This morning, even though the dual-layer DVD media isn’t available yet, I picked up a Sony DRU-700A dual-layer DVD recorder. The intent was to externalize it so I can use it with both my Windows XP Pro Box and my G4 PowerBook. The DRU-700UL external version isn’t available for a couple more months, so I also picked up a Manhattan USB 2.0 external 5.25” case for the burner. The case didn’t come with instructions, but putting the two together wasn’t at all difficult. Total cost: $260. Considering the DRU-700UL will be $300, this seems a better solution.
I installed the bundled Nero software that came with the drive onto the XP Pro box without a hitch, restarted the computer, plugged the enclosure’s USB 2.0 and power cables in, and fired it up. The Windows machine recognized the drive almost immediately, as did the Nero software. Apparently, creating a portable version of this drive is a piece of cake.
The real test was next. Various reviews on the internet indicate the DRU-700A may not be recognized by any of Apple’s iApps, but that it is recognized by Toast 5.2.3 and will probably be better off with Toast 6. But my question was how Apple’s DVD Studio Pro might recognize the drive, particularly via the USB 2.0 connection. I safely disconnected the drive from the XP box’s USB connection, plugged it into the USB port on the back of the G4, and turned it on. The OS X 10.3.3 System Profiler showed it as being as a Drive Type of CD-RW/DVD-RW, but under Disc Burning it read “Not Supported”. Even so, I went ahead and opened the older DVD Studio Pro 2 with an empty project and hit Build/Format in the toolbar.
When the Build & Burn dialog opened, the DRU-700A was happily listed in the Output Device dropdown box on the General tab. On the Disc/Media tab, I was able to select 8.54 Gigabytes in the Disc Media dropdown, and Layer Options [Single/Dual], Direction [OTP/PTP], Dual Layer Break Point, and Number of Sides [One/Two] were enabled. When I set Number of Sides to Two, Disc Side [Side A/Side B] was also enabled.
Now that I know there’s recognition from within DVD Studio Pro, I’ll go ahead and attempt to burn a single-layer DVD project from the PowerBook tomorrow from within DVD Studio Pro 2. Even though System Profiler indicates disc burning is not supported, I have a little faith this might actually work. If it does, I’ll take it up a notch later with a FireWire enclosure.
Keeping my fingers crossed …