In today's computer centered society, CD recorders have become an indispensable peripheral that every serious computer user cannot do without. Just about three years ago CD recorders were out of the reach of all but the very select few power users. Back then a CD recorder could be had for the bargain price of $800-$900. Now, a decent recorder can be had for under $200. With such attractive prices no wonder a lot of people have already purchased or planning to purchase a CD recorder. Of course CD recorders have evolved over the years. Today's latest recorders have the capability of recording at speeds of up to 12X.
The most common CD recorders have the capability of recording at 4X to 6X. Originally there were only recorders which could record on a specific media once. Once the media was recorded on it was permanent. These recorders which are still around today are simply known as CD-Rs. When referring to CD-Rs you will usually see two numbers associated with them. For example, a 2x/8x recorder can record at 2x and can read at 8x. Of course today recorders than can write on certain media more than once. These recorders are known as CDR-Ws. These drives have three numbers associated with them. For example, a 6x/4x/24x drive, has the capability to record on write once media at a 6x speed, record on re-writable media at 4x, and a reading of 24x. A good rule of thumb to follow is that the highest number is the reading speed, and for modern drives, the lowest number is the rewrite speed.
Today we are going to be taking a look at two of the best known CD recorders. Ricoh and Yamaha. Ricoh has submitted their 7060S SCSI-2 6x/4x/24X model, and Azzo computers
has submitted Yamaha's 6416SZ 6x/4x/16x model. Both are SCSI-2 internal models. As far as I'm concerned, going to SCSI based recorders is the best way to go. Of course going with SCSI of any sort is usually an expensive proposition, but if you have the means to, you will not regret it. Due to the requirement of having a steady data flow to the CD burner when burning a CD it's usually not a good idea to use your computer during that time. When utilizing a SCSI CD burner this is not usually the case.
The SCSI controller has the capability of providing steady data flow to the burner no matter what your hard drive is doing. It's been my experience that I can use my computer like usual and still burn a CD perfectly. That's definitely not the case with most IDE burners. Of course there are always exceptions to this rule.
In this review we will show you the benchmarks you should
always expect to see when it comes to testing CD burners of any sort. I tried to
bring in some unique testing elements in order to come up with an especially
interesting review, but unfortunately none of these drives exhibited any of the
capabilities I was looking for. In particular, I wanted to see if any of these
drives had the capability of reading CD-ROM's with intentional "bad" sectors on
them. A lot of software titles these days come with some sort of a copy
protection on them.
The copy protection usually consists of placing
"bad" sectors on the CD itself. Most CD drives are not able to read past those
sectors therefore failing in making a 1:1 copy of a software title. I fully
realize I'm going to get flamed for even bringing up this issue, but besides the
piracy issue, there are still people out there who wish to make legitimate
back-up copies of their software titles. Keep in mind that we are in no way
advocating software piracy. Either way, none of these two drives exhibited the
capability of reading past the "bad" sectors. So with that out of the way, let's
examine each of these drives individually.