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Plextor PX-W1210TS


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Plextor PX-W1210TS - Write/ReWrite Performance Results

  November 30, 2000 Author: Tim Zakharov  

Write/ReWrite Tests

CD-R Based Duplication

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In our audio CD duplication test, the 12/10/32S pulls ahead of its ATAPI brother by about 5% during the imaging process. However, both drives write the image back to CD-R at the same pace. This suggests that the faster DAE speeds we measured are helping during this process. Nevertheless, Sony's Spressa CRX160E remains the king of CD-R duplication in our comparisons. The 12/10/32S trails the Sony by 2.5% in total duplication time, but beats the 12/10/32A by 3% in the same comparison.

The data CD duplication test shows similar trends. Sony's CRX160E remains on top, but its lead is shortened. Plextor's 12/10/32S again edges out its ATAPI brother, but this time the difference is in the burning times, not in the imaging process. Its 3% advantage in burn speeds translates to less than a 2% advantage in total duplication times. The Sony holds tenuously to its negligible 3.5 second lead in total data CD duplication times.

All in all, Plextor's latest performs admirably in our CD-R based duplication tests. It's just a hair slower than the fastest 12X burner we've tested to date, Sony's CRX160E. Let's now see how the new Plextor fares when writing to high speed -RW media.

CD-RW Based Duplication

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Because the image portion of this test is identical to the image portion of our CD-R based data duplication test, results are nearly identical (human reaction times account for the ~0.5 second differences you may notice if studying these results in the database). The burn portion of the test shows the 12/10/32S to do its 10X rewriting at an identical clip to the 12/10/32A-big surprise. While the Sony is the fastest at imaging our test data disc, its 8X rewrite speeds keep it significantly behind the two 10X Plextors when we examine the total duplication times. In the end, the 12/10/32S edges its ATAPI brother by about 1 second-in effect, the two Plextors yield identical results.

CD-R Based Stress Tests

As we pointed out earlier, the 12/10/32S has an extra 2 megs of buffer over its ATAPI counterpart. Our feeling going into testing was that the extra 2 megs would probably benefit in our stress tests, where we drain the buffer and (in drives which support such technology) exercise the drive's buffer underrun protection. Were we right? Apparently not. As expected, this drive passed our Unreal Tournament stress test easily without ever running out of buffer. We felt, though, that our CPUmark99 stress test would show us a potential benefit to having 4 megs vs. 2. Results, however, showed the 12/10/32S to average about 4X burn speeds with Easy CD Creator set to 12X, just like Plextor's 12/10/32A. So, at least in our tests, we found no added benefit to the extra buffer, even under the highest loads.

According to Plextor's Director of Engineering, the extra buffer in the 12/10/32S is to accommodate those in the professional duplication market who may have 4 or more of these drives connected to a single SCSI bus, all burning simultaneously. We can't imagine the extra buffer having any added benefit in a single drive system, though, based on our CPUmark99 stress test.

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DirectCD Formatting

A full format of high-speed rewritable media under Adaptec's DirectCD averaged 15:45, which is the 2nd fastest result we've measured so far. Only Sony's CRX160E finished a full format faster. Continuing our comparison with the ATAPI Plextor, the SCSI version distanced itself here by about 16%, which is a change of pace compared to the nearly identical results we've been seeing in most of our other tests.

Subsequent quick formats of the same media took about 32 seconds, which is significantly slower than both the Sony and Ricoh comparison drives, and about the same as Plextor's 12/10/32A.

DirectCD Packet-Writing Performance

In our packet-writing performance test, we time how long it takes to copy a 195 MB folder from our testbed's hard drive to a DirectCD-formatted disc using Windows Explorer. The 12/10/32S averaged just over 3 minutes, which was (again) equal to its ATAPI sibling, but 11% slower than category-leading Ricoh. How significant this is depends on how often one uses packet-writing vs. standard burning. If packet-writing is all one will use a burner for, then perhaps 11% is worth factoring into the purchasing decision.

DirectCD CD-RW Erasing

Finally, we use DirectCD's "CD-RW Eraser" program to time how long it takes to wipe a used CD-RW to a blank state. The 12/10/32S clocked in at 44 seconds, which is not a significant amount of time, but measureably slower than the competition. Compare this to the 23 seconds it takes Ricoh's MP9120A to perform the same task. Only Plextor's 12/4/32 is slower in our compiled results thus far.

 Conclusion...


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