Review As Blu-Ray climbs to the top of the optical storage ladder, one might assume that manufacturers of optical drives would cease production of anything that doesn’t feature this technology. However, Plextor has seen fit to launch the PX-L611U, a smart external DVD writer.
Etching ahead: Plextor's PX-L611U
While it’s all too easy to shun this sort of device, this is not your ordinary bulky, “Oh, do I really have to carry this?” external drive. At 22mm tall and with a footprint of 137mm x 137mm, it’s just about as small as an external optical drive can possibly be and still be properly protected.
Plextor’s aim is clearly compact convenience for the netbook market. The PX-L611U weighs only 350g and is powered by a combination of the USB 2.0 bus and some kind of internal battery of unknown specification. Overall, a simple, but neat approach to optical portability.
As for the software, it’s even simpler – Windows XP and 7 (let’s assume Vista as well) and Mac OS X (10.6.6 tested) instantly recognise the drive and require no additional drivers or software to function. Those wishing to use the included PlexUtilities or Nero 9 Essentials software will, however, have to use a Windows platform.
Neat and tidy with support for most disc types
As with most modern drives, Plextor has included support for nearly all DVD± disc formats with one exception; no DVD±RW DL support. This will be an inconvenience to some, but most needn’t worry, you can still have your dual layer fix with DVD±R DL discs, but no rewrites for you, alas. If it’s any compensation though, this drive also features LightScribe for those who aren’t artistic enough with a permanent marker.