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The HP BD-R DL 50GB Blu-Ray Discs

The HP BD-R DL 50GB Blu-Ray Discs

Hi everyone,

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.

VERBAT-IMf-000 Panasonic UJ-260

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.

VERBAT-IMf-000 Panasonic UJ-260 Burning 6x on Nero

It did seem to start burning great, but unfortunately, the disc failed to burn with just a generic burning error:

VERBAT-IMf-000 Panasonic UJ-260 Burning 6x on Nero Failed

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.

HP BD-R DL 10pk 6

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.

VERBAT-IMf-000 Pioneer BDR-2212

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.

HP BD-R DL 10pk 7

The finished disc has a dark grey burned color. Here we can see it compared to a burned CMCMAG-DI6-000 disc:

HP BD-R DL 10pk 8

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

VERBAT-IMf-000 Burned with Pioneer BDR-2212 at 8x and scanned on LiteOn iHBS112 at 4x

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.

VERBAT-IMf-000 Burned with Pioneer BDR-2212 at 8x and ScanDisc on LiteOn iHBS112

Now, let’s move on to scanning and verifying it on the LG WH16NS58:

VERBAT-IMf-000 Burned with Pioneer BDR-2212 at 8x and scanned on LG WH14NS58 at 4x

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.

VERBAT-IMf-000 Burned with Pioneer BDR-2212 at 8x and ScanDisc on LG WH16NS58

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.

Conclusion

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:

Using the Hidizs AP80 as a Micro SD reader

Using the Hidizs AP80 as a Micro SD reader

Hi everyone,

It comes a time when I have to update my Windows devices manually because sometimes, on my Intel Atom machines, Windows Update fails to install a Windows Insider build. I know I’m not the only one who have had this happened. One thing one can do to solve this is to go ahead and download a Windows Insider ISO and then create a bootable micro SD card, with tools like Rufus. Now, the bootable part is not important, as I’m upgrading my Windows install rather than doing a clean install.

I used an 8gb MicroSD card that I have and used Rufus on my AMD Ryzen desktop machine. I then used my Hidizs AP80 in USB Storage mode to make the microSD card appear in the PC and format and prepare the card with the ISO. Once that was ready, I used the Hidizs USB-C to Micro USB cable that came with my Hidizs DH1000 (the Hidizs AP80 also comes with this cable) to connect the USB-C port of the AP80 to the Micro USB port of the tablet. From there, I was able to go to “This PC” -> The Micro SD card and launch the Windows 10 setup to begin upgrading my tablet. It is really nice that the Hiby OS that this DAP use has different modes when it comes to USB, because you can either use it as a Storage device or as a DAC.

Here’s the image where I have my AP80 connected to my tablet:

Using the Hidizs AP80 as a Micro SD reader
Unboxing the HP OfficeJet 4650 Printer

Unboxing the HP OfficeJet 4650 Printer

Hi everyone,

In this post, I’d like to show you a series of photos unboxing the HP OfficeJet 4650 printer.

This is a very nice printer. It’s cheap, and offers office-quality printing. I purchased it at Best Buy.

Let’s begin!

The box:

Here’s the front of the box:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 1

The Side:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 2

The other side:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 3

The front side:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 4

The back side:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 5

Opening the Box:

Opening the box, we find these:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 6

There are the manuals, ink and power cable.

After taking all of that off, we can see the printer:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 7

Taking off the printer from the box:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 8

Removed from the protective foams:

After taking off the wrapping, here’s the top view:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 11

And here’s the front view:

Side view:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 13

Back view:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 15

The other side:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 16

Opening the flatbed scanner:

Opening the automatic scanner feeder:

Front view with the scanner feeder opened:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 21

Opening the paper tray:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 22

Tape removed:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 23

Opening the printer access panel:

And finally, here’s the printer with all of the tapes removed:

HP OfficeJet 4650 - 26

That’s all for this post!

Solving the HP Stream tablets CPU Throttling

Solving the HP Stream tablets CPU Throttling

Hi everyone,

In this post, I’m gonna talk about the HP Stream tablets and how to work around the overheating issues you may have with them.

These tablets works really good most of the time, that is, as long as you are in a well ventilated room, or a room with Air Conditioner. However, on tropical weather, it does not performs good sometimes. This is because the temperature is mostly in the mid 70s to 90s F, and in the summer, it can reach 100 F or more, and this causes the tablet to overheat and therefore, the CPU starts to throttle.

The tablet has a Quad-Core Intel Atom Z3735G clocked at 1.33Ghz. However, the CPU can reach up to 1.57Ghz given the CPU temperature is not extremely hot.

Now, the other issue is that the tablet is mostly plastic, and plastic is not a good heat conductor as compared with metal, but also, it is good that it is plastic as it would not transfer the heat to the battery and it is therefore concentrated in the CPU area, which prevents damage to the battery as the battery is kept cool. If it were metal, the heat could easily transfer to the battery and this could result in the battery getting swollen due to heat. So, each, plastic and metal has its pros and cons.

HP Stream 8 tablet
HP Stream 8

As you may know from the other posts I’ve made, I run the Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing (BOINC) in my PCs, and these tablets are no exception, but given the overheating issue, I had to find a solution to keep them cool.

HP Stream 7 and 8 crunching BOINC Tasks

Mainly, when it runs a BOINC CPU project, the throttle will not be severe in most cases, but when you add a GPU project to crunch, then that’s when the tablet will throttle severe enough to make it unresponsive until it cools down and the CPU clock restores to more than 1Ghz.

So, what is a good way to prevent the tablets from overheating and throttling? I got some aluminum heatsink that are designed to keep products like the Raspberry Pi cool. These aluminum heatsink comes with a thermal conductive tape and it is a good way to dissipate heat from the device.

Once the aluminum heatsink arrived, I attached them to the HP Stream 8 tablet, and then to the HP Stream 7. Below, you’ll find the procedure I made:

First, we must take the back panel off and remove some + screws. It is very easy to remove, and once removed, we will see the printed circuit board:

HP Stream 7 and 8 Heatsink Mod 1

The area we need to cool is this:

HP Stream 7 and 8 Heatsink Mod 2

We need to place the Thermal Conductive Tape to the heatsinks:

Now, we just place it in the area we need to keep cool:

HP Stream 7 and 8 Heatsink Mod 5

Of course, one heatsink is not sufficient, so we will be adding more (The item I purchased came with 10, so I installed 5 per tablet):

Now that we have applied the heatsinks, we need to make a cut to the cover so that we can reapply it to the tablet to protect the circuit board:

And that’s basically it! The tablet will not throttle unless the heat is sever enough. Now, a little fan to keep them cool really helps.

Now, I can run [email protected] in the GPU of the tablet without it throttling.

BOINCTasks HP Tablets
[4K Video] Unboxing HP Stream 8 Tablet

[4K Video] Unboxing HP Stream 8 Tablet

Hi everyone,

In this video, I will be unboxing the HP Stream 8 tablet. This tablet has basically the same specs as the HP Stream 7 I showed you yesterday, as it comes with an Intel Atom Z3735G @ 1.33Ghz, 1GB of RAM, 32GB of eMMC storage, Wifi/Bluetooth connectivity, and it came with Windows 8.1 but is fully compatible with Windows 10. The main difference between the HP Stream 7 and HP Stream 8 is that the HP Stream 8 is 8 inches while the HP Stream 7 is 7 inches. Also, the HP Stream 8 comes with an HSPA Modem so you can use the internet whenever you go as long as you’re subscribed to a Wireless Carrier Data Plan. The tablet came with a T-Mobile SIM Card which offered 200MB of free data every month, but for just $10, I could add 5GB of High-Speed Data and then it would throttle to 128kbit/s, which is a very good deal considering that music data doesn’t count the High-Speed Data Allotment.

The tablet itself is actually good for lightweight tasks, however, like the HP Stream 7, the 1GB of RAM is pretty much the limiting factor as Windows 10 uses some 800MB most of the time out of the 1GB available, so it uses the Page File frequently, making the performance of it a little slow sometimes. What I like most about this tablet is having Windows 10 in it and using the internet whenever I go.

[4K Video] Unboxing HP Stream 7 Tablet

[4K Video] Unboxing HP Stream 7 Tablet

Hi everyone,

In this video, I will be unboxing the HP Stream 7 tablet. This tablet comes with an Intel Atom Z3735G @ 1.33Ghz, 1GB of RAM, 32GB of eMMC storage, Wifi/Bluetooth connectivity, and initially comes with Windows 8.1. The tablet itself is actually good for lightweight tasks, however, the 1GB of RAM is pretty much the limiting factor.

Do you have this tablet? How does it work for you? Let me know in the comments.