What's inside the
On this page
we will take a look at what the drive came shipped with, and take a look at the
drive and its technology.
NU have picked
mostly light colours for their box, but the content of the box is even more
important than the look of it so we opened it up and took out the
Seems to be a
pretty good bundle, but to make sure nothing is left out we list everything in
the box below:
Empty 4x DVD+RW disc made by
Empty 4x DVD+R (capable of 8x with
this drive) made by Mitsubishi Chemicals.
Quick installation guide
Not a bad
bundle, as we have software and empty discs, but a thicker and better manual
plus an IDE cable would be nice.
it's time to take a look at the drive
The front sets
this drive aside from most other drives, it has some slight curves and it has
the play/next buttons that few drives have. After all it's a nice looking front
As we could
see from the sticker on the drive, our drive was manufactured 9th
October 2003 at a factory in China. Seems like this drive
has been forgotten somewhere since it's about 6 months since it was
On the back of
the drive there are from the left: unknown pins probably used for calibrating
the drive at the factory; digital audio connector; analogue audio connector;
pins and jumper to set the drive to cable select, slave or master, and 2
reserved jumper positions; IDE connector and power connector. The back of the NU
DDW-082 is completely identical to the back of Lite-On DVD-Writers, which is a
bit surprising. But it's not a Lite-On manufactured drive and completely
different in other ways.
installed the drive without any problems and here is a screenshot from Nero info
Our drive came
shipped with firmware BX02. Firmware B364 will be used in this review, this
firmware changes the model name from DDW-081 to DDW-082 and adds DVD-R/RW
support to the drive, and the upgrade to DVD-R/RW support is free '“ no
additional charges like with some other brands such as BenQ. The drawbacks with
this drive is that it does not support reporting C2 errors, and lacks Mount Rainier support. It does not support DVD-RAM reading/writing,
but few drives supports this. We would also prefer a larger buffer than
shot from Nero Burning ROM:
We do not
really find anything alarming here either, but a larger buffer and Mount Rainier support would have been nice.
it's time to take a closer look at
the write technology used by the NU DDW-082:
As we could see the
NU DDW-082 uses CAV (Constant
Angular Velocity) to write at its rated
speed of 40x. This gives an average speed of 31.15x. Seems pretty good, but let
us compare this with two other 8x DVD-Writers:
ND-2500A also uses Z-CLV, (Zone-Constant Linear
Velocity), to write at its maximum speed of 32X. The drive wrote the last
zone at 32X and this gives an average speed of 27.16x.
As we could
see the Plextor PX-708A uses P-CAV (Partial-Constant
Angular Velocity) writing strategy to reach it rated speed of 40X.
This gives an average speed of 33.38x.
we have made the following table:
It uses the
same amount of time as the Lite-On LDW-811S to write a disc at 40x '“ but lags
behind the Plextor PX-708A with a few seconds
The NU DDW-082
uses P-CAV (Partial-Constant Angular Velocity)
writing technology to write at 24X for Ultra Speed CD-RW discs, the average
speed is 23.47x. But let us compare this to two other drives capable of
ReWriting at 24x speed:
The Pioneer DVR-107D uses Z-CLV,
(Zone-Constant Linear Velocity), to write at its rated speed of 24x, this gives an
average speed of 22.47x.
PX-708A, with its P-CAV (Partial-Constant Angular
Velocity) write speed of 24X for Ultra Speed CD-RW discs is among the
faster writers due to its high starting speed of 20.01x. For a better overview
we present the following comparison table:
As we could
see the NU DDW-082 did very good and the only drive that used less time at
writing the disc is the Plextor PX-708A.
8X DVD-Writing speed:
The NU DDW-082
uses Z-CLV, (Zone-Constant Linear Velocity). The
first zone from 0-0,4Gb is done at 6x speed; last zone from 0,4Gb to 4,4Gb is
done at 8x speed. This gives an average speed of 7.65x. The curve is bumpy due
to the 'Running OPC" feature this drive have, this will be explained later in
the review. But let us compare this result to two other writers as
ND-2500A uses Z-CLV, (Zone-Constant Linear
Velocity). The first zone from 0-0,8Gb is done at 4x speed, the next zone
from 0,8Gb to 2,2Gb is done at 6x speed and the last zone from 2,2Gb to 4,4Gb is
done at 8x. This gives an average speed of 6.80x. The speed is the same for both
DVD-R and DVD+R discs.
PX-708A also uses Z-CLV, (Zone-Constant Linear
Velocity). The first zone from 0-0,7Gb is done at 6x speed; the next zone
from 0,7Gb to 4,4Gb is done at 8x speed. This gives an average speed of 7.69x,
look below to see a comparison table:
We could see
that the Running OPC feature slowed it down a tiny bit as it shifts writing
speed earlier than any other drive we have reviewed, and without the running OPC
feature it would have been clearly faster than the other drives. But it is still
very fast and only beaten with 2 small seconds by the Plextor
Features and techniques:
it's time to take a look at the
features and techniques of this drive:
is developed by BenQ in co-operation with Philips. The reason why this drive
incorporates Seamless link is that it uses a Philips Nexperia chipset. This is
how the Seamless link buffer under run prevention mechanism works:
- Monitors the amount of data that
is buffered during writing.
- Stops the writing process and
stores the RecEnd address if there is any problem which causes the amount of
data in the memory to drop below a certain level
- Waiting on the Pause state and
receiving new data to fill the buffer memory
- Seeks the RecEnd address to find
the exactly RecEnd point
the recording process
The drive also
features running OPC (Optimum Power Control) while writing,
you will see this as small bumps in the transfer graph in Nero CD-Speed if you
use the 'Create data disc" function. This is another feature of the Philips
Nexperia chipset. You will see later in this review if it really improves the
writing quality or not.
Changing book type tool (bitsetting):
also supports bitsetting, which basically means that you may change the Book
type of DVD+R/RW and special for this drive only you could also set the book
type of DVD-R/RW discs to DVD-ROM. Some players do not allow certain types
of recordable DVD media to be played and with this bitsetting trick you may
change the Book type to DVD-ROM, now the discs are identified as DVD-ROM discs
by the player and may play. You may download the bitsetting utility here. And
here is a screenshot from the small program:
The utility is
very easy to use:
-Start it and
select the NU Drive you want to use
from the dropdown menu.
In the left
column it will tell you what it's currently set to.
Flash ROM: The
setting stored in the flash ROM of the drive and will stay the same after a
DRAM: The setting stored in the DRAM memory of the drive, the setting
in the DRAM memory will be erased/reset if you restart the computer.
In the right
column you may choose the book type to use. The drive comes with book type for
DVD+R discs pre-set to DVD-ROM stored in the FLASH ROM. If you want your
settings to survive a power loss / computer restart you should tick the 'Enable
Flash Ram save" box to save your settings to the Flash ROM. Notice: Do not
change the settings in the flash ROM to often as the Flash ROM could be written
to only a limited amount of times (Usually over 100 times tough, but if you
change the setting every day you may run into problems pretty soon).
To verify that
it worked we wrote several different discs. And tested them in
As we could
see, the bitsetting worked with all types of DVD-media that this drive supports
test we did was to start Nero CD-Speed and look at the disc
were verified and all discs was show as DVD-ROM.
improved one thing for us: The NU DDW-082 has a problem; it creates DVD-R discs
that do not work in some drives (examples of drives that do not detect the NU
DDW-082 written DVD-R discs: Toshiba SD-M1612 and Pioneer DVR-106D), but if we
set the book type of the DVD-R discs to DVD-ROM they will now work in the
Toshiba SD-M1612 (still do not work in the Pioneer DVR-106D). So there is a
small improvement. But the DVD-R problem is a firmware bug that we hope NU is
able to fix soon, more on this later in the review.
it's time to look at the included
software, and comment it if needed. Notice that we may not use the included
software in our performance testing part of the review.
includes Sonic CinePlayer to play DVD and VCD movies. Not among the most used
software DVD players but it worked just fine for us.
This is the
opening window of Sonic MyDVD.
And this is
the creation window.
Sonic MyDVD is
one of the easier programs we have used when it comes to creating VCD and DVD
movies. Although we have not used the program very long it seems like NU made a
good choice on including Sonic MyDVD.
is a very easy to use program, but in our opinion it also lacks some advanced
functionality that programs like Nero Burning ROM have. But for a new user it's
probably pretty easy to understand and use, which is positive.
(Drive Letter Access) installs, but is invisible until you right click on your
writer, now you are able to see the format option.
Here you may
select to do a full format or quick format. Sonic DLA is among the faster and
better packet writing programs we have used. Notice that it may conflict with:
Easy CD-Creator, DirectCD, Nero Burning ROM and InCD.
All in all the
software collection bundled with this drive is quite good, and among the better
bundles we have seen.
Now that we
have finished examining the drive and its writing strategies it's time to head
on to next page, which is reading performance