Introduction

Our last look at a drive from Pioneer, which was the DVR-109D, turned us off a little because of the lack of performance that we saw in its predecessor back in our Fall 2004 DVD roundup. In the fall, Pioneer's unit came in just behind NEC's ND-3500A with its speed and quality over the rest of the lineup.

This time around, we would like to expect that Pioneer's firmware team has taken past performance into consideration and have made improvements to their release firmware, version 1.08. Now, firmware changes from time to time, some with additional features and others in speed and quality improvements. But there are those firmware releases that introduce new issues, which can cause drives to perform even worse than the previous version.

A few weeks ago, we tested Plextor's new budget drive, the PX-740A, which is based on BenQ's DW1640. The PX-740A performed just like the DW1640, which is not a bad thing at all. Today, we will compare the DVR-110D from Pioneer to Plextor's PX-740A along with drives from our Summer 2004 DVDR roundup to see how it matches up.

Special thanks to Marken Communications for supplying us with Verbatim brand test media.
Special thanks to Antarra Communications for supplying us with Ridata brand test media.


About the DVR-110D
POST A COMMENT

20 Comments

View All Comments

  • yanon - Saturday, September 17, 2005 - link

    I am glad that I just bought a Benq 1640A. I can't wait to test it on Tuesday. Reply
  • deathwalker - Friday, September 16, 2005 - link

    Its sad to see such poor product development work being done a Brand name Mfg. There is no excuse releasing a product for production that does not meet the expectations of not only the buying public but also a product that does not live up to a companies reputation. Reply
  • Bozo Galora - Thursday, September 15, 2005 - link

    heres the 1.17
    http://www.pioneer-eur.com/eur/content/support/sup...">http://www.pioneer-eur.com/eur/content/support/sup...

    since the review was so negative, I think it deserves an addendum with FW 1.17
    Reply
  • RyanVM - Thursday, September 15, 2005 - link

    When are you guys going to review the PX-716A? Reply
  • imaheadcase - Thursday, September 15, 2005 - link

    How come we don't see SATA based CDROM/DVD/DVD burners? Is it lack of standard for those? Expensive? Even if performance was not a reason, sure would look nicer in a case than the old ribbon cables..

    Just seems like lately i've noticed lots of computer parts seems, well outdated compared to how fast other stuff changes. hehe
    Reply
  • Anton74 - Friday, September 16, 2005 - link

    Indeed.

    On the same token, why can I buy 1GB of RAM for less than $100, but most all optical drives seem to have a 2MB buffer, or 8MB at the most for the more expensive models?


    Similar story for hard drives, which could potentially benefit even more. Why aren't there models with something like 64MB or even 128MB buffers? I'd be perfectly willing to pay ~$20 more for the increased performance.

    /soapbox
    Reply
  • xsilver - Saturday, September 17, 2005 - link

    most of the memory on hdd's and optical drives is provided via 1 memory chip
    your usual ddr/ddr2 uses a 8/16 chip configuration
    they also try to use lower latency/higher frequency ram

    however, yes I do agree though that devices should come with a 32mb buffer, which is feasable
    Reply
  • joex444 - Thursday, September 15, 2005 - link

    Indeed, as already commented, the Plextor 712SA and 716SA are both SATA drives, 12x and 16x (which also has some more features over the 712SA). Last I checked, the 716SA ran about $120 or so.

    I was considering buying one, but realized that it would be incompatible with my SATA chip, which is one reason that you don't see more of these drives -- motherboard compatibility. Apparently the SATA chips were designed for HDs or something stupid like that...
    Reply
  • bldckstark - Thursday, September 15, 2005 - link

    The SATA reviews are just one Google search away.

    http://www.hothardware.com/viewarticle.cfm?article...">Plextor's PX-712SA Dual-Format DVD+/- SATA Drive
    http://www.tomshardware.com/storage/20040709/">MSI's DVD Drive Gets The SATA Connection

    It's a big world out there, you should take a look sometime.
    Reply
  • KristopherKubicki - Thursday, September 15, 2005 - link

    Unfortunately, OSD manufacturers don't have mature unbridged SATA interfaces. Thus, they need to rely on a bridge to support SATA, but the logic goes if you're buying a DVD/CD drive you've probably got an older computer (because new computers come with DVD/CD drives).

    On the other hand, there is some market for OEM components, as removing the PATA interface for some companies (Dell) saves them a fraction of the production cost -- but unfortunately then the OSD manufacturer ends up eating that cost with the bridge chip.

    Plextor did just that for a bunch of people at first, and coincidentally the company is in trouble now. When the margin on these kind of products is so razor thin, *anything* to increase the cost is a huge problem for manufacturers.

    So in short - there is no market to support SATA on OSD right now.

    Kristopher
    Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now