Eh, I'm not aware of any methods to use the interface for the optical drive for a PCMCIA or ExpressCard slot yet. You will probably want the optical drive in case you need to import CD's or DVD's on the fly.

You could try doing the external RAID route, though having to use the camera to import at near real time OR using a bulky reader which doesn't record enough seems like two more hurdles to go through.

IF P2 (here I'm not sure) dumps the video as a raw file for later editing in a hurry so you just have to have a small spare to write to while swapping out cards, then that may be doable.

Please let me know how those import times are regardless. I'd appreciate it.