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At 04:01 PM 11/23/2004 -0600, Brandon Burke wrote:
>Interesting.
>
>I should mention that I'm also closely considering a Quadriga system which,
>in one package anyway, includes a "Combo 4 x DVD+RW/R - EIDE Drive".  Can
>anyone explain just exactly what this drive is? ...manufacturer?  ...etc?
>The online specs are no more specific than the quote above.
>
>If it is the kind of CD-R/DVD-R drive that typically accompanies a Dell
>product then it is likely to only burn in the DVD+R format.  This is
>something I am trying to avoid.
>
>Thanks,
>Brandon

CAUTION:

There are numerous media for DVD, most significantly DVD+R and DVD-R.
Despite hype to the contrary, neither is "better" than the other, but they
are different and they are not fully compatible. A drive designated DVD+RW
will write DVD+R and DVD+RW, but not DVD-R or DVD-RW. The opposite is true
for one marked DVD-RW. A drive capable of writing all four will usually be
designated with a plus-or-minus sign. Unless you have information
indicating otherwise, I strongly urge you to get such a plus-or-minus drive.

(No, I do not wish to go into DVD-RAM at this point.)

The 4x indication is for the write speed. My own limited results and
measurements by those I trust say that today's technology is best used at
4x, though 8x is getting better and error rates may be acceptable on the
better 8x drives and media. In general, you are free to write at a lower
speed with higher-speed media, but as with CD recording, there is an
optimum for your drive with a given line of blanks. Best is not necessarily
fastest or slowest, but should be determined by the user. (The range of
speeds and the relative qualities are less extreme with DVD than with CD,
so good media and a good drive will generally give good results even if off
optimum.)

With so little information and apparently no specs at all, the drive you're
looking at would not be a wise choice, especially if you are responsible
for your customer's satisfaction. The manufacturer of the drive may be just
about any of the six or ten companies who make them; it may bear any of a
wide number of names on its face. Without some specification, the packager
may throw in whatever drive rated 4x or above he happens to pick up least
expensively this week. Even a company like Plextor buys some of its drives
for rebadging, but they stand behind them and do not switch (from Sanyo)
willy nilly.

Mike
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