Plextor 48/24/48A CDRW

Author
Aron Schatz
Posted
October 19, 2002
Views
20748
This is the newest drive from Plextor.
Tags Storage

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<B>Introduction</B>:

<a href="http://www.plextor.com">Plextor</a> has been known for quality, and for price. Today, I'll show you their newest burner: The 48/24/48A CDRW drive.

The Box<B>:
</B>
<center><img src="http://www.aselabs.com/images/articles/oct02/plex48/box.jpg"></center>

The outside of the box is nice to see, but that really won't matter too much to the people that are buying it, it is what's inside.

<B>Included in the box</B>:

Plextor doesn't skimp on what's included with the drive. You get a good manual, a nice quick start guide, the burner, a CD full of software, a single CDR disc, and the mounting screws and quick release poker thing.

<center><img src="http://www.aselabs.com/images/articles/oct02/plex48/parts.jpg"></center>

<B>The manual and quick start guide and CD</B>:

New users will most likely want to read the manual, it gives a load of information. Users beyond the skill of a beginner will either use the quick start guide, or nothing. The quick start guide was well written with pictures showing the jumpers and cabling. On the other side it shows the software aspects of burning. The CD had the normal suite of utilities including Easy CD Creator and Direct CD among other things.

<center><img src="http://www.aselabs.com/images/articles/oct02/plex48/side1.jpg">

<img src="http://www.aselabs.com/images/articles/oct02/plex48/side2.jpg"></center>

<B>Specs</B> (From Plextor Site):

E-IDE (ATAPI) interface
3-in-1 drive: 48X CD-R, 24X CD-RW, 48X max CD-ROM
Burn-Proof
PoweRec
SpeedRead
65ms Average Random Access
4 MB Buffer
Supports CD-DA, CD-Extra, CD-ROM Mode 1, Mix Mode CD, CD-ROM XA, Photo CD, Video CD, CD-I, Multisession, CD-Text, CD+G, UDF
Supports Disc-at-Once, Track-at-Once, Session-at-Once, Variable & Fixed packet writing modes
Flash ROM allows for easy upgrade over the Internet
Windows 98/2000/ME/XP Compatible
One-Year Full Warranty and Unlimited Toll-Free Tech Support
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<B>The drive itself</B>:

<center><img src="http://www.aselabs.com/images/articles/oct02/plex48/logo.jpg"></center>

When I stuck the drive in an opened it, it was black inside. That's amazing! Now that I think about it, I'm pretty easy to please...

<center><img src="http://www.aselabs.com/images/articles/oct02/plex48/blackinside.jpg"></center>

I thought it was cool...

<B>Testing</B>:

I tested this drive against my TEAC 16x burner. I wanted to see if it is worth it to upgrade from a not so old burner. The minimum specs for using this CDRW drive are a P2 300mhz with 64MB of Ram. The test system being used is a pretty average budget gaming system. All drives are on different IDE channels to ensure that the bus isn't being maxed or interfered with.

Athlon 1800+ at 1.63 Ghz
Abit KX7-333R
256MB DDR Ram
WD 80GB HDD (8MB cache)

The other stuff in the system isn't important. I used Nero to burn an ISO file of <a href="articles.php?id=36">Lycoris</a> Build 53. It is 516MB. I also used CD speed to determine the read speed of the drive.
<table class='line' cellspacing='1' width='80%' align='center'>
<tr class='titlebar1'><td align='center'><big>Teac 16x</big></td></tr>
<tr><td><table class='line' width='100%' cellspacing='1'><tr class='background'><td>ISO Burn (516MB)</td></td><td><b>4 Mins 39 secs</b></td></tr><tr class='background'><td>Avg Speed</td><td>28.49x</td><td>28.45x</td><td>28.47x</td><td><b>28.47x</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>Start Speed</td><td>18.07x</td><td>18.01x</td><td>18.02x</td><td><b>18.03x</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>End Speed</td><td>36.85</td><td>36.80</td><td>36.82</td><td><b>36.82x</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>Rand Seek (ms)</td><td>75</td><td>74</td><td>75</td><td><b>75</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>1/3 Seek (ms)</td><td>82</td><td>80</td><td>82</td><td><b>81</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>Full Seek (ms)</td><td>131</td><td>117</td><td>120</td><td><b>123</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>CPU 1x (%)</td><td>1</td><td>1</td><td>1</td><td><b>1</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>CPU 2x (%)</td><td>2</td><td>3</td><td>3</td><td><b>3</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>CPU 4x (%)</td><td>5</td><td>5</td><td>5</td><td><b>5</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>CPU 8x (%)</td><td>10</td><td>10</td><td>9</td><td><b>10</b></td></tr></table>

</td></tr>
<tr class='titlebar1'><td align='center'><big>Plextor 48x</big></td></tr>
<tr><td><table class='line' width='100%' cellspacing='1'><tr class='background'><td>ISO Burn (516MB)</td></td><td><b>2 Mins 52 secs</b></td></tr><tr class='background'><td>Avg Speed</td><td>29.10x</td><td>29.06x</td><td>29.06x</td><td><b>29.07x</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>Start Speed</td><td>18.45x</td><td>17.24x</td><td>17.24x</td><td><b>17.64x</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>End Speed</td><td>37.63x</td><td>37.63x</td><td>37.63x</td><td><b>37.63x</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>Rand Seek (ms)</td><td>57</td><td>59</td><td>57</td><td><b>58</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>1/3 Seek (ms)</td><td>64</td><td>64</td><td>61</td><td><b>63</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>Full Seek (ms)</td><td>98</td><td>99</td><td>99</td><td><b>99</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>CPU 1x (%)</td><td>0</td><td>0</td><td>1</td><td><b>0</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>CPU 2x (%)</td><td>1</td><td>1</td><td>1</td><td><b>1</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>CPU 4x (%)</td><td>3</td><td>3</td><td>3</td><td><b>3</b></td></tr><tr class='background'>
<td>CPU 8x (%)</td><td>6</td><td>6</td><td>6</td><td><b>6</b></td></tr></table>
</td></tr>
</table>

<table class='line' cellspacing='1' width='80%' align='center'><tr class='titlebar1'><td>Drive</td><td>ISO 516MB</td><td>Avg Speed</td><td>Start Speed</td><td>End Speed</td><td>Rand Seek (ms)</td><td>1/3 Seek</td><td>Full Seek</td><td>CPU 1x</td><td>CPU 2x</td><td>CPU 4x</td><td>CPU 8x</td></tr><tr class='background'><td class='titlebar1'>Teac 16x</td><td>4:39</td><td>28.47x</td><td><B>18.03x</B></td><td>36.82x</td><td>75</td><td>81</td><td>123</td><td>1</td><td>3</td><td>5</td><td>10</td>
</tr><tr class='background'><td class='titlebar1'>Plextor 48x</td><td><B>2:52</B></td><td><B>29.07x</B></td><td>17.64x</td><td><B>37.63x</B></td><td><B>58</B></td><td><B>63</B></td><td><B>99</B></td>
<td><B>0</B></td><td><B>1</B></td><td><B>3</B></td><td><B>6</B></td></tr></table>

<B>Conclusion</B>:

All in all, this is a great drive. CPU utilization is excellent, as well as seek times. If your looking for a new drive, I highly recommend this one. If you already have a 16x or faster burning, don't bother. I don't feel it is worth the money for a new drive for a few minutes of time. I'd like to thank Plextor for sending this out for review, too bad I can't keep it Wink.

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