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Sony punts external BD burner at home cinemas

It's portable too

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Sony is well known as a maker of consumer-oriented Blu-ray Disc players, but now the Japanese giant's optical drive division wants to get into the nation's living rooms too.

Later this month, Sony Optiarc will release the BDX-S500U, an external BD writer with 3D support that's designed to be hooked up to your home entertainment system.

Sony BDX-S500U

"The external burner replaces the DVD player in the home cinema system," the company said.

Well, kind of. You can do this if your home cinema rig includes a netbook, notebook or desktop computer.

And indeed, SO also stressed that the BDX-S500U is darn portable, making it ideal to carry around with you for ad hoc back-up sessions and hotel room BD viewing.

Sony BDX-S500U

The drive comes bundled with CyberLink Media Suite 8 software for Windows, plus a blank 25GB disc to get your burning started. It's rated at 4x write speed for dual-layer BD-Rs, rising to 6x for single-layer BD-Rs and falling to 2x for BD-REs. All BDs are read at 6x, and it's happy to handle all the usual DVD formats and CDs.

It comes with a two-year warranty, SO said. There's no word yet on pricing. ®

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