As with most IDE drives
now installation is simple. We installed
it as secondary master by changing the jumper
on the back. The drive was detected in Windows
XP without any problems.
Auto insert notification
was enabled but we disabled it by changing
the registry key "KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SYSTEM/CurrentControlSet/Services/Cdrom/Autorun=0".
DMA is normally successfully turned on by
default if Windows XP can detect it. We
experienced no difficulty or strange behaviour
Above you can see we examined the drive
using the popular program Infotool version
1.01. It is reporting that the Read
speed is: 24 x and write speed is 8 for
CD-R disks. This is slower than the Philips
228k (32 read and 12 speed write). The buffer
of this drive is 2,000KB.
You can see that it can not read DVD-RAM
disks and it can also read the competition
formats "+" disks i.e. DVD+R &
DVD+RW. It wrongfully reports no buffer
underrun protection for CDs which is inaccurate.
This drive also does not support the packet
writing standard "Mount Rainer"
which is available in newer CD writers.
Installation was easy and it took around
10mins from disassembling the machine to
having the software installed and the drive
ready for use.
Our review drive is a May 2002 model that
came shipped with firmware version 1.20
(which is currently the latest version available
for this drive).
The software we used for this review was:
DiskJuggler 4.01.1002, Nero
184.108.40.206, Record Now Max 4.1 &
The above shows what Nero (220.127.116.11)
finds about the drive. Nero does
correctly detect its burnproof feature and
it is supported. You can see it supports
the overburning of CDs and the writing of
CD-Text information. The maximum writing
speed of CD-Rs is 8 speed (around 10mins).
What is strange is the DVD high compatibility
option has not appeared (see the review
of the Philips DVDRW228k) to aid compatibility
with certain DVD players by padding the
disk with dummy data (to a minimum of 1GB).
The above screen shots are from DiscJuggler
4.01.1002 and more information is now revealed.
We can see that it reads DVD's at x 6 speed
(slow by today's standards as 16 speed DVD-ROM
readers have been out for well over 14months).
It also reports ripping (CDs) at 10 speed.
The drive can only write to CD-RWs at 4
speed (which is much slower than the Philips
228k's 10 speed) and DVD-RWs at x1. The
DVD "+" format wins by a huge
margin in the re-writing stakes (at least
on specifications). We were disappointed
to learn that no DAO RAW mode was added
since the A03. Also the drive can not read
and write full 96 bytes sub-codes (only
2 - Last Updated: 10 August 2002