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

Thursday, December 08, 2005

2. Reading Tests

- CD Format

For our CD transfer rate tests, we used the Nero CD-Speed utility on Pressed and CDR media. Let's take a look at how the drive performed compared to the other drives in this comparison.

The LiteOn and Plextor drives both support up to 48X max reading speed for both pressed and CDR media while the HP drive supports up to 40X. It is therefore logical that the HP850b was the slowest reader of the three drives.

With USRW media, the HP840b was again the slowest reader with the Plextor drive way in front.

- AudioCD

For this tests we used a pressed AudioCD and its copy on CD-R media.

The HP840b supports a low DAE speed, reporting averages of 23,99X and 23,87X with pressed and CDR media respectively, while achieving a quality score of 100 points and an average speed of 22.19 as reported by the CDSpeed Advanced DAE test.

- 90mins Audio disc

- 90mins Audio disc

Unfortunately, the drive could not finish the test while reading the 90min audio disc. On the other hand, the 840b achieved a perfect reading when reading the 99min audio disc.

- DVD Format

Now let's have a look at how the drive performs with DVD media. Again, a set of DVD media was used, both SL and DL.

The above reading confirmed the manufacturer's specifications. All drives performed at similar speeds.

The two layers of a PTP DVD-ROM disc are read sequentially with the drive starting reading from the inner part of the disc, which is the beginning of each layer, progressing towards its outer range. The Plextor drive was fastest with a difference when reading the PTP DL media, supporting a maximum reading speed of 12X. The HP840b and the LiteOn 1635S had similar speeds.

The first layer of an OTP dual layer DVD-ROM is read exactly the same way as the first layer of the PTP disc we tested previously, the main difference being the reading strategy of the second layer on the disc. The beginning of the second layer is located in the outer part of the disc, so the drive starts reading from the outer tracks towards the inner part of the disc. Same performance again, this time with PTP media.

After performing the reading tests with -/+ R and RW media, we can see that the HP 840b is not the fastest DVD reader on the market, while it is not slow either. Once again, we see that the Plextor drive is the fastest reader.

Very few drives can stand up against the Plextor drive when it comes to DVD ripping. With an average speed of 8,785kB/s, the HP 840b drive gave good results, although obviously no match for the Plextor 740A.


As mentioned before, the HP840b is a Super Multi drive, and as such, it can read DVD-RAM media at up to 5X reading speed.


Nero CD-DVD Speed Graphs

CD Pressed / CD-R / US-RW / AudioCD / AudioCD-R

DVD Pressed SL / DVD Pressed DL PTP / DVD Pressed DL OTP / DVD-R / DVD-RW / DVD+R / DVD+RW / DVD-RAM

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