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View Full Version : Do you ever miss having a disc drive?




MacGeekAZ
Oct 10, 2011, 12:06 PM
I'm ready to replace my iBook G4 in a few weeks. I was planning to buy a refurbished MacBook or MacBook Pro, but I am still intrigued by the MacBook Air. I don't travel often, but I do take my laptop with me a lot (coffee shop, library, etc.).

The one thing that I can't figure out is if I would miss having a disc drive. If you have software or data on a CD, do you just use another computer and a thumb drive to transfer it to your MacBook Air? Or is there another option I don't know about? We have two desktop Macs in our house, so I could use those. I also have an external drive for backups.

So tell me about your MBA. Do you miss having a disc drive?

I use my laptop for internet use, email, word processing, watching movies, and a few other programs.

Thanks,
Wendi



cluthz
Oct 10, 2011, 12:10 PM
No.

I even have a external DVD writer and I haven't used it once and I've had the MBA for two months.

eckthroi
Oct 10, 2011, 12:29 PM
This also was a scary transition for me as I thought I would regret not having the disc drive. However, I got the Air the day it came out. I have used it everyday for personal as well as for college. I have yet to find a time where I actually needed to use the disc drive. Do not let this be a determining factor for you. It is so much easier and hassle free this way.

zap2
Oct 10, 2011, 12:32 PM
Very rarely, if I do, I'll borrow the Apple MBA Drive from my place of employment, but honestly I don't need to much. But the space I save is well worth not having the drive.


I wouldn't mind one on my desktop(Mac mini), but not at the price of losing my 2nd storage device.

ts3
Oct 10, 2011, 12:34 PM
I have an external CD/DVD drive (Samsung, $40 on amazon). I only use it from time to time, to import CDs into iTunes or to watch a DVD.

Xgm541
Oct 10, 2011, 12:36 PM
not at all.

the only time i needed a dvd drive was to install windows which i was able to get by by using a usb

MultiFinder17
Oct 10, 2011, 12:38 PM
I've had my Air for two years now, and have missed having the optical drive once. It was about a month after I got it, and I wanted to give a friend of mine some music while I was at her apartment. After a few seconds of "Ugh, no optical drive" I just threw the files on my thumbdrive and gave them to her. Problem solved, and I honestly haven't missed it since :)

onthecouchagain
Oct 10, 2011, 12:46 PM
It'd be a lie if I said I didn't miss it entirely, but it is rare. Once in a while, the convenience of having a DVD drive to watch movies on to go would be nice.

But I certainly don't miss it in respect to the Air's weight and thin frame. It is worth the trade off in the big picture.

iAppl3Fan
Oct 10, 2011, 12:49 PM
I had a PC laptop for years and hardly ever used its built-in dvd drive. The transition to MBA was fine as I still don't have a need for it. The only time needed is to import CD/DVD which is rare.

glen e
Oct 10, 2011, 12:57 PM
not for in/out stuff once I discovered dropbox...

Mak47
Oct 10, 2011, 01:05 PM
I have one of the new Mac Minis with no optical drive. I can't rightly say I miss it.

At some point I'll grab a cheap external drive for those just in case moments, but really it hasn't been missed.

There really isn't very much boxed software available anymore that isn't also available as a direct download, which is far more convenient anyway.

I decided on a MacBook Pro over the MacBook Air earlier this year because I was concerned about the optical drive. I now regret the decision, not that the MBP isn't great, it is, but the Air would be so much more compact to travel with.

Coarseman
Oct 10, 2011, 02:52 PM
Nope.

I actually hate having a Superdrive on my MBP as I found it to be a complete waste of space-the number of times I used it in the last year: 1....

CardboardGiant
Oct 10, 2011, 03:23 PM
I don't miss it at all.

All my software needs can be downloaded digitally.

reputationZed
Oct 10, 2011, 03:33 PM
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No more than I miss my floppy drive. Actually I miss the floppy more. Loading 30 to 40 floppies to install a software package was so much more thrilling then tossing a single CD/ROM in the drive and letting it do it's thing. There was always that fear in the back of your mind that somewhere around floppy 37 you would get a system error.

mac jones
Oct 10, 2011, 03:35 PM
I you miss these you are insane.

but space is a problem. I bought a Lacie TB drive. Problem solved.

Nioxic
Oct 10, 2011, 03:44 PM
i've got a desktop pc with a dvd burner..

i only use it when im burning some data, or installing windows..

so basically i use it very rarely.

i see no use for it at all on my MBA

bp1000
Oct 10, 2011, 04:03 PM
Rarely need a disc drive these days.

Everything is shared over the net and videos music can be streamed.

I do need a dvd writer for making my home movies etc... so it just sits on my desk and i plug in when i need it. I used it tonight for example, watching a movie which i like to do in my study as i have a big monitor and a big lounge sofa next to my workstation.

Usual
Oct 10, 2011, 04:30 PM
I use a notebook, and I have never needed a disc drive for last one year :)

cfedu
Oct 10, 2011, 04:43 PM
What is a disc drive, better yet what is an iBook!!!

catchdry
Oct 10, 2011, 05:14 PM
I actually do miss the disc drive. For instance when I'm visiting my hometown or for holidays and vacations, I often feel the need to simply put in a newly bought dvd or to import a cd to iTunes so that I can sync it with my iPhone. I had a PowerBook 12" that will always be my favorite mac of all time. It had it all; power, small enough to take it everywhere all though it was a bit heavier than the 11" Air that I now use. I'm seriously considering buying a MBP 13" the next time, just because of the disc drive. I wish the screen was 11" on the MBP:)

IngerMan
Oct 10, 2011, 07:17 PM
I leave my portable disk drive right next to the clicker. :p

LizKat
Oct 10, 2011, 07:29 PM
Yes I would miss the disc drive if the MBA were my only machine. I can't stream video where I live, I don't have a TV set or anything to watch DVDs on except a laptop, so now when I watch DVDs, it's on an MBP or a really old 15" powerbook.

My all time fave machine was always the 12" G4 Powerbook. I regret giving my two away to family members now because of having so much trouble with my MBP WiFi connectivity, that stupid thing! I practically end up using the mbp ONLY for watching DVDs if I'm too lazy to fish out an ethernet cable on days the pro is misbehaving.

I love my MBA though. I have the original, and want to get the newer one sometime next year. No problems with the wireless on that thing, and the new ones really fly. Enjoy it if you buy it! :)

BadaBing!!
Oct 10, 2011, 07:57 PM
Have my MBA for only a week but even on my desktop PC, I barely use the disc drive so I don't miss it at all.. USB drives and Dropbox are more than enough in 2011 !!

gloss
Oct 10, 2011, 08:24 PM
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No more than I miss my floppy drive. Actually I miss the floppy more. Loading 30 to 40 floppies to install a software package was so much more thrilling then tossing a single CD/ROM in the drive and letting it do it's thing. There was always that fear in the back of your mind that somewhere around floppy 37 you would get a system error.

You're a Man.

buddybd
Oct 10, 2011, 08:50 PM
So far I used my external drive on the Air for a grand total of 1 time, and used that same drive on my desktop once as well. Both the times I was installing Windows.

Other than that I have so use for the external drive.

sporadicMotion
Oct 10, 2011, 08:54 PM
It's a bit of a shift but it's not as difficult as it seems. In the days of 250 Mbit internet connections, gigabit ethernet and wireless N; optical seems a little silly.

summitRun
Oct 10, 2011, 09:07 PM
Its really all about weight...+/- 5lbs vs +/- 2.5lbs. I will take the latter with a $30 external DVD drive any day, which I have only used once in the two months since its delivery.

Snesley Wipes
Oct 10, 2011, 09:08 PM
I came from a 15" MBP. The only thing I miss from that is the screen and vid card but not the DVD drive. I plan on going back to the pro next revision and it better NOT have a disc drive!

Asia8
Oct 10, 2011, 09:14 PM
My current laptop has a DVD drive, I only ever use it when installing an OS. And when I finally figure out how to install Windows via USB I hope wont even use it then.

I'd much prefer a lighter machine without a DVD drive but require at least 15" with a built in number pad, so I'm still waiting on apple.

Snesley Wipes
Oct 10, 2011, 09:38 PM
My current laptop has a DVD drive, I only ever use it when installing an OS. And when I finally figure out how to install Windows via USB I hope wont even use it then.

I'd much prefer a lighter machine without a DVD drive but require at least 15" with a built in number pad, so I'm still waiting on apple.

Make an ISO image Windows, then Bootcamp assistant will guide you through through putting it on a USB.

halledise
Oct 10, 2011, 09:48 PM
no don't miss it at all as I've an older MBPro that I can always burn or import from as needed

get used to it going forward as the next iteration of MBPros will be w/o optical drives

It's a bit of a shift but it's not as difficult as it seems. In the days of 250 Mbit internet connections, gigabit ethernet and wireless N; optical seems a little silly.

250 Mbits !!! - I'd love to live where you live - we're lucky to get 2.5 - 4 Mbps and this is on ADSL2+ :eek:

mac jones
Oct 10, 2011, 10:57 PM
I came from a 15" MBP. The only thing I miss from that is the screen and vid card but not the DVD drive. I plan on going back to the pro next revision and it better NOT have a disc drive!

Yeah, it's unlikely that they will continue the DVD drives. They can omit them and lower the price, as they have shown with the new Mac Mini's.

But you never know. They could do some skewed market research that give them crazy data and get afraid to move ahead. :D

Who knows what's going to happen with this company. Should be amusing.

TheRdungeon
Oct 10, 2011, 11:05 PM
took the disc drive out of my mbp for a HDD, up yours disc drives

peskaa
Oct 11, 2011, 02:04 AM
I have the Superdrive for my Air, but only used it to install software when I first got the notebook. After that I've had no need for it - although I can foresee future use when I buy updated software.

I certainly don't take it around with me, or miss having a drive in my day to day work.

bwhinnen
Oct 11, 2011, 02:22 AM
Haven't needed it yet. And I cannot remember the last time I used one on the old laptop either.

The only things I've installed on the MBA I purchased as downloadable images and most stuff I will take an ISO image of and keep on the NAS anyway using the desktop.

alphaod
Oct 11, 2011, 02:25 AM
I miss my optical drive all the time; that's why I have keep an USB drive with me.

I burn DVDs and such.

LordVic
Oct 11, 2011, 09:21 AM
I can't for the life of me think of a single thing a disc drive would give me today.

simple fact of the matter, Everything that you could put on a DVD disc can easily fit now on a USB memory stick. I have no use anymore of burning a DVD of data to transfer to other computers.

Game wise, anything that comes in DVD format, for the most part also comes online via download. Steam is a wonderful tool, especially since now a lot of the games I can buy once, and download for either my PC or my Mac.

Movies are all streamed for the most part. Netflix, Roger's on Demand, other sources. I haven't bought or rented a physical copy of a movie in the better part of 2 years.

The only time I've needed a disc drive in the last few years were painful windows installs on Netbooks and desktops. Every thing else i've used memory sticks for (or network shares)

johnpq
Oct 11, 2011, 10:53 AM
Make an ISO image Windows, then Bootcamp assistant will guide you through through putting it on a USB.

I"m getting an imac in a couple of days... upgrading from a G5. Can I make an ISO image of Windows on that old of a machine? Not looking for a step by step, if I can do it I'll go learn how!

Snesley Wipes
Oct 11, 2011, 11:04 AM
I"m getting an imac in a couple of days... upgrading from a G5. Can I make an ISO image of Windows on that old of a machine? Not looking for a step by step, if I can do it I'll go learn how!

Ya you can make an ISO anywhere, however, Bootcamp will want you to put that ISO on a USB in order to install windows. It needs that bootable media for the installation process.

johnpq
Oct 11, 2011, 11:16 AM
Ya you can make an ISO anywhere, however, Bootcamp will want you to put that ISO on a USB in order to install windows. It needs that bootable media for the installation process.

Gotcha, thanks.

John

stark4
Oct 11, 2011, 02:46 PM
yes i do miss my optical drive. I just got my MBA few weeks ago and i want to install Office 2011 in it. I'll have to borrow my friend's optical drive.

I also missed my Ethernet port since my wireless router broke yesterday.

those are temperary so i think i'll be ok later on.

reputationZed
Oct 11, 2011, 03:13 PM
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I you miss these you are insane.

but space is a problem. I bought a Lacie TB drive. Problem solved.

You spent $400 on an external hard drive and I'm the one that's insane?

csjcsj
Oct 11, 2011, 04:42 PM
I do miss it somewhat. Only because theres a new CD out that isn't on iTunes yet. Of course I also bought an external drive when I bought the MBA and haven't even removed the shrink wrap yet.

The only reason to go with a Pro over the Air is if you need the graphics card. That I **really** do miss. Illustrator and photoshop are noticeably slower on the Air.

dubAdub
Oct 11, 2011, 05:05 PM
Don't miss it at all. I bought a SuperDrive with it but it was a complete waste of money. I haven't used it.

reputationZed
Oct 11, 2011, 06:15 PM
I do miss it somewhat. Only because theres a new CD out that isn't on iTunes yet. Of course I also bought an external drive when I bought the MBA and haven't even removed the shrink wrap yet.

The only reason to go with a Pro over the Air is if you need the graphics card. That I **really** do miss. Illustrator and photoshop are noticeably slower on the Air.

Which reminds me of one of the best things about didtching optical media, never having to peel the frack'n shrink wrap off a jewel case again.

Gatteau
Oct 11, 2011, 07:13 PM
Been using a MBP without an optical drive for a while now. Don't miss it one bit.

vitzr
Oct 11, 2011, 07:15 PM
Not at all. I'd like to see them remove it from the MBP line as well.

The ultra thin, light, external USB optical drive I have is there for the rare times when I need it. That's a much better solution than a captive drive within the laptop I never use.

mac jones
Oct 11, 2011, 07:55 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_5 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8L1 Safari/6533.18.5)



You spent $400 on an external hard drive and I'm the one that's insane?


:D, good catch. And yes, I am insane BTW. :) (and broke)

alan111
Oct 11, 2011, 09:37 PM
I honestly do not remember the last time I used an optical disc drive....
I have the Apple Superdrive but never used it. It could be broken and I would't even know.

mrsir2009
Oct 11, 2011, 09:43 PM
I've got one on my MacBook Pro, and I don't use it at all anymore, thanks to the Mac App Store for almost all my software needs ;)

Sangdushi
Oct 12, 2011, 12:09 AM
I never use it

thejadedmonkey
Oct 12, 2011, 12:35 AM
I actually went back to a computer with a DVD drive. I admit I'm not using a mac (I switched back to PC's) but the promise is still the same. I got a computer that happened to have a DVD drive, but didn't think I'd need it. Since then I've used it a few times to install old games I had, rip some music, nothing major but I was glad to have it. Ironically, the one time I didn't use my DVD drive was for installing Windows 8.

I think as long as I have a computer with a DVD drive, I'll be fine, although I don't need it on this computer.

chrono1081
Oct 12, 2011, 02:07 AM
I don't miss it at all. Most everything I do is too big to fit on a cd/dvd anyway so they weren't much use to me.

MaxZero
Oct 12, 2011, 06:17 AM
Not at all, the disk drives of my previous iMac and Macbook Pro both broke so i've been pretty used to it

Abazigal
Oct 12, 2011, 06:29 AM
Funny. It was only after the release of the MBA that I realised that in the past few years, I had used my cd-drive just once - to install starcraft 2, and just how little of my HD space I actually took up (I watch most shows online, and whatever I download, I usually delete after watching it once).

I don't know if my experiences are indicative of others' user preferences, but I can safely say that the MBA's supposed limitations are really no drawbacks to me at all. :)

rickolis
Oct 12, 2011, 07:36 PM
It's 2011. Who uses CDs anymore? They've gone away the same way 3.5" disks went obsolete.

joe1946
Oct 12, 2011, 07:54 PM
I just received my 13" i7 256GB Air today and just ordered the Samsung slim silver ext DVD burner from Newegg because I have Windows 8 Dev Preview DVD that I might want to try .

Yaboze
Oct 14, 2011, 02:46 PM
I know you can share a DVD drive on another Mac or PC and use it on the Air, Apple had a page explaining how to do it (Remote Disk).

I have a question about this. Can you put a music CD in the other drive, go into iTunes and rip it to the Air? I am pretty sure I ripped everything in my CD collection already and have been using iTunes for about 4 years now almost exclusively. I have purchased some DRM MP3's from other sites, but anyway....

Will that work?

I'm seriously looking at 13" MBA (was looking at 13" MBP) now.

Thunder82
Oct 14, 2011, 02:47 PM
I wish they'd ditch optical drives in the Pros. Just imagine what they could do with that extra space..

Yaboze
Oct 14, 2011, 02:50 PM
It's 2011. Who uses CDs anymore? They've gone away the same way 3.5" disks went obsolete.

Well, nobody :), but people still use DVD's for certain media, like older OS's when using VM's, DVD movie playback, ripping music from CD's and stuff like that. Windows XP (for installing VM's) is still on CD, Vista and Windows 7 came on DVD's, Ubuntu can be a CD, etc.


With 8GB+ thumb drives, burning data to a DVD is kind of pointless now, but it can be handy at times. There lies the problem though, it's handy only once in a while and the other 364 days of the year you won't need it (and it takes up a lot of room).

JHUFrank
Oct 14, 2011, 05:26 PM
Not really. I have an el cheapo external to rip any movies or isos I may need.

MacGeekAZ
Oct 14, 2011, 06:36 PM
Okay. Sounds like I wouldn't miss it much, and an external drive is not expensive if I do decide to get one.

I am really getting intrigued by the MacBook Air.

Wendi

Gaelic2
Oct 14, 2011, 07:29 PM
I really hated giving up my floppy drive. I got over it in time and transitioned to the new disc drives. I didn't like giving them up either when CD and later, DVD drives replaced them. If it weren't for Apple, we'd still be using floppies! Change is inevitable, like it or not, and it usually makes life even easier in the long run. The same goes for DVD drives, perhaps hard drives and whatever comes after the Cloud.

VMMan
Oct 15, 2011, 11:48 PM
I would love it if Apple made a retro MBA with the original 6052 CPU from the Apple I, ][, //e with a 128 kilobyte extended memory card with double hi-res (80 column) graphics card and a 5 1/4" 143 kilobyte floppy drive.

I would seriously use that machine all day to play Taipan, Karateka, Ultima, or that EA game Larry Bird vs Dr J.

MaC rA mE
Oct 16, 2011, 12:26 AM
I don't miss the:
- spin noise
- read/write head click noise
- latency
- sms having to be on
- larger size
- slow boot time

256GB SSD samsung FTW

Aksta
Oct 17, 2011, 11:09 AM
What is a disk?

TheJing
Oct 17, 2011, 11:13 AM
Nope. I've never used the one on my Macbook Pro.

Chipg
Oct 17, 2011, 04:24 PM
No, I don;t miss it. I bout the Apple external CD drive, I have only used it once in 2 months (to install Windows 7 for boot camp). Now i'm going to put a SSD in an iMac I have and remove the CD and move the hard drive to that location. I'f I need to burn a CD I have the external Apple one to use.

Your not going to miss it unless your a DJ or work in the music industry.

Beanoir
Oct 17, 2011, 04:56 PM
Yes - but only very occasionally, but it's on those occasions it bus the hell outta me that I didn't have one.

I've bought an external superdrive now for those annoying times.

Would I want one built in...No, too much space for a device i'd hardly use.

jj48
Oct 18, 2011, 05:02 PM
I have to say, having had the 2011 MBA for a couple of months... there has been a couple of times it would've been useful to have that optical drive for a DVD or two (especially for the last week or two when I've had no internet connection at home!).

Having said that, I think the smaller form factor and lighter weight that have been achieved by ditching the optical drive are more than worth the compromise.

Gregabyte
Oct 18, 2011, 05:41 PM
I wanted to rip a CD from my collection today and couldn't :(

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