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Sony's New Line of High Speed Spressa CD-RW Drives

Complete Suite of Software Allows Users to Create Discs in All Popular CD Formats

SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--July 20, 2000-- Sony Electronics continues to lead in CD-RW technology by expanding its Spressa(TM) CD-ReWritable (CD-RW) line with two new drives that support high-speed 12X maximum write, 8X maximum rewrite, and 32X maximum playback for quick and easy use. The 8X rewrite speed is twice the previous 4X speed, allowing users to rewrite a CD in 9 minutes.

The new Spressa Professional ATAPI internal (CRX160E-A1) and the Spressa i.LINK external (CRX1600L-A2) drives are ideal for corporate, professional and small office/home office users who need to store and manage digital data, images, and sound quickly and easily. By incorporating user-friendly software packages, the Spressa drives can create powerful, yet cost-effective storage solutions to suit both professionals and consumers. The CRX1600L-A2 is the first i.LINK interface 12X/8X/32X drive to market.

"Sony's new line of CD-RW drives offers even faster hardware with easy to use software," said Robert DeMoulin, marketing manager of Value Added Products for Sony Electronics' Component Company. "At 8X maximum recording speed, CD-RW records faster than many competitive products using magnetic technology. The ease-of-use and speed of these drives make them popular for the tech savvy, as well as for the first time PC user."

Spressa Professional ATAPI (EIDE) INTERNAL CD-RW Drive

Sony's Spressa Professional ATAPI internal (CRX160E-A1) drive is designed as a CD-RW kit for home and corporate users who want to create their own CDs using exceptional speed, performance and reliability. The Spressa Professional drive comes with high performance recording software, called Sony CD Complete Pro software, which is compatible with Windows® 95/98/2000 or Windows NT® 4.0 systems.

Sony's CD Complete Pro software package offers robust and feature-intensive applications for Windows-based systems. This package also comes with an integrated product installer that provides an easy path for users to choose the software they prefer to install on their PC. The software package includes:

  • CD Extreme, which allows users to create most popular CD types,
  • Sony abCD, which lets users drag-and-drop files and folders to CD-RW discs as easily as to a floppy or hard drive,
  • Spressa Play & Record, which allows users to listen to their favorite CDs while archiving files, documents or digital images,
  • MixMan Studio, which offers non-musicians the ability create professional sounding music from a library of royalty-free music pieces, and
  • Retrospect Express, with its full-featured back-up compatibility with disaster recovery.

Spressa i.LINK External CD-RW Drive

For consumers and "prosumers" who want IEEE-1394 connectivity, speed and performance, Sony's Spressa i.LINK (CRX1600L-A2) model incorporates Sony's i.LINK (IEEE 1394) high-speed interface, as well as a full suite of Macintosh® and Windows® software. The drive supports high-speed 12X maximum recording for CD-R, 8X maximum recording for CD-RW, and 32X maximum for reading. The Spressa i.LINK external drive comes with a high performance recording software package, called Sony Spressa Professional software, which includes Discribe CD Creation software (Macintosh) and CD Extreme(TM) (Windows) software, as well as abCD (Windows), Retrospect Express (Windows and Macintosh), and Mixman Studio. The drive is compatible with Windows® 98 Second Edition and Mac®OS 8.6 or higher platforms.

Availability, Pricing and Warranty

The Spressa Professional ATAPI internal (CRX160E-A1) drive will be available next month with an estimated U.S. retail selling price of $299. The Spressa i.LINK external (CRX1600L-A2) drive will be available in September with an estimated selling price of $399. Sony supports "worry-free" installation and easy operation with toll-free customer and technical service, Monday through Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., along with a one-year limited warranty from date of purchase.

Web site

A new service has been added for customers who have previously purchased or plan to purchase any of the new Spressa CD-RW drives with CD Extreme software. Spressa drive users will have access to a new web site, "Spressa News & Marketplace," for information on new CD-RW models, updates on new software versions, technology tips on how to use the products, and special promotions on hardware, software and audio files. All of these services will be available next month only to Spressa drive customers through software that is bundled with the new drives. Current owners of Spressa CD-RW drives with CD Extreme software can visit Sony's web site at to receive the latest software update.

Double Density Format

Sony has also recently announced plans to develop a "Double Density CD-ROM/-R-RW (tentative name)" with 1.3GB data capacity. The Double Density CD formats are designed to provide a natural migration path for both consumers and manufacturers alike, as the new high-capacity format extension offers a low-cost solution that inherits the basic specifications of the CD format. This allows manufacturers to leverage their current CD technology and production facilities to manufacture Double Density CDs. Royal Philips Electronics and Sony will license the Double Density CD format variations together, beginning in September. Philips will serve as the licensing contact (

Key Specifications

   Spressa Professional ATAPI           Spressa i.LINK External
   Internal CRX160E-A1 Drive              CRX1600L-A2 Drive

-- ATAPI (EIDE) Internal Interface  -- i.LINK External Interface

-- 12X recording (CD-R), 8X         -- 12X recording (CD-R), 8X
   recording (CD-RW), 32X (max.)       recording (CD-RW), 32X (max.)
   reading                             reading

-- Drive dimensions: 10.1" x 7.5"   -- Drive dimensions: 10.1" x 7.5"
   x 2.4" (L x W x H)                  x 2.4" (L x W x H)

-- Sustained Data Transfer Rates:   -- Sustained Data Transfer Rates:
    -- 150 kB/s Mode 1                  -- 150 kB/s Mode 1
      (1X, read/write)                     (1X, read/write)
    -- 300 kB/s Mode 1                  -- 300 kB/s Mode 1
      (2X, read/write)                     (2X, read/write)
    -- 600 kB/s Mode 1                  -- 600 kB/s Mode 1
      (4X, read/write)                     (4X, read/write)
    -- 1,200 kB/s Mode 1                -- 1,200 kB/s Mode 1
      (8X, read/write)                     (8X, read/write)
    -- 1,500 kB/s Mode 1                -- 1,500 kB/s Mode 1
      (10X CD-R write)                     (10X CD-R write)
    -- 4,800 kB/s Mode 1                -- 4,800 kB/s Mode 1
      (32X, CAV reading max.)              (32X, CAV reading max.)

-- Burst data transfer rate:        -- Burst data transfer rate:
-- 3.0 Mbps (Asynchronous SCSI)        400 Mbps
-- 5.0 Mbps (Synchronous SCSI)

-- Random access time: 150 ms       -- Random access time: 150 ms

-- Buffer memory: 4 Mb              --  Buffer memory: 4 Mb

-- Recording method: Disc at Once,  -- Recording method: Disc at
   Track at Once, Multisession,        Once, Track at Once,
   Fixed and Variable Packet           Multisession,  Fixed and
   Writing                             Variable Packet Writing

-- MTBF: 100,000 POH                -- MTBF: 100,000 POH

-- Availability -- August 2000      -- Availability -- September 2000

-- ESP -- $299(1)                   -- ESP -- $399(1)

(1) Estimated U.S. retail selling prices. Actual prices may vary.

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