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Home > Hardware Reviews > Optical Storage > DVD Recorders Double Layer

Tuesday, February 08, 2005
LiteOn SOHW-1653S

1. Introduction - Retail Package

LiteOn SOHW-1653S DVD Burner

Introduction - Retail Package

LiteON recently released their latest 16X recorder, following on the footsteps of other manufacturers. The new LiteON SOHW-1653S supports up to 16X DVD+R recording speed, being capable of burning a full Single Layer disc in almost 5:50mins.

The drive also supports writing speeds of 12X for DVD-R, 4X for DVD+RW and DVD-RW, and 4X recording speed for Double Layer media. When it comes to CD writing speeds, the drive can write CDs at 48X and can rewrite at 24X.

- Features

  • ATAPI/E-IDE Half-Height internal DVD+R / DVD+RW / DVD-R / DVD-RW / DVD+R9/ DVD-ROM/ CD-R/ CD-RW / CD-ROM combination drive
  • Supports Double Layer DVD+R9 Recording Function
  • SMART-BURN(*1) avoiding Buffer Under Run error, automatically adjusting writing strategy & running OPC to provide the best burning quality
  • SMART-X(*2) function adjusts CD-DA / VCD / DVD data extraction to the fastest allowable speed according to both data request rate from host and disk quality
  • VAS(*3) system reduces vibration and noise during recording and reading
  • Supports Fixed Packet, Variable Packet, TAO, SAO, DAO, Raw Mode Burning & Over-Burn
  • DVD read compliant: DVD single/dual layer (PTP/OTP), DVD-R(3.9GB/4.7GB), DVD-R multi-borders, DVD+R, DVD+R multi-sessions, DVD-RW and DVD+RW
  • CD read compliant: CD-DA, CD-ROM, CD-ROM/XA, Photo-CD, Multi-session, Karaoke-CD, Video-CD, CD-I FMV, CD Extra, CD Plus, CD-R, and CD-RW
  • Supports both 8cm and 12cm discs from CD and DVD families
  • Conforms to Orange Book: Part 2 CD-R
    Volume 1, Part 2 CD-R Volume 2 Multi Speed, Part 3 CD-RW Volume 1 (1x, 2x, and 4x), Part 3 CD-RW
    Volume 2: High Speed, Part 3 CD-RW
    Volume 3: Ultra Speed
  • Supported transfer mode: PIO mode 4, DMA mode 2 and Ultra DMA mode 2

- Specifications

DVD Family:  
Write DVD+R 16X(21600KB/sec) maximum by CAV
  DVD-R 12X(16200KB/sec) maximum by CAV
  DVD+R9 4X(5400KB/sec) maximum by CLV
ReWrite DVD+RW 4X(5400KB/sec) by CLV
  DVD-RW 4X(5400KB/sec) by CLV
Read 16X(21600KB/sec) maximum by CAV
Access time 160ms
CD Family :  
Write CD-R 48X(7200KB/sec) maximum by P-CAV
ReWrite CD-RW 24X(3600KB/sec) maximum by Z-CLV in UltraSpeed disc
Read 48X(7200KB/sec) maximum by CAV
Access time 160ms
Buffer Size : 2MB
PC Required : Pentium III 450MHz or faster CPU and 128MB or higher RAM are required 650MB HDD available capacity; and 5GB free space for creating a DVD image file
Compatibility : MS-Windows 98 / NT4.0 / ME / 2000 / XP
MTBF(Life) : 70000 Hours
S/N Ratio : >75dB
Environment :  
Operating 5 C to 45 C ;Relative Humidity: 15% to 80%
Non-Operating -40 C to 60 C ; Relative Humidity: 15% to 95%
Dimension : 145(W) x 41.3(H) x 170(D) mm
Weight : <0.9 Kg
Voltage Requirements : +5V +/-5% and less than 100 mVp-p ripple voltage
+12V +/-5% and less than 200 mVp-p ripple voltage
*1 SMART-BURN : Smart Monitoring & Adapting Recording Technology for BURNing.
*2 SMART-X : Smart Monitoring & Adjusting Read-speed Technology for eXtraction.

VAS : Vibration Absorber System

Below are the drive's main specs as given by NeroInfoTool and DVDInfoPro:

The drive also uses the RPC II region control, allowing a user to change the drive's region at most 5 times. However, since this is a LiteOn drive, you can set the drive to region free using several readily available utilities such as Kprobe.

- European Retail Package

The retail package includes the LiteON SOHW-1653S, a quick installation guide, audio cable, mounting screws, DVD+R and DVD-R media. Also included are CDs with application software, DVD authoring, writing and editing software, DVD playback software, BackUp software and User Manual. Nero 6 is also included for all your writing/authoring needs along with PowerDVD 5 for playing your favourite DVDs.

The front panel is the same as on previous LiteON models, with the activity led lighting up green when the device is active. Also on the front, the user will discern the DVD+R Double Layer logo.

The rear panel has the usual analogue and digital outputs, IDE connector and power input connector.

Opening the device's case voids your warranty, so we advise against it. Instead, use the photos in this review for a closer look under the hood. Clicking on the image below will reveal a high resolution image:

- Installation

The drive was installed as secondary master and under Windows XP SP2, recognized as "LITE-ON DVDRW SOHW-1653S ". For this review, the drive was flashed with firmware version CS07. Below is a screenshot from Nero Burning Rom, showing supported options such as overburn and buffer under-run protection.

During this review, we will be comparing the LITE-ON SOHW-1653S burner with the NEC ND-3500A, The BenQ DW 1620A and the Pioneer DVR-108 burners.

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