iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






TDK VorteX AI-CDRW121032A

Specification of the VorteX 121032:
Firmware version
Recording modes Disc-At-Once, Track-At-Once, Session-At-Once, MultiSession, Packet Writing
Recording formats CD-DA, CD-ROM, CD-ROM XA, Photo CD, CD-Text, CD-I, CD-Extra,Video CD
Read/write support in Raw-mode RAW-DAO - supported
RAW-DAO Write Simulation - supported
CD+G RAW-DAO - supported
RAW-SAO - supported
RAW-SAO Write Simulation - supported
Average access time 120 ms
CD-R recording 2x, 4x, 8X, 12X
CD-RW recording 2X, 4x, 10X
Buffer underrun error prevention technology JustLink
Interface PIO Mode 4
Reading 32x max (4800 KBytes/s)
Buffer size 2048 KBytes
Production date March 2001
Manufacturer Taiwan
Price as tested N/a

The drive ships in a Retail package.

The box contains:

  • In-depth user's manual in 6 languages;
  • Installation Manual in the form of a poster;
  • CD with software for disc recording Nero Burning Rom, InCD 1.8 from Ahead Software and a TDK's utility Digital MixMaster 3.54, an audio player;
  • 16x CD-R Reflex Ultra and High Speed CD-RW (4X10X) discs;
  • 4 screws, a spare bridge and an "Eject Stick";
  • TDK's marker for writing on an idle disc surface;
  • Analog cable for connecting the drive to a sound card;
  • IDE cable.

ATIP: 97m 34s 23f
Disc Manufacturer: Mitsubishi Chemicals Corp.
Reflective layer: Phase change
Media type: CD-ReWritable
Recording Speeds: min. 4X max. 8X
nominal Capacity: 656.40 MBytes
(74m 43s 00f / LBA: 336075)

ATIP: 97m 31s 01f
Disc Manufacturer: Ritek Co.
Reflective layer: Dye (Long strategy; e.g. Cyanine, Azo etc.)
Media type: CD-Recordable
Recording Speeds: min. unknown max. unknown
nominal Capacity: 656.69 MBytes (74m 45s 00f / LBA: 336225)

In spring this year TDK launched a new line of CD-RW drives in addition to the CyClone. This measure should extend their segment on the market and strengthen the TDK's position. But it is quite difficult even for major vendors to promote several lines simultaneously.

Here is what the Nero says you about the drive:

The JustLink, a 2 MBytes buffer, v1.00 of the microprogram and the appearance prove that it is a Ricoh based drive. The accessories do not differ much from the CyClone series. But the price of the VorteX remains attractive.

While working the VorteX whistles a little, and discs ejected after intensive reading are usually rather warm.

The design is not less fetching than that of similar drives from ASUS, AOpen or Ricoh.

A semitransparent door hides a stylish black tray with the TDK's logo.

All other controls are standard: a headphones jack, a mechanical volume control, an emergency ejection hole and one LED. On the rear panel there is a digital-out. The drive can be installed both in vertical and horizontal positions.

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