No, Apple hasn’t finally caved into their high end users’ demands and offered a Blu-Ray option on their portable line. Aftermarket specialist Fastmac has, however, and is offering the 50Gb Optical Disc upgrade on some of Apple’s recent laptops and consumer desktops:
– iBook G4
– iMac G5
– iMac Intel
– MacBook Pro (17-inch)
– Mac mini
– PowerBook G3 Pismo
– PowerBook G4 Titanium (667 Mhz or higher)
– PowerBook G4 Aluminum
The $1000 pricetag is hefty for the average Joe, but if you are in the making-movie biz and need to do work on a laptop, this is almost a no-brainer.
We are not sure we’d want to drop a G on Blu-Ray for an iBook but we can’t wait to see the 17 inch HD screen enabled playback version of the device!
From the company’s press release:
Fastmac Announces 2X Blu-Ray Optical Drive Upgrade for Laptops; Low Profile Slot Loading Drive Provides 50 GB of Storage on 1 Disk for Apple PowerBook, iBook, MacBook Pro, iMac & Mac mini; New Drive Cuts Burn Times in Half
October 05, 2007
Salinas, CA – Fastmac today announced the first & only 2X Blu-Ray optical drive upgrade for Apple’s PowerBook, iBook & MacBook Pro computers. The new slimline, slot loading drive uses the fastest & most compatible Blu-ray mechanism available to provide up to 50 GB of storage on 1 disk, without sacrificing compatibility with standard DVD & CD recordable media. Fastmac’s Blu-Ray optical drive upgrade is scheduled to ship within 30 days and is available for pre-order from http://www.fastmac.com for a special introductory price of $999.95. Each drive carries a 1 year warranty and a 30 day money back guarantee .
Fastmac’s new Blu-ray slot loading drive gives photographers, videographers & musicians the ability to save anything, anywhere- now twice as fast. System and database administrators can archive and retrieve large amounts of data on 1 convenient disk. And consumers can now watch today’s latest HD content in true high definition with surround sound anytime & anywhere they happen to be. Blu-ray is the next generation of storage technology & entertainment and it’s available today, only from Fastmac.
Fastmac’s new Blu-Ray slot loading drive has been tested and certified compatible with Adobe’s Premiere Pro CS3 video production software that includes Adobe Encore CS3 and is part of the Adobe Creative Suite 3 Production Premium Collection. Adobe Encore CS3 integrates with Adobe Photoshop & Adobe Premiere to provide a rich set of creative tools for the production and output of full-featured, menu-driven DVD and Blu-Ray Discs. It is the only video production and editing software available for the Mac OS that supports built-in Blu-Ray Disc authoring for playback on stand-alone Blu-Ray DVD players & the Sony PlayStation 3.
Blu-ray, also known as Blu-ray Disk (BD), is the name of a next generation optical disk format developed by a consortium of electronics and computer manufacturers including Apple, Dell, HP, JVC, Mitsubishi, Panasonic, Pioneer, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Sony & TDK. The format was designed to enable the recording and playback of High Definition (HD) content and to allow storage of large amounts (up to 200 Gb) of data. While current optical drive technologies rely on a red laser to read and write data, the new format uses a blue-violet laser (hence the name, Blu-ray). The blue-violet laser has a 38% shorter wavelength (405nm) than a red laser (650nm), allowing the drive’s optical pickup unit to focus more precisely than ever before. Data can then be packed more densely on standard sized disks. Despite using a new type of laser, Blu-ray drives are compatible with standard DVD and CD media through the use of a combined red, blue & violet optical reader and writer.
In addition to broad support from the electronics, music, computer & video game industry, 6 out of 8 of the major Hollywood film studios support Blu-ray media and 5 out of those 6 (Disney, Fox, Lionsgate, MGM & Sony) have decided to release their movies exclusively in the Blu-ray format. With its forward and backward integration with new and old media, Blu-ray is destined to become the successor to today’s DVD format.
Fastmac’s slimline Blu-ray slot loading optical drive supports reading, writing and re-writing to single and dual layer Blu-ray media at up to 2x speeds. The drive is also compatible with standard DVD and CD media and can write to DVD-R and DVD+R media at 8x speed in single layer and up to 2.4x speed in dual/ double layer mode. It can rewrite to DVD-R and DVD+R media at 4x speeds. The drive also supports DVD-RAM reading and writing at up to 5x speeds and standard CD-R and CD-RW burning at 8x speeds.
Fastmac’s slimline Blu-ray slot loading optical drive upgrade requires Mac OS X 10.2.8 or higher and is compatible with the following Apple computers:
MacBook Pro (17-inch)
PowerBook G3 Pismo
PowerBook G4 Titanium (667 Mhz or higher)
PowerBook G4 Aluminum
Blu-ray burning requires 3rd-party software such as Adobe Premiere CS3 or Roxio’s Toast 8 Titanium, which enables Blu-ray disk support in the Mac OS Finder. Native support for Blu-ray burning within iLife & iTunes is expected in the future via Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard, but cannot be guaranteed at this time.
Fastmac is an OEM designer and manufacturer of innovative upgrade products that add value and extend usability of Apple computers & iPods. Fastmac’s award-winning product line-up includes drive, CPU, LCD and battery upgrades, including the world’s longest lasting PowerBook & iPod batteries & the only replacement batteries for Apple’s latest MacBook portables. More information about Fastmac is available via http://www.fastmac.com/company
Michael Lowdermilk (Mlowdermilk at Fastmac dot com)
Business Development Manager
Fastmac Performance Upgrades
1172 S Main St., Suite 243
Salinas, CA 93901-2204