Frankly, I’m sick of the format wars and all the hoopla going around, but FastMac has released the first and only Blu-Ray drive for Macs and that puts a smile on my face. Does this mean that Blu-Ray has finally put the debate to rest? No, but it is a clear indication of the direction the industry seems to be headed.
The new optical drive will make your PowerBook, iBook, MacBook Pro, Mac mini or iMac the hot topic around the water cooler. It’s compatible with DVD±R/RW + Dual/Double Layer, DVD-RAM, and CD-R and CD-RW formats. Because Blu-Ray burning requires a third-party software the new drives can be bundled with Roxio Toast 8 Titanium from FastMac. Native support with iLife and iTunes is expected when Leopard is released. The drives are ready for delivery now with a $799.95 price tag.
Fastmac’s slimline Blu-ray slot loading optical drive supports reading, writing and re-writing to single and dual layer Blu-ray media at 1x 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 2x 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.