The ASUS is a so-called Multi DVD Drive; meaning is also supports writing and reading the DVD-RAM format. Writing at 14X and reading at 12X. Lets us look at the recording side of the disc, and as you can see it has differences from the other DVD+R/W/R9 DL and DVD-R/W discs.
On the data side, we can see a very fascinating pattern of lighter spots, supposedly these spots are used for calibration while writing and reading.
A DVD-RAM’s disc can be formatted in the following formats: FAT32, UDF 1.02, UDF 1.50, UDF 2.00, UDF 2.01, and UDF 2.50.
By formatting a DVD-RAM disc with FAT32 it will act like a removable hard drive and all writing will be done as “background processes”. Meaning you do not have to wait for it to finish, you can start or work with other applications while the DVD-RAM is working without noticing any “hangs” or CPU slowdowns.
Lets us take a look how the drive performs:
Maxell branded 12x media manufactured by Maxell.
Thanks to ExtremeMhz for providing this media.
Writing Maxell 12x without verification
Transfer Rate test
As shown above the ASUS DRW-1814BLT writes 12X DVD-RAM without problem at 14X in 5:44 minutes. This drive will read DVD-RAM at 12X and read this disc in 5:36 minutes.
With 12X DVD-RAM being very difficult to locate at this time we will also test the DRW-1814BLT with some 5X DVD-RAM discs which are more available. Here are those results:
Writing Maxell 5X without verification
Writing Maxell 5X with verification
Transfer Rate Test
As we can see, the ASUS DRW-1814BLT writes and reads 5X DVD-RAM without any problem.
For those of you who are not familiar with DVD-RAM, you may probably think that something went wrong during the write process with the verification turned on, since the 3x and 5x media was written at 1.3x and 2x, respectively. But don’t worry, that is pretty normal for DVD-RAM discs. The reason for the lower writing speed is, the drive constantly reads back the data after writing it to verify that it’s written correctly. We can also call it a “bullet proof” writing/verify technique, with no data loss/errors.
Before we complete this review, let us run the drive through some advanced tests at next page…