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Home > Hardware Reviews > Optical Storage > DVD External

Thursday, April 27, 2006
LiteOn SLW 831SX

2. Reading Tests

- CD Format

The Slimtype supports 24X reading speed for CD media (pressed) and 24X for Re-Writable CD media. What follows is the average, start and end (max) reading speeds achieved for each media format.

The drive confirms the manufacturer's specifications. In both cases, the maximum supported speed of 24X was reached.

- AudioCD

For these tests, we used a pressed AudioCD and the Advanced DAE CDSpeed feature.

According to the CD-Speed Advanced DAE Quality test, the drive was awarded a quality score of 100 and an average DAE speed of 17.04X. It supports Leadin and Leadout, as well as CD Text and Subchannel Data. Note that for the On-the-fly copying test, the drive was rendered unable to perform the function at speeds higher than 10X.

- 90mins Audio disc

- 99mins Audio disc

Unfortunately, the drive cannot read either 90 or 99mins audio discs.

- DVD Format

We repeated the reading tests, this time using a collection of pressed SL and DL DVD media to test the drive's reading capabilities with DVD media and posted the results in the graphs below.

Once more, the test confirms the manufacturer's specifications.

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 the outer range, for each layer. Maximum supported speed for the reviewed drive is 8X in this case.

The graph shown above indicates the reading performance of the drive with OTP dual layer media. 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 difference here is the reading strategy of the second layer of 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 as the PTP disc, due to the 8X maximum reading speed with DL media.

With WriteOnce media, the drive reported same average speed of 6.36X for both +R and -R formats due to its cap at 8X reading speed, while with Re-Writable media, the drive again produced similar speeds for both formats achieving 6X maximum reading speed.

Slow ripping from the drive, with an average ripping speed of 4.4X.

From the above tests, we can conclude that the drive is slow. However, the specific drive is not intended to be a fast reader. It doesn't have to be since it's an external solution for notebooks.

- Appendix

Nero CD-DVD Speed Graphs

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