Plextor's Premium 52/32/52 CDRW

Article Index
Plextor's Premium 52/32/52 CDRW
Drive, Bundle and Installation
Test Setup, Info and Media Compatibility
CD Read Tests
CD Write Tests
Advanced Tests
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

A couple of weeks ago, I saw on Plextor's site that they were announcing their PlexWriter Premium. It was to be a 52/32/52 CDRW drive that supported Mt. Rainer, and many other technologies, exclusive to Plextor. I thought to myself, "I should see if Plextor will send me a drive to review." I dropped them an email and within a couple of hours I got a call back. They said they'd be happy to set me up with a drive to review. I'd like to thank Plextor for trusting me with one of their drives.

I've been waiting on the edge of my seat for the past couple of weeks while they got more drives in stock to send out to reviewers. Mine finally arrived, so here goes the review:

Plextor has long had a name of quality Optical Drives. They are labeled "The King" by many when it comes to CD Burning, Digital Audio Extraction (DAE), and general longevity. What this review will attempt to make clear, is how the Plextor performs, what goodies you can expect from the Bundle, and what's all the hubbub with these Advanced Features. We'll get down to the nitty gritty and at the end of the writing benchmarks we'll see how it compares to other burners that cost less.
Specs & Features:
To start off we'll take a look at the specs of the drive, and just take a sample of the features that it boasts. Not too much detail - yet. This info is taken from the PlexWriter Premium Product Page:

Data Transfer Rates:

  • Write - CAV 52x, PCAV 40x, 32x, 24x, CLV 20x, 16x, 10x, 8x, and 4x.
  • Read - CAV 52x, 40x, 32x, 24x, CLV 8x, 4x.
  • Supports DMA2
These are the major features:
  • E-IDE (ATAPI) interface
  • 3-in-1 drive: 52X CD-R, 32X CD-RW, 52X max CD-ROM
  • 8MB buffer
  • Buffer Under Run Proof technology prevents buffer under run errors that can cause wasted media or coasters.
  • GigaRec - allows high capacity storage of up to 1 GB on a 700 MB disc. With this advanced feature, you can increase the maximum writing capacity up to 40%.*
  • Q-Check - checks and reports written disc quality — C1/C2, track and focus errors.*
  • SecuRec - offers password protection for your disc and other valuable data.*
  • SilentMode - enables users to vary tray load/unload speed, spin up/down speed and write/read speeds.*
  • VariRec - provides power users with unprecedented control over the burn process.*
  • PowerRec - (Plextor Optimized Writing Error Reduction Control) technology is a sophisticated write strategy for superior quality and stable recording at maximum speed.
  • High quality digital audio extraction.
  • Windows® 95/98/ME/2000/XPâ„¢ Mac compatible (software not included).
  • Self-diagnostics validates correct operation of drive to media.
  • One-year full warranty. (parts, labor and replacement)
  • Unlimited toll-free tech support.
The specs show that this could be a pretty impressive drive. . . Let's head on over and take an closer look at the drive before we begin the benchmarking.