Samsung's SE-S084D External Optical Drive Redefines Slim

A bunch of new netbooks launched at this year's International Consumer Electronics Show, but you'll still have to select an ultraportable (or larger) if you want a machine with an integrated optical drive. Still, Intel's new Atom N450 is likely to move quite a few more netbooks in early 2010, particularly amongst those who were waiting for the aged Atom N270 to be replaced. Optical drives aren't always needed, but when you do need one, you need one in the worst way.

Samsung seems to understand this better than anyone, this week introducing a prototype of its new slim external DVD writer, the SE-S084D optical disk drive (ODD). It was designed to be slimmer, smaller and more compact than any rivaling product, and it also uses a single USB port for power and data in order to eliminate the need for an external power brick. The drive features a metallic centerline and has claimed the iF Product Award Design; specifically, it's 20% smaller than conventional DVD writers and 25% lighter than Samsung’s conventional DVD writer. It was built to work within Windows 7 and even OS X, and it can provide a variety of speeds across varying media types: 24X CD-ROM, 24X CD-RW, 8X DVD±R recording, 5X DVD-RAM recording, 8X DVD+R Dual Layer recording, 6X DVD-R Dual Layer recording, 8X DVD+RW recording and 6X DVD-RW recording.

It will be released globally in Q2 of this year, but a price remains unknown.

“Because netbooks are designed for ultra mobility, they aren’t typically equipped with optical disc drives, which can potentially make booting from a CD or playing a DVD movie a problem,” said John Suh, director of OMS sales and marketing, Samsung Semiconductor, Inc. “But with the lightweight, portable SE-S084D Optical Disc Drive, you have the perfect on-the-go, stand-alone. And thanks to its USB BUS power source, you can write at maximum speed with no outlet in sight.”