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on June 27, 2012
This "Apple USB Superdrive" is basically the exact same thing as "Apple Macbook Air USB Superdrive", except with the new Macbook pro's shipping out without an internal disc drive, they just decided to drop the "Air" from the Superdrive.

What is wonderful about this drive is that it only requires one USB Port. Often you'll find external drives requiring 2 USB ports, one for Power, and one for data. On a laptop with as few USB Ports as Apple ships with, this is borderline unacceptable. As a computer Engineer, I need at least 1 port free for various interfaces, so an external drive that requires both my usb ports just wont work.

Design: While I have my gripes about Apple, build quality is not one of them. This thing is sturdy, thin, and requires a minimal amount of desk space. I actually fashioned a "bookstand" like enclosure which makes it vertical, which means it takes up even less desk real estate.

Speed: I didn't notice any major difference in speed between a medium quality laptop internal disc drive and this one.

The one thing I wish it had: Blu-ray support. I can dream can't I? That said, discs are on their way out. Which is why I'm okay with the superdrive being seperate from my laptop. I only use it when I'm at my desk anyways.

All Said and done: If you already have the superdrive for the air, don't get this one, its not any different, at least not enough to notice. If your computer does not have a disc drive like the air and retina pro, this is the drive to get, if you plan on using it for anything besides emergency purposes. If you plan on using an external drive 1-2 times a year, there are cheaper options out there. That said, this one is a great blend of build quality, ease of use, and not using a ton of my valuable ports.

Update: I had a chance to look at an air superdrive again, the USB Cord does appear to be a couple inches longer on the new superdrive. This is actually a much appreciated addition, I had forgotten how short the old USB cord was. I wouldn't have had room to plug it in from the back of the desk with the old cord length, I do now.
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on January 17, 2015
It gets only 2 stars not because of it's performance but because of a problem with compatibility. I ordered this because the CD/DVD drive in my MacBook Pro ( 10.6.8 ) went out. I got it and found that it was not compatible with my computer because my laptop ( which I got in 2011 ) was too old and the drive, when hooked up would not work. I wish I'd known this before I ordered it because it was really what I wanted. Otherwise, I was impressed with it's sleekness and that you can push the disc in and eject it without the use of a tray which is what most other models seem to have. It's slim and the cable is attached not plugged in so there is no problem with losing the cable. The cable is not very long, that might be an issue with some people. The silver matches the housing on the laptop. Just wish they'd made it compatible with any MacBook Pro. Be sure to check before you order it. I did plug it in and it would not take a DVD under any circumstance. Again, I wish it was a Universal external drive or at least functional for any Mac, no matter the age. No alternatives from Apple are available. I got a Samsung after this and I'll be sending it back. Still looking for a good external drive.
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on March 28, 2013
PRO's:
--Very quiet operation
--Familiar slot-load mechanism if you've been using Apple stuff for the past years
--With your optical drive-less Mac, it Just Works. No compatibility issues.

CON's:
--USB 2.0 cable might be a tad short for some
--Joint connecting cable to rear of drive seems rather under-engineered for something from Apple; concerns with long-term durability
--Pricey when compared to some external CD/DVD drives
--It Just Works -- until a warped or damaged disc gets stuck. See next con...
--No forcible eject (paperclip-accessible) hole. If you can't get a disc out, disassembly of the drive might be necessary (ugh)

BOTTOM LINE:
--Not my favorite product from Apple. For the price, it should have a standard USB 2.0 connector--or at least *some* kind of replaceable cable on the rear of the drive's external case. This might not be too big an issue for me and not carrying with me while I travel (it's dedicated to home use with a Mac Mini or 2013 MBA), but I would be nervous about long-term wear on the cable if moved around a lot. A forcible eject button/pinhole would be appreciated. Beyond that, it's quiet, relatively fast, and it Just Works.
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on May 14, 2015
Is exactly what it seems. A basic drive, aluminum, attached USB cable that plugs into (in my case) a recent vintage iMac, works with media software and controls, and is doing fine with old DVDs and music CDs. Commonly described nits are true: short USB cable, must use a precious USB port on computer (can't plug into basic USB 3.0 hub, and no ability to add blu-ray and no upgrade model/software from Apple. And is a bit pricey. But I knew these when making a purchase decision. I have not found additional nits based on my use.

I like the disk insert and eject distances ... push a disc mostly in before drive grabs disc, and eject pushes disc out far enough to handle but no farther. So no chance of disc moving mostly outside the drive without your hand on the disc. This is an issue with most slot entry drives. Not this one.

It makes the spinning sound when spinning up, and insert and eject make sounds. Nothing unusual. When the disc is playing I don't have the drive, even when I must the sound.

It's a keeper until Apple gets more serious about media players (blu-ray, 4K video, ...) or a comparable quality drive is getting 5 stars when used with Apple computer, has fully Apple-ecosystem-integrated software, and supports the higher quality media forms.
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on April 26, 2015
I wasn't sure how I would like having to use an external drive for my MacBook Pro, but the Apple SuperDrive has performed like a champ. From day one, you just plug it in to a USB slot and it works. No external power needed. I have not yet found a DVD or CD it can't play. Overall, I am quite happy. One change of habits - since the drive is not internal to the computer, there is no disk eject button on they keyboard. You have to "right click" the disk and select Eject Disk from the pop up menu. That is no problem, just a change. The only down side is that the cord from the drive to the USB connector is very short. The disk must be physically located very close to the computer - and it has to plug directly into the computer, not a hub. On my desk at home, no problem. In my motorhome, this will require a little creative arranging to fit the MacBook Pro and the SuperDrive on my small folding table. Still, I don't use it all that often in the motorhome, so this won't be a problem. Overall, I am surprised at how happy I am with this drive.
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on November 7, 2014
Hoping this works better than the "knock-off" one I purchased originally. I was hesitant to spend the money on the "real deal" at first, thinking these knock-offs look just as good, but boy was I wrong! After some time, the fake stopped working and actually got a DVD stuck in there - had to use my boyfriend's computer (ironically a PC vs. Mac) to get it to eject the DVD. Promptly sent it back and Amazon's customer service was top-notch about getting me all of my money back despite being WAY past the deadline. So far this one is working great and I don't doubt that it will continue to.
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on November 27, 2013
I'm over generously giving it five stars, just because it's Apple, and it's [Apple] BIOS will treat it as though it's an internal drive IF it's plugged directly into USB port of an Apple Computer (that does NOT come with internal SuperDrive) It's my understanding it WILL NOT BE RECOGNIZED IF you plug it into a MAC Computer that ALREADY has internal DVD drive! I've gotten one of these for every model of Apple computer I have, that DID NOT come with internal DVD drive (which now days, is EVERY model of Apple Computer) Other reviewers have commented on it's annoyingly short USB cable (shown in illustration) I had to get a USB Extension Cable for each one, to make it practical! On Apple computers with 4 USB ports, it works okay plugged into one of the 4 ports. It wasn't until I got late model MacBook Pro (no internal DVD drive) with only two USB ports, and attached USB hub, that I discovered the Apple USB SuperDrive will NOT work when plugged into USB hub! iI MUST be plugged DIRECTLY into one of the Computers USB ports, which ties up one of the only two USB ports! On OS X Mavericks, it even generated an on screen error message, saying it HAD to be plugged DIRECTLY into computers USB port (even though it was a POWERED USB Hub!) This is a big issue for me and anyone else attempting to install Windows 7 on a Mac Computer (which I've done numerous times) using Mac OS X BootCamp Utility. I discovered that during the Install process, with the Windows 7 install DVD in a second party NON Apple DVD drive in USB port, you will end up looking at a Black Screen with a flashing white cursor! It wasn't until I put the Windows 7 install DVD in the Apple USB SuperDrive (which apparently IS recognized as though it were an INTERNAL DVD!) that the Windows 7 install completed properly! It's a problem, because this Apple Computers ONLY remaining free USB port must then be occupied by a USB Keyboard and Mouse (mouse plugged into keyboards port) so Windows will recognized the USB Keyboard and Mouse to complete the Windows 7 install process (the drivers for the internal Apple Keyboard and Trackpad have NOT been installed yet, so they probably won't work!) I can't confirm this, but O.W.C.'s Website reported some Apple DVD Software programs might not work properly if you aren't using an Apple SuperDrive. But I found that non-Apple branded External USB DVD drive plugged into a powered USB Hub was recognized and seemed to work okay for some routine activities (but not when you're trying to install Windows!)
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on June 24, 2013
I had a raw LiteOn 24x drive that I stuck in a Sabrent case. The drive would not burn DVDs on my Mac and I was unwilling to participate in the old 'find the most compatible discs for your drive' game... we should be past this now. DVD Rs and RWs should work in every drive, regardless of the manufacturer of the drive or the media. Also the case fan was crazy loud. I like to leave my drives running but this case made that impossible. I figured I'd better bite the bullet and get a Superdrive.

I found this Superdrive on Amazon refurbished for about half the price of a new one. I don't burn disks or rip media that often, so my need isn't that great, but when I DO want to burn a disc or rip media I want it to work. Not the fastest tool in the shed, but after receiving the drive today I burned a disc I needed to have, and it worked as well as my old iMac with the internal drive.

I like the design of the drive; it is thin and it disappears on your desk until you need to use it. It is also quiet as all get out. If I have one beef, it would be that the USB cable is too short., but it goes on the right side of the Mac where I would naturally use it anyway, so no big.

I got this drive refurbished sold from Ocean Reef Electronics. The drive did not come in the original packaging, but it is pretty spartan given that it only has the attached USB cable, so they can be forgiven. It was packed well in a USPS priority envelope. I ordered late Thursday, June 20. The seller shipped the drive the next day and it arrived today, Monday the 24th. Almost as good as Prime shipping.

This purchase was as smooth as it gets. I am very pleased with the device and the service received.
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on December 22, 2014
As a drive, it's OK but surely not exceptional.

BUT, it get's points off for being designed with a short connector; in fact, that wouldn't be bad but that for the premium price Apple should have included a 3 ft. extension cord at no extra charge. Frankly, I've lost track of the number of times my drive has fallen off the table because of a slight shift in the position of my Mac.
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on October 15, 2014
Did not work with my Mac Book Pro laptop (2012 model), which has a superdrive built-in. There is a software fix to work around the design problem, but this is not a BUG. It was not designed to work on older laptops, before the "Retina" displays. Actually, "Retina" also means no built-in super-drive. I understand the problem is concern about the USB port having enough power to run the external disk drive.

Anyway, I bought it to use on a new iMac, which also does not come with a built-in superdrive any longer. It's the only way to load high value applications and backed-up data files. It works fine on the iMac (2014 model).

I'm surprised Apple has abandoned disc media so suddenly. They never came out with a Blu-Ray disc drive.
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