Two months from introduction to shipping? Not bad, Pioneer... not bad at all. The world's first BDXL PC writer is now on sale at your local Fry's Electronics, bringing support for toasting 128GB quad-layer discs (if you can find / afford 'em) as well as speedy writing on typical BD-R, DVD-R and CD-R discs. Pioneer's also throwing in a CyberLink software suite, and if you buy in early, you'll get a single piece of 100GB BR-R XL media for free. Makes that $199 asking price seem entirely more attractive, doesn't it? In other news, the first Blu-ray format still isn't supported by Apple, not even on a $10,000 Mac Pro. Spectacular.
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Pioneer Ships First BDXL Computer Drive to Read and Write New Blu-ray Disc Recording Format

LONG BEACH, Calif.–Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc. continues its innovation in the optical disc drive category with today's announcement of its new professional, high definition BDXL internal Blu-ray Disc drive. The Pioneer BDR-206MBK, BDXL writer for Windows based1 personal computers, is the first drive to read and write using the new multi-layer recordable Blu-ray Disc format. BDXL more than doubles the current maximum Blu-ray Disc storage capacity and is ideal for various commercial uses such as video and broadcast archiving and storage, capturing and playback of high definition programming or data archiving needs. The BDR-206MBK also enhances recording accuracy and further limits artificial noise for quality playback.

By integrating additional layers to traditional Blu-ray Discs, BDXL offers up to 128 GB of storage capacity on a quadruple layer disc. The BDR-206MBK drive allows users to read/write BD-R XL and BD-RE XL triple layer (100GB) and BD-R XL quadruple layer (128GB) discs. Additionally, the drive can play back and record on virtually all disc formats including CD, DVD, and Blu-ray Disc. The drive comes bundled with CyberLink software to support BDXL and is ready for use out of the box. For a limited time, Pioneer is including a piece of BD-R XL 100GB media for free with each drive.

Further enhancing the user experience, Pioneer has incorporated proprietary technologies to significantly improve recording and playback quality. Its Limit Equalizer technology improves RF signals generated when reading data from Blu-ray Discs and enables improved playback capability. Along with a new, airtight structure that helps keep the drive quiet and protects against contaminants and dust particles, the Disc Vibration Stabilizer feature helps protect the disc from warping during the writing process, resulting in a higher quality written disc.

The BDR-206MBK is currently available for a suggested retail price of $199. The BDXL drive can be purchased at Fry's Electronics and at www.pioneerelectronics.com.

About Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc.
Pioneer has been an innovator of optical disc technology since it shipped its first LaserDisc products, the precursor to DVD, to the consumer market in 1980. Pioneer went on to introduce the first DVD writer for video authoring use in 1997, the first DVD recorder as a VCR replacement in 1999, the first DVD-R/CD writer for home computer users in 2001 and the first Blu-ray Disc writer in 2006. Pioneer Corporation is one of the original Blu-ray Disc Founders. More details can be found at www.pioneerelectronics.com.

1 For playback of 3D video, additional equipment, such as a 3D capable monitor that supports Windows7 3D, is necessary.

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Pioneer ships $200 BDR-206MBK BDXL writer, dares you to afford related media