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Exclusive : TDK 48x24x48x CD-RW/DVD Combo
By Aaron Yip
Category : Optical Storage
Published by Jimmy Tang on Saturday, 9th August, 2003
Rating : 5 out of 5 stars  

Looking for a 2-in-1 Drive?

The CD-RW optical storage drive now play such a fundamental role inside a PC that it's probably hard imagine building a PC without one. It helps of course, that the media are cheap and widely available, and the drives don't cost much anyway (a new 52x32x52x drive can be purchased for anything below S$100). But unlike the more expensive DVD writers that are usually regarded as the "all-in-one" for their ability to read and write both CDs and DVDs, CD-RW drives can't write on DVD media, let alone read them. So for users who have no need for a DVD writer yet but wants to view their DVDs on their PC, or to play games that comes in the DVD format (such as the recent Metal Gear Solid 2 for the PC), the alternative here is to purchase a separate DVD-ROM drive. Or, they could opt to buy a drive like the one we're reviewing today, which is both a CD-RW and a DVD-ROM drive.

The S$113 TDK CyClone CD-R/RW & DVD Combo (let's just call it the CyClone Combo here) drive is essentially a 2-in-1 drive that comes with a 48x24x48x terminology as well as 16x DVD-ROM capability. Part of the beauty of this drive is that it comes in a shorter length as compared to most other drives, so owners of mini-casings such as the Shuttle XPC SN41G2 and the Soltek QBIC EQ3701M need not worry about it being unable to fit the interior comfortably. Strangely, the TDK CyClone Combo drive doesn't sport the usual bluish transclucent tray as seen in its full CD-RW cousins. Instead, the faceplate design is based on a very ordinary corporate-white look. We also understand from TDK that a black faceplate version is available for the same price too, although we have yet to see it for ourselves.

Going a little in-depth on the drive's exterior, we also found that the tray eject and close smoothly without those loud "whirring" noise. The tray's sensitivity when it's ejected is also worth noting here, where the slightest push will end trigger the drive to retract the tray. Other than that, the drive's faceplate features some of the usual suspects - a headphone jack, a volume knob, an LED, and the tray eject button (which doesn't feel tacky at all).

Let's inspect the drive's technical specifications below before we move to the next page to have a look at the drive's performance.

TDK 48x24x48x CD-RW/DVD Combo Technical Specifications
  • EIDE
  • Data Capacity
  • 700MB (80 min. disc)
  • 650MB (74 min. disc)
  • 210MB (24 min. disc)
  • Writing Speed (CD-R)
  • 48x
  • 40x
  • 32x
  • 24x
  • 16x
  • 12x
  • 8x
  • 4x
  • Writing Speed (CD-RW)
  • 24x
  • 16x
  • 12x
  • 10x
  • 8x
  • 4x
  • Reading Speed
  • 48x max.
  • 48x max. (digital audio extraction
  • Access Time
  • 120ms (CD) / 140ms (DVD)
  • Data Buffer
  • 2MB with SMART-BURN Buffer Underrun Protection
  • Writing Methods
  • Disc at Once
  • Track at Once
  • Session at Once
  • Packet Writing
  • Multisession
  • Mount-Rainier
  • Supported Write / Read Formats
  • CD-DA
  • CD-ROM
  • PhotoCD
  • VideoCD
  • Super VideoCD
  • CD-I
  • CD-Extra
  • CD Text
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