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Pioneer ships first Blu-ray computer drive

Pioneer ships first Blu-ray computer drive

Pioneer Electronics announced today that it is shipping a Blu-ray computer drive, the industry's first. The BDR-101A uses blue laser technology to burn up to 25GB of data onto a single-layer Blu-ray disc. It ships with Roxio Blu-ray Disc software and blank TDK Blu-ray discs.

As expected, the BDR-101A write speeds are slow when writing to BD-R and BD-RE (rewritable): 2X. What's surprising is its slow DVD write speeds: 8X to single-layer -R and +R; 4X to -RW and +RW; 2.4X to double-layer +R; and 2X to double-layer -R. As soon as we can get our hands on a unit, we will test it and let you know how it performs.

Thinking about getting one? Hope you have $1,000 to spare, because this drive ain't cheap. Also expensive are the Blu-ray discs. A quick search on the Internet shows TDK BD-R discs for about $18 apiece and BD-RE discs for about $20 apiece. Yikes!