2. Reading Tests
3. CD Error Correction
4. DVD Error Correction
5. Protected Discs
6. CD Recording Tests
7. CD Writing Quality - Plextools
8. CD Writing Quality - Clover System
9. DVD Writing Tests
10. DVD Writing Quality - Page 1
11. DVD Writing Quality - Page 2
12. DVD Writing Quality - Page 3
13. DVD Writing Quality - Page 4
14. DVD Writing Quality - Page 5
15. DVD Writing Quality - Page 6
16. DVD Writing Quality - Page 7
17. DVD Writing Quality - Almedio
18. DVDR DL - Page 1
19. DVDR DL - Page 2
20. SA300 vs DVR-111DBK - Page 1
21. SA300 vs DVR-111DBK - Page 2
22. SA300 vs DVR-111DBK - Page 3
23. SA300 vs DVR-111DBK - Page 4
24. Booktype Setting
The Pioneer DVR-111DBK is the latest drive to be released after the DVR-110 series. Unfortunately, the supported 16X media list for the DVR-111 series is limited and most of the 16X media is recognized as 12X. A new firmware revision may expand the 16X support list.
The DVR-111DBK is not the fastest drive on the market when it comes to CD reading, supporting up to 40X. As a DVD reader, the drive supports 16X for SL and 12X for DL, something that you can find in any other drive currently on the market. However, you may not find many drives out there, that are able to read DVD-RAM media, which the Pioneer DVR-111DBK supports at the 5X reading speed.
The drive cannot read 90/99 min Audio CDs, but when it came to our DAE quality test, it received a perfect score. Interesting to note, is that despite the fact that the drive uses the NEC chipset, it performed very well in that test, in contrast to NEC drives which usually have problems.
DVD ripping is a strong point of the drive, being the fastest in comparison with the other two latest drives (PX-760A, SHM-165P65) in this department.
Protection schemes are a problem however, the drive failing to bypass even Safedisc v2, which is found on older games. It also failed to rip our key2audio protected disc. So this drive is not the ideal choice for backing up protected discs.
In CD error correction, the drive gave better than average performance, and could have been ranked as very good if not for the less than perfect score with the ABEX TCD-726 test disc. In the CD-Check Audio Test, the DVR-111DBK read up to the fourth track without errors and produced only two audible clicks in the fifth track. Very few drives are capable of playing the fifth track.
The drive also has a good DVD error correction mechanism, reading all our test discs without reporting any errors, despite some speed drops in some cases.
As a CD-R burner, the DVR-111DBK is slow, due to its 40X burning speed. The quality that we saw at that speed and even at lower speeds (32X), could and should be better, since none of the tested media managed to pass the Clover System check.
The strong point of the DVR-111DBK is its writing quality with DVD-/+R media. Most of the tested discs produced excellent quality (low error levels, smooth speed graphs), although most of the 16X certified media was burned at lower speeds. On the other hand, we saw that some of the 8X media was oversped and burned at 12X with good quality. As for any unreadable media or media with high error levels from our LiteOn or Plextor drive tests, these were re-checked with the Almedio AEC-1000 error checker and only Traxdata DVD+R 16X showed up as bad quality.
With DL media, the drive supports 8X for both formats and the best quality was achieved with MKM DVD+R DL 8X. Also, we should mention that Ricoh+R DL 8X media was recognized as 2.4X, while MKM-R 8X at 2X. A new firmware release should fix this by including higher supported burning speeds.
Unfortunately, the drive does not support the booktype change for plus media. However, by default, it sets the DVD+R DL media to DVD-ROM, so you can hopefully achieve the best possible compatibility with any outdated stand alone players. ;-)
One final point, is that we had a problem with the drive which is most probably due to a faulty unit. After burning an initial batch of media, we were unable to perform any more burns and hence were unable to provide any writing strategy graphs. Pioneer will be shipping another unit off to our labs. We should then be able to complete our tests, the results of which will be updated in a follow-up review.
- The Good
- Supports 8X DVD±R DL
- Good DVD error correction
- Supports reading of DVD-RAM media
- Supports overspeeding of 8X media up to 12X
- DVD writing quality with DVD±R
- The Bad
- Cannot create working backups of SafeDisc's most recent versions
- Does not support DVD overburning
- Limited media list for 16XDVD±R media
- Limited media list for 8XDVD±R DL media
- Like To be fixed
- Writing quality for CD-R and DVD+RW media
- More media compatibility through firmware release
- Booktype change for DVD+R/RW media