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December 13, 1987

SHARP LAUNCHES ITS ERASABLE OPTICAL DRIVE

By CBR Staff Writer

Sharp Corp duly launched its promised erasable optical disk drive last week as the JY-500 (CI No 825) – at a substantial price. The 5.25 drive stores 422Mb on a removable optical cartridge, costs $12,000 in Japan, and the cartridges cost $680 apiece. The drives are initially being offered with a $905 SCSI interface board for use with Japanese MS-DOS personal computers – the NEC PC-9800 series and the IBM 5550. They use magneto-optic technology where the laser is used simply to create or destroy the magnetic spots, which are written and read by a conventional magnetic head. The drive measures 7.9 by 5.1 by 12.6 deep, and Sharp plans to manufacture them at a rate of 3,000 a year.

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