How to Use Apple USB SuperDrive?

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Apple Superdrive is an optical disc reader. Although originally meant to read and write to floppy discs, it rebranded in 2001 to evolve with the change in information exchange technology. Today, we’ll discuss how to use the Apple USB SuperDrive.

Apple USB SuperDrive or Mac SuperDrive, as it’s commonly referred to, is the device that reads optical discs exclusively for Macs and other Apple computers that don’t have a built-in optical drive.

It’s meant for those who want to keep their laptops light and maneuverable, but still needs a way to keep their data safely saved or hidden away from time to time.

Apple Superdrive is doubtlessly one of the fastest and most efficient USB-based disc reader/writer out there. The said restriction is that it’s meant only for Apple PC users, leaving people with other operating systems a little worse for wear.

Depending on the model, some Mac PC models like MacBook, MacBook Pro, iMac and Mac mini use a built-in version of the SuperDrive.

Most of these are older versions of the relevant models as the Superdrive was phased out of them to increase usage functionality on other levels, being replaced with the USB Superdrive version we all know today.

Also, the iCloud facilities are useful enough to do whatever you could with a CD/DVD without an external physical device.

How to Use Apple USB SuperDrive

Getting to the topic at hand: how to use Apple USB Superdrive, there are a few things you should make sure of before you start trying to use it:

  1. Make Sure the Apple Logo Is Pointing Downwards: Make sure the Apple Logo on your SuperDrive is pointing downwards, and the aluminum silver top is facing upwards. This is the correct orientation of the Superdrive, and it won’t work if the orientation is upside-down.
  2. Check Your Disc Size and Type: The Mac Superdrive and Mac Air Superdrive don’t work with a disc that isn’t a standard use CD or DVD. So, fancy CDs and DVDs in different shapes won’t work. Just the 120mm round-shaped compact discs and DVD discs work.

To get the Apple Mac USB Superdrive to initialize, all you have to do is plug it in and wait for your Mac to recognize and run it. It’s that simple. From this point, you should be able to read any CD or DVD data.

What makes the Apple Superdrive special is that it doesn’t have a loading platform for the discs you insert; instead, it pulls the disc into itself to start reading it.

Any disc that isn’t compatible is usually rejected and ejected promptly by the super drive unless it happens to get stuck. So, be careful which discs you put in.

To insert a disc, just push the disc in with the readable side face down into your Superdrive. You will have to push it in almost all the way before the reading mechanism activates; if you don’t, the SuperDrive will automatically push the disc back out to the default eject position.

The SuperDrive will start reading the disc automatically, but in case you face any issues, we’ve compiled a list of the few (after all, it’s Apple) possible situations where the Apple USB Superdrive might not work as planned and how to tackle them.

  1. If the Disc is Auto Rejected – If the disc is automatically rejected every time, the first thing you should do is try another disc to confirm it’s a problem with the disc and not with the SuperDrive itself. If it is a problem with the SuperDrive, take it to the nearest Apple store and get it checked. But if it’s a problem with the disc, try the following:
    1. Check the disc to make sure there aren’t any bumps or cracks. If there are, the disc stands a chance to get stuck in the slot.
    2. Look for labels and other protrusions on the disc that may be interfering with the disc entering the drive.
    3. Reset the System Management Controller (SMC) on your Mac and try again.
    4. Unplug and reattach the Superdrive to make sure it’s not an internal boot error.
  2. Doesn’t Eject Discs or Does So Slowly – This is the most dreaded problem for SuperDrive users and possibly the most common. Usually, it’s a problem with the disc and not the SuperDrive itself, though. So, follow these tips to try and get it working better:
    1. Clear out labels on the disc.
    2. Check for bumps, scratches, and cracks in the disc.
    3. Reinsert the disc several times to make it go in smoother.
    4. Press the eject key on the keyboard to eject it.

Now to write a disc using the super drive, all you have to do is insert a blank disc into it. OS X will automatically detect the blank disc and ask you what to do.

From here, you can easily navigate and begin burning your disc. Just add whatever data you want to, and click “Burn” to get the process started.

If you don’t want to do this or if the auto detects is disabled on your Mac PC, you can use the Disk Utility to burn images to a blank CD or DVD. To write an audio disc, just use iTunes, create a playlist and find the option to write an audio CD.

Despite its usefulness, the Apple Superdrive is fast losing its place as a default part of the Mac family.

With Apple’s aggressive campaign to follow cloud-based technology, the CD and DVD generations seem to be becoming a thing of the past. Innovation has always been Apple’s forte, and Mac users are thankful for the Superdrive on all accounts.

This concludes the guide on how to use the Apple USB Superdrive. We hope you enjoyed reading about it and the excellence that Apple puts into add on products like these.

Apple Superdrive is one of the highest-rated DVD burners available on the market and is exclusive for Mac. So, if you need to burn DVDs, this is probably the best option for you. Good luck!


Aishwar Babber is a passionate blogger and a digital marketer. He loves to talk and blog about the latest tech and gadgets, which motivates him to run GizmoBase. He is currently practicing his digital marketing, SEO, and SMO expertise as a full-time marketer on various projects. He is an active investor in NewSmartWave and ImageStation.

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