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

Tuesday, February 19, 2002
Yamaha CRW3200E CD-RW

1. New Features

Yamaha CRW3200E IDE CDR-W - Page 1

- Introduction:
is the first manufacturer that ever used P-CAV as the main recording technology to achieve higher recording speeds than 12x. The 2200E was Yamaha's first recorder that included both P-CAV and SafeBurn technologies and was able to face the competition at equal terms. In the meantime competition has moved ahead and 24x writing speed solutions are offered by June of 2001. Yamaha stayed loyal to the P-CAV principal and finally their 24x writing proposal has arrived! The drive not only supports 24x writing speed but also includes several new technologies that the competition misses. Let's find out what's new first...

- Yamaha's 18-24x P-CAV

The Yamaha 3200x series support 24x writing (P-CAV), 10x re-writing (CLV) and 40x reading (CAV). The drive uses OAK's OTI-9797 controller which is capable of 24X CD-R and 24X CD-RW writing speeds as well as 40X CD-ROM read speeds, and it provides an upgrade path to 32X recording speeds. The OAK's chipset is also the first to implement support for the pending Mt. Rainier standard in hardware for best packet writing performance. The OTI-9797 employs partial and full Constant Angular Velocity (CAV) writing technologies.

The rest of the manufacturers use Zone-CLV to achieve 24x writing speed. P-CAV technology keeps disc rotation constant in the inner portion of the disc as writing speed smoothly accelerates outwards until it reaches top speed. After that, writing speed is kept constant (CLV) until the end of the writing.

The 3200E starts writing at 18x in the lead-in area and gradually accelerates towards to 24x writing speed until 14mins. Afterwards the 24x writing speed is kept constant till the end of the disc. No links are performed during the acceleration from 18x to 24x.

In the P-CAV method, the rotation speed is kept moderated (8200 rpm) in the inner portion of the disc, compared with CLV method (over 9000 rpm at the beginning of the disc at 20X CLV). That helps the quality improvement of writing in the inner portion of the disc, because by moderating the disc rotation reduces the vibration that corrupts quality. Also since the rotation speeds are low the life of the laser diode and the drive's pickup will be extended.

- New Features

>> "Audio Master Quality Recording"

Yamaha has developed a new writing mode for recording AudioCD that promises to reduce jitter during playback in CD players. When Audio Master Quality Recording mode is enabled, CRW3200 writes PITs (and LANDs) relatively longer than normal writing mode. As a result, CD players can read the Audio Master Quality Recorded discs at linier velocity 1.4m/s speed. As a result, jitter becomes small giving a 30% improvement over conventional recording mode. When you are using "Audio Master Quality Recording" System since pits have longer, lenght the total maximum recording space is reduced down to 63 and 68mins for 74 and 80min CDs respectively. Also the "Audio Master Quality Recording" is applied only at 4x writing speed.

>> CD-RW Audio Track Edit mode

CRW3200 provides a unique new feature that allows users to edit recorded audio track on CD-RW disc without erasing the entire disc. Users can add audio tracks to or erase audio tracks off any audio CD-RW.

>> CD-MRW (CD Mount Rainier ReWrite)

CD-MRW (CD Mount Rainier ReWrite) allows CD-RW to be used as a drag-and-drop device, like a floppy. Yamaha's CRW3200 series is the first CD-RW recorder that supports such feature. Read more about Mt. Rainier format over here.

- Other features

is the concept for error-proof CD recording, which includes Buffer Underrun Protection, 8MB buffer and Optimum Write Power Control. That means triple security with 8 MB Buffer, Buffer underrun protection and Optimum Write Speed Control. When data transfer is delayed and memory in the buffer drops to a critical level, recording is suspended until the buffer has regained the sufficient memory. After the recording restarts virtually seamlessly from the point that was suspended. The recording procedure is resumed at the same speed.

>> Optimum Write Speed Control

The Optimum Write Speed Control function that automatically adjusts writing speed to the optimum level for each kind of disc. Simply by setting the writing speed at 24X, the CRW3200 checks the characteristics and the condition of the inserted disc and automatically selects the maximum optimum writing speed to ensure data reliability when the disc is read back by CD-ROM drives or CD players.

Plextor, Sanyo and Ricoh have similar systems which can drop down writing speed. Due to the lack of P-CAV technology other drives can only reduce the speed from 24x to 20x or 16X (all speeds are CLV) while Yamaha's Optimum Write Speed Control can set the maximum writing speed more flexibly, at 24x-22x- 20x-18x-16x.

The Optimum Write Speed Control is enabled by default but can be turned off within the recording software. With the Nero software you can notice the speed dropdown since a warning message appears.

- Universal design of interface variation

All CRW3200 series models are based on the same ATAPI drive. Using interface bridge adapters specially engineered by Yamaha, the 3200 series can be connected to several different interfaces (SCSI, FireWire, USB 2.0) making all users happy:

The CRW3200 series features four models to meet users' needs: CRW3200E (internal ATAPI), CRW3200SX (external SCSI-3/SCSI-2), CRW3200IX (external IEEE1394), and CRW3200UX (external USB1.1/2.0).

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