iXBT Labs - Computer Hardware in Detail






Toshiba SDR1412T DVD/CD-RW Review

Toshiba, one of the pioneers on the combo drive market launches new solutions quite rarely, though its products are very reliable and have a lot of admirers in spite of some disadvantages. New solutions from Toshiba do not make their arrival triumphant, but it doesn't make them less interesting. Today we are going to test a new combo drive named Toshiba SDR1412T.


  • Interface: ATAPI 
  • Formats supported:
    • DVD-R Ver. 1.0, DVD-R Ver. 2.0, DVD-ROM, DVD-RW Ver. 1.1
    • CD+(E)G, CD-DA, CD-I, CD-I Bridge (Photo-CD), CD-I Bridge (Video-CD), CD-MIDI, CD-R, CD-ROM, CD-ROM XA, CD-RW, CD-Extra, CD-RW.

  • Write speeds:
    • CD-R: 32X ZCLV
    • CD-RW: 24X ZCLV

  • Write methods: Disc at once, Track at once, Session at once, Packet write.
  • Read speeds:
    • DVD-ROM 12X CLV
    • DVD-RAM 2X CLV
    • CD-ROM 48X CLV 

  • Access time: 
    • DVD 130msec. (typ.)
    • DVD-RAM 180msec. (typ.) 
    • CD: 110msec. (typ.) 

  • Buffer: 2 MBytes 
  • Weight: 1 kg
  • MTBF: 100,00 hours

The drive came in the OEM package, i.e. without any accessories. 

The new model from Toshiba doesn't differ in appearance and design from the other models in the line of optical drives. Toshiba's optical drives are a classic example of an ascetic device without any controls on the front panel. There's only an Open/Eject button and an emergency eject hole and a two-color LED.

Look at the drive's base.

The chipset is Toshiba's proprietary solution.

The photo above shows the contents of the drive case. 

The label on top provides information on all drive's features.

The installation caused no problems. A user is offered a standard procedure, like that for an ordinary CD-ROM drive. The drive needs no special drivers. You can do just with the NeroBurning Rom; as for me, I used the latest version  - 

Now let's use other utilities to get more information on the drive; for example, Nero Infotool tells what formats and disc types are supported by the drive:

According to www.firmware-flash.com it's still impossible to turn the drive into RPC-1. However, you can use the DVD Region free program which provides the regional protection. 

EAC (EAC Configuration Wizard) tells us about Audio CDs. 

Test results

DVD recording

CD burn time

Traditionally, we used two types of media, with cyanine and phthalocyanine coating. The number of the trade marks were lifted up to 4, 2 of each type, to get more information of how the drive treats discs of different trade marks. Below is the ATIP for the discs tested. 

Mirex 48x
Disc Type = CDR (B-)
Nominal = 702.83MB (79m 59s 74f/LBA:359849)
Manufacturer = Plasmon Data Systems Ltd.

Philips 52x
Disc Type = CDR (A-) 
Nominal = 702.83MB (79m 59s 73f/LBA:359848)
Manufacturer = RiTEK Corporation

Verbatim 48x
Disc Type = CDR (A+) 
Nominal = 702.83MB (79m 59s 74f/LBA:359849)
Manufacturer = Mitsubishi Chemicals Corporation
Verbatim Pastel
Disc Type = CDR (A+)
Nominal = 702.83MB (79m 59s 72f/LBA:359847)
Manufacturer = Taiyo Yuden Company Limited

Recording on TOSHIBA SDR1412T (Philips 52x, phthalocyanine)

  Recording on TOSHIBA SDR1412T (Mirex 48x, phthalocyanine)

  Recording on TOSHIBA SDR1412T ( Verbatim 48x and Verbatim Pastel , cyanine)

The drive selects different write speeds for different media types.

We also tested ability of the drive to record cyanine discs at the minimal speed, - the mode usually used by audiophiles to get the highest quality sound. 

The choice of burn speeds is not that rich.

Drive Philips 52x. Mirex 48x. Verbatim 48x. Verbatim Pastel.
MITSUMI DR-6800TE 2:46 2:52 2:42 10:21 (8x)
TOSHIBA SDR1412T 4:25 7:10 4:04 21:12

To extend the picture, I added the results of burning of CD-RW discs. 

Recording on TOSHIBA SDR1412T (TDK 12x CD-RW)

  Recording on TOSHIBA SDR1412T (Verbatim 24x CD-RW)

Drive TDK 12x. Verbatim 24x.
MITSUMI DR-6800TE 7:17 3:34
TOSHIBA SDR1412T 8:36 4:18

Time of CD-RW full formatting in UDF with InCD 4.1.0

CD-RW recording in UDF format, 530 Mb test packet in 3000 files. 

TDK 12x CD-RW  

Drive Burn time (min.) Formatting time (min.)
TOSHIBA SDR1412T 8:03 9:12
MITSUMI DR-6800TE 8:46 10:18

Verbatim 24x CD-RW  

Drive Burn time (min.) Formatting time (min.)
TOSHIBA SDR1412T 4:56 5:20
MITSUMI DR-6800TE 7:28 8:18

Operation with 80mm CDs (tested with a CD-RW disc), formatting and recording in UDF

Formatting and recording of the 80mm CD-RW disc in UDF, 4x burn speed.   

Drive Formatting time (min.) Burn time (min.)
MITSUMI DR-6800TE 9:18 4:56
TOSHIBA SDR1412T 9:55 5:14

Reading of the recorded discs on the Lite-On drive with KProbe

Reading of Philips CD-R recorded on TOSHIBA SDR1412T 

Reading of Verbatim CD-R recorded on TOSHIBA SDR1412T 

Reading of Mirex CD-R recorded on TOSHIBA SDR1412T

New Mirex discs with ATIP Plasmon are incorrectly identified by some programs, like it takes place in this case.

Reading of Verbatim Pastel (4x burn speed) recorded on TOSHIBA SDR1412T 

  Reading of TDK 12x recorded on TOSHIBA SDR1412T 

  Reading of Verbatim 24x recorded on TOSHIBA SDR1412T 


Drive 80 min CD-R 90 min CD-R
MITSUMI DR-6800TE 81:38.32 95:49.08
TOSHIBA SDR1412T 81:46.22 94:57.07

CD reading parameters

CDWinBench 99

Winmark 2350 1960
Inside transfer 3430 Kb/s 3210 Kb/s
Outside transfer 6720 Kb/s 6560 Kb/s
CPU Utilization  1.47 % 1.69 %
Access Time 84.4 ms 108 ms


Test CD reading


Average speed  37.83x CAV 36.37x CAV
Random Seek 96 ms 109 ms
Full Seek 320 ms 189 ms
CPU Usage 8x 3% 15%
SpinUp Time 2.66 1.11
SpinDown Time 4.24 2.29
Disc Recognition Time 10.20 sec 6.42 sec
Accurate stream Yes Yes

CD-ROM Drive Analyzer

CD-R reading


CD-RW reading


Low-quality CD reading


CD audio track extraction (CDDAE 99, EAC)

Average extraction speed 14.6x  7.4x 
Total errors  0.00% 0.00%

Fatal numbers

The drive was also tested for ability to read a file that contains a signature that turns into a sequence of data repeating Sync Header. This problem was closely studied in this article. The drive has successfully read the test files. 

Advanced DAE Quality (Nero CD-Speed)


The detailed information on the tested parameters is given in the help file to the Nero CD Speed test program. If you don't want to download the utility, here you can find the HTMl help file. 

DAE Quality (EAC)

This test was made by the developer of EAC, and it's called DAE Quality (see its description here). In short, it measures quality of audio data extraction and quality of C2 error processing with a special test disc. In this case it's impossible to measure C2 processing quality, you just look at the general data on quality of audiotrack extraction. 


  • Errors total Num : 878477
  • Errors (Loudness) Num : 25143 - Avg : -68.8 dB(A) - Max : -15.2 dB(A)
  • Error Muting Num : 7627 - Avg : 2.2 Samples - Max : 419 Samples
  • Skips Num : 0 - Avg : 0.0 Samples - Max : 0 Samples
  • Total Test Result : 75.9 points (of 100.0 maximum)
  • C2 Accuracy : 99.9 %

Direct copying of information from 832 MB (92 min) CD-R to HDD

The drive successfully copied the contents of the 832MB drive without any errors. 


Copy time

  • MITSUMI DR-6800TE - 5 min. 36 sec.
  • TOSHIBA SDR1412T- 8 min. 46 sec.

Drive's physical characteristics 


Test DVD reading

TOSHIBA SDR1412T 1-layer DVD (stamped DVD-Data)

Average speed  12.03x CAV 11.42x CAV
Random Seek 96 ms 125 ms
Full Seek 165 ms 219 ms
SpinUp Time 1.40  1.31 
SpinDown Time 3.17 sec 2.15 sec
Disc Recognition Time 10.08 sec 5.02 sec

TOSHIBA SDR1412T 2-layer DVD (stamped DVD-Video)

Average speed  7.74x CAV 6.27x CAV
Random Seek 102 ms 130 ms
Full Seek 177 ms 220 ms
SpinUp Time 1.67 1.44
SpinDown Time 2.97 sec 1.54 sec
Disc Recognition Time 9.52 sec 6.95 sec
Layer Change Time 91 ms 105 ms

Reading of recordable DVD

DVD-RAM reading


DVD+R reading


DVD+RW reading


DVD-R reading


DVD-RW reading


The drive successfully reads all types of recordable discs, including multiborder DVDs. 

DVD Video copying with Smart Ripper

Drive Average speed

Drive's physical characteristics 


Drive Tray CD-Seek CD total DVD-Seek DVD total
TOSHIBA SDR1412T 7/10 7/10 6/10 7/10 7/10

The drive is not that noisy; but you may feel discomfortable when working with CDs at high speeds. Besides, the drive is very sensible to the disc balance quality, and it might vibrate if they are poorly balanced. The speeds can be reduced with external programs (CDBremse, Nero DriveSpeed). The programs allow setting the following read speeds: 48x-40x-32x-24x-16x-12x-8x-4x.

Thermal conditions

Drive T inside PC case, C T of the upper surface, C T of the lower surface, C
TOSHIBA SDR1412T 36 48 48

The drive doesn't get hot even if used a lot. But be careful when placing other devices close to it as they can burn.

Vibration in case of unbalanced CDs

The drive is very sensible to the disc balance quality. It vibrates and makes a lot of noise when reading poorly balanced discs at high speeds but it managed to finish reading the test CD. I thought the disc could get damaged but it didn't. 


The new combo drive from Toshiba doesn't possess any outstanding features, it keeps in the middle. The new model is faster at writing and reading CDs. The burn and read quality is very good for all media types. Unfortunately, the read speed of recordable DVDs is still low but I hope that it will be solved when the cracked firmware becomes available, like it happened to Toshiba 1802 DVD-ROM. The new-comer is very critical to the disc balance quality, and such discs usually make the drive vibrate and produce a lot of noise. On the whole, Toshiba maintains its high-level authority, and this drive can be recommended for any user. 

Roman Shelepov aka SRL (srl@ixbt.com)

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