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Appeared on: Monday, August 26, 2002
CyQve 2400PLUS DVD+RW


1. Introduction

CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 1

Introduction

M.E.T technologies presents another DVD+RW/+R recorder, the CyQ've 2400Plus. The external drive is actually a combo one, since it also supports CD-R/RW writing. We have already tested some of the latest DVD+RW/+R drives from Ricoh and Philips, and the comparisons are expected to be at least interesting.

The drive

CyQ've 2400Plus supports 12x (CD) and 2.4x DVD+R/+RW writing, 10x re-writing, 32x (CD) and 8x (DVD-ROM/+R/+RW) reading. The drive also supports "JustLink" technology in order to avoid buffer underruns, for the CD-R/RW format. Its writing speeds are: 2x, 4x, 8x, 12x (CLV) writing and 4x, 10x (CLV) re-writing. The supported connections for the CyQ've 2400Plus are Cardbus/IEEE1394/USB2.0 interface, compatible to PC and notebooks.

The writing speed for DVD+R/+RW format is 2.4X CLV (X factor is now 1385Kb/s) which is equivalent to 20x for CD-RW drives. Although the media support both CAV and CLV writing modes, the drive incorporates the CLV recording. The differences are the same as in the CD writing, meaning that the overall writing speed with CLV will be quicker. However random access with CAV is quicker. Due to 'Lossless Linking' we don't have buffer underrun problems in DVD+R/+RW formats. The drive doesn't support Mt. Rainier in both CD/DVD formats. The next generation of DVD+RW recorders are supposed to support the DVD-MRW format (Mount Rainier at DVD format). Currently, the following writing formats are supported:

1) DVD+R/+RW: DVD-ROM, DVD-Video, Random Access Write
2) CD-R/RW: CD-DA, CD-ROM, CD-ROM XA, CD Extra, CD-I, Mixed-ModeCD, VideoCD, PhotoCD, CD TEXT and Bootable CD.

The package

The retail package includes: CyQ've 2400Plus, an installation guide, 1 piece of Ricoh 74min 1-24X CD-R media, 1 piece of Ricoh DVD+RW & DVD+R media, a USB2.0 connection cable and a power cable. The package also included a USB2.0 host adapter card by Tekram, and an installation manual for it. The attached software programs are Nero v5.582, InCD v3.2x, PowerDVD v4.0x for DVD Video playback and Unlead VideoStudio v5.0 for Video editing. There are also available an installation CD-ROm for the attached USB2.0 adapter card.The expected price of the drive is around Euro 600 (?)

The external drive is placed in a stylish plastic case. In the front of the drive you can see the "CyQ've", "JustLink", "High-Speed RW" and "DVD+RW/+R" logos, among with one orange led, the eject button and the headphone input jack/volume selector: The power button of the drive is located in the right side, and the power indication led is placed right above it, as you can see in the picture below.

On the back of the drive there are the power conector, the interface conector, audio output and a cooling fan.

Installation

CyQ've 2400Plus was identified as "CQ2400PLUS" under WinXP.. The drive was easily installed to our test PC through USB2.0 interface.

The drive came with firmware version v1.27 installed. Nero reports that the available cache buffer is 2MB.

The "high compatibility" mode is also present in the writing software. It is included in order to allow users to create DVD according to the DVD ROM standard. As you may know the minimum data on a pressed DVD is about 1Gb or 30 mm of data. In some DVD drives and players having less data may cause incompatibility issues. The feature allows the users to write the minimum amount of data and the actual user data should not be less than 1Gb or 30mm.


2. Data CD Tests

CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 2

Data CD Tests

- Pressed CD results (Click to see the CD Speed Graphs)

CyQ've 2400Plus supports 32X average reading speed, for the CD format. The drive gave a 32.58X average by the end of the CDSpeed test, and as you can see in the graph above, both Ricoh MP5125A and Philips DVDRW228 gave a similar reading speed.

In the same test, we measured the seek time of the drive. Again all the drives gave adequate results, with Ricoh MP5125A to have a slight lead in the test. However the differences are small considering that the time is measured in mseconds.

- CDR Media results (Click to see the CD Speed Graphs)

The drives improved their reading performance with the CDR media. The small speed differences are not worth to mention and sometimes can be included in the measurement errors.

In the seek test, the drives were slower in the Full seek mode, and Ricoh MP5125A is again a little faster with 233 msec.

- HS-RW media (Click to see the CD Speed Graphs)

For the RW tests we used the Ricoh HS-RW media. All the drives started the reading in the same speed, and CyQ've and Ricoh gave the same average reading speed (23.4X). The Philips drive lowered the speed by the end of the test, giving a lower average.


3. CD Error Correction tests
CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 3

CD Error Correction tests

In the following tests we examine the error correction capabilities of CyQ've 2400Plus, with for the CD format.. We use the built-in Nero CD Speed v0.99.3 CD Quality test. The reference test media come from ALMEDIO and Philips corporations.

- ABEX TCD-714R

This test disc has been produced for measuring and adjusting the tracking servo characteristics of the drive, against the eccentricity of compact disc. The fundamental characteristics of this disc other than on eccentricity are compatible with the standards in "Red Booklet".

The test examines the ability to trace eccentricity of the compact disc player. In reference to a zero eccentricity disc, we check the following phenomena:

a. There is skipping of sound tracks
b. Requires excess time to locate or cannot locate the starting point of the tune.
c. Mechanical noise is heard from the CD player
d. Requires excess time to read or cannot read the TOC information
e. The spindle motor runs wild

Physical characteristics of disc:

Eccentricity: 280 micro meters
Deviation: 3 micro meters

Our tests did not show any of the above negative behaviors from the CyQ've 2400Plus. The drive kept a stable reading speed to 8.6X and did not gave any read errors, as it was expected.

- ABEX TCD-721R

This test disc is produced with the objective of measuring and adjusting the CD player's tracking servo characteristics and error correction ability against scratches on the disc. Artificial scratches with lengths from 1.8 mm to 3.0 mm are found on the disc. The phenomenon that may occur during playback of the disc contents are:

a. Noise is created
b. The sound skips
c. The same section is repeatedly played
d. Start of the tune cannot be detected
e. The spindle motor rotates erratically (reverse rotation, change in revolution, e.t.c)

Nero CD Speed showed that the drive gave 4152487 read errors during the reading process. The read errors occurred when the size of the scratch on the disc became large enough, and they kept coming up until the end of the disc. The reading speed was constant to 8.6X from the 6min area till the end. We cannot say that the drive gave very good results in the test, and definitely error correction needs to be improved.

- ABEX TCD-726

This disc is produced for measurement and adjustment of error ability and tracking / focusing servo characteristics of a CD player against defects included in some discs. Three kind of defects, interruption, black dots and fingerprints are prepared in this disc. The interruption defects are sized from 0.5 mm to 1.0 mm. The black dots are from 0.4 mm to 1.0 mm. Lastly, the fingerprints are from 65 to 75 micro meters.

The drive started the reading test at 14X and accelerated to 19X until the 16min, where the speed was reduced to 8.6X. Some read errors occurred in the data interrupted areas, and also in the black doted areas of the disc. The total amount of the read errors were 240. The drive managed to pass the fingerprint area with no errors.

- PHILIPS SBC-444A

Another test disc that comes from Philips. The purpose of this disc is adjustment / checking of the CD player. Note that the disc is not within specification concerning local defects. The defects found on the disc are interruptions of the information layer, black dots at out-read area, and simulated fingerprint.

As in the previous test, the read errors were noticed in the interrupted areas, but the local black dots and fingerprints did not make the reading more difficult.


4. DVD reading tests

CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 4

DVD reading tests

- Test Method

We used Nero DVD Speed to run DVD tests (DMA enabled on all drives). All tests were performed at least 3 times with the same DVD title (we show the average results). The tests discs were one single sided, single layer DVD-ROM, one single sided, dual layer DVD-ROM, and DVD-R,-RW, +R and DVD+RW media.

- Single Layer DVD-ROM reading: (Click for DVDSpeed results)

CyQ've 2400 Plus read the DVD-ROM disc at 8087KB/sec. The increased speed in the end (10810KB/sec) makes the drive faster than Ricoh MP5125A and Philips DVDRW228.

In the random seek test, the CyQ've was fast with 131 msec. What we found strange was the drive's behavior in the Full seek mode, where the 298msec result is considered high.

- Dual Layer DVD-ROM reading: (Click for DVDSpeed results)

The reading performance of CyQ've 2400Plus with dual layer DVD media is not as high as in the previous test. The average speed is 7390 Kb/sec. The seek times for the dual layer disc are even higher the single layer one.

- DVD Ripping Tests

We measured the DVD Ripping speed using the "Matrix" DVD Video title and DVD Decrypter v3.0 software.

CyQ've 2400Plus ripped the movie to the hard disk at 7892 kb/s. In the same test Ricoh MP5125A is faster with 8021kb/sec and Philips DVDRW228 gave approximately the same ripping speed with the CyQ've drive.

- DVD reading Tests

The chart below shows the Nero DVD Speed results of both drives with DVD+R, DVD-R, DVD-RW and DVD+RW media.

The CyQ've 2400Plus managed to read the DVD-R/-RW test discs in a high average speed. However, the drive was not that fast with the DVD+RW/+R media. In the DVD+RW reading test the drive gets the second position with 3998kb/sec, and in the +R test the third position, since Philips DVDRW228 and Ricoh MP5125A are faster.


5. DVD Error Correction tests
CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 5

DVD Error Correction tests

In the following tests we examine the DVD error correction capabilities of CyQ've 2400Plus. For the tests we used CDVD Benchmark v1.21 and Nero DVD Speed . The reference test media comes from ALMEDIO.

- Single Layer media

ABEX TDR-821

This is a single sided, single layer DVD-ROM with a 4.7GB capacity, in which there are scratches with dimensions from 26 to 48 mm. The following picture comes from CDVD Benchmark v1.21.

CyQ've 2400Plus did not manage to finish the reading test. The requirements of the test exceeded the drive's error correction capabilities and serious read errors were occurred by the end of the test, making the drive unable to read all the disc contents.

ABEX TDR-825

This is also a single sided, single layer DVD-ROM with a 4.7GB capacity. The data structure of the disc is exactly the same as the TDR-821, with the difference that there no scratches on it but defected areas with dimensions from 0.5 to 1.1 mm. There also fingerprints sized from 65 to 75 mm.

The drive did not have any problems to read the disc contents. As you can see from the above graph, the yellow dots correspond to the current speed in each area of the disc. No read errors were reported.

- Dual Layer media

ABEX TDR-841

This is a 8.5GB dual layer, single sided DVD-ROM disc with artificial scratches with dimensions from 0.4 to 48 mm, in both layers.

The CDVD Benchmark showed that the drive cannot handle heavily scratched DVD-ROM media. The drive stopped reading by the end of the first layer, and the test was terminated. The result was expected, since the CyQ've 2400Plus had previously failed to successfully finish the single layer scratched DVD-ROM reading test.

ABEX TDR-845

The disc is a single sided, dual layer DVD-ROM disc with a capacity of 8.5GB. The only difference between the TDR-845 and the TDR-841 is that the first includes defected areas and fingerprints. The dimensions of the defected areas are ranged from 0.5 to 1.1 mm and the fingerprints are sized from 0.065 to 0.075 mm.

CyQ've 2400Plus did not have any problems to overcome the defected areas and successfully finished the reading test.

ABEX TDV-541

The TDV-541 is a single sided, dual layer DVD-VIDEO disc, with capacity of 8.5GB. The disc is based upon the TDV-540 series which is designed for inspection and adjustment of DVD-VIDEO players. The discs check the layer switch operation from layer 0 to layer 1 and also include test pictures and test signals for DVD sound files. The current TDV-541 checks also the error correction capabilities of the drive and includes scratches from 1.8 to 3 mm.

For another time, the CyQ've gave a read error in the scratched areas of the test disc, and the test was terminated.

ABEX TDV-545

The TDV-545 disc is based on the TDV-540 series. It is a single sided, dual layer DVD-VIDEO disc with a capacity of 8.5GB. The TDV-545 includes artificial black dots on the data surface, sized from 0.8 to 1.0 mm. It has also 0.065 - 0.075 mm fingerprints.

Black dots and fingerprints were not a problem for the drive. The test was successful, and the layer change time was 149msec.


6. CloneCD Reading Tests

CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 6

CloneCD Reading Tests

- Procedure

We used CloneCD 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 reading/writing capabilities as CloneCD reports:

- PSX Pressed Media

For this test we used the PSX game 'NBA Jam Extreme' and we ripped the image to the HD with CloneCD. CyQ've needed 1:49min to finish the requested task, just 2 seconds slower than Philips DVDRW228.

- SafeDisc v.2 Results

With both pressed and backup test discs, CyQ've 2400Plus was faster than the other drives, with small differences.

- LaserLock v.2 Results

With the LaserLock v.2 protected disc, CyQ've 2400Plus was slightly slower than the other drives, especially in the test with the backup CD.

- SecuROM Results

CyQ've 2400Plus can read SubChannel data from Data/Audio tracks. Ricoh MP5125A is the faster drive in the pressed CD test, but CyQ've 2400Plus leads the backup CD test.


7. DAE Tests

CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 7

DAE Tests

- DAE features

We used EAC v0.9 reports that CyQ've 2400Plus supports caching of data, "Accurate Stream" and retrieves "C2" error info.

 

- Pressed AudioCD results

In this test we examine the speed of the DAE of the drives. CyQ've 2400Plus ripped the audio files to the hard disk 22.5X average speed. The Ricoh and Philips drives are approximately 1X faster.

- CDR AudioCD results

With CD-R media, the CyQ've improved the ripping speed to 23.6X close to Philips DVDRW228, and Ricoh MP5125A was slower with 17.9X.

- EAC Secure Extract Ripping mode

EAC's secure extract ripping mode results, which ensures maximum produced WAV quality. Note that for each drive we used the build-in detection function:

Tested Drives
Average DAE Speed (X)
Pressed
CDR
Cy'Qve 2400Plus
19.8
20.1
Ricoh MP5125A
12.3
11.6

- Advanced DAE Quality

CyQ've and Ricoh drives got a 100 score (best) in the Nero CD Speed Advanced DAE test. The average speed for CyQ've 2400Plus was 23.61X. The drive can also read data from SubChannel and CD Text.

- CD-Check Audio Test Disc

Error Level
1
2
3
4
5
CyQ've 2400Plus
5/5
3/5
1/5
0/5
0/5

The CyQ've drive showed poor error correction abilities with the CD-Check audio test disc. Only the 1st audio track was playbacked correctly without any error noises. The result could be expected after the previous error correction test results, with the ABEX media.

- Bad CDR Media results

We used CD DAE 99 software to rip the whole disc (756539616 sectors) to the hard disk.

Average Speed (X)
Errors
Errors Of Total Disc (%)
Cy'Qve 2400Plus
8.6
115528060
15.27
Ricoh MP5125A
8.7
106648871
14.1
Philips DVDRW1208
8.6
50368737
6.66

CyQ've 2400Plus ripped the files at 8.6X average speed, but the 15.27% of the disc contents were incorrect.

- Ripping 90 and 99mins AudioCDs

Tested drives
Ripping up to
Cy'Qve 2400Plus
86 min

- Reading/Ripping Protected AudioCDs

For the test procedure we used 2 protected AudioCDs, which we tested in both recognition and ripping (with 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
EAC
CyQ've 2400Plus
Cannot recognize disc contents
Rips entire disc without problems

The CyQ've drive did not any problems to rip the audio files of CDS200 discs. On the other hand, the Key2Audio protection was hard for the drive and the inserted disc was not even recognized.


8. CDR Tests
CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 8

CDR Tests

We tested the drive with latest version of Nero/CloneCD. CyQ've 2400Plus supports the 2X, 4X, 8X and 12X writing speeds. For all the recording tests, we used slightly more than 80min data (80:01:47).

- Recording Tests

CyQ've 2400Plus finished the task in 7:19 min. The recording time result is very close to Philips DVDRW228, and Ricoh MP5125A is 5 seconds faster.

- Writing quality

We used Mitsubishi Chemicals and Taiyo Yuden media and burned them at 12x with CyQ've 2400Plus. We used Nero 5.5.9.6 as a CDR software. The produced CDs, were measured from DigitalDrives and results are illustrated in the following tables.

Brand
C1
C2
Average Burning Time (mins)
Max
Average
Max
Average
Taiyo Yuden 74min (24x)
19
1.6
0
6:46
Mitsubishi Chemicals 80min (24x)
41
3.5
7:19

The produced writing quality is high. Notice that the C1 error rate at the 12x recording speed is lower for the 74min media.

- Other features

Overburning
Up to 99 min
CD text reading/writing
Yes

- CloneCD Writing Tests

CloneCD reports that the drive supports the DAO-RAW feature. We performed our usual tests and we confirmed that the drive supports the DAO-RAW writing mode at the following CD protections: SafeDisc 1, LaserLock 1/2 and SecuROM 2 CD protections.

SD2 Support

For the SD2 test we used the "Emperor: Battle for Dune", "Max Payne", "Serious Sam - The Second Encounter" and "Medal of Honour Allied Assault" game titles. We used the drive both as reader/writer at the maximum reading/recording speed. Unfortunately, the produced backups did not work at any drive we tried to. With CloneCD v4.x "Amplify Weak Sectors" setting this can be overpassed.


9. HS-RW Writing Tests

CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 9

HS-RW Writing Tests

We used Nero 5.5.9.6 for writing CDs in maximum RW writing speed for all the tested drives in 10x HS-RW media. All the drives in the test support the HS-RW writing standard:

The writing times are almost the same for all the drives. In the quick erase process, Ricoh MP5125A is faster with only 30seconds.

- Packet Writing Tests

We used InCD v3.28 and Ricoh HS-RW media for all Packet Writing tests. The formatting of the media takes around 10min. The formatted disc had 530mbs 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 explorer (we dragged and dropped) we completed the test twice to eliminate possible time measurement faults and user errors:

The writing speed of all the drives is approximately 7X. In the reading part, Ricoh MP5125A is faster with 16.72X and CyQ've 2400Plus gets the third best place with 13.6X.


10. DVD Tests

CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 10

DVD Tests

- Writing Performance

We used Nero 5.5.9.6 and written the same amount of data for all the drives. The media DVD+RW/+R come from Ricoh. The results are listed in the following table.

DVD Tests
Drives
Writing Speed
Average Writing Time (min)
CyQ've 2400Plus DVD+RW
2.4x
23:30
CyQ've 2400Plus DVD+R
2.4x
24:32
Ricoh MP5125A DVD+RW
2.4x
23:05
Ricoh MP5125A DVD+R
2.4x
24:47

Ricoh MP5125A was 25 seconds faster than CyQ've 2400Plus in the DVD+RW writing test. With DVD+R media, both drives gave higher writing times, but this time the CyQ've was 15 seconds faster.

The following pictures come from Nero, after successful DVD+RW and DVD+R burnings. The amount of data is the same in both tests.

- Erase Time Performance

Average Erase Time (mins)
Drives
Quick
Full
CyQ've 2400Plus DVD+RW
32secs
23:56
Ricoh MP5125A DVD+RW
28secs
23:24

Ricoh MP5125A has low erase times - 32 seconds for quick erase and 2.24mins for full erase. CyQ've 2400Plus follows with slightly higher times.

- Packet Writing Performance

We used the same file/methodology we are using for our CD packet-writing test. Ricoh DVD+RW MP5125A needs less than 2minutes to write the test file. CyQ've 2400Plus is also fast and gave a 2.4X writing speed and a 2.26X in the reading test.

Packet Writing/Reading Tests
Drives
Average Writing Speed
Average Reading Speed
CyQ've 2400Plus DVD+RW
2.4x
2.26x
Ricoh MP5125A DVD+RW (2.4x)
2.46x
2.38x


11. Conclusion

CyQ've 2400Plus IDE DVD+RW - Page 11

Conclusion

Positive (+)

Negative (-)

- Fast DVD+RW/+R recorder
- "Just-Link" anti-coaster technology
- Complete retail package
- Optional IEEE 1394/USB2.0 interface
- Very good data reading performance with CDs/HS-RW media
- Good CD-R writing quality
- Good reading/writing packet writing performance
- Good seek times
- Very good DVD-ROM/-R/-RW reading performance
- Good DVD ripping performance
- Supports HS-RW standard (10x rewrite)
- Supports DAO-RAW
- Supports reading of SubChannel data
- Supports CD-Text (reading/writing)
- Can handle CD200 audio discs

- Low CD/DVD error correction capabilities
- DVD+RW/+R reading speed needs improvement
- Failed to backup SD2 protected CDs
- DAE speed limited to 24X
- Cannot handle Key2Audio discs
- Bad DAE quality with dusted/scratched CDR media

The performance of the CyQ've 2400Plus seems to meet the drive's specifications. The drive comes in a complete retail package with the installation manuals, software and the essential DVD+RW/+R media, for your first DVD burnings. The flexible connecting interface provides easiness of use, and the external case looks solid and stylish. The tests showed that the CyQ've 2400Plus is a fast DVD+RW/+R writer, can compete other drives in the category in terms of reading speed, especially for the DVD-RW/-R and DVD-ROM formats and the DVD-Video ripping speed is adequate. Regarding to the CD format, the 12X maximum supported writing speed will produce high quality CD-R recordings, the reading speed is high and HS-RW writing and packet writing is also fast. In addition, the drive supports the DAO-RAW writing mode, can read Subchannel data, fully recognizes CDS200 audio protected discs and supports CD-Text.

However, the CyQ've 2400Plus seems to have some problems in both CD/DVD formats, when it comes to error correction matters. The drive gave back read errors in the corresponding tests with ABEX media, especially with the discs which were artificially scratched. Reading was very hard for the drive and the tests were terminated. The same results were also confirmed in the scratched / bad conditioned disc test we used to run with every drive we test.

The CyQ've 2400Plus will also not be the best solution for all those who wish to backup their favorite SD2 titles, and as for the audiophiles, the DAE speed provided will be less than 24X, and there is no support for Key2Audio protected discs. Last, we mention that the DVD+RW/+R reading speeds could be higher.

 



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