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Home > Hardware Reviews > Optical Storage > 32x CD-RW

Monday, February 04, 2002
32x CD-RW Roundup Vol2

2. Introduction - Page 2

32x CD-RW Roundup Vol 2 - Page 2

- CyberDrive CW-058D

The drive supports 32x writing (Z-CLV), 12x re-writing, 2MB Buffer and "ExacLink" as the main buffer underrun technology. The maximum reading speed of the drive is 48x (CAV). The exact writing speeds are 4x, 8x, 12, 16x, (CLV), 20x, 24x, 28x and 32x (Z-CLV). The re-writing speeds are 4x, 8x and 12x. The drive doesn't support Mt. Rainier format, which should be added in newer models. According to CyberDrive's press release "The drive supports all RAW formats including EFM correction", which however didn't confirmed from our test results...

The drive utilises a quality media detection system, which automatically lowers the maximum recording speed, according to the inserted media condition. The drive will reduce maximum writing speed down to 28x, 24x or even 16x in case it detects low quality of media.

- CyberDrive's 32x writing speed

The CyberDrive supports 32x writing speed with the use of the Z-CLV writing technology. Below it's the Nero CD Speed writing graph that illustrates the use of Zone-CLV writing technology:

The 32x writing speed range is divided in 5 zones: The drive starts writing at 16x from the lead-in area till 8mins, shifts up to 20x at 10mins, up to 24x at 24mins, to 28x at 36mins and lastly shifts to 32x at 52mins and stays there until the end. The average recording speed is 26.41X, as Nero CD Speed shows, making it faster than AOpen CRW3248 but slower than Philips PCRW3210.

It's quite interesting how the drive passes from 16x to 20x since it almost doesn't lower its recording speed like other recorders do. This happens again at 20x -> 24x speed, where the drive doesn't lower at all the recording speed! That gives the drive an advantage, which affects the final recording speed. The drive instantly lowers the recording speed for shifting from 24x to 28x and from 28x to 32x.

- The package

The package supplied was the retail European version. This included: the drive itself, an installation guide, audio cable, a CD-R pen, 1 piece of CyberDrive 80min 32x CD-R blank (actual manufacturer Ritek), 1 piece of CyberDrive 74min HS-RW (actual manufacturer Plasmon) and mounting screws. The software supplied with the drive was Nero v5.5.6.9 and InCD v3.12. We don't know if the drive has a 2-year warranty (only in Europe). The complete package will be available at €129 including 16% VAT. (s.r.p.).

The front of the drive doesn't have the CyberDrive logo, and just gives the features of the drive "32x/12x/48x" - no HS-RW logo is present. You will also find only one led, the eject/stop/play/next buttons and the headphone input jack/volume selector:

At the back of the drive we will find the usual connectors (IDE interface, power), the jumpers for setting the drive as a Master/Slave, the SPDIF output connector and the analog/digital output connectors:

- Installation

The CyberDrive CW058D was installed as Master in the secondary IDE Bus. The drive worked in UDMA33 mode and under WinXP, DMA was activated automatically.

The drive was a January 2002 model with firmware revision v0.72 installed. CyberDrive supplied two new firmware revisions (0.96D/0.98D) that fixed some of our initial problems. The latest version used for all recording/reading tests. We used Nero (5.5.7.2), InCD (3.21) and CloneCD (3.3.4.1) for the recording tests.




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