I used ImgBurn to burn a disc to its maximum. It took 3 hours to get it burned, but it was successful:
The disc verification took 2 hours, as the drive switches between 2x and 4x while it reads. It was successful too:
The disc surface looks very smooth:
The only drive that I currently have that is capable of scanning BDXL media is the LG WH16NS58. This drive reported an increase of numbers at the start of the 2nd layer and at the end of the 3rd one:
I burned another disc in this drive too, and the LG scan was similar, but the numbers on those 2 spikes were about the half:
The disc is completely readable regardless of those spikes and no slowdowns occurs either.
The Panasonic UJ-260 can successfully burn these discs. It is very slow, at just 2x, taking 3 hours to fully burn a disc. The verification is a bit faster, taking 2 hours. This also means that whenever we want to read back the entire disc in this drive, it will take 2 hours to do so.
The quality scans are questionable, as the discs could be read back properly without any issues. This is the only drive that can scan these discs.
If you don’t mind waiting 5 hours in total for the whole burning session, feel free to use this drive for your backup needs.
You can buy these discs and the drive on Amazon at the following links:
Burning a ValueDisc 25GB Blu-Ray Disc in the LiteOn iHBS112 drive
This drive allows us to burn these discs at up to 10x:
I used Nero Express to initiate the burn at the maximum speed of 10x:
The disc was burned and verified successfully:
Here is how the disc surface looks after burning in this drive:
The surface seem to have a ring in it, and altough it cannot be seen clearly, more to the outer part of the disc, it has some clouds.
Both the LiteOn and LG results would be great if it wasn’t for that spike at the 20GB mark. I’m not sure whether it is intentional or is related to the disc, but given how this drive seem to have a spike at 18GB on Ritek’s SmartBuy 25GB discs, I’m pretty sure this may be an issue with the drive not burning these discs properly. The rest of the scan is very good for the speed we used to burn it.
Reading back the data is successful on different drives regardless of this spike.
The LG drive read it back successfully.
The Panasonic UJ260 also read the disc back fine without any read errors.
The LiteOn iHBS112 seem to have very good results at burning these discs at 10x, but presents us with a spike at the 20GB mark. This spike is present on both drives, meaning that it wasn’t burned properly, altough the data can be read properly on my drives.
You can purchase these discs on Amazon at the following link:
Burning a ValueDisc 25GB Blu-Ray Disc in the Pioneer BDR-2212 drive – Part 3
The disc scanned better in the LiteOn drive than the 6x burn and definitely way better than the 12x burn. On the LG drive, the results are mostly similar to the 6x burn, and similarly to the latter, it is an improvement over the 12x burn.
At 4x, we get a burn that is similar to the 6x results. The LiteOn drive tolerates it better now, while the LG drive seem to consider it similar to the 6x burn. Both scans are better result than when the disc is burned at 12x. The time it takes to burn the disc at this speed is 24 minutes or less. Given that the LG drive didn’t show an improvement, we can be safe to use the 6x speed on these discs without a quality penalty, but the LiteOn drive still agrees this is a better burn.
You can purchase these discs and the Pioneer drive on Amazon at the following links:
Burning a ValueDisc 25GB Blu-Ray Disc in the Pioneer BDR-2212 drive – Part 2
Here is how the surface looks when burned at 6x in this drive:
The surface looks very smooth. Overall, this drive seems to burn Blu-Ray discs with really smooth-looking surface.
The disc scanned better than the 12x burn. The numbers are lower, but still not at the amount that the Panasonic drive can offer for this speed. We can also see that the LG tolerated it better than the LiteOn drive.
At 6x, we get a better result than when the disc is burned at 12x. The time it takes to burn the disc is increased by about 5 more minutes, taking 15 to 18 minutes to burn it (This compilation had several .mpd files so the drive was stopping frequently while the buffers recovered, taking a bit more to burn). If you don’t mind taking a few more minutes, you can reliably use this speed with these discs in this drive.
You can purchase these discs and the Pioneer drive on Amazon at the following links:
Burning a ValueDisc 25GB Blu-Ray Disc in the Pioneer BDR-2212 drive
This drive is able to burn these discs at up to 12x. This will be the speed used on this post:
Burning a disc in this drive at its maximum speed takes less than 12 minutes:
Disc verification is successful:
Overall, it takes less than 23 minutes to burn and verify a single disc at 12x.
Here is the disc burned surface:
I scanned the disc in my LiteOn iHBS112 and LG WH16NS58. While the disc is perfectly readable, we can see how the numbers are huge as the disc progresses toward the end:
It does seem, however, that the LG drive numbers are less than the LiteOn drive by about a half.
Burning these discs in the Pioneer BDR-2212 drive is really fast, taking less than 12 minutes for just burning it, and less than 23 minutes for burning and verification. However, while the time it takes to burn a disc is small, the disc quality suffers at this speed. There are no negative consequences when reading back the disc in none of my drives, and the data is all readable. Whether to use this maximum speed in this drive is up to you, according to the above images.
You can purchase these discs and the Pioneer drive on Amazon at the following links:
A few years ago, I recall that some gold-colored discs became corrupted due to corrosion. Since these discs are gold-colored too, I’ll be checking them after a while to make sure its data is still fine.
I got these discs last year and I’m writing about them right now, altough these images and screenshots were taken last year, the disc quality scan is from this moment. This is also why the drive we will be using is the LG WH14NS40 crossflashed to the LG WH16NS60 firmware. This drive allows us to burn these discs at up to 8x. I’m no longer using this drive to burn discs due to some coasters it produced randomly and have since moved to using the Panasonic UJ260 or the Pioneer BDR-2212. Here are the details for these discs on the LG drive:
The drive was able to write the disc successfully:
And it was also able to verify correctly:
The burned disc surface looks like this:
The LiteOn iHBS112 problem
These discs will not burn correctly on the LiteOn iHBS112. They fail around the 18GB mark, and while the drive can scan the disc, it will also report a very high error count at that same mark. Here is a recent scan from the disc burned in the LG drive:
Here is another scan from another disc also burned in the LG drive and scanned in the LiteOn drive. This is a scan from last year:
The disc, however, is completely readable on that drive. Something that contradicts the scans:
Here is an image of a failed burned disc in the LiteOn drive. Notice the right disc has some clouds in the burned surface and that the left disc surface seem to come lighter in color and then return to be dark:
A Year later
A year later the discs do not seem to have any visual defects in the surface. The discs can still be read. Here are the scans of 2 discs scanned in the LG WH16NS40 crossflashed to the LG WH16NS58 firmware:
The first image is from the disc we burned above. It still have excellent results. The second image is from a disc also burned last year but with the Panasonic UJ260.
You can see that neither of the images above have the 18GB spike that we had in the LiteOn drive. It seems that the LiteOn really doesn’t like this media. Altough it can be read fine, it will fail to burn, and if it succeed, it will fail to verify those sectors. This read issue does not happen if we read a disc burned with another drive, but the scan will still report the spike at 18GB.
These discs seem to be reliable, except with the LiteOn drive. I was able to burn them fine with my Panasonic UJ260, where it can only burn them at 2x or 4x, but will always burn them at 2x regardless. I assume it has to do with the drive’s power calibration it performs before it writes.
The LG WH16NS40, crossflashed to the LG WH16NS60 firmware at that moment can also burn the discs fine. I do recall it failed to close the disc session sometimes, erroring out and therefore leaving the disc in an open state. The discs would still work and the data could be read just fine, with the exception that they remained open.
You can buy these discs on Amazon at the following link:
Today, I got the KZ DQ6. This IEM contains 3 dynamic drivers per side, which is a bit different than the usual BA and dynamic drivers combination they usually make. It is made of a single 10mm “Xun” unit that handles the bass and 2x 6mm drivers that handles the mids and treble. KZ is well known to experiment with different driver configurations and this is no exception. We’ll see how they perform below.
The box is the usual we get with KZ IEMs. It’s small and practical.
In the inside, we can see both units. The form factor is similar to their previous KZ ZSX “Terminator”.
We get the usual offering with these IEMs: A silver 0.75mm 2-pin cable, which is what KZ is now packaging, the tips, and the usual instruction manual.
The headphone tips are no longer the “star” tips. Rather, they decided to change them to a soft white tip. Unfortunately, these tips are way too soft and they make the DQ6 not fit the ear properly. This is no problem, as most would use third-party tip, but there is actually another problem: The nozzle diameter is smaller than the previous KZ IEMs, making some of the tips not compatible with them.
I tried the SednaEarFit Light to replace the stock tips, but the nozzle diameter of them are bigger than the KZ DQ6 and therefore, they would get out and not seal properly. Fortunately, the SednaEatFit Xelastec fits as well as the Spinfit CP100:
This IEM has a great tuning and I consider it an improvement over their latest hybrid IEMs. In the bass region, there is more presence without being overblown or being too fast. The mids are less recessed. Vocals are clearer, not metallic and warmer. The treble sounds extended without being sharp and fatiguing, something I had issues with their hybrids. The instruments are very well separated and well coordinated. None of the frequencies dominate the audio and seem to work together to produce a beautiful, musical, detailed, warmer sound.
I also own the KZ ZS7, ZS10 Pro, AS16, ZSX and ZAX, and I feel these DQ6, while being cheaper and having less drivers, do sound better than all of the previous mentioned models. I can also listen to these for more time without having ear fatigue. For me, these are the most balanced KZ IEMs I have ever tried.
It’s interesting to see KZ try something different than their usual hybrids. They nailed it with the tuning on these, really! Just be sure to change those stock tips to something better like the SpinFit CP100 or the SednaEarFit Xelastec. You’ll note how comfortable they will be and the sound will not disappoint you.
You can get these on Amazon at the following link:
Early this week, I ordered more Double Layer Blu-Ray discs. Unfortunately, the Philips 10pk BD-R DLs that were at $9 each were out of stock, so I had 2 options, both listed at $11 dollars:
Philips BD-R DL 10pk – Logo surface
HP BD-R DL 10pk – Logo surface
I decided to go with the HP ones since I’ve already tested the Philips BD-R DL 10pk printable discs, and maybe the Logo surface ones were the same CMC Magnetics discs. With the HP ones, I have the opportunity to review these and see if they are the same or different than the Philips discs. Because the Verbatim 100GB discs are still very high on price and seem to be low on stock, I need to get more BD-R DLs than usual. This is why I ordered 5 of these packs again.
Basically, last time I wasted a full 10pk of the Philips discs doing tests, until realizing that the Pioneer BDR-2212 drive was the one that handled them best. Will the same happen here again? We’ll find out.
The disc packaging is very similar to the Philips discs, except that these spindles have a paper on the top as well as the branding on the sides. Both were made in Taiwan. They are also rated to be burned up at 6x, although the burning speeds available depends on the burner capabilities and firmware itself.
Opening it, we have the shiny top logo surface discs:
The discs does look to be very well made. The data surface also look very smooth too.
It also has a dark gold-colored look, as opposed to the dark grey color of the Philips discs. This is important because it may tell us that the manufacturer is different.
My first thought was to insert this into the Panasonic UJ-260, to see what it thinks of this disc.
ImgBurn says these discs are made by Verbatim! The media code ID is VERBAT-IMf-000. The Panasonic UJ-260 can burn them at 2x and 6x. This is higher than the RITEK-DR3-000 and CMCMAG-DI6-000 discs, both of which could be burned up to 4x on this drive (Note that the CMCMAG-DI6-000 failed on this drive, but it could burn the RITEK-DR3-000 perfectly fine).
Given this, let’s try to burn a disc with Nero at 6x.
It did seem to start burning great, but unfortunately, the disc failed to burn with just a generic burning error:
This is the first time the Panasonic fails on me while burning a disc. This is also unexpected, given that Verbatim discs should be the best of the best. Usually, this drive would burn a disc fine but may fail on the verification, like it did on the CMCMAG-DI6-000 discs. Maybe it couldn’t handle burning at 6x.
As we can see, it failed at the first layer.
My next try was of course, on the Pioneer BDR-2212. It burned all of the Philips spindles flawlessly, altough on just one of the discs, it wrote a bad sector and this drive was able to read it back while the others failed on that sector. I discarded this disc, but the others wrote and verified just fine.
The Pioneer drive reports that this disc can be burned at up to 8x.
I fired up Nero and attempted to burn the disc at 8x. The CMCMAG-DI6-000 burned great at this speed and the verification went really well too. No speed slowdowns happened at all when reading them.
Nero was able to burn and verify this disc successfully. In fact, it also read back fine in my LiteOn iHBS112.
The finished disc has a dark grey burned color. Here we can see it compared to a burned CMCMAG-DI6-000 disc:
The CMCMAG-DI6-000 on the left has a darker burned color than the VERBAT-IMf-000 disc on the right.
Next are the usual quality scans. I really don’t pay attention to it, as it’s been proven that the drives can handle high amounts of LDC/BIS numbers and the only discs that failed on me were scratched or rotten ones. This happened some years ago, but none of the discs I’ve burned so far has given me issues.
Test results of an 8x burn
The LiteOn iHBS112 seem to read the disc just great but reports high numbers on the first layer and a bit on the 2nd one before going back down to numbers that stays within the limits. Besides this result, the disc was completely readable.
Now, let’s move on to scanning and verifying it on the LG WH16NS58:
The LG drive stayed between the tolerance numbers except once it reached the 20GB mark, where it went up. It stabilized again on the 2nd layer at around 29GB and stayed within its limits. The disc once again was completely readable according to Nero DiscSpeed.
Test results of a 6x burn
I burned a disc at 6x, which was successful too. The difference between a 6x and 8x burn is about 5 minutes.
Now, let’s see how it scanned:
The scan on the LiteOn drive is very similar to the 8x burn. On the LG drive, however, it seems the first layer was burned better. The start of the 2nd layer did present a spike but seem to correct itself. Remember that the Pioneer drive performs some calibration while burning. It usually does it at around 56% after starting to burn the second layer of a BD-R DL disc. The rest of the disc burned with good quality and no spikes.
Even with those spikes on both scans, the disc read fine on both instances.
Burning on the Panasonic UJ260 at 2x
I decided to give this drive another try, but this time burning at 2x. Surprisingly, it handled burning it and succeeded in the verification stage.
Testing on the LiteOn and LG drives looked way, way better too
We can see once again that the LG scanned it a bit better, but the difference between the LiteOn and LG is not so much. Overall, this looks way better than the Pioneer burns at 6x and 8x.
This is very good to know because before the Pioneer drive, I was always burning on the Panasonic drive. This means that the only media this drive cannot handle well is the CMCMAG-DI6-000, but it could be because of the tint of those discs that I mentioned on that review and may not be the case with other branded CMCMAG discs.
The discs from the batch I got are all Verbatim 6x media. They are burning reliably on the Pioneer drive and at 2x on the Panasonic drive. The LG and LiteOn drives can read back the data on all of the above cases regardless of the quality scans without any speed slowdown. I’d recommend this media because of how cheap it is, considering they seem to be Verbatim media but branded for HP.
You can order these discs on Amazon at the following link:
The discs do not come in a standard spindle, so you have to be very careful when opening it.
They have a branded surface:
The recording surface has a dark purple color:
When the disk is loaded in ImgBurn on a LiteOn iHAS524 drive with OverSpeed turned on, it will detect them as having a speed of up to 16x:
The disc media ID from this batch is RICOHJPN-D01-67.
Unfortunately, burning these discs with either 12x or 16x will not work and will produce coasters. They will actually write at 4x but will fail the verification. This is why I recommend turning off OverSpeed and burning at the rated 8x speed.
Here’s the disk information with OverSpeed turned off:
The LiteOn iHAS524 was able to burn the discs successfully when burned at 8x. I burned them with HyperTuning, Online HyperTuning and Smart-Burn turned on. OverSpeed was turned off.
Interestingly, it seemed to have burned some discs using a CAV strategy while the rest were burned using a Z-CLV strategy.
The disc started burning at 5x but eventually reached 8x. Then it went backward:
Data verification was successful going up to 16x:
The drive burned the discs starting at 4x, then going up to 6x, and finally up to 8x. It then did the same on the opposite direction:
Data verification was also successful having a maximum read speed of 16x:
Disc Quality Test
I used Nero DiscSpeed to perform quality tests on these discs. It seems that there is a problem around the layer break when the scan is performed at the maximum speed which is 16x:
However, when we reduced the speed to 8x, we got some decent results with no issues at the layer break:
With a price of just $19.99, I think this is a good media to backup data. A 100pk Single-layer DVD+R spindle cost somewhere between $20-$25 these days. While these media are Double Layer, you’re getting half the discs with almost double the capacity for around that same price.
When burning these discs, just don’t overspeed them. You’ll have coasters. Burn them at their rated speed of 8x and always verify the data. While none of my discs had issues verifying the discs burned at 8x, those burned at 12x and 16x did experienced issues. This is why you should disable overspeed and burn at 8x.
Today, we will be looking at the Philips BD-R DL White Inkjet Printable Blu-Ray Recordable media:
These discs were at a surprising price of just $9 dollars on Amazon, so I picked up 5 spindles of these.
These discs holds up to 50GB and are rated to be burnt at up to 6x. Let’s take a look at the disc surface and label sides:
The discs have the Philips brand at the center of the disc. Also, we can see that the discs have some sort of tint on the data side. Hopefully, these will not affect the recordings. Or will it? Let’s find out how my burners handle these discs.
Burning on Panasonic UJ-260
My first attempt to burn these was with my old but trusted Panasonic UJ-260 drive. It has been successfully burning discs with media codes RITEK-BR2 (25GB), RITEK-DR3 (50GB), CMCMAG-BA5 (25GB) and VERBAT-IMk (100GB).
The disc was recognized as CMCMAG-DI6-000 and can be burnt at up to 4x in this drive:
The disc was able to burn fine, but unfortunately failed verification. Let’s see the disc burned surface:
We can see that there are burning issues. The Panasonic UJ-260 writes double layer media in two zones. It starts at 2x, and then burns at 4x. On the 2nd layer, it goes from 4x to 2x. The red zones are when the drive spins down to 2x to burn the final parts of the disc.
Still, out of curiosity, somehow this disc was readable on the LG drive when I did a ScanDisc run on Nero DiscSpeed:
I burned another disc, this time at 2x. The burn again went fine, but the verification failed on the 2nd layer again.
The disc looks awful. You can see the rings in the recording surface. The scans also points this issue out:
Both drives agree that something is wrong at the end. The disc should technically be looking darker like the rings look, which would explain why the second layer was scanning properly until the rings started to appear.
Few days later, I burned another one at 4x using ImgBurn. The previous 2 were burned with Nero, but that shouldn’t had be an issue. This time, the disc burned and verified fine, but it still did rings at the disc surface:
Scans looks better, but I wouldn’t trust the disc in its condition:
It’s still clear that the rings are affecting the burn.
Burning on the LiteOn iHBS112
I burned another disc on the LiteOn iHBS112. This drive is able to burn them at 4x and 6x:
The disc burned and verified fine, but the drive produced rings on the disc surface too.
This burner also burned this disc in 2 zones, one at 4x and the other at 6x. The first layer burned fine, but we can see it struggled on the 2nd layer at the 4x zone:
Regardless of the scans, the disc was completely readable.
This drive is interesting in that if I burn with Nero, it fails immediately with “Write Error” and closes the disc, effectively not allowing us to retry burning anything since it changes the book type to BD-ROM somehow. I tried with ImgBurn at 6x and it managed to burn and verify the disc, but again, it came out with rings:
The drive did seem to produce a better burn except at the layer break. Also, the several rings do have an effect too:
I burned another disc, but this time it failed verifying:
It seems this time the issue is mostly at the layer break.
I have this slim drive, and surprisingly, it did not produce any visible rings in the disc surface. It is also able to burn it at 6x:
The disc was verified successful too. Let’s see how it performs at the graphs:
The LG seem to tolerate the disc better than the LiteOn. The first layer scanned fine. In both cases, the disc was completely readable without errors.
Pioneer BDR-2212 (BDR-212ULBK/BDR-212M)
I recently got this recorder to try burning these discs and see if it would offer a better burning experience. It is able to burn these discs at up to 8x on this drive.
I burned some discs with Nero 2017, which I haven’t upgraded since that version since every version is essentially just the same, and it burned the discs fine at 8x.
The disc surface looks very good. No rings are present either. However, when I first scanned the disc with my LG drive, it gave a really bad result:
So I re-ran the test again and got a way better result:
The LDC numbers may look high but the BIS numbers are almost within the standards. High, but the disc works fine across all my drives. The above scan was also performed at 8x. Below, we have the scans from my LG and LiteOn drive, from the same disc burned at 8x:
As we can see, the LG drive scanned the disc better than the LiteOn drive, but it was read without any issues there.
This drive seem to have better results when writing the 2nd layer, which is unexpected. Usually, the 1st layer is the one that gets burned the best. I did noticed that this drive seem to do a power calibration when switching layers, which can explain why the LDC/BIS numbers are low at that point. I think of this because the drive seem to slow down and pause when it reaches the layer break. The drive then proceeds to burn the disc as usual. My other drives would just keep burning immediately at this point.
These Philips BD-R DL use discs from CMC Magnetics with media code CMCMAG-DI6-000. These discs seem to have compatibility issues with some drives. In fact, go to Amazon and read the reviews and you’ll see some people are also having issues when burning these discs. Unfortunately, drive vendors that update their firmware are low. LG and Pioneer seem to keep their drives up to date, but the LG doesn’t seem to have the best luck burning them, as some discs may come fine and some may fail. The Pioneer seems to handle them the best and can even overspeed it to 8x. I think the investment on the drive paid off. Considering these discs spindles can be found cheap now, I think I’ll keep purchasing them for my archival needs.
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