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Home > Hardware Reviews > Optical Storage > DVD External

Wednesday, December 08, 2004
Freecom FX-50 external 16X

3. CD Error Correction Tests

Freecom FX-50 DVD+/-RW 16X Burner - Page 3

CD Error Correction Tests

In the following tests we check the drive's behavior when reading scratched / defective audio discs. The test discs used were the ABEX series from ALMEDIO.

- ABEX TCD-721R

Errors total
Num: 1457128
Errors (Loudness) dB(A)
Num: 173360 Avg: -80.3 dB(A) Max: -18.3 dB(A)
Error Muting Samples
Num: 5993 Avg: 1.2 Samples Max: 18 Samples
Skips Samples
Num: 36 Avg: 6.0 Samples Max: 6 Samples
Total Test Result
64.1 points (out of 100.0 maximum)
C2 Accuracy
98.7 %

The total error count was a little above average and the maximum error loudness level was high at -18.3dB. There were 36 skipped samples which is high, while the drive was awarded a total score of 64.1. In general, the drive 's performance was not that good with this test disc.

- ABEX TCD-726

Errors total
Num: 8435
Errors (Loudness) dB(A)
Num: 12258 Avg: -85.4 dB(A) Max: -11.3 dB(A)
Error Muting Samples
Num: 321 Avg: 4.4 Samples Max: 18 Samples
Skips Samples
Num: 2 Avg: 6.0 Samples Max: 6 Samples
Total Test Result
73.8 points (out of 100.0 maximum)
C2 Accuracy
96.1 %

The Abex TCD-726 test disc is much easier for drives in general to read. Most drives manage to compile a score in the 90s with the better drives managing 100. The drive managed only 73.8 points, indicating once more that the drive's CD error correction capabilities need further improvement.

- CD-Check Audio Test Disc

The CD-Check Test Disc is a very useful tool for evaluating the Sound Reproduction / Error correction capabilities of a CD player. The disc offers a signal combination with disc error patterns to rate the drive's abilities to read music and reproduce it completely. Five tracks on the disc contain a sequence of progressively more difficult tests. These tracks are referred to as Check Level-1 through Check Level-5.

The tracks are reproduced through a software multimedia player (i.e. Windows Media Player). Each level is considered as passed, if the tone is smooth, continuous without interruptions, skipping or looping. The higher the Check Level passed, the more reliable the sound reproduction of the tested drive.

Error Level
1
2
3
4
5
Freecom FX-50 External
5/5
5/5
3/5
0/5
0/5

The drive successfully passed only the first two out of the five check levels for this test. Here too, the drive turned in a poor performance. Almost all drives have difficulties reading the 5th level but good quality drives can read up to the 4th level. However, most drives will pass at least the third level without any problems.

- Summary

Generally we can say that the CD error correction of the Freecom FX-50 external burner is less than average, something that could be fixed with newer firmware releases.




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