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Lite-On LTD-163 - Specifications

  September 12, 2001 Author: Tim Zakharov  


Specifications according to Lite-On:

  • CD read speeds of 48X CAV
  • DVD read speeds of 16X CAV
  • Digital audio extraction speeds specified as "high speed"
  • Buffer size of 512 KB
  • <80 ms average random access time
  • ATAPI/ATA-33 interface
  • 1-year Warranty
For more information, click here to see Lite-On's online product page.

The retail box includes:

  • The drive
  • Quick Install Guide foldout poster
  • CyberLink PowerDVD software
  • Drive manual in .pdf format on CD
  • DOS drivers on CD
  • Analog audio cable
  • Four mounting screws

The drive front features a bold DVD-ROM logo printed in black at the center of the tray face. Like the company's 16/10/40 burner, there is a sticker depicting the company's website address. Rarely found on optical drives, the LTD163 also has a second button to advance audio tracks in addition to the standard eject button. The LED is large and easily visible, shining bright green when CDs or DVDs are accessed. The LED remains off if there is a disc in the tray that isn't being accessed.

The rear of the drive features a digital audio out in addition to standard optical drive connections.

The drive arrived with firmware revision GH4F. Recently, GH4N was released- brief comparisons with the new firmware determined that full retesting was not warranted - performance levels were identical and problematic drive issues remained unfixed.

As a 48X reader, the drive operates at a constant 10,800 RPM when reading at full speed. The drive is remarkably quiet considering its spindle speeds... there are much louder 40X readers out there. What most consumers should be more interested in, however, is the drive's noise levels when playing DVD-Videos. Whereas most DVD-ROMs spin at full spindle speed when playing back movies, the Lite-On spins at minimal speeds (perhaps 1X) and thus is nearly silent during movie playback. Heat levels consequently remain very low during movie playback as well. The drive does warm up a bit after extended use in full-speed reads, though not high enough to warrant any concern.

Current online pricing runs as low as $48 for the retail box. In comparison, Artec's retail 16X drive goes for $42. Pioneer's DVD-116 and Toshiba's 16X offering (both available only as bare drives) go for $49 and $47 respectively. In short, most of today's top DVD-ROMs are similarly priced.

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