Apple Patents Mini CD/DVD-ROM Adapter For Slot Loading Drives

Discussion in ' News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Nov 29, 2007.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple has issued a patent application for an adapter to convert mini CD/DVD-ROMs to standard 12 cm size for use in slot-loading drives found on many of Apple's computer models.

    Apple points out that the use of reduced-size media when possible would reduce shipping, manufacturing, and packaging costs. However, such media cannot be played in slot-loading drives that are designed to only accept standard-sized 12 cm media.

    As a solution, Apple presents an adapter that would fit around reduced-sized media, making the media work as if it were standard 12 cm media in slot-loading devices.


    The patent application, which was first published last Thursday, was filed in May of 2006 and was brought to light today by AppleInsider.

    Raw Data: Patent Application #20070271577

    Article Link
  2. macrumors Penryn


    Mar 23, 2005
    Nintendo Wii slot drive anyone?

    I've seen these adapters before though.
  3. macrumors 6502

    Oct 24, 2003
    How does the Wii manage to handle Gamecube discs now? That's a much nicer way of handling smaller discs than an adapter would be.
  4. macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2005
    Brussels, Belgium, Europe
    Hang on, I've one of those for adapting CD single to play in a normal CD drive???
  5. Administrator/Editor


    Staff Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    Yeah, the old-school ones from the '80s when 3" CD singles were rather popular in the UK.

    The argument for these foldable ones seems to be that including a standard one is the same as issuing a full-size CD. Why don't computer manufacturers just include a regular adapter or two in the box with their slot-loading machines? You don't need an adapter with every mini CD.

    Wii technology is certainly an easier option for end-users, but does anyone know the drive height of those Wii drives? (ie. Would such a drive fit in laptops?)
  6. macrumors 6502

    Mar 20, 2003
    I just wish the odd size/shape CD and DVDs would just die out. I'd hate to have to keep an adapter around. I don't see how making smaller CDs and DVDs could save enough money to justify the pain in the a$$ they cause.
  7. macrumors 6502a

    Sep 25, 2003
    Some slot loading drives handle 8cm discs without a problem, it just depends on the drive and if it's designed to do it or not.
  8. Editor emeritus


    Jul 10, 2003
    Falls Church, VA
    Yes, the Wii slot drive can handle smaller disks (gamecube games). However, try doing something like that with your MacBook, MacBook pro, iMac, or whatever, and you'll be making a trip to a Mac genius station.

    It would have been nice if Apple had included a Wii-like drive in all of their computers so they didn't have to deal with an adapter, but they didn't.

    Remember that reduced sized media = reduced packaging = good for environment as well.
  9. macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

    Mar 17, 2005
    London, UK
    I'm pretty sure its a slimline drive as is. Its definitely not full size at least, the whole Wii's the size of a full size device!!
  10. macrumors 65816


    Mar 15, 2005
    One more thing to carry in your laptop bag. I've never had a smaller than regular sized CD for anything other than novelty trade show stuff. And these were in funky shapes - like a house or a brick. Where are those adapters? :D

    Will shipping smaller than 12cm media really save that much money in manufacturing and shipping costs? Smaller disks = less capacity too.
  11. macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Oct 9, 2006
    I am kind of wondering how they would paten something like that. To me it just common senses that something like that would be formed (which means it might not hold up if apple tries to sue any one over it)

    Also I though there where items like that already out there long before apple filed the patented.

    Now how the Wii does it is another story. I am kind of wondering how they do it on the Wii.
  12. macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2006
  13. macrumors 68020


    Jul 21, 2004
  14. macrumors 65816


    Mar 15, 2005
    Another item to sell on the Apple Store, the iFoldingMiniCDToFullSizeCDAdapter. Catchy name!:p
  15. macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2007
    Same argument can be said about printers. Why doesn't the printer manufacturers include the USB cable? Makes NO sense.
  16. macrumors 68000


    Jun 9, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    So instead of a sub-notebook completely scrapping the optical drive, maybe Apple will be releasing one with a sub-optical drive?
  17. macrumors 65816

    Jun 25, 2007
    Bellevue, WA
    My Sony CD Walkman comes with the 8cm CD adapter too. Yay, it's a slot-load portable CD player. It works okay with my TiBook.
  18. macrumors 65816

    Clive At Five

    May 26, 2004
    St. Paul, MN
    Are we sure this is Apple's filling or even their project? Or is it just this Tony Fadell guy?

    It seems odd that Apple would care to develop something so... lame.

    It sort of reminds me of:

    Apple, who always seems so concerned with keeping it easy for the consumers, should probably just opt for the slot-loaders that read both sizes of disc.

    If this IS Apple-related, one has to wonder... why all the new interest in mini discs? Trying to make everyone happy by putting a mini optical drive in an ultra-portable or something? That would be a waste of an optical drive. =P


  19. macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Oct 9, 2006
    it depends on which side you are on. For us individuals they seem to cost a because it an odd ball item. But in huge numbers they are cheaper. They the plastic more effectively and they can get more disk out each sheet they stamp them out of us. Add in the fact it cost less to mail them.
  20. macrumors 68000

    Oct 8, 2003
    Or why did they used to sell electronics in the UK without a plug? ;)

    That said, all printers I've bought had USB cables in the box.
  21. macrumors 6502

    Sep 30, 2007
    Boston, MA
    I live in the US and never have seen a smaller disc then the dvd/cd size.....are they prevalent in digital filming or something? I've seen PSP discs and Nintendo GameCube discs but this seems kind of irrelevant....
  22. macrumors 603


    Sep 19, 2003
    Canada, eh?
    Why bother with a CD at all? We are getting to the point where anything you could fit on a miniCD (what, 180 megs or so?) could easily be downloaded over the internet.

    If they really want to impress me, they should come up with a disposable, inexpensive, mini-USB-storage chip that would store the desired content.
  23. macrumors 6502

    Nov 14, 2003
    Goodyear, AZ
    Yeah...My thought precisely. Why not just put more R&D into those drives instead of a clumsy adapter?
  24. macrumors 68040


    Jun 27, 2006
    Rhode Island
    If Nintendo can pull off a slot loading drive that can handle both regular and small sized disks, why can't Apple? :mad:
  25. macrumors 6502a

    Sep 30, 2005
    Green Bay, WI
    Odd. My slot-load iMac took my 3" Sony Mavica CDs all the time, never a problem.

    And I have an adapter too, came with my Sony camera. So this really is nothing new.

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