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Amacom Baby DVD Drive

Amacom Baby DVD Drive - PCSTATS
Abstract: Thinking about getting a DVD drive for the computer? Maybe one for the home and one for the Laptop? Well the Baby-DVD from Amacom would allow you to do just that - with just one drive...
 83% Rating:   
Filed under: Home Theatre Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Amacom May 18 2000   Max Page  
Home > Reviews > Home Theatre > Amacom Baby DVD

All important Benchmarks

Test Platform:

For all of our tests with the Baby DVD we used an ACER 512T laptop (Celeron 366Mhz, 64MB ram and 2.5MB video memory). We tested the drive connected through both the laptops PCMCIA interface and USB port, although it would make more sense to only use the PCMCIA port with a laptop.

Installation

Installation of the drive was as simple as plugging in the PCMCIA card, turning the computer on and waiting for Windows to recognize the device. The correct drivers were pulled off the diskette, and the device registered itself in Windows Explorer as a second CD-ROM drive after a few moments. We also enabled DMA for the device in Windows' System Manager to take full advantage of its abilities.

Seeing as the Baby DVD is connected via the PCMCIA port, removal involves disabling the card in the PCMCIA properties, and then just popping out the card. Insertion was as simple with the drivers already installed - the card would automaticaly be detected and added as another CD-ROM drive a few moments after being hooked up.

BenchMarks

We ran several types of benchmarks on the Baby-DVD, to compare its performance while connected to the PCMCIA and USB ports, running CD-ROM's and DVD's. The first set of benchmarks we ran tested the Baby-DVD's CD capabilities. Amacom lists the drive itself as a 5X DVD 24X CD-ROM, but benchmarks seemed to show that the drive was limited to around 10X throughout the entire disk (because of the PCMCIA port, we're not sure), while the internal 24X CD-ROM in the laptop we used for comparison showed an average speed of 18X with 24X towards the outside. Both drives are made be Toshiba and thus form a good comparison.

PCMCIA vs USB

Finding a good set of benchmarks to represent the DVD ability of this drive connected via USB and PCMCIA has proved to be substantially difficult. The two benchmarking utilities we used seem to under-represent the Baby DVD's DVD capabilities and gave results which just appear too low to be realistic with the performance we witnessed. DVD benchmarks through Sandra were based on a small DVD disc, and not a reference disc.

SiSoft Sandra Benchmarks
Test Parameter Internal CD-ROM PCMCIA/DVD PCMCIA/CDROM USB/DVD USB/CDROM
Drive Tech 4x 1x 10x 1x 6x
Track Speed 9024 RPM 1616 RPM 5251 RPM 1049 RPM 3035 RPM
Buffered Read 17 Mb/s 1541 Kb/s 7 Mb/s 779 Kb/s 56 Mb/s
Sequential Read 2554 Kb/s 1572kb/s 1487 Kb/s 1020kb/s 859kb/s
Random Read 623kb/s 484kb/s 584 Kb/s 396kb/s 210kb/s
Avg. Access time 123ms 92ms 74 99ms 275ms
Drive TEAC CD-224E TEAC DV-25E TEAC DV-25E TEAC DV-25E TEAC DV-25E
Drive Index 1137 1117 770 599

PCMCIA-DVD Benchmarks

PCMCIA-CDROM Benchmarks

USB-DVD Benchmarks

USB-CDROM Benchmarks

CDspeed99

Test Parameter Internal CD-ROM PCMCIA/DVD PCMCIA/CDROM USB/DVD USB/CDROM
Speed 18.04x N/A 9.95x N/A 6.4x
CPU Usage  12% N/A 36% N/A 51.5%
Seek Time  171ms N/A 172ms N/A 148ms
Drive TEAC CD-224E TEAC DV-25E TEAC DV-25E TEAC DV-25E TEAC DV-25E

Builtin CDROM Benchmarks

PCMCIA-CDROM Benchmarks

Of important note is that the DVD benchmarks were difficult to come by, as standard movie-length DVD's were not benchmarkable. Perhaps it is the copyright protection on the discs themselves as we were unable to perform any benchmarking with the drive running those types of DVD's with DVD-Speed 99.

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Contents of Article: Amacom Baby DVD
 Pg 1.  Amacom Baby DVD Drive
 Pg 2.  Looking at the guts of the system
 Pg 3.  — All important Benchmarks
 Pg 4.  Bundled software... that's good
 Pg 5.  Nuances and Conclusions

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