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Home > Hardware Reviews > Optical Storage > DVD External

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

4. DVD Error Correction Tests

Freecom FX-50 DVD+/-RW 16X Burner - Page 4

DVD Error Correction Tests

In the following tests we examined the DVD reading capabilities of the Freecom FX-50 burner with scratched / defective DVD media. For the tests, we used CDVD Benchmark and Nero CDSpeed . 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, and its surface has an artificial scratch of dimensions varying from 0.4 to 3.0 mm.

The following transfer rate snapshot comes from the CDVD Benchmark v1.21 transfer rate test.

The Freecom FX-50 reported minor changes in speed over the scratched region on the disks surface but in general had no real problems reading the disc successfully. The resultant graph is very clean and smooth.

ABEX TDR-825

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

Again, the drive had no problems reading this test disc. This behavior was more or less expected since this is a NEC based drive.

- Dual Layer media

ABEX TDR-841

This is an 8.5GB dual layer, single sided DVD-ROM disc with artificial scratches of dimensions ranging from 0.4 to 3.0mm, on both layers.

Very good DVD error correction capabilities were shown again with this test disc. It should be noted that some NEC based drives have problems reading this disc, but the Freecom successfully read the media without any speed drops or fluctuations.

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 defective areas and fingerprints. The dimensions of the defective areas range from 0.5 to 1.1 mm and the fingerprints are sized from 65 to 75 micrometers.

The Freecom drive kept on reading past the defective areas without any problem. Once more, very good performance.

ABEX TDV-541

The TDV-541 is a single sided, dual layer DVD-VIDEO disc, with a capacity of 8.5GB. The disc is based on the TDV-540 series which is designed for inspection and adjustment of DVD-VIDEO players. The disc checks the layer switch operation from layer 0 to layer 1 and also includes test pictures and test signals for DVD sound files.

The current TDV-541 also checks the error correcting capabilities of the drive and includes scratches from 0.4 to 3.0 mm.

click to enlarge!

The FX-50 needed to reduce its reading speed immediately after the layer switch point, but it managed to read the disc without any errors. It started to read at a speed of 1.91X, reached a highest reading speed of 4.60X at the end of the first layer and reported an average speed of 3.40X.

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 0.4 to 1.0 mm. It has also 65 - 75 micro meter fingerprints.

click to enlarge!

Not even this disc was a problem for the Freecom FX-50. The test started at 1.91X and reached a maximum 4.60X speed, reporting an average speed of 3.44X.

- Summary

The Freecom FX-50 external burner is a very good reader when it comes to defective media. It managed to read all test discs and at a considerably high speed. Very good performance indeed.




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