PD dual phase Phasewriter.
DVD-RAM has the advantage of being based on the well advanced technology used in dual phase systems available between 1995 and 1998. 'Toray and Panasonic promoted the Phasewriter system in those years. Today this has evolved into DVD-RAM, one of the competing variants vying for the DVD designation.
The advantage of DVD-RAM is that the recorders are cost-effective, about the cost of a CD-R burner (yet you get 5.2 GB instead of just 650 MB). Other forms of DVD, such as those used to record movies, do not yet offer recorders under $5,000 (since movie companies are afraid people would copy their films if a cheap DVD burner was available).
The crimson cartridge on the right is the PD disk. A DVD-RAM disk is the identical size and shape (just a different color nowadays).
Inside the crimson cartridge is a CD disk of normal size and shape, just protected by the permanent cartridge.
The protective cartridge insures a long life but means that a PD or DVD-RAM disk cannot fit into thinner players for other flavors of DVD. Considering how easy it is to destroy all the data on a CD disk by a single scratch (or splash of Coca-Cola), the protective enclosure is a good idea.
The transparent case at the left (saying PD 650 MB) is just the dust cover.
The software for the new DVD-RAM systems is made by the same company which made the original PD Pack software which ran the former PD system. Thus you are assured that the hardware, software, and disks for the new DVD-RAM is made by people with experience in this technology.
Where to buy DVD-RAM and/or DVD-RAM disks? FLAAR. Purchases all its storage (RAID, hard drives, CD burners, disks, etc) from several sources. Over the years we have found the these people to be honest, capable, informative, and reliable. Even better, they offer good deals (especially when you buy several drives or several peripherals all at once). We use exclusively Maxell brand DVD-RAM disks and prefer the full-size 4.6 GB (which is 2.3 GB per side).
Design updated June 25, 2008.