In Tape Op #44, I wrote a review of the Bravo II Disc Publisher and called it "awesome." The BravoPro is the new big-brother to the Bravo II. Using either, you can "publish" your own CD's or DVD's with your own full-color graphics printed right on them. Unlike its sibling, the BravoPro includes two burners instead of just one, and it has larger bins that can handle 100 vs. 50 discs at a time. My review unit came equipped with two Pioneer 16X DVD+/-R Dual Layer (32X CD-R) recorders.
Installation was a complete no-brainer. An excellent interactive Quick Start application walks you through the installation process step-by-step, with clear, concise writing and informative illustrations. Considering that (a) you're unpacking a robotic machine, (b) installing two ink cartridges, (c) adding drivers for a printer and two DVD recorders, and (d) installing two software applications, Primera deserves credit for making the whole process so quick and seamless.
The BravoPro has two bins, right and left, for holding blank and completed discs. It has two drives and a single 4800 DPI ink-jet printer. How does it handle a multi-disc run? With the right bin loaded with up to 50 discs, the robotic arm grabs one blank disc at a time and loads both drives. Both discs are burned simultaneously. The arm then grabs the first disc out of its drive and places it on the ink- jet tray. The second disc is transferred temporarily to the left bin. Two new blank discs are then moved into the drives, and the disc held in the left bin is transferred to the right bin. While the two new discs are burning, the ink-jet starts on the first disc. Printing complete, it's moved to the left bin. The second disc is moved from the right bin to the ink- jet tray, and it too is printed and moved to the left-bin. The cycle repeats. Seems complicated, but all this makes it possible for burning and printing operations to happen in parallel, such that the BravoPro is more than twice as fast as the Bravo II. Cool! I should also mention that in Kiosk Mode, the BravoPro pulls blank discs from both bins and spits completed discs out of its front slot, allowing for an unattended 100-disc run.
I tested the BravoPro on a Windows XP system. As I explained in my Bravo II review, the included software, PrimoDVD from Sonic, works great. Also, most users will be happy with the bundled SureThing CD Labeler application for creating artwork, while advanced users can use their favorite graphics programs (Photoshop, Illustrator, etc) to create a PRN file for PrimoDVD. PTBurn Network Software allows Windows users to share the BravoPro on a network. Software for both Windows and Mac OS X is now included with all Bravo-series printers; Mac users get CharisMac Discribe 5.2 Mastering Software.
My music-production company has a Bravo II that's worked efficiently and reliably, and it's a crucial part of the company's workflow. If the BravoPro had been available at the time, I would have bought it instead for its higher capacity and more-than-2X throughput. If your facility also needs immediate and custom disc creation/ duplication, you should seriously consider a Bravo II or BravoPro. As I stated in my previous review, Primera's Publishers are awesome! ($3495 MSRP for BravoPro CD Publisher, $3995 for BravoPro DVD/CD; www.primera.com)