iMac floppy argument doesn't justify DVD-less MBP

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Dark Goob, May 14, 2012.

  1. Dark Goob macrumors regular

    Dark Goob

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    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #1
    The original iMac lacking a floppy drive is often cited as justification for Apple's rumored removal of the DVD drive from the upcoming MBP. However this is BS.

    The original iMac was a desktop computer. You could easily add a USB-tethered floppy drive to it. This did not really affect you in a negative way, other than the fact that all those USB floppy drives were very slow.

    However the MacBook Pro is a portable computer. If you're someone like me that needs DVD, then you will have to carry around that annoying external USB thing with you everywhere.

    I throw my MBP into a sleek pocket in my camera bag. There is no space in there for an external USB DVD burner. However I need it.

    Even if I get a case that can hold it, I am often burning a DVD while sitting in my car, or even sometimes on a plane (pro photographer). Where do I put an external USB drive in that case...? Somewhere awkward.

    The current DVD drive in my MacBook Pro is flawless, fast, and reliable. Apple will replace it for free if it fails under my AppleCare agreement. I have used this service once or twice and it was critical for me.

    However if I buy a cheapo USB external DVD burner, most of them require TWO USB ports to operate. The MacBook Pro only has two USB ports. Therefore there is no way to directly burn a CompactFlash card to a DVD with this computer! It will first have to be copied to the hard disk, which basically doubles the amount of time for this operation.

    Further I would not put very much faith in the long-time durability of a $35 external USB DVD burner.

    So I hope Apple does not remove internal DVD as a BTO option for 15". I'm not going 17" ever.

    I use MacBook Pro because it's a swiss army knife, has everything I need built-in. I want to be able to boot from a DVD for startup volume recovery. I want to be able to burn DVDs for clients and install drivers for new hardware when I'm on location and don't have internet.

    DVD is a ubiquitous technology that makes it useful to hand people information on a DVD. It is an instant transfer of data from one person to another.

    When I go do research at the library, a lot of times the books have accompanying CDs or DVDs.

    I just don't want to have to deal with an external DVD drive on my portable computer. It's not like an iMac where I didn't care because it didn't matter. It matters when it's something that's portable, meaning you'll have to bring one extra THING around with you everywhere. On a desktop it doesn't matter because it just sits there and doesn't matter.
     
  2. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

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    #2
    Then keep using your current MBP. What's the problem?
     
  3. jj48 macrumors regular

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    UK
    #3
    True but for now rumours are rumours - and you've still got your current MBP to tide you over. After that bites the dust then you might be stuck with having to buy non-apple!

    EDIT: In fact by the time your current MBP bites the dust DVDs probably will have too.

    Seriously though I find it strange that (if the rumours are to be believed) apple will no longer produce any portable computer in its line up with either a CD drive or an ethernet port built in. Just doesn't really make sense to me that they would alienate the people who would still want these features. And this is coming from somebody who uses a MBA as a main computer.
     
  4. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

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    #4
    We've already had these conversations when the 2011 mini lost its optical drive. Somehow the world did not end.
     
  5. Meever macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2009
    #5
    You're a small minority. Barely anyone uses DVD drives anymore.

    By that logic we should still be rocking Floppies and Zip drives. There are people out there that still uses them afterall....
     
  6. Demosthenes X macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2008
    #6
    You may need and use your optical drive frequently, but the reality is, most users do not. I can count on one hand the number of times I've used the ODD in my MBP since I've owned it.

    Apple builds a limited number of models, and they build them to appeal to the widest possible customer base.

    And the downsides of carrying an external ODD are not nearly so bad as you make out. The Apple branded one is fairly small and light, and wouldn't be much of a burden to carry...
     
  7. SDAVE macrumors 68040

    SDAVE

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    #7
    Same happened when they removed the ExpressCard slot and added SD cards (except for the 17").

    Thing is, Apple deals with the general consensus vs supporting a small minority. This is why they don't cater specifically to the desktop publishing market anymore, but a mass market.

    The DVD drive will definitely go away in the new MBP.

    You have many (cheap) options now. USB sticks, external hard drives, online storage (Dropbox owns this market right now) and external optical recorders. You know how cheap a 4GB USB stick is nowadays? Or even 8GB?

    I don't see a point in burning discs anymore. Or ripping. Sure, you might need to watch DVD's from Redbox or whatever, but Apple has iTunes (which I never use) and thinks that you should rent from them instead. If you need to rip, just do all that at home with your external drive. Since ripping is not a daily task, I don't see a need to do it every day.

    If you're a super technical person, then you will definitely dislike the removal of the optical drive.

    I think that removing it is fine. I do pro work and I rarely use the DVD drive. I think more battery power, better GPU and lighter laptops are more essential than one that has a DVD drive. You can just keep your DVD drive in your car's compartment box if you need it all the time.
     
  8. samac92 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2008
    #8
    Exactly. The MBP is portable, so why make 100% of people carry a drive they don't need when you could remove it and let the minority (like you) who needs one to carry one? The ODD is going whether you like it or not, sorry.
     
  9. theLimit macrumors 6502a

    theLimit

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    #9
    Technology gets smaller, faster, cheaper, and better all the time. DVDs are a fifteen year old format, there are many alternatives for file transfer. Your current computer is not obsolete, these new CPUs won't make you a better photographer. You are not being forced to give up DVDs. You have time to adapt your workflow to more modern methods.
     
  10. Astroboy907 macrumors 65816

    Astroboy907

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    #10
    You are a minority. On an older iMac, all I use the dvd drive for is ripping and the occasional DVD to make a home vid. Apple killed iDVD like 4 years ago. 95% of the population is content to use flash drives... Which are actually better in many, many ways. Cheap, reliable, reusable (a big point over DVDs), less easy to destroy (scratches on DVD), and way more portable. I would not be surprised if apple removed it altogether, for everything. The population just isnt using them. I bought a pack of 100 around 5 years ago and have not used all of them yet.
     
  11. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    #11
    No, it's subjective. Whether you specifically use optical media or not is irrelevant. It's the general trend among the consumers that matters. No manufacturer mass produces any product for the anomalous consumers. If you have an unusual need then you need to deal with it. If you have figures that state that the majority of people heavily rely on regular use of optical media then present your data.
     
  12. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #12
    Most of us don't find the DVD that ubiquitous, and wouldn't want you giving us info on disks. People with phones, pad, netbooks, etc have been getting along quite well without DVD drives.

    Some slow-moving areas may continue to use them, but their time is over. Even people with older MBPs are ripping them out and inserting SSDs.
     
  13. Medic278 macrumors 6502a

    Medic278

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    Feb 1, 2012
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    New York
    #13
    While I would be disappointed if apple did away with an ODD it wouldn't be a deal breaker for me. I do a lot of work in final cut pro and the only time I really need to make a DVD is of a finished product, when I am working on it I back up to my external drive or USB flash drive for portability. For me and most other users having an external ODD at home to burn final copies probably wouldn't be a big deal. It really is just a matter of convenience.
     
  14. Astroboy907 macrumors 65816

    Astroboy907

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    #14
    Really... Lol I don't know ANYONE that uses *gasp* DVDs (!) for file sharing... Was this not why we invented Internet??
     
  15. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2012
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    #15
    Erm.

    A portable machine is MORE reason to drop legacy crap you don't need all the time.

    Why carry around a DVD drive 100% of the time that you may need 1% of the time, when that internal space could be better used for battery, cooling, additional RAM, additional storage, better GPU, etc?


    I say that as someone who DOES use the optical drive in my MBP from time to time. I'd still rather have a machine without it, but with better battery life or better cooling - and plug in an external drive those times I do occasionally use it.
     
  16. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

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    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #16
    So true. I so wish the optical drive was more battery or less case in my 2010 MBP.
     
  17. Dark Goob, May 28, 2012
    Last edited: May 28, 2012

    Dark Goob thread starter macrumors regular

    Dark Goob

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #17
    (The following is directly copied from my post that is archived here.) I was talking about the Mac Mini not having a DVD drive in that thread, which caused many users lots of problems with installing Boot Camp (including Lion erasing my external USB drive due to a bug in the mds process). However the data about DVD usage by Americans is still valid, as is the argument for why a DVD drive is a useful thing to have for many people, and the argument for why it should be considered a core feature (for those people, of which, obviously, there are many, even though you want to ignore them since they simply don't fit into Apple's picture of "the future" that it wants to inflict on all of us).

    I know that Apple hates backwards compatibility and hates to acknowledge things its customers wants, that it doesn't want them to want. For example, Blu Ray support, 3D support, and AVCHD playback support, to name a few. But frankly it ticks me off when users like you guys actually defend Apple's format war and would actually say that people buying a new Mac shouldn't even have the option of a built-in optical drive, even if they need it, even when statistics show most Americans still use DVD and there are plenty of other arguments why optical media ought to be a built-in core feature of a computer (especially a portable one).

    -=DG=-
     
  18. hkim1983 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    #18
    It's really simple. If consumers are that upset over (potential) lack of an optical drive in the upcoming refreshes, they will not purchase them. If a large enough group of people speak with their wallets, Apple will notice. At that point, Apple may re-evaluate their options.

    You can argue as much as you want for the inclusion of an optical drive, but your singular opinion means absolutely nothing in the grand scheme of things. The numbers will speak for themselves, and that is what Apple will listen to.
     
  19. pragmatous macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 23, 2012
    #19
    Seriously? DVD's are old news man. The future of software is via some appstore where you download it or it comes on a flash drive. if you're seriously burning your data on dvd you need to join us future folk that use flash drives. 8GB drive is like 5 dollars. If you can afford a Mac you can afford a 5 dollar flash drive.

    Transcend JetFlash 500 8GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive (Blue) Model TS8GJF500 - $6.94
     
  20. MichaelLAX macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2011
    #20
    Yeah: Maybe Apple should use a different name so that customers can differentiate them more easily; say "MacBook Air!"
     
  21. Dark Goob thread starter macrumors regular

    Dark Goob

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    Portland, OR
    #21
    With the Mac Mini you can add an external DVD and it just sits on your desk. It's kludgy but not THAT big of a deal.

    With a portable, now you have to carry around an external DVD with you. And that just sucks.
     
  22. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2012
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    #22
    No, the DVD drive is being removed because perhaps 1% of users ever use them. if that.

    There is still the possibility to plug an external in, but for the 99% of users who never use them, or only use them when at their desk, there is zero point carrying around the dead weight that could be better put to use as battery or an additional drive bay.

    Want to copy data off your mac while on the move? USB sticks of 16gb of bigger are easier to fit in your pocket. Plus there's airdrop and plenty of other options.

    "I refuse to change the way I work" is not justification to stop apple giving the other 99% of people better battery life, less weight, etc.
     
  23. Dark Goob thread starter macrumors regular

    Dark Goob

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    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #23
    Dude you're smoking crack. Blu-Ray is the future. I can buy 25 discs of 25gb each, with 50-year archival life, for $62.99 at Fry's. Lets see, that's about 10gb per dollar of archival, permanent storage.

    How in the world is a crappy made-in-china USB drive better than an archival Blu-Ray disc? Answer: it's not better, it's worse.

    When I get home from a photo shoot with three 8gb cards full, I burn them all to a Blu-Ray and now it's backed up -- even if my Time Machine drive and regular drive somehow both fail at the same time.

    I can write on that disc with a Sharpie what the contents of it are. Also can't do that with a USB stick. I can have a file with all my discs in a big archival binder, and I can flip through it and see the writing on the discs and find the one I'm looking for. Can't do that with USB sticks.

    I freaking hate USB sticks. For one thing, my Mac does not have any free available USB ports. They are all in use. I do not feel like unplugging any peripherals (you know, those things for which USB was invented).

    If I want to put in an optical disc however I can put it in the slot that was designed for the without having to detach a hard drive, sound interface, keyboard, modem, scanner, monitor, hub, or anything else that I don't feel like disconnecting.

    As for the "cloud"? Store all my most valuable works of art on someone else's computer, where anyone who hacks it can get all my files? Where if they decide to one day change their TOS or delete my files, then I have no say in the matter? Where if the internet is out, you can't access it? Where if you live in the boondocks or a third-world country and have crappy internet, it's worthless? Sorry, thanks but no thanks.
     
  24. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

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    Perth, Western Australia
    #24
    You realise that 2tb of hard drive is cheaper than 2tb of BD-R or BD-RWs, yes?

    You also realise that seagate is talking 30-40tb hard drives by 2014, yes? Try backing them up with BDROM.
     
  25. Astroboy907 macrumors 65816

    Astroboy907

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    #25
    Truly, the only time I use a DVD is to install some older software... 100% of the time this is at home. The DVD drive in my MacBook doesn't even work!!
    So on the occasional time I use the drive, it's mostly at home, where portability is not an issue. occasionally I rip a DVD. Most of the time at home....

    Here's a thought- I wen out of the country for 2 months. No access to a computer, much less a laptop. Even if I did have it, I would not use DVDs... I only brought home 1 DVD because I needed 4gb of memory for photos.

    Apple I ligitimatly believe is going to remove it. The main thing holding down thickness is the cd drive. And heres a thought, expanding a battery to fit there would give approx 50% more battery life... I'd take carrying around an 8gb flash drive for 8hours of battery

    ----------

    1) Buy a USB hub. Use mine all the time

    2) I think blu ray, if not catching on in the next 2 years or so, is going to fail. The format is just too old... CDs are like 20!

    The problem is, I would much rather stick my files on an Ssd or something and not have to deal with taking an hour to burn a 1 use device. SSD = 5 minutes and re usable. Anyways, if I am in a hurry, well, optical media sucks. Super slow transfer rates, and I can't even add to the disc? Maybe good for long term physical backups, but I would never use optical media in daily use..
     

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