Pioneer has announced a new external DVD/CD burner called the DVR-XD09 that is one of the smallest external optical drives around. The drive weighs a mere 8 ounces and has an overall size only slightly larger than a CD case. The drive connects to the Pc via USB.
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Pioneer is aiming the tiny optical drive at the users of netbooks, which typically lack an optical drive. The big downside to most external solutions is that they are very large but the XD09 gets around that easily. The drive is able to write to multiple formats of CDs and DVDs.
The most interesting part of the tiny optical drive is its price. The drive will ship in August for $79.99. It appears that the drive needs an AC outlet to operate as opposed to being a bus-powered device.