- this page lists *everything* that i know. do not write to me expecting i know some more secret tidbits, this is ALL i've got on the subject.
- drives typically DO NOT ADVERTISE that they have CD+G capability like you see in some spec sheets (see below). In fact, many don't even advertise that they are Macintosh compatible. Rest assured they *are* mac compatible and that ones below marked "Works for Sure" can indeed read and write CD+G.
- the Matshita drives built into many older laptops DO NOT WORK
- newer Mac computers have the "HL-DT-ST" drive which actually may work, try it out!
- You can expect to get perfect rips and burns. If you're getting glitchy graphics, could be your drive, lense, or disc, don't think "oh I can't expect perfection", because you can and you should.
How to tell if your drive will work
Well, you can just stick in *any* CD (does not have to be a CD+G disc) and try to play it in kJams. If it works, you're set. If it says "reports not compatible", hit the "attempt" button. if THAT works, you're all set. Otherwise, read on.
Find the *original spec sheet* for your drive. Google it, they're almost always out there somewhere in a PDF or something. Looks something like this:
Failing that, this compatability list is quite nice. And here's a BIG list. Or try TriceraSoft, GoldenHawk.
Works for Sure
- PilotKaraoke ONLY sells CD+G compatible drives
- $35 GearHead 8XDVDEXT
- $52 Samsung SH-S182M or SE-S224 or SE-S084C or
SE-S084DUpdate: the "D" version does NOT work for burning.
- $50 HP DVD1170e Lightscribe available everywhere!
- $122 - Liteon 20X External DVDrw + Lightscribe, Retail Pack
- Optiarc DVD RW AD-7580S
- hp-dvd1270, hp DVD RW AD-75815
- Pilot Karaoke sells drives
- LaCie d2 DVD±RW with LightScribe. Update: Some folks have reported trouble burning with the "NEC DVD±RW ND-3500AG", which is the drive used in at least some LaCie D2 burners.
- many HL-DT-ST DVD-RW. (Hitachi/LG drives. DT is for DaTa, ST is for STorage) Models confirmed working are GWA-4080M. Some MacBookPro's have these built in!! Warning: Some can only read! See below.
- HP DV920105 CA 16X DVD with LightScribe
- LaCie 16X DL
- Plextor 708UF & 760A
- Yamaha CRW-F1E
- Sony DRX-510UL DVD-R Works for ripping. Burning has not been tested yet.
Read Only (No burning)
- HL-DT-ST DVD-RAM and RW models GSA-S10N, GP08NU6B, GE24LU20 and GA32N can read but they fail burning viable discs. GE20-LU10 can read but apparently only burns 2 tracks and fails after that. (check the MBPro BEFORE you buy so you know, it's rather random which drive you'll get if you just order the MBPro online)
- $99 Blu-Ray USB External Player
- LaCie LigtScribe DVDRW8651 will read but NOT WRITE
- Discs burned with Pioneer DVR can can be read by other computers, but not real karaoke hardware.
- Plextor 610U can read. it *seems* to write discs but they don't play back very well.
Does NOT work for Sure
- most Optiarc drives (except as noted)
- TEAC CD-W548E
- Many "Matshita" drives don't read or write (many mac laptops have them)
- Plextor 716SA, S, UF
- Plextor 880U
We are Confused
- HP dvd1040e I know it can rip, but there's been at least one user who could not burn.
- The specs say it does NOT work, however you are somehow able to rip SOME cdg discs. Haven't tried burning. LG GSA-E60L (and why the hell do they have such arcane names??)
- Note: it does rip but a user has reported this will not burn!! A pre-certified CD+G compatible drive from MTU. I recommend the IDE Internal ($80) plus a DriveDock ($114). Yes it's more expensive but it's faster than USB2. If you don't care about blazing speed then simply the USB one ($130) is fine.
- Plextor 755UF: one person could not get it to work at all. another reports "perfect success ripping and burning"
- Plextor 750A: reports it can read but not write, however, one user reports that the graphics read are VERY glitchy
This Just In - from Plextor
Unfortunately, many of the newest models do not support cd+g. The models that support reading and writing cd+g include: Q840U, 755UF, 716UF, 712UF, 708UF, PREMIUM-U, W4824TU & W4012TU. You can check with Unity Electronics or eSsaitech for pricing and availability.
Why does the drive that does not work on Mac still work on Windows?
What? Really? Do you have such a drive? Can I see it? What is its make/model? Please contact me.
I have gone the extra mile and with help from Apple and a secret third party I have written a low level disc reader that has access to the drive in the same way that Windows has. Unfortunately I have discovered that it is still incompatible with Matshita drives. Matshita the most important drive to gain compatibility with, given that that is the drive manufacturer for the vast majority of mac laptops. However if you find a drive that says it should be CD+G compatible, but isn't, please let me know. To see if your drive will work, just put in a disc and try to rip it with kJams, kJams will honestly inform you if it *should* work but doesn't, or if it should NOT work but you can try anyway (and many drives DO work even when not advertised to!) or it will inform you that it is in fact not compatible.
Burning: There ARE drives that natively support Reading but not Writing. On those windows programs, the authors have figured out how to send raw data to the device directly, bypassing the "CD+G Write" strategy that kJams currently uses. One day i expect i'll figure out how to do that too, but for now, you're stuck having to purchase a drive with native CD+G write capability.