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View Full Version : MacBook Air Superdrive IDE or Sata?




khongaeng
Nov 30, 2010, 10:37 AM
Has anyone opened up their new MacBook Air Superdrive, by chance, and seen what type of connection it uses?

In searching high and low with the google machine, it appears that the old model number MB397G/A is definitely IDE.

However, I noticed that there is a newer model number MC684ZM/A (which is the model that I have), and I am wondering if Apple has updated the interface for SATA. Strangely Apple sells both models on their website (the older one has 90+ comments while the newer one has less than 10)

The reason why I am asking is, I would like to flash the firmware on the drive to make it region free. From all that I have read, the drive is just a standard Sony NEC Optiarc drive (very hackable) and appears that the superdrive needs to be disconnected from its Apple IDE to USB bridge board in order to flash it and then it can be re-assembled. Unfortunately I do not have any components that support a slim IDE connection found in the original MB397G/A drive (see http://www.flickr.com/photos/tnkgrl/sets/72157605790040071/with/2607352970/ for pictures of a disassembly)

Adapters or enclosures can be purchased at newegg (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817366021&Tpk=slim%20ide%20dvd) and newegg (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16812200451&cm_re=slim_ide_adapter-_-12-200-451-_-Product), but they are around $20 shipped.

I am hoping that the newer model MC684ZM/A is SATA, not the ancient IDE. Anyone have any insight? Thanks in advance



khongaeng
Jan 4, 2011, 07:37 AM
So last month I opened up my MacBook Air Superdrive, and to my chagrin, the new model does not even have an IDE controller board like the previous generation. The new superdrive is a completely custom drive that has the power and data leads from the USB cable soldered directly to the board inside the DVD drive. It looks like there will be no easy way flash the firmware on the newer drives, and no way to turn them into generic DVD drives that can be used with any computer.

On a side note, I noticed that the MacBook Air Superdrive works with the newest MacMini (I only had the newest model to test it with), it makes me wonder if there is some sort of kext file or extension on the Mac Mini and MacBook air that allow the drive to be identified on these computers. If so, I wonder what that file is and if it can be transferred to a different computer like an iMac or Mac Pro.

Anyone have any thoughts on this. Thanks

logandzwon
Jan 4, 2011, 09:51 AM
On a side note, I noticed that the MacBook Air Superdrive works with the newest MacMini

MacMini or MacMini Server? The server officially supports the MBA super drive. The non-server does not.

DSpawnZ
Jan 4, 2011, 10:13 PM
MacMini or MacMini Server? The server officially supports the MBA super drive. The non-server does not.

It works with both Mac mini 2010 models.

khongaeng
Jan 7, 2011, 10:11 AM
It works with both Mac mini 2010 models.

Sorry, I should have been more specific. I concur that it works with both models the server model and the consumer model