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Sony Unveils New 24X CD-RW Drives

If you're in a hurry to burn digital images, video, or "original music" (interesting that Sony inserts the qualifying adjective, eh?) onto CD, Sony Electronics answers your need for speed with four fast new CD-RW drives. The company's latest rewritable drives boast 24X write speed (as well as 10X rewrite and 40X playback), tamed by Sony's PowerBurn technology to ensure reliable digital recording without buffer underrun errors.

The CRX1750U/A2 external drive ($279) uses a USB 2.0 interface, while the CRX1750L/A2 external model ($299) uses an i.Link (a.k.a. IEEE 1394 or FireWire) interface. Both are compatible with both Windows 98SE/Me/2000/XP and Mac OS 9.0.4 or higher systems.

The CRX175A/A1 ($179) is an internal ATAPI (EIDE) drive for Windows 98SE or newer PCs only. The CRX175M/A1 ($229) is the same, but adds a Memory Stick media slot for transferring digital images and data from Sony's 8MB to 128MB flash media modules to CD-RW.

All four drives support sustained data transfer rates up to 3.6MB/sec write and 6MB/sec read, and come with a software bundle including ArcSoft PhotoBase, PhotoImpression, and VideoStudio; Dantz Retrospect Express backup; and B's Clip and B's Recorder Gold for drag-and-drop file management and backup copying on CDs. The external drives and Memory Stick-equipped internal model will be available in November, while the CRX175A/A1 will ship in October.

Eric Grevstad is managing editor of sister site Hardware Central.