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Home > Hardware Reviews > Optical Storage > 24x CD-RW

Tuesday, February 19, 2002
TDK CyClone 241040 CD-RW

1. Installation

TDK CyClone 241040 IDE CDR-W - Page 1

- Introduction:

decided to enter the world of CD-Recording competition on the year 2000 with a 12x writer (TDK CyClone 121032). From that time on TDK keeps shipping the fastest CD-RW products earlier than all other companies in the retail market. This was accomplished through strategic alliances with Plextor and Sanyo manufacturers. The CyClone series of recorders are designed for delivering the maximum performance at an affordable price for the novice as well as the power user. The new TDK CyClone 241040 also promises to be the fastest CD-RW drive ever! Is it able to accomplish this? Does it perform better than our initial BP1500P drive review?

- Features:

The CyClone 241040 supports 24x writing, 10x re-writing and 40x reading speeds. With 24x writing speed you can have a full 74min CD under 4mins! That is the fastest current recording speed you can get, but for getting that level of performance you will have to use very good quality media! The drive is also equipped with "BURN-Proof" technology and has all the goodies which the "BP1500P" also has: "Zone-CLV" recording mode and "FlexSS-BP" quality control mechanism. Read more about those 2 technologies over here.

- The package:
The package supplied was the retail European version. This included: The drive itself, a detailed manual (in 6 languages), a quick installation guide, one TDK 24x CD-R blank, 1 TDK High-Speed RW Blank, Audio cables, mounting screws and a CD-R pen. The software supplied with the drive was Nero Burning ROM v5.5.1.9 and Ahead InCD v2.12 (for packet writing use). The labeling on the included CD says that the InCD version is 2.14, but the real content was different. That is not a serious flaw, but it is something that TDK should look into more carefully.

The retail package as we said earlier contains one TDK "Ultra-Reflex" 24x certified media. The actual manufacturer for the media is Taiyo Yuden as CDR Identifier reports:
ATIP: 97m 24s 01f
Disc Manufacturer: Taiyo Yuden Company Ltd.
Assumed Dye type: Cyanine (Type 1)
Media type: CD-Recordable
Recording Speeds: min. unknown - max. unknown
nominal Capacity: 656.40MB (74m 43s 01f / LBA: 336076)

The front of the drive is exactly the same as the previous CyClone models. It displays the High Speed Logo on the left hand side of the front tray along with the "24/10/40" logo. The tray has a fluorescent blue color adding a special hue to the drive. There are also 2 leds (read, write) and the BURN-Proof logo above it, the eject button and the headphone input jack/volume potentiometer:

On the back of the drive we find the usual connectors (IDE interface, power), the jumpers for setting the drive as Master/Slave and the SPDIF (analog/digital) output connectors. The drive is also equipped with a slot for an extra cooling fan but it is empty:

- Installation:
The TDK CyClone 241040 was installed as Master in the secondary IDE BUS. The drive worked in PIO MODE-4 mode and after booting it identified itself as the "TDK CDRW241040X". We unchecked the Auto Insert notification, checked DMA and rebooted.

The drive was a May 2001 model with firmware revision v6.34 installed. We used the Nero (5.5.2.4), InCD (2.13), CloneCD (3.0.0.20) and Padus DJ (3.00.780) for the recording tests.

The package also contains TDK Digital MixMaster which offers many interesting features such as:
1) Turn your hard drive into a computer jukebox, with easy-to-create music playlists.
2) On-the-fly decoding converts your computer music files and playlists into play-anywhere CDs quickly and easily.
3) Automatic CD track labeling (Internet access required).
4) Convert your LPs and tapes into great-sounding CDs.
5) Built-in 20-band graphic equalizer lets you customize your sound.
6) See your music with 3D visualization technology.
7) Superior CD Duplication
8) Copy virtually all types of CD Audio and CD-ROM discs.
9) One-drive dupe mode lets you copy your music CDs in half the time of most two-drive CD-ROM/CD burner setups ( up to 700 MB free hard drive space required).

The software is very fun to play with and has a fantastic 3D visualization engine (more or less like the one found in NeroMIX).

- Test Machine:
WinMe OS
Soyo 7VCA
Celeron II 566 over clocked to 850 MHz
128MB SDRAM PC 133
WD 18GB UDMA 66
Quantum Fireball EX 6.4 GB UDMA 33
DAWI 2975 - PCI (ULTRA) SCSI Host Adapter
ATI AIW 128
Yamaha 2200E firmware v1.0C
Ricoh MP7200A firmware v1.10
Sanyo BP1500P firmware vHg.35
TDK CyClone 241040 firmware v6.34




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