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Sony to no longer produce optical disc drives

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 27 Aug 2012 10:01 User comments (22)

Sony to no longer produce optical disc drives According to multiple reports, Sony is closing its Optiarc division.
Sony Optiarc, which is its own subsidiary responsible for the company's production of optical disc drives, will completely shut down operations by March of next year.

Optiarc was formerly a joint venture with NEC, but Sony bought out NEC's stake back in 2008.

The company has a 15 percent market share of the optical disc drive market, but has been running at a loss for years now. This is thanks to 'fierce competition' from overseas, say the sources.

After ceasing operations next year, the company will liquidate everything remaining, so stay tuned for some cheaper DVD drives.

Additionally, 400 employees will be laid off, or leave the company via an early retirement package.

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22 user comments

127.8.2012 10:46

Quote:
After ceasing operations next year, the company will liquidate everything remaining, so stay tuned for some cheaper DVD drives.

I wouldn't want one of their crummy drives if they gave it to me; the reason they are suffering is that their competition has fewer warranty claims so they have to keep cutting prices to sell to OEMs.


227.8.2012 10:53

Back in the day there were some very good NEC/Optiarc drives, but I haven't bought a new DVD burner in quite a while now.



327.8.2012 12:36

It may have been 10 years since I remember owning a Sony optical in one of my computers & I'll guarantee you I didn't buy it.

I've also owned at least one NEC & it may have been worn out by the time I got hold of it so I don't want to pass judgement. But at least the thing DID work. Sounded like an old Cox, fueled model air plane we used to play with as kids, when the thing spun up, yet work it did.

Back in the 80s I used to have a thing for Sony, but then somewhere in the break into the 90s it all seemed to fall apart. Part of me wants to blame it on their steady escalation into the entertainment industry. Kind of like they were working on a revenge scenario or something.

The other is like a Paris Hilton mixed with Sid Vicious. Too much money & stupidity mixed with a disastrous dose of self destruction on a highway to hell.


427.8.2012 14:32

A cheap blueray drive would be grand with me : )


Due to copyright issues I am sorry to say I am no longer Batman : (

527.8.2012 15:11

bluray is what Sony care about really.

627.8.2012 15:23

I have a Pioneer BDR-205BK and I am so impressed with it, I don't think I would buy from another company for an optical drive. I think Sony's problem is they try and dabble in everything. Most of the time you had no clue they even made a product for what you where wanting, not that Sony is all the "special" anymore.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 27 Aug 2012 @ 15:23

727.8.2012 15:25

lol optical drives. I remember when I couldn't live without one. Now I use it once in a blue moon.

827.8.2012 17:16

Well, Sony is, in essence, a modern zaibatsu, and zaibatsu generally do "dabble in everything".

It isn't that they are involved in too many areas, as much as (as previously noted) falling quality, inflated prices, and terrible customer service. That's death to *any* company.

927.8.2012 17:45

Good riddance, and don't come back. I've had nothing but trouble with their drives in a past life.


"Do not underestimate the power of an enemy, no matter how great or small, to rise against you another day." - Atilla

1027.8.2012 20:30
sintekk
Unverified new user

Panasonic (AKA Matsushita) dabbled in everything -- even bicycles and "vibrating massagers". Some of their products may not have been economically successful but everything worked well. Sony started failing in the early 90's. Their TV's had faulty tuners, their VCR's went downhill after the demise of Betamax, and MiniDisc was a failure as was their MemoryStick format. Sony is the Apple of the consumer electronics world. Apple and Sony did business together -- the 3.5" floppy drives with the weird motorized eject was designed and built by Sony for Apple as well as the PSUs in those systems...

1127.8.2012 21:29

Originally posted by Mr_Bill06:
I have a Pioneer BDR-205BK and I am so impressed with it, I don't think I would buy from another company for an optical drive.
+1. It is my 3rd BD drive (still have the 2) and it is the quietest and fastest; at half the price. And, has the fewest unrecoverable read errors.

1228.8.2012 1:43

Hate to see jobs being lost. That is never fun to deal with.


This is superman

1328.8.2012 8:32

Originally posted by core2kid:
lol optical drives. I remember when I couldn't live without one. Now I use it once in a blue moon.

Same here. It's been years since the last time I used any sort of optical media. Optical technology is dead; it simply has no sense anymore.

"You know, it seems that quotes on the internet are becoming less and less reliable." -Abraham Lincoln.

1428.8.2012 13:27

I can honestly say I haven't burn a disc in over a year.
Hard drives all the way.

1528.8.2012 18:51

I don't have any valid reason to avoid Sony drives but I still do. I'm not sure why.

I haven't burned a disc in a long time either, but I still use previously burned discs quite often. All of my OS's and essential software are stored on discs and kept together. They are easy to find and I won't be tempted to erase them and store something else on them like I would with a flash drive or hard drive. Plus I haven't met the computer that won't boot from a CD or DVD, but many won't boot from a USB device. In my opinion, optical disc drives are still a necessity.

1628.8.2012 20:25

Originally posted by dali:
Originally posted by core2kid:
lol optical drives. I remember when I couldn't live without one. Now I use it once in a blue moon.

Same here. It's been years since the last time I used any sort of optical media. Optical technology is dead; it simply has no sense anymore.
There is still some use for it...like when an album only gets released on iTunes and CD...I buy the CD and make FLACs (even if I didn't hate Apple, I wouldn't pay for their crummy rips). Plus, the difference between Netflix and Blueray on a 40" HDTV is night and day.


1729.8.2012 17:50

You are right, KillerBug, but I gave up on BR since the last few times I bought one and it freezed my computer in the middle of playing, or forced me to upgrade firmware and/or software for what I had paid... Of course, paying a bit more (PowerDVD). In fact, I had to end up downloading ripped copies of movies I had paid for in order to be able to watch them entirely. So, bye, bye, BluRay! It's a crappy so called standard which adds new "features" every day which are continuously breaking my setup.

It's annoying how legal customers have to cope with so many trouble to watch a movie, including unavoidable trailers and warnings, while pirated copies can be played without any issues after a single click, isn't it?

Anyway, I can't understand why optical technology can't die for good, living in an era on which you can store so many GB in a small microSD. Why not developing a standard for music and movies based on small ROM cards once and for all?


"You know, it seems that quotes on the internet are becoming less and less reliable." -Abraham Lincoln.

1829.8.2012 20:17

You know, MPC-HC, along with several other players out there, will play BR disks from any region with no update requirements or whatnot.

1931.8.2012 10:21

Originally posted by Bozobub:
You know, MPC-HC, along with several other players out there, will play BR disks from any region with no update requirements or whatnot.

It did not at the time I was talking about, but thanks for the hint, I'll give it a try.

"You know, it seems that quotes on the internet are becoming less and less reliable." -Abraham Lincoln.

2031.8.2012 12:34

Originally posted by KillerBug:
Originally posted by dali:
Originally posted by core2kid:
lol optical drives. I remember when I couldn't live without one. Now I use it once in a blue moon.

Same here. It's been years since the last time I used any sort of optical media. Optical technology is dead; it simply has no sense anymore.
There is still some use for it...like when an album only gets released on iTunes and CD...I buy the CD and make FLACs (even if I didn't hate Apple, I wouldn't pay for their crummy rips). Plus, the difference between Netflix and Blueray on a 40" HDTV is night and day.
Agreed. Still plenty of uses for an optical drive.

2131.8.2012 13:44

Good riddance, if you ask me! I used to like Optiarc before Sony got their hooks into it. The last Optiarc I had gotten in January lasted only six months before it needed replacing. The tray would reload every time it was touched after being ejected. The Optiarc I had before that needed replacing after only a year.


I used to like Sony products back when they made the Playstation and the early, pre-slim models of PS2. Then, they went downhill fast. They used cheaper optical drives in the later PS2's that I had to have replaced after 6 months, again with the six month life span! Had a top loading slim PS2 that skipped on playbacks of DVD movies. The PS3 does not like Ritek branded Blu-Ray media, causing all kinds of playback issues that do not occur on Panasonic standalone Blu-Ray players.

2231.8.2012 18:02

Originally posted by brockie:
bluray is what Sony care about really.
exactly mate

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