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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > Upgrading to Superdrive

Upgrading to Superdrive
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Oct 7, 2006, 11:54 AM
 
I was really wanting to upgrade to a Superdrive but was not sure how difficult the task would be. I am pretty "electronic savy," but I have never messed with putting together or taking apart a Mac. I have a PB G4 that has a combo drive. I was hoping to get some insight on whether or not the task would be managable if I had a day to sit down and do it, or if it required a whole lot more than just "swaping" the super drive for the combo drive???
     
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Oct 7, 2006, 12:06 PM
 
Depending which size you have it ranges from "freaking hard" to "oh kill me now." You can look at the guides at ifixit.com to see how to do it for your model.

The Pionner DVR-K05 is about $65 at NewEgg. Dremel off a few little tabs on the bracket and it fits perfectly. CompUSA will do the drive swap for $30.
     
jmault  (op)
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Oct 7, 2006, 12:35 PM
 
Is there a better, faster burning, option that the Mac superdrive that I can put in my PB G4? If so which drives do you recomend to replace my combo drive with?
     
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Oct 7, 2006, 10:22 PM
 
What is the "Mac superdrive"? Mac laptops shipped with a variety of SuperDrives over the years. The Pioneer DVR-K05 is the best/fastest.
     
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Oct 8, 2006, 10:50 PM
 
They have the Pioneer DVR-K06 now Mark (in Australia, you can't even buy the DVR-K05 anymore, unless you want to pay more than the DVR-K06). IMHO, these are the best slot-load DVD burners you can buy. Just remember that 8x burning is "up to" - it's really 5.5x across the disc, and 4x usually is best for a stable burn. Also remember some drives from vendors are set in firmware to be slave or master - some people have issues if it's set to slave so you may need a PC to reflash the firmware, then install into the PowerBook.
     
jmault  (op)
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Oct 9, 2006, 01:12 PM
 
Is the DVR-K06 a dual layer burner? Becuase I was thinking if it is not, do you think it would be a better choice just to get an external, dual-layer burner?
     
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Oct 9, 2006, 07:22 PM
 
Oops, I mean the K06.

Yes, it does dual layer -
Pioneer Slim DVD Burner With 5X DVD-RAM Write Black IDE Model DVR-K06 - OEM at Newegg.com says "DVD+R DL 4X"
     
jmault  (op)
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Oct 9, 2006, 11:37 PM
 
But uhhhh...since that is a slot loading burner are they, COMPUSA or whoever, going to have to cut something out of the side since there is only a small whole there to begin with???
     
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Oct 10, 2006, 03:20 AM
 
No - slot load means you only need a small slot wide/tall enough for the CD/DVD to fit into. If you have a 12" PB it's on the side, a 15" or 17" it's on the front. I recommend you get CompUSA do it if it's a 12", the 15" or 17" you could probably do youself, but probably better to get CompUSA to handle it. Most (if not all) slot-load drives come with a front bezel that can be taken off easily and removed, on a PC the bezel makes up part of the case, whereas in the PowerBooks the casing covers the drive so the bezel is redundant. I've replaced the UJ-826 from my Alu 15" with a DVR-K05, it drops right in with no problems. Just need to make sure the disc slides in and ejects properly before closing it all up.

I should point out the max speed you'll get from an internal burner is 5.5x on a +/-R and 4x on a DL disc (it may be slightly less, depending on the write speed and zones for burning). If you are serious about speed, get a Pioneer 111 in an external case. If you prefer to have an all-in-one laptop without the extra drive hanging around, get the DVR-K06.
     
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Oct 13, 2006, 04:57 PM
 
Wondering if anyone has any experience with the DL superdrive upgrade from mcetech?

Its $129 and they'll install for $49 (you ship your PB to them), or they have many affilitated installers around the country.

MCE Internal 8x SuperDrive Upgrade for PowerBook G4 with CD-RW, Combo or DVD-R Drive: MCE Technologies Online Store
     
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Oct 13, 2006, 09:18 PM
 
I'm pretty sure they're the DVR-K06. If you're happy spending nearly $180 US on getting it and having it installed + warranty it's worth it. You can get the DVR-K06 for about $75 + $30 installation (if it's true) from CompUSA. I personally upgraded my drive to a DVR-K05 - it's by far and away the best slot load drive you can get (excluding the DVR-K06) for the PowerBooks if it fits. Less picky about media. No raw disc read issues (so VLC works). Burns DL and SL media at 4x. It's great.
     
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Oct 13, 2006, 09:22 PM
 
CompUSA.com -> Services -> Technical Services -> In-Store Service Centers: Installations and Upgrades $29.99 first service; $14.99 each additional service
     
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Oct 15, 2006, 01:33 PM
 
does anyone know where I could get one in the uk?

seems my drive is failing - unable to burn cds now, and would always be worth an upgrade in speed. I've got a 15" titanium G4, so I think it'll fit...

Does anyone know reasonable re-fit shops in the uk or is it much better idea to do it myself?

Cheers!
     
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Oct 15, 2006, 05:20 PM
 
So is the K06 faster than the MATSHITA DVD-R UJ-857 i have in my MBP
     
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Oct 16, 2006, 06:11 AM
 
The DVR-K06 is faster and better. You can only fit it into the 17" MBP however (size issues) or older Alu or Ti PowerBooks. Sorry, no idea where to get one in the UK - if you can find a price search engine for the UK that'd be best, or buy from Froogle and ship from US to UK. Fitting it into a TiBook is easy, you can do it yourself without too much of a problem. Just takes time and patience.
     
jmault  (op)
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Oct 17, 2006, 08:44 PM
 
Does the DVR-K06 fit into the PB G4 12"???!!!
     
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Oct 18, 2006, 12:37 AM
 
Yes. Check on this forum, someone's just done it.
     
   
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