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Before you reach for another floppy disk, think about transferring your data onto a CD instead. The Philips OMNIwriter CD-ReWritable (CD-RW) drive gives you the ability to read, write and rewrite your own CDs over and over, while archiving large amounts of data.
The OMNIwriter is as easy to use as a floppy disk. It offers familiar drive-letter access and drag-and-drop functionality to copy data directly from a Windows application to your CD.
In addition, your CD-RW media can be read by DVD-ROM drives and can record DVD-readable discs. The OMNIwriter also works as a fully functional backup device to provide storage for large-capacity data.
The drive includes Seagate Backup Exec for CD-RW, a software suite for CD-RW drives. With the drive's one-button disaster-recovery retrieval capability, you can reboot your
system to automatically reload the Restore portion of the backup program if a hard-drive failure occurs. The suite also includes Adaptec's DirectCD and Creative Digital Research's HyCD Data, HyCD Copy and HyCD Music.
External, $699; internal, $599
Using standard CD-Recordable (CD-R) media, you can archive any data at 4X and play back at 6X with the Yamaha CRW4001 CD-RW drive. You can save or copy files, rename, rewrite or completely erase them at 2X. The CDs produced by the drive can be read on any CD-ROM drive suitable for PCs.
Other features include a 2MB buffer that virtually eliminates buffer underrun, SCSI or ATAPI interface options, and Flash ROM software that allows simple downloading of firmware upgrades. The CRW4001 offers session-at-once, packet writing, disc-at-once, track-at-once and multisession recording modes.
$699; with software, $749
Microboards Technology Playwrite 2060
Get two drives in one with the Microboards Technology Playwrite 2060. The drive handles 2X CD-R duties and adds CD-RW capabilities. You can erase and rerecord CD-RW media up to 1,000 times. The unit offers the drag-and-drop ease of packet writing, which allows you to write files of any size to the media.
Using the drive's CD-R functionality, you can make discs for distributing, archiving and storing any data that shouldn't be revised or deleted. CD-RW media from Ricoh has a protective layer to provide reliability during repeated overwriting. The unit is upward-compatible with DVD drives and Multi-Read CD-ROM drives.
Internal $580; external $645
The Nomai 680.RW CD-R/CD-RW drive lets you read any CD at 6X, and record and write at 2X. Using IDE, SCSI or parallel interfaces in external or internal versions, the drive features TAO, DAO, MS and incremental packet-writing recording modes.
It supports CD formats such as Digital Audio, CD-ROM (XA), CD-Bridge Multisession, CD-I, Video CD and universal disk format. The 680.RW ships with one CD-R medium and software utilities such as Easy CD Pro, DirectCD and CD Label Editor from Adaptec.
Internal IDE or SCSI, $549; PC external parallel, $599; PC external SCSI, $649
MDI CD-R Express
Crank out compact discs within minutes using the MDI CD-R Express writable disc system. It writes at 4X, reads at 6X and has a 2MB buffer to help prevent data-flow interruption. You can create single-session, multisession, digital audio and mixed-mode discs. Multisession capabilities allow you to add data sporadically or all at once. CDwrite software, a premastering utility included with the unit, features a graphical display of the directory tree and minimizes a CD's recording duration.
$895 to $995