I think this is the best place to start. If this does’t work, none of the other aspects matter. You can have all the gloss and the design work you want, but unless you have a working promotional Item that can do the job, no point to the rest of it.
For the moment, I am just producing audio CD’s. Creating Audio/Data CD’s that work in a car stereo is doable, but I need to get a bare-minimum prototype working. If it requires special equipment that is not cheaply available I know what CD drive 6 is going to be; if not, it’s software, can be fixed quickly/quicker and mostly at zero cost with the current hardware I have in mind.
CD Burning Program
From the reviews I’ve looked at; searching for specific multi-drive burning capability and compatibility with Windows Vista (as that is my old laptop’s OS); this is the best program:
It supports making CD’s on multiple writers, it works with Vista. its a start, but I can tinker with later if it does not work as intended. Seems to do the job, is free, open source and decently rated. So until I have the hardware and can work practically with it, not much more needs to be done at this stage.
What I am thinking is 5x CD writers, powered and hooked up through a powered USB Multi-tap; going into my old uni laptop.
CD/DVD WR drive, 2 USB 1.0 ports, Windows Vista, 8GB of ram, Duel core and the oldest bit of computing hardware fully functioning that is in semi-regular use I own. Also almost a decade old.
Its got some power issues, hence the separate powered USB idea. If you turn off the Wifi card, it seems to work fine for watching Rick and Morty on the internet.
Perfectly decent for the task at hand, might even be able to support a mouse, of which I have one spare.
Should for all intents and purposes, work.
USB CD Drives:
This seems to be the best I can find for the lowest cost:
USB BURNER DRIVE #1 £9.99 free delivery
Plenty available, Burns CD’s and DVD’s, USB Powered and Does not seem to be any poor reviews
There is also this one from:
USB BURNER DRIVE #2 £12.97 free delivery
Claims the same…
I’m going to test number one, as there seems to be no benefit on paying the extra and seems like the same deal. at this price level, there is always going to be a variance in quality and my rights are still the same as they are both a UK seller. I’ll Paypal and if they suck, no cash. send back, no loss.
USB Multi Tap £21.02 free delivery
This part has to power all the CD drives, and manage the data.
In terms of hardware, this needs a touch more beef to run whats needed. Plenty of £8.99 ones, but this is going to be housing quite a lot of stress in terms of usage. Best to buy decent with this one I feel (not £120 quid decent, but decent). Shipped from China, will take time but it will work.
Enough to hook 5 up with usb power. x2 USB Ports of dedicated power for each CD drive, so it should work. There is no real way to tell from information provided. If i can run one off one USB port, even better.
CD Burners x5= £9.99 x5 = £49.94
USB Multi-Tap x1= £21.02
That’s with all delivery included.
For what I can see, this looks like that It could work as a set-up. If it works fully, it will be able to write DVD’s also.
The initial cost of everything is quite cheap as I have the expensive parts already.
As for a dedicated stand alone unit, I will have to make a computer to do the trick. I may invest some time is Raspberry PI and see if I can make something, but ultimately, it will have to support something like photoshop to make it work, which I know my little laptop can handle.
thats all in the MRK 2 phase anyway. For now, this works as a working model for the CD production phase.
This marks the 1st initial build draft. Once I have it up and running, I will do a how-to.