AOpen DRW4410 DVD+R/RW Drive

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The AOpen DRW4410 4x DVD+R/RW Drive
A drive that won't burn through your budget!

By Robert Maloney
December 4, 2003

If we were to step back for a second and look at the state of optical storage a couple of years ago, we were just getting used to having CD-Writers come standard in pre-built PCs. They might not have been super-fast, or overly elegant, but they got the job done.  It was for some people, a liberation from the scant amounts of removable storage that floppy or ZIP drives provided. DVD-Writers, or "burners" as many have dubbed them, were just entering the market, but the prices were way too prohibitive for most people to write off as a justifiable expense. Not to mention that the actual media was just as pricey, and hard to find. Throw in a debate as to which format to support, DVD+R or DVD-R, and the pot really begins to boil. Anyone old enough to remember the VHS vs. Beta debacle can lament all too well what it means to support the "losing" standard.

As the saying goes, time and tide wait for no man and DVD burners have come down enough in price to make them a practical choice for replacing the CD-RW. There are various reasons why someone might want to make this jump. DVD media is generally 6+ times larger than a typical CD-R, allowing for much more data to be backed up or archived. The drives are also multi-format, meaning that they can read and write to both CDs and DVDs. Like they say at Walmart, it's a one-stop solution for all of today's needs. We've looked at a couple of DVD+R drives in the past, but today's this new product is the first one we've seen that breaks below the $100 barrier. We've got a look at the AOpen DRW4410 DVD+R/+RW drive that's sure to turn more than a couple of heads, with its aggressive price point and relative performance.

     
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Specifications of the AOpen DRW4410
Great features for less than you'd expect
Model: DRW4410
Interface: ATAPI / IDE
Data Buffer Memory: 2MB
Average Access Time: DVD: 140ms
Average Access Time: CD: 120ms
Data Transfer Rates:
     DVD+R/RW Write: 4X
     DVD Read: Up to 8x
     CD-R Write: 4x - 24x
     CD-RW Write: 4x - 10x
     CD Read: Up to 40x
 
Supported Formats: CD-Audio, CD-DA, CD-ROM, CD-ROM XA, CD-R, CD-RW, CD-I, Photo-CD, Video CD, CD Extra, CD-G (Read), CD Text, DVD+R, DVD+RW, DVD-R (Read, Play), DVD-RW (Read, Play), DVD-ROM (Read), DVD-Video (Play)

Recording Modes: Packet, TAO, DAO, SAO, RAW SAO, RAW SAO 16, RAW SAO 96, RAW DAO 96

Buffer Management: JustLink Buffer Underrun Prevention
Write Methods: Disk at Once, Track at Once, Session at Once,
Multi-Session, and Packet Write.
Write Verification: JustSpeed technology reduces disc errors such as insufficient power in writing and servo follow errors.  

Front Panel: Built-in Power Eject/Load Button, LED Indicator
Disc Loading: Power Loading Tray
Power Requirement: +12V DC and +5V DC
Power Consumption: normal operation 16W or less
Mounting Orientation: Horizontal or Vertical (eject button must be upside)
Dimensions: (WxHxD) 145.6mm x 41.6mm x 191.4mm
Weight: less than 1.2 kg (about 2.6 lbs.)
Temperature: Operating: 5-50° C, non-operating -40-65° C
Humidity: Operating: 5%-90% R.H., non-operating 5%-95% R.H.
EMI Requirement: VCCI-Class B, FCC Part15-Class B, BSMI
Safety Requirement: UL/CUL, TUV, CE, CDRH, C-Tick, CB, WHQL



Bundled Media and Software
Checking the box for more goodies!

Although the AOpen DRW4410 is priced low, it didn't affect the included items in the retail bundle very much.  A multi-language user's manual contained all of the information concerning installing the drive and software, the various features of this DVD drive, and a brief troubleshooting section.  An Easy Installation Guide only covers the basic steps for installation and will probably be used in most situations.  An audio cable and four mounting screws were present, but no IDE cable was included, which would have completed the setup.

     

Surprisingly, AOpen has also included a full suite of writing media.  While you can usually expect at least one blank CD or DVD to test the drive, here we found at least one of each type to try.  There was a 4x DVD+R and three 4x DVD+RW discs, as well as a CD-R and a CD-RW.  These were more than an ample amount of discs for one drive at any price.  To put these discs to work, AOpen has included a software CD that contained VideoStudio 7, neoDVD 4.5, PowerDVD XP, Nero 5, and InCD packet writer.  For example, neoDVD 4.5 can be used to transfer movies from VHS to DVD, which could then be edited using VideoStudio 7.  Nero 5 is an older version of the powerful burning software by Ahead, which burns both CDs and DVDs.  You also can take the newly burned DVD and watch it in a fully-licensed copy of PowerDVD XP.  The last piece of software, InCD, can use the DVD drive almost like another hard drive, writing up to 4.7 GB of data at a time. 

A closer look at the DRW4410  

 

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