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2nd drive!Eric Cheng has just rocked his MacBook Pro. He installed a second hard drive called the MCE Optibay which replaces your internal SuperDrive with a standard notebook hard drive and took it a step further by striping the disks (RAID 0). This gives him a pretty big performance bump on reads and booting the machine, etc. but has got to take a toll on the battery. No matter… how often do most of us actually run our MB Pros unplugged?

This makes me long for the days of my PowerBook G3 Pismo. The Optical Drive was removable/swappable and an entire ecosystem of 3rd party products arose to fill the slot. This was a brief but fleeting stroke of genius for Apple designers. I’ve found that I hardly ever use the Optical Drives in my notebooks, and it seems like a waste to haul them around — I’d rather plug one in when I need one, or better yet, swap it on-the-fly with an expansion bay. With my PowerBook G3 I could go coast-to-coast playing games and watching DIVX movies or ripped DVDs (and occasionally working) by putting a second battery in the drive bay — on one trip I got a full 7.5 hours of use before it died. And by putting a second hard drive in the Expansion Bay, one could theoretically get a lot more utility for a lot less weight than hauling around that SuperDrive all the time, making Images of frequently used CDs or DVDs and storing them there.

Even today, I long for my Pismo. Now I’m thinking about buying my old one back from Simon and pimping it out.

-Ian.

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