External Drive... Did you buy it?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by gregbeaty, Mar 19, 2008.

  1. gregbeaty macrumors newbie

    Mar 19, 2008
    Hi all,

    I'm probably going to pick up the MacBook Air this weekend. I'm wondering how many of you who currently own one, either bought or didn't buy the external super drive and your rationall for your decision.

    Then lastly, do you regret that decision? Those of you who bought it, do you use it? Those of you who didn't, have you been in a position where you wish you would have?

    I understand it's only an extra $100, but I don't want to spend money on something I'm just going to have to waist the money on and carry around for nothing.


  2. fk51785 macrumors regular

    Feb 5, 2008
    South Florida
    I bought it because MBA is my only computer and I needed an optical drive.
  3. stakis macrumors member

    Oct 25, 2007
    Bought it, but I can't really give an answer as to why.... I know you need it to install windows over bootcamp... but I recommend not getting it, and see if you really need it... mine just sits in my desk drawer doing nothing....
  4. BWhaler macrumors 68030


    Jan 8, 2003
    I bought one, mostly for convenience's sake. Sure, the remote disk looks interesting, but for 99 bucks, I can be sure of no headaches when installing software, etc.

    I recommend it.
  5. jlbrown23 macrumors member

    Aug 18, 2007
    Don't get it. I didn't and have zero regrets. Most drivers & you can download & install, file transfers can be done with flash drives. For other stuff use the wireless drive feature - a little slow, but how often will you need to use it? I rarely use the optical drive on my MacBook either - they're the floppies of the future. I think that there is a compulsion to get an optical drive because people are so accustomed to having one available, but think about how much you actually USE it. I've had an IBM X40(with external DVD drive) for about 3 years for work, and can't even tell you where the power cord for the drive is these days because I never use it.

    I think a lot of folks get the Superdrive because it IS a very attractive piece of hardware, but if you need it all that often you sort of defeat the purpose of the Air(it's portability. I see it as almost an affront to the Air to get one).

    Here is a suggestion - DON'T get a Superdrive for 60 days after you buy the Air. If after that time you feel you are missing out, then buy one. My guess is once you get by the initial urge & figure out how easy it is to get around the times you THINK you need one, you'll be glad you held on to your $100. It is easier to buy one than to unbuy one.
  6. iJeff macrumors newbie

    Mar 11, 2008
    Good advice. I bought it and only used it once to reinstall Leopard (took out printer drivers, GarageBand and iDVD).
  7. rom macrumors regular

    Jun 7, 2006
    Bought my MBA bare with only the USB Ethernet adapter (only because it was discounted). I don't use the USB Ethernet adapter that much and I do not miss the Superdrive (though I am thinking of getting one, maybe this May). Used Remote Disc to re-install the OS. :D
  8. raremage macrumors 6502a

    Nov 21, 2005
    Orlando, Florida
    It's going to depend on your individual needs. I bought one because from time to time I need one. If you can make it with the remote disk only, great! For the way I work I don't need it often, but from time to time it's a must.
  9. smirrors macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2008
    I agree ... I've already used mine half a dozen times for exactly that.

    The wireless networking is easy - and great for copying files to and from the MBA to save space on the HD. But if you ever want to write CD's or DVDs', - the External drive is a no brainer for that money.
  10. isdereks macrumors newbie

    Mar 17, 2008
    Bought it only because I knew there would be times when I would not have access to a remote drive.
  11. hotdamn macrumors 6502

    Jan 24, 2007
    Ottawa, ON, Canada
    you must have not heard of eBay, sir :)

    for what it's worth, I did not buy one, because I am a rebel.
  12. mcvaughan macrumors 6502a

    Aug 9, 2007
    Houston, TX
    Bought one, but I never use it. I guess it's good to have one though, just in case. Same thing with the ethernet dongle...
  13. pughchrism macrumors member

    Mar 9, 2007
    bought one. don't like the thought of remotely loading any operating sys and did think using the superdrive would be less hassle. want the ability to watch my dvd's independent of any other sys.
  14. mykoljay macrumors member

    Feb 1, 2008
    Tried to buy one with the mba, but they were out of stock. I haven't had one for the past month and haven't missed it.

    I want one just in case, especially on trips to watch dvds, but I was stuck in the airport 2 weeks ago and watched 2 rentals from itunes.

    This is my primary computer, so I guess I'll buy one when I need one...$90 after corp discount isn't that bad.
  15. Kinetic macrumors member

    Jun 29, 2007
    I bought it but at first it was only because I read so many horror stories of folks not being able to get remote disk to work right (especially when reinstalling Leopard). I didn't want to have my first MBA experience be colored by that disappointment. I used it a lot to install software and I used it just the other day when a friend brought over a photo disc and I wanted to take a look at it.
  16. Abq-Pete macrumors newbie

    Mar 18, 2008
    You can also try using any external USB DVD/CDROM drive (powered of course) you may have already. I used one from my collection of PCs and it worked just fine.
  17. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

    Feb 9, 2005
    The good side of the grass.
    I bought one and am glad I did. Very handy when you don't want to tie up two machines for simple software loading. Worth the $100.

    Bought an ext. HD too. 80G with a hard drive that's not really laptop tested (as far as I know..) I feel it was a wise decision. Time machine makes it pretty easy for backup.
  18. t4cgirl macrumors member

    Feb 22, 2008
    I didn't -- sort of daring fate to screw me, I skipped the external drive.

    After accidently installing an old XCode, I needed to access my Leopard DVDs. Literally five minutes later I was pulling the files i needed from Remote Disk via my XP desktop workstation.

    Try it out, and let's see how far we get :)
  19. joefrank64k macrumors 6502


    Feb 12, 2008
    I bought one so that I could install Win XP Pro with Fusion and I just wasn't ready to totally say good-bye to the optical disc drive.

    Now that I've had it a month or so, I've used it two or three times simply because I had it (in other words, I could have used my Vista desktop to remotely install the software but used the SD because it is faster), and now I realize, just as other posters have pointed out, that between remote disc and a 16GB flash drive, there is no reason to have it, except to save a walk upstairs to drop a disc in the Vista rig (or transfer files to the flash drive)!

    If you're on the fence, I say hold off and see how it goes...
  20. jlbrown23 macrumors member

    Aug 18, 2007
    I would say that "just in case" isn't a good reason to spend $130 + tax(for ethernet & drive). If you find a sudden need, THEN head to the Apple store or Best Buy and get one. Or, as another poster pointed out, any old external optical drive you have lying around will work. I just keep thinking of the IBM X40 I have had for 3 years, and how I never use the Ethernet or external drive on the thing any more. I agree that it would be a pain in the neck to reinstall an OS over remote disk, but how often do you really need to do that? The one time every year or two that you do, just start it before you go to sleep and it will be done long before you wake up.
  21. fredrickyoon macrumors regular


    Feb 14, 2008
    Seoul, South Korea
    I decided to purchase it and used it a few times. Some will think that the extra 100 dollars is a waste, but I purchased it anyways, because you never know when you'll need it.
  22. hotdamn macrumors 6502

    Jan 24, 2007
    Ottawa, ON, Canada
    10.6 hahah
  23. Garemz macrumors regular

    Feb 7, 2008
    Edmonton Alberta Canada
    Bought one and I'm Glad I did, I burn music for my car and 2 times a year i reformat my Hard-Drive so will need to Superdrive to do that.

    It gives that security feeling knowing you have it on backup ready for use, it dont matter if you use it once a year, the point is if you need it it's there.

  24. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

    Feb 9, 2005
    The good side of the grass.
    Problem is, always need it when they're all closed.

    Just got taxes done, acct. handed me a cd. No more paper copies they told me. Don't feel comfortable using remote disk w. such sensitive info. Just call me old fashioned, or just old.

    I think for $100 a usb powered superdrive in such a svelte enclosure is money well spent for just such instances.
  25. SFStateStudent macrumors 604


    Aug 28, 2007
    San Francisco California, USA
    I'm glad I bought it...

    like other posters I just finished my taxes from the H&R Block Taxcut Disc they gave out at MWSF '08, so I gave the MBA SuperDrive a shot and it did rather well. Not sure if I'm even 80% remote disc confident yet. :cool:

Share This Page