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Ricoh MP7200A - CD-ROM Performance Results

  July 5, 2001 Author: Tim Zakharov  

For an overview on methodology, click here.

CD-ROM Performance Results

Low-Level Measurements

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Ziff-Davis' CD Winbench 99 measures sustained transfer rates and random access times.

The Ricoh lives up to its 40X spec with maximum transfer rates of 6040 KB/sec. Interior transfer rates clock in at just under 20X (2940 KB/sec). This places it 3rd in the comparison though it trails the Plextor and Teac only marginally.

Access times measure at 88 ms, well under the 100 ms spec. This ties Ricoh's unit for 2nd place with Ricoh's MP9120A in our comparison, trailing only Teac's sub-80 ms score.

CD-ROM Winmark 99

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CD Winbench 99's CD-ROM Winmark test runs through a timed script of routines from a variety of popular software programs. The presented score is an average from four different test discs obtained from Ziff-Davis. This tests each drive's ability to read from a range of discs pressed with identical data.

The MP7200A shatters Teac's freshly set record of 1360 KB/sec with its own high-water mark for a burner: 1480 KB/sec. As the Ricoh merely equals the Teac in transfer rates and trails it in access times, the MP7200A likely features better-optimized electronics. Also, Ricoh's scores deviate by only 3% whereas Teac's scores deviate by 6%. This suggests that the Ricoh reads better from a variety of pressed media at maximum speeds.

File and Disc Copy

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The file copy test places emphasis on sequential transfer rates in copying a single, 634 MB file. The MP7200A's copy time of 2:40 places it firmly into first place in the comparison. Teac's latest trails by 5%.

The disc copy test introduces random accesses, due to the multiple files and folders on the test CD. Teac's access time advantage helps it maintain a slim margin over the challenging Ricoh in this test. The MP7200A ends up an insignificant 1 second behind the CD-W516EB.

Digital Audio Extraction

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SR measures DAE using two programs: CDSpeed99 and CDDAE99. CDSpeed99 measures low-level DAE capabilities, while CDDAE99 is an actual audio ripping program that converts audio tracks on CD-DAs to .wav files on the hard drive.

In CDSpeed99, the MP7200A nearly equals the Plextor in audio extraction speed, trailing the PX-W1610TA by less than 1%. CDSpeed99 in addition reports perfect extraction quality as well as support for accurate streaming.

When extracting audio with CDDAE99, the MP7200A maintains speeds near to those demonstrated in CDSpeed99. The 65-minute test disc extracts in 2:21 at an average speed of 27.6X. The Plextor completes the same task one second quicker. The Ricoh also maintains the perfect extraction quality presented in CDSpeed99. In short, zero errors surface when CDDAE99 verifies the extracted .wav files.

CD-DA Error Correction

Due to popular request, SR has begun testing each drive's error correction capabilities when playing audio CDs. The tool we use is Digital Recordings' CD-CHECK. CD-CHECK is a reference disc with five levels of error sizes created on it, each error on its own track. Error size and other details may be viewed by clicking here. During each track, a continuous 20-second tone is played. The larger the error, the more difficult it is for the drive's error correction to mask the error without an audible pop or click occurring during playback of the tone.

We test each drive by playing each track five times. We record the amount of times each track plays back without producing an audible pop or click. A result of 5/5 indicates that no pops or clicks were heard in 5 out of 5 playbacks of a particular track. A result of 0/5 indicates pops and clicks occurred during all 5 playbacks of a particular track. Digital Recordings indicates the following interpretation of results:

  • Level-1 Pass: player meets minimum requirements
  • Level-2 Pass: Average error correction
  • Level-3 Pass: Good error correction
  • Level-4 Pass: Very good error correction
  • Level-5 Pass: Excellent error correction
CD-Check Performance
Error Level 1 2 3 4 5
Ricoh MP7200A 5/5 5/5 0/5 0/5 0/5
Artec 52X CD-ROM 5/5 5/5 4/5 2/5 0/5
AOpen CRW1232A 5/5 5/5 4/5 0/5 0/5
Plextor 16/10/40A 5/5 5/5 5/5 5/5 0/5
Pioneer DVD-116 5/5 5/5 5/5 5/5 0/5
Teac CD-W516EB 5/5 5/5 5/5 5/5 0/5
Kenwood 72X 5/5 4/5  0/5 0/5 0/5

The MP7200A performs perfectly at the first two levels. However, Levels 3-5 all produce playback errors 100% of the time. For comparison, the PX-W1610TA, CD-W516EB, and Pioneer's DVD-116 all provide perfect error correction up to Level-4. AOpen's CRW1232A provides 80% successful error correction at Level-3, but drops to 0% for Levels 4 and 5.

CD-R Media Compatibility and Performance

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To test each drive's ability to read from a variety of CD-R and -RW media, we duplicate our pressed test CD to these discs and measure low-level performance with them.

With CD-R media, the Ricoh continues along at 40X max read speeds, nearly approaching 41X by the outer edge of our test CD. Access times measure in at 89.5ms, slightly slower than with our pressed disc. We see nearly identical performance with Ricoh, TDK, Imation, Verbatim, and PNY media.

CD-RW Media Compatibility and Performance

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With CD-RW media, 41.3X (6200 KB/sec) transfer rates are achieved at the outer edge. This makes the MP7200A the fastest CD-RW media reader SR has ever tested. Access times weigh in at an impressive 87 ms. There are no issues reading from low- and high-speed CD-RW media from TDK, Verbatim, Memorex and Sony.

 Write/ReWrite Performance Results...


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