iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






Sony DDU1611 DVD-ROM Review

  • ATAPI-E/IDE interface. 
  • Formats supported
    • DVD-ROM : DVD Video, DVD-R, DVD-RW, DVD+RW 
    • CD-ROM : ISO-9660, all CD-ROM formats

  • Reads 8cm and 12cm DVD and CD
  • Data buffer: 512 Kbyte 
  • Data rate: 
    • DVD Transfer Rate 16x (21600 KB/s) 
    • CD Transfer Rate 40x (6200 KB/s) 

  • Access time: 
    • DVD 100 ms 
    • CD 85 ms 

  • Installation: horizontal and vertical
  • MTBF : 70'000 hours (POH 20%) 
  • Weight: 1.00 Kg. 

In the beginning this drive was named Liteon LTD-163, such approach is typical of SONY. Most drives from this company are OEM versions of BTC's and Liteon's drives. We received this model in the OEM package. The front panel design is standard. There is only the Load/Eject button. In the front there is also a rubber layer to reduce noise and protect from dust. 

Additional information on the device

Nero CD-Speed

EAC Configuration Wizard

Test results

Quality of operation with CDs

CDWinBench 99

  • CDWinMark99 - 2170 
  • CD-ROM Transfer Rate 
    • Inside - 2780 KB/s 
    • Outside - 5620 KB/s 

  • CPU utilization - 1.19% 
  • CD-ROM Access Time - 88.1 ms 

Testing with a standard CD

  SONY DDU1611
Average Speed 29.41x
Start Speed 16.79x
End Speed 39.04x
Random Seek 102 ms
1/3 Seek 114 ms
Full Seek 187 ms
Reading type CAV
CPU usage 1x 0%
Accurate stream Yes
DAE quality Score 10
SpinUp Time 0.00
SpinDown Time 2.91
Disc Recognition Time 7.87 sec

CD-ROM Drive Analyzer

CD-R reading

CD-RW reading

Scratched CD reading

Advanced DAE Quality(Nero CD-Speed)

Offset 2256 bytes ( 564 samples)
Sequential Read Test Average Speed: 29.44 X 
Data Errors: 0 
Sync Errors: 0
Harmonica Read Test Average Access Time: 168 ms
Data Errors: 0
Sync Errors: 0 

Total Data Errors: 0
Total Sync Errors: 0
Quality Score: 100.0

On The Fly Copying Simulation Copying at 1 X
Copying at 2 X
Copying at 4 X
Copying at 6 X
Copying at 8 X
Copying at 10 X
Copying at 12 X
Copying at 16 X
too slow
CD Text Drive is capable of reading CD Text information
Subchannel Data Drive cannot read Subchannel Data directly
Leadin Drive cannot read data from the Leadin 
Leadout Drive cannot read data from the Leadout

CD audio track extraction (CDDAE 99, EAC)

CDDAE scores

  Licensed disc Pirated disc
Average extraction speed 27.6x 25.3x
Total errors 0.00% 0.00%
EAC scores (superb quality) 

  Licensed disc Pirated disc
Average extraction speed 6.2x 5.8x
Total errors 0.00% 0.00%

Direct copying of information from 780 MB CD-R (90 min.) to HDD

The drive copied the 780MB disc flawlessly. Copy time is 4 min. 42 sec. 

Quality of operation with DVD

Nero DVD Speed

Testing with the one-layer DVD

  SONY DDU1611
Average Speed 5.13x
Start Speed 3.37x
End Speed 6.30x
Random Seek 114 ms
1/3 Seek 145 ms
Full Seek 204 ms
Reading type CAV
CPU usage 1x 4%
SpinUp Time N/A
SpinDown Time 2.01 sec
Disc Recognition Time 11.96 sec

Testing with the two-layer DVD

  SONY DDU1611
Average Speed 6.45x
Start Speed 3.32x
End Speed 3.89x
Random Seek 107 ms
1/3 Seek 125 ms
Full Seek 252 ms
Reading type CAV
CPU usage 1x 1%
SpinUp Time N/A
SpinDown Time 2.78 sec
Layer Change Time 96 ms
Disc Recognition Time 12.77 sec

Compatibility with recordable DVD

DVD-R reading

  DVD-RW reading

In course of reading the DVD-RW there was a persistent reading error at 4.2 GB. 

DVD+R reading

  DVD+RW reading

DVD-Video playback with Cyberlink PowerDVD 4.0

The DVD video was played without any problems. No artifacts were noticed. The quality wasn't affected either when the layer was changed. 


  • Tray - 4/10 
  • CD 
    • Seek - 6/10 
    • General noise - 6/10 

  • DVD 
    • Seek - 6/10 
    • General noise - 7/10 

On the whole, the drive works noisy at the maximum speed. It's possible to reduce the speed only using external programs (CDBremse, Nero DriveSpeed). The programs support the following speeds: 48x-32x-24x-20x-16x-14x-10x-8x-4x-2x. 


In operation with the unbalanced discs the drive vibrated noticeably though not too strongly. However, it didn't prevent the drive from reading the disc successfully at the high speed. 

Thermal conditions

The thermal conditions are good. The measurements were taken after 2-hour intensive operation. 
T inside the PC case - 36°C 
T of the upper surface - 46°C 
T of the lower surface - 46°C 

Possibility to make it multizone (RPC-1)

According to www.firmware-flash.com/ it's possible to change the status of the drive from RPC-2 (region locked) to RPC-1 (region free).


SONY replaced its flagship of the 16x series with a new one having changed the OEM manufacturer as well. Was it worth doing? If we compare the test results with the previous model, we won't notice any considerable difference. All in all, this is an excellent drive, though without any outstanding features. 

Roman Shelepov (srl@ixbt.com)

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