediatric care. She has developed and presented educational programs at the professional, educational and community level. In addition to being a professional in the medical field, she is a published writer, with hundreds of reviews and articles appearing on-line, and is currently working on a speculative fiction novel.