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Appeared on: Sunday, June 23, 2002
40x CD-RW Roundup Vol. 3


1. Introduction - Philips PCRW4012P

40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 3 - Page 1

Which one is the faster?

- Introduction

After testing the majority of the drives in the 40x-recording platform, two new drives from CyQve and Philips came in our labs. Both drives have the same specs as many other drives in this category. We mainly focus on the writing quality and the media compatibility the drives offer in the maximum speed, and of course the overall performance against the competition.

- CyQve 4048

The drive supports 40x writing (Z-CLV), 12x re-writing, has 2MB Buffer and includes "JustLink" and "JustSpeed" technologies.

The exact writing speeds are 4x, 8x, 12x, 16x (CLV), 20x, 24x, 32x and 40x (16-40x) (Z-CLV). The re-writing speeds are 4x, 10x and 12x (CLV). The maximum reading speed is 48x (CAV). The drive supports all the known writing modes (DAO, SAO, TAO and RAW), among with packet write/overburning option. There is no support of the Mt. Rainier format.

- 40x writing speed

CyQve 4048 supports 40x writing speed using the Z-CLV writing technology. Below is the Nero CD Speed writing graph which illustrates the use of Zone-CLV writing technology:

The 40x writing speed range is divided into five zones: The drive starts writing at 16x from lead-in till the 4mins, then shifts up to 20x until 10mins, shifts to 24x at 14mins, jumps to 32x at 34mins and lastly shifts up to 40x at 56mins and stays there until the end of the burning process. The theoretical average recording speed is 29.24X with 80min discs, making it one of the slowest 40x recorders.

- The package

The package supplied contained: the drive, 1 piece of RICOH 80min 32x CD-R blank, 1 piece of CyQve 80min 4-12x HS-RW blank (unknown manufacturer 97m10s00f code), audio cable and mounting screws. The software supplied with the drive was Nero Burning ROM v5.5.8.2 and Ahead InCD v3.27 (for packet writing use). The package also contains a printed manual for the drive and for Nero software. We must also note the attractive design of the retail package! The retail package costs around Euro 100.

On the front of the drive there are the "CyQve", "40x12x48", "JustLink" and "High-Speed RW" logos. You will also find one led, the eject button and the headphone input jack/volume selector:

In the rear panel of the drive we will find the usual connectors (IDE interface, power), the jumpers for making the drive Master/Slave, the SPDIF output connector, the analog/digital output connectors and 3 jumpers which are used to setup the drive's working mode (UDMA33 or PIO-4Mode):

- Installation

CyQve 4048 was installed as a Master in the secondary IDE BUS. The drive worked in UDMA33 mode and after booting, identified itself as "CQ4048". We used WinXP for the recording, reading tests and the DMA was automatically enabled.

The drive is a May 2002 model with firmware revision v1.01 installed. We used the latest build of Nero (5.5.8.2), InCD (3.31), and CloneCD (4.0.1.6) for our recording tests. The drive supports the 40x writing speed with all media when you disable "JustSpeed". If you have this option enabled, the drive will limit its maximum recording speed when the drive detects low quality media.

- Perfect Write Suite

MET offers a recording software with the "Perfect Write" name that can be used only with CyQve 3248/4048 recorders to fine tuning the writing with unknown media. It can test variable kinds of CD-R discs to figure out writing parameters suit your drive such as optimal burning speed, laser power and so on. Then user can save all the parameter settings for next time using.

Usually, the supported media list is stored in the drive's firmware. If the disc you use is not on the list, the CD-RW drive will burn it with the default parameters. This may cause writing error or writing break. If you want your drive to extend its media supporting list, you must wait for new firmware to upgrade. Right now "Perfect Write" can let you burn much more kinds of media with your burner. However, this function only can go with special designed hardware and firmware. Only the CD-RW drives, which support "Perfect Write", can use this technology.

CyQve CQ 3248/4048 users can download this utility at ftp://ftp.met.com.tw/PW.In order to use the "Perfect Write" software, you need the latest firmware.

After we finished the reading/recording tests, MET send us a newer firmware version (v1.06) to demonstrate the use of "Perfect Write" Suite.

After we start the application, we choose the target drive (CyQve) in which the adjustments will be applied.

We insert the media in the drive. The software informs us that the specific disc is not supported, and allows us to start the adjusting process in order to write the disc in the maximum allowed speed. We choose to proceed and the media testing starts.

The application tests the ability of the drive to write/read in various speeds. It starts writing a small region of the disc at 12x, reads it back at 12x, continues the same test at 16x, and incrementally tests the 20x, 24x 32x and finally 40x speeds. If the inserted media are determined for writing in a lower speed than the maximum supported by the drive, the "PerfectWrite" will stop the testing process in the maximum allowed writing speed. Have in mind that the software does not simulate writing and reading, so the test disc cannot be used more than once.

After the media testing, users should restart the PC and after restarting the application, the software will prompt for applying the settings to the drive.

Our tests showed that after we applied the settings to the CyQve recorder, we could select writing to the specific media brand in the highest speed indicated by the "PerfectWrite", having the "JustSpeed" feature enabled.


2. Introduction - CyQve4048

40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 3- Page 2

- Philips PCRW4012P

The drive supports 40x writing (Z-CLV), 12x re-writing, 4MB Buffer and "Seamless Link" as the main anti-buffer underrun technology among with "Thermo Balanced". The maximum reading speed of the drive is 48x (CAV). The exact supported writing speeds are 4x, 8x, 16x, 20x (CLV) and 24, 32x and 40x (Zone-CLV). The re-writing speeds are 4x, 10x and 12x.

The drive doesn't support the Mt. Rainier format yet, but Philips plans to release a firmware upgrade in the near future. The drive includes C2 error reporting and supports all the known writing modes (DAO, SAO, TAO and RAW).

- 40x writing speed

The Philips PCRW4012P supports the 40x writing speed with the use of the Z-CLV writing technology.

The 40x writing speed range is divided in 4 zones: The drive starts writing at 20x from the lead-in area till 6mins, shifts up to 24x at 10mins, up to 32x at 30mins and lastly shifts to 40x at 56mins and stays there until the end. The average theoretical recording speed is 30.28X.

- The package

The package supplied was the retail European version. This included: the drive itself, an installation guide, a warranty registration form, audio cable and one (1) piece of Philips 80min 32x CD-R blank (actual manufacturer Ritek). The package doesn't offer any HS-RW media. The supplied software comes from Ahead, Nero v5.5.8.1 and InCD v3.27. The drive has a 2-year warranty (only in Europe).

The front panel of the drive includes 2 led (busy, write), the manual eject hole, the headphone jack/volume control and the logos of "Philips", "HS-RW" and "CDRW4000 Series".

At the back of the drive we will find the usual connectors (IDE interface, power), the jumpers for making the drive Master/Slave, the SPDIF output connector and the analog / digital output connectors. There are also 3 jumpers on the left. The two of them are not used (factory reserved), and the third is used for making the drive working in UDMA33 mode. If you remove the third jumper, the drive works in PIO-Mode4 mode.

- Installation

The drive was installed as a Master in the secondary IDE Bus. It worked in UDMA33 mode and after booting, identified itself as "PHILIPS CDRW4012P".

We used WinXP for the recording tests. WinXP activated automatically the DMA. The drive is a May 2002 model with firmware revision vP1.1.


3. Data Reading Tests

40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 3 - Page 3

Data Tests

- SCSI Mechanic v3.0x results

The faster reader in the Average Sequential I/O test is the CyQve with 5524Kb/S. Philips PCRW4012P gets the third place with 5352Kb/s. The CyQve 4048 performed well in the Average Random I/O test with 908Kb/s, followed by Philips PCRW4012P but the first place belongs to the LG GCE-8400B.

- Pressed CD results: (Click to see the CyQve and Philips CD Speed Graphs)

At the Nero CD Speed test, the CyQve 4048 gave the highest reading speed of 37.83X. The Philips PCRW4012P comes third with 36.65X.

In the Seek times test, the CyQve 4048 has the second best performance with 91ms, while the Philips drives has the lowest with 114ms (random), 133 (1/3) and 249ms (Full Stroke).

- CDR Media: (Click to see the CyQve and Philips CD Speed Graphs)

With CDR media, the CyQve 4048 holds the first place with 38.54X, while the Philips PCRW4012P gets the third place with 37.4X. The CyQve 4048 would have higher average reading speed, but at 70mins it dropped its reading speed to 45X.

- HS-RW media: (Click to see the CyQve and Philips CD Speed Graphs)

For the RW tests we used the Mitsubishi Chemical HS-RW written at 12x. The CyQve 4048 has the higher average reading speed of 36.02X, while the Philips PCRW4012P is slower with 25.33X.


4. CloneCD Reading Tests
40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 3 - Page 4

CloneCD Reading Tests

- Procedure

We used CloneCD (v4.0.1.6) and 4 original CDs - Serious Sam 2 (SafeDisc 2), Desperados (LaserLock 2), V-Rally 2 Expert (SecuROM 2) and NBA Jam Extreme (PSX) - in order to test the reading time of the drives. We also tested the reading performance with backups of the original CDs, since the reading speed varies between original and backup media. The following pictures show the drive(s) reading/writing capabilities as CloneCD reports:

- PSX Pressed Media

The faster reader at this test comes from LG with 55secs. The Philips PCRW4012P needs 161secs and the CyQve 4048 13secs more to end the task.

- SafeDisc 2 Results

Both CyQve 4048 and Philips PCRW4012P are very slow with SafeDisc 2 discs. The Samsung SW-240B is the only drive with high performance in this test.

- LaserLock 2 Results

With LaserLock v.2 protected CDs, the CyQve 4048 performed well with the original disc, but with the backup disc it needed almost twice the time. The Philips PCRW4012P is slow with the original disc, but improves its performance with the CD-R backup.

- SecuROM Results

All tested drives can read SubChannel data from Data/Audio tracks. The faster drive comes from CyberDrive. The CyQve 4048 comes third and the Philips PCRW4012P follows.


5. DAE Tests

40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 3 - Page 5

DAE Tests

- DAE features
CyQve 4048
Philips PCRW4012P

- Pressed AudioCD results

Even if CD Speed reports that the CyQve 4048 supports up to 48x reading speed, ripping with EAC and CD DAE gave a 40x maximum speed. The faster drive comes from CyberDrive with 34.6X and Philips PCRW4012P follows with 34.3X. The CyQve 4048 gets the third place with 30X.

- CDR AudioCD results

With CD-R media, the Philips PCRW4012P improved its reading performance and now gets the first place with 34.6X. The CyQve 4048 still stays at the third place with 30.3X

- EAC Secure Extract Ripping mode

For each drive we used the build-in detection function:

Tested Drives
Average DAE Speed (X)
Pressed
CDR
CyberDrive CW078D
8.5
8.8
Philips PCRW4012P
5.5
5.7
CyQve 4048
10.2
10.4
LG GCE-8400B
5.9
6.2
Samsung SW-240B
9.7
9.9

- Advanced DAE Quality

All tested drives got a 100 score (best), except from the CyberDrive CW-078D, in the Nero CD Speed Advanced DAE test. The faster drive is the CyQve with 34.91X, which comes in direct contraposition with the real life ripping tests..

- CyQve 4048

The drive's average reading speed was 34.91x and no data/sync errors were produced. As the following picture shows, the drive can read SubChannel Data and CD-Text:

- Philips PCRW4012P

The drive's average reading speed was 34.63x and no errors were produced. As the following picture shows, the drive can read CD-Text but not SubChannel Data:

- CD-Check Audio Test Disc
Error Level
1
2
3
4
5
CyberDrive CW078D
5/5
5/5
5/5
5/5
5/5
Philips PCRW4012P
5/5
5/5
5/5
4/5
0/5
CyQve 4048
5/5
5/5
5/5
0/5
0/5
LG GCE-8400B
5/5
5/5
5/5
5/5
0/5
Samsung SW-240B
5/5
5/5
5/5
0/5
0/5

The only drive that passed the forth level of CD-Check test disc test comes from CyberDrive. The drive didn't produce any pops during the playback process. The Philips PCRW4012P reaches the 4th level (4 out of 5) and the CyQve 4048 reaches only the 3rd level.

- Bad CDR Media results

The disc has fingerprints and includes light scratches, enough in order cause problems to most of the tested drives. We used CD DAE 99 software to rip the whole disc (756539616 sectors) and the results are posted in the following table:

Average Speed (X)
Errors
Errors Of Total Disc (%)
CyberDrive CW078D
.3.7
509053
0.07
Philips PCRW4012P
Cannot recognize disc contents
CyQve 4048
8.4
37396
0.00
LG GCE-8400B
Stops ripping at 78%
Samsung SW-240B
13.2
152005
0.02

The best reader for this test is the CyQve 4048 drive. It lowered its reading speed down to 8x and managed to produce the lower amount of reading errors at this roundup. The Philips PCRW4012P had problems to recognize the disc contents.

- Ripping 90 and 99mins AudioCDs
Tested Drives
Ripping up to
CyberDrive CW078D
96mins
WAITEC STORM40
Cannot recognize disc contents
Mitsumi CR-485C
98mins
LG GCE-8400B
99mins
Samsung SW-240B
99mins

- Reading/Ripping Protected AudioCDs

For the test procedure we used 2 protected AudioCDs, which we tested in both recognition and ripping (with CD DAE & EAC) processes:

* Pressed AudioCD with Sony Key2Audio (Celine Dion - New Day Has Come)
* Pressed AudioCD with Cactus Data Shield 200 (Natalie Imbruglia - White Lilies Island)

Key2Audio
CDS200
CyberDrive CW078D
Can rip disc contents without any issues
Can rip disc contents without any issues
Philips PCRW4012P
Can rip disc contents without any issues
Can read the disc contents, cannot rip the first track but the rest without any issues
CyQve 4048
Cannot recognize the disc contents
Can rip disc contents without any issues
LG GCE-8400B
Cannot recognize the disc contents
Can recognize the disc contents but cannot rip!
Samsung SW-240B
Cannot recognize the disc contents
Can rip disc contents but the extracted files contain errors

The Philips PCRW4012P didn't have any major problems ripping the contents of Key2Audio and CDS200 protected disc. The only problem that came up was during the extraction of the first track of CDS200, where the drive failed to rip it. The CyQve 4048 will ripped the CDS200 protected disc but not the Key2Audio one, since it didn't recognize the disc contents.


6. CDR Tests
40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 3 - Page 6

CDR Tests

- Procedure

We tested the two drives with latest version of Nero/CloneCD. We used various media for our tests: Mitsubishi Chemicals 80min 40x certified, Mitsui 80min 32x/40x certified, Taiyo Yuden 80min 32x/40x certified and Mitsubishi Chemicals HS-RW media. We burned CDs at almost all recording speeds from 16x up to 40x using the SAME amount of data for all drives. The posted recording times are the best we had from our test results. Using other media can increase the final burning time. Check the writing quality tests for details upon each drive's compatibility

- Comparison

Before starting the recording tests, let's see how the drives are compared in the writing/rotation speeds:

The Philips drive start writing at 20X speed, while the CyQve at 16X. The Philips shifts earlier to the 24x and 32x speeds, and both drives shift to 40x at the same time point.

Philips drive produces higher noise due to its increased rotation speed. In the beginning start almost reaches 10.000rpm and gradually falls to 8.000rpm in the end. Both drives start spinning at 8.000rpm and gradually reduce their rotation speed.

- Recording Tests

For all the recording tests, we used slightly more than 80min of data (80:01:47). The CyQve 4048 has the third best recording time for the 16x writing speed. The Philips and Samsung SW-240B have the highest times with 335secs:

At the 40x writing speed, the faster drive comes from CyberDrive with 184secs. Philips PCRW4012P comes third with 204secs and CyQve 4048 forth with 207secs.

Below are the Nero screenshots for the CyQve 4048 and Philips PCRW4012P

- Overburning Tests
Tested Drives
Writing up to
CyberDrive CW078D
99mins
Philips PCRW4012P
93mins
CyQve 4048
99mins
LG GCE-8400B
98mins
Samsung SW-240B
99mins

- CD-Text Results

All tested drives can read/write CD-Text without any problems.

- CloneCD Writing Tests

The CloneCD v4.0.1.6 reports that all drives support the DAO-RAW feature. For the EFM correction (SD2 test) we used 'Serious Sam - The Second Encounter" game titles. We performed both software/hardware EFM corrections test. The only drive that supports hardware EFM correction is the LG GCE-8400B. You can backup all protected discs with the "Amplify Weak Sectors" setting:

Tested Drives
DAO-RAW writing speed
Software EFM Correction
Hardware EFM Correction
CyberDrive CW078D
40x
Yes ( v2.50.021+)
No
Philips PCRW4012P
16x
No
Samsung SW-240B
24x
No
CyQve 4048
32x
No
LG GCE-8400B
32x
Yes ( v2.50.021+)


7. Writing Quality of CyQve 4048
40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 4 - Page 7

Writing Quality Tests of CyQve 4048

We used many media and burned them at various recording speeds with CyQve 4048A. The produced CDs, were measured from DigitalDrives and results are illustrated in the following tables.

- 40x writing speed (firmware v1.01)
Brand
C1
C2
Average Burning Time (mins)
Max
Average
Max
Average
Plasmon 80min (16x)
(JustSpeed On)
5042
808.4
2492
51.2
3:28
SmartBuy 80min (32x)
(JustSpeed Off)
45
4.8
0
3:32
Prodisc 80min (32x)
(JustSpeed Off)
26
1.7
3:27
EMTEC 80min (24x)
(JustSpeed Off)
41
5.1
3:33
Maxell 80min (32x)
(JustSpeed Off)
36
4.5
3:30
MitsuBishi Chemicals 80min (40x)
(JustSpeed On)
16
0.9

3:34

MitsuBishi Chemicals 80min (40x)
(JustSpeed Off)
19
1.0

3:27

SKC 80min (24x)
(JustSpeed Off)
28
1.2

3:30

Philips 80min (40x)
(JustSpeed Off)
31
4.9
3:38
Philips 80min (40x)
(JustSpeed On)
25
3.2
3:33
Mitsui 80min (40x)
(JustSpeed Off)
23
0.9
3:36
Sanyo Digital 80min (24x)
(JustSpeed Off)
54
2.3
3:30

The CyQve 4048 showed different behaviours with various media. The worst results came with cheap no-name Plasmon 80min 16x media even in the low recording speeds of 16x, 20x. The drive produces un-readable discs at 40x with this media even with JustSpeed on. We also had problems with Taiyo Yuden 80min 40x certified media. The drive couldn't recognize the inserted discs...With high quality media from Mitsubishi Chemicals, the results are very good, with JustSpeed On/Off.Below are some graphs from various media written at various speeds:

Philips 80min 40x - JustSpeed Off

The following graph comes from Philips 80min 40x certified media written at 40x speed. As we can see until 35 mins the writing quality is good, however during the 32x recording speed, the drive produces more errors. After 55mins (40x recording speed), the error rate drops to lower levels.

Plasmon 80min 16x -32x JustSpeed Off

The following graph comes from the cheapest media we could buy in the local stores (by Plasmon). The drive allows up to 24x recording speed with that media with JustSpeed On. However even in the 16x area, the error rate is high producing un-readable discs. At 32x speed, the error rate is high between 5-15mins and after 35mins.

- Additional tests with firmware v1.06

We made some additional tests with the latest firmware v1.06 installed. The low quality media we used were tested with the ?Perfect Write? software. The adjustments were applied to the CyQve drive and we burned at 40x.

Brand

C1

C2

Average Burning Time (mins)

Max

Average

Max

Average

Plasmon 80min (16x)
(PerfectWrite ? JustSpeed Off)

571

47.7

0

3:27

Plasmon  80min (16x)
(PerfectWrite ? JustSpeed On)

75.4

6.3

3:29

The combination of the newest firmware among with the use of ?PerfectWrite? improved the produced writing quality at 40x. However, we could not expect the best results with such media in the maximum speed. We made some additional tests with the same media written at lower speeds. 

Plasmon 80min 16x

C1

C2

Average Burning Time (mins)

Max

Average

Max

Average

24x recording speed

 

PerfectWrite ? JustSpeed Off

70

3.7

0

4:02

24x recording speed
PerfectWrite ? JustSpeed On

66

2.6

4:03

32x recording speed
PerfectWrite ? JustSpeed Off

59

5.5

3:34

32x recording speed
PerfectWrite ? JustSpeed On

236

29

3:34

Nacar Media 80min 16x

C1

C2

Average Burning Time (mins)

Max

Average

Max

Average

32x recording speed

PerfectWrite ? JustSpeed On

4679

416.9

1704

16

3:42

40x recording speed
PerfectWrite ? JustSpeed On

UNREADABLE

4:03

The ?Perfect Write? allows users to write low quality media at high speeds, but the produced quality cannot by very high. The discs had many errors as expected but they were not unreadable, with an exception when we used low quality16x certified media written at 32x and 40x. The JustSpeed feature also helped in most cases to reduce the total amount of errors.


8. Writing Quality of Philips PCRW4012P
40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 4 - Page 8

Writing Quality Tests for Philips PCRW4012P

We used many media and burned them at various recording speeds with Philips PCRW4012P. The produced CDs, were measured from DigitalDrives and results are illustrated in the following tables:

- 40x writing speed
Brand
C1
Average Burning Time (mins)
Max
Average
Taiyo Yuden 80min (40x)
30
0.6
3:26
Prodisc 80min (32x)
38
2.5
3:25
Mitsubishi Chemicals 80min (40x)
17
1.2
3:24
Imation 80min (32x)
70
4.6
4:28
Hitachi Maxell 80min (32x)
28
2.2
3:24
Mitsui 80min (40x)
25
1.6
3:28
SKC 80min (24x)
32
0.2
3:24

The writing quality of the Philips PCRW4012P is very good with high quality media. The drive has only problems with Imation 80min (32x) media, and for that reason it lowered its average recording speed. The SKC 80min (24x) gave the best results.


9. RW-Packet Writing Tests

40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 4 - Page 9

RW Writing Tests

We used Nero 5.5.8.2 for writing CDs at the maximum RW speed for all the tested drives. The CyberDrive CW078D comes first due to its increased re-writing speed (16x). The rest drives support 12x re-writing speed and CyQve 4048 ended first with 404secs. The Philips PCRW4012P follows by one second with 405secs.

- Packet Writing Tests

We used Ahead InCD v3.31 for the packet writing tests with the LiteOn HS-RW media. The formatted disc had 534mbs of free space. We copied a 403 MB file (403.147 kbs) from a Hard Disk (on the same PC as the writers) to the formatted RW media using Windows Explorer (we dragged and dropped) and we completed the test twice to eliminate any possible time measurement faults and user errors:

The best performance again comes from the CyberDrive. The CyQve 4048 gets the third place with 8.18X and the Philips PCRW4012P last with 7.07X. It seems that the Philips drive supports only 4-10X under packet writing mode. The CyQve 4048 also had had the lowered average reading speed of 5.82X under packet writing mode.


10. Conclusion

40x CD-RW Roundup Vol 4 - Page 10

Conclusion

CyQve 4048

Positive (+)

Negative (-)

- Faster reader due to its 48x (CAV) speed
- Supports JustLink and JustSpeed technologies
- Supports "Perfect Write" Suite
- Very good DAE ripping quality
- Can"handle" some protected AudioCDs
- Supports DAO-RAW
- Supports reading/writing of SubChannel Data
- Supports CD-Text (reading/writing)
- Supports Overburning (reading/writing up to 99mins)
- Supports Ultra-DMA 33 connection interface
- Complete retail package contains Nero/80min HS-RW media

- Lower DAE performance than expected
- Doesn't support 'Mt. Rainier' format
- Low CloneCD reading performance
- Doesn't support hardware EFM correction
- Competition offers 2 years of warranty

Philips PCRW4012P

Positive (+)

Negative (-)

- 4MB Buffer
- Supports "SeamLessLink" anti-buffer underrun technology
- Supports "Thermo Balanced Writing"
- Mt. Rainier would be supported with future firmware upgrade
- Very good DAE speeds
- Supports DAO-RAW
- Can "handle" some protected AudioCDs
- Supports reading/writing of SubChannel Data
- Supports CD-Text (reading/writing)
- Supports Overburning (up to 93mins)
- Supports UDMA33 connection interface
- Retail package comes with Nero and offers two years of warranty

- Drive is noisy
- RAW writing is performed only at 16X
- Low CloneCD reading speeds
- Cannot recognize written 99min CDs
- Didn't recognized our BAD DAE disc test disc
- Supports only software EFM correction (SD2)

After the second roundup in the 40x recording speed, we compare two more drives from CyQve and Philips. Previous roundups showed that the competition is very strong. Lets see each drive positive and negative points.

The CyQve CQ4048 is the faster reader in this roundup for Mode1 discs. The DAE ripping speeds don't seem to reach the 48x and the average DAE speed stays lower than competitor drives. The recording speeds are also slower than other drives and the writing quality is good only with specific media. In some cases we got un-readable discs, even with JustSpeed enabled. The good news is that with the latest firmware (v1.06), CyQve offers the Perfect Write software utility in order to support more media. The utility improved the writing quality of the drive when we used non-40x certified media for high-speed recordings. Lastly the competition offers 2 years of warranty for Europe, where CyQve doesn't.

The PCRW4012P is another proposal from Philips for high-end recording. The drive has superb DAE ripping speed but the increased rotating speed produces high noise while reading. The recording speed is not the best you can find, but the quality level is high. In addition, we had some problems with our test discs, and RAW writing was performed only at 16x. Lastly, the Mt. Rainier format is expected to be supported with a new firmware. After all, Philips was one of the founders of Mt. Rainier.



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