Is Super really Super?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by beria, Apr 25, 2005.

  1. beria macrumors newbie

    Mar 4, 2004
    I am going to order a new 12" PowerBook in the next few weeks (When Tiger comes). I am just not sure wether to get the Superdrive or not. I am a PhD student in the field of molecular biology and won´t do any video stuff aside of watching DVD. I know that the SD version of the PB also has 20GB more Discspace. The difference is about 200 Euros here in Europe and I´m not sure if the upgrade it is worth the money for me. I would be thankful for any opinions on this topic.
  2. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
    Very handy for archiving & backing up stuff. Instead of CDs you can burn DVDs.

    Now that blank DVD prices have come down, this aspect alone makes it worth it IMHO.
  3. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    Well I kind of regret not getting a superdrive, not that it was an option on the iBook at the time. As for the extra hard drive space, I'm pretty sure you'll be able to get Apple to put in a bigger one for you, of course it'll cost a little more though.

    As laptops are hard (and therefore expensive) to upgrade further down the track, I recommend getting it maxed out. I really doubt you'll regret it.
  4. efoto macrumors 68030

    Nov 16, 2004
    Cloud 9 (-6)
    Get the SD

    I just recently (in Feb. '05) received a 12" PB w/ SD and I love it, completely worth every extra penny I spent on it.

    I am a bio-medical engineering student, no video here either, but I still find it very useful. I purchased a cake-box of Ridata DVD+R (100pk) for only 24 USD from, so the blanks are definitely dropping in price which makes backing things up to DVD very realistic.

    Aside from video capabilities, just being able to burn and have a 'removable drive' of 4.4Gb is awesome! Personally, for the added cost (which based on the whole is minimal) I would say go for it. As stated above, portables are very hard to upgrade down the road, and even if you only use it once in a while, I would still argue you get it because for those few times it is amazing.

    Just a reference, but copying a DVD movie (single-layer) and burning it took less than one half hour with 8x SD. (read entire disk, burn entire disk). Burning only takes (I think 8-12 minutes) for a full sl dvd +/- r. I have not tried RW no comments there.
  5. 840quadra Moderator


    Staff Member

    Feb 1, 2005
    Twin Cities Minnesota
    It is worth it.

    I use it to Archive, and when I rip DVD's I compress them and burn them onto DVD as smaller files, that way I can have 2 or more full feature movies on one DVD, and bring them to work on my Dell laptop and watch during slow nights.

    So far I have been happy with the unit installed in my Powermac, and I bet I would have hated myself if I didn't have it.
  6. homerjward macrumors 68030


    May 11, 2004
    fig tree
    get the superdrive. when i first got my emac i said "well, i'm prolly not gonna use it but it's more 'future proof.'" well it turns out i can't live without it. i use cheap philips dvds i got at circuit city 25 for 8 bucks and they're fine. im thinking of flashing my 117D (single layer only, 8x) to a 108 (16x single, 4x dual) using some hints from xl8yourmac for even more capability as i find myself today wishing i could burn a 7gb folder to a single dvd and trying to figure out how to split it
  7. beria thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 4, 2004

    Right, there are lot´s of advantages but the 200 bucks more will REALLY HURT my bank account, plus i can get a external FW Superdrive when I need it. I doubt that I will burn that much DVD´s or need to save several GB of data when I´m on the move (Travelling to congresses and so on).
  8. gangst macrumors 6502a

    Dec 27, 2004
    i'd definately recommend the getting the superdrive. i personally was in the same predicament at the time of purchasing my 12" powerbook. but in the end opted for the superdrive and have not looked back, at first i thought i'd get very little use from it but now i use it pretty much every day copying dvds, backing stuff up and making idvd. you said you wouldn't have much video use for it, but i think that for anyone else in this situation thee idvd use is a good enough reason to purchase a superdrive.
    Plus the extra 20gb will come in handy if you plan to keep the powerbook for a few years.
  9. whooleytoo macrumors 604


    Aug 2, 2002
    Cork, Ireland.
    Just to balance all the other comments.. ;)

    I got a SuperDrive with my 17" iMac, and have used it once. Unlikely to get one again (at least, until the iTunes Movie Store opens!)
  10. johnnowak macrumors 6502

    Jul 24, 2003
    New York, New York
    Look at it this way:
    When you sell it in a few years, people are going to really expect DVD-R capability. $200 more now might get you $150 more when you sell it later on.
  11. efoto macrumors 68030

    Nov 16, 2004
    Cloud 9 (-6)
    I completely understand the financial impact, I was split too when I was finally ready to order because although you can argue it isn't 'that much more', it still is for some of us who are less fortunate....or poor financial planners like myself :p

    I did not think I would use it hardly at all, and purchased it on the premis of future proof and 'neat', plus I am an ameatur photographer shooting raw images which take up a lot of disk space. I have found it to be great (although I do not have one in my PC....which more than likely would serve the same purpose).

    If you don't get one factory installed, when you do look to get an external, don't get the Apple Superdrive or whatever their external model is called. There are much better, faster, and cheaper external drives available if you get to that point. Plus, lightscribe, which to my knowledge is not on the Superdrive, would be awesome to have if you are getting another brands burner anyway ;)
  12. BornAgainMac macrumors 603


    Feb 4, 2004
    Florida Resident
    I regretted not getting a superdrive with my Powerbook. Even when it would have been only a 4x drive at the time.
  13. benbondu macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2004
    I didn't get a superdrive with my powerbook. I don't really miss it. Like you I viewed it as being primarily useful if you're making dvd movies. There is the option of using it for backing up files, but if you ask me..... for $200 I'd rather have a 250-300GB external hard drive. (there are frequently deals like that on the web) If you need more space than that, DVD-R might be a more economical choice (although more of a hassle organizing 100 disks in my opinion).

    I'll go against the options of most other people here and not recommend the superdrive. It's a necessity if you're into DV, but for just backing stuff up there are other options.

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