Red-Hot Stuff: 11 DVD Burners Reviewed

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About DVD Recording, But Were Afraid To Ask

Glossary: DVD Basics
1x, 2x, 4x DVD DVD recording or playback speed in relation to spindle speed of the DVD on video playback
1x = 1.385 MB/s
2x = 2.77 MB/s
2.4x = 3.324 MB/s (only DVD+R/+RW)
4x = 5.54 MB/s
8x = 11.08 MB/s
Authoring Compilation of video data and, if necessary, of a menu before actually burning a movie DVD.
Burning Writing to a CD or DVD.
Capturing Recording a TV program using a TV card
CSS Content stream scrambling - an encoding procedure commonly used for DVD video for the purpose of copy protection.
DVD-5 One-sided, one-layer DVD with 4.38 GB gross capacity. Usually, however, this is given as 4.7 GB. This reason for this is that 1 kB is defined as 1,000 Bytes rather than 1,024 Bytes. All writeable DVDs to date are in the DVD-5 category
DVD-9 One-sided but dual-layer DVD with 7.95 GB or 8.5 GB at 1,000 Bytes per kB. The bulk of all DVD movies are based on this standard, because they cannot be copied onto a DVD-5 without considerable effort.
DVD-10 Two-sided, single-layer DVD with 7.95 GB or 8.5 GB capacity at 1,000 Bytes per kB. Now and then you see this type of disc, which naturally has to be turned over in the drive. DVD movies sometimes follow this standard so that Cinemascope (2.35 : 1) and widescreen (16 : 9) can but put on a DVD.
DVD-18 Two-sided, dual-layer DVD with 7.95 or 8.5 GB per side. Yields 15.9 or 17 GB at 1,000 Bytes per kB. This type of DVD is very rare.
DVD video Subcategory of DVD specifications intended for MPEG-1 or MPEG-2 content. The latter is used for quality reasons. Common MPEG-2 resolutions are 720x480 (NTSC) and 720x576 (PAL).
DVD rip One or more files that were created from a DVD movie. DivX/MPEG-4 or SVCDs/MPEG-2 are common formats.
Firmware The software needed to run a hardware device, usually stored on a small memory chip. In many components this can be updated as needed.
Grabbing Selecting one or several titles off a music CD.
Mini DVD A CD that has a DVD-compliant file system. This is actually not a standard, but it allows burning of short films or a trailer in DVD quality onto a CD. Not supported by all DVD players.
Ripping Copying all information from a DVD video onto a hard drive. Often this means getting past write protection. Circumventing copy protection is punishable under national copyright laws.
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  • Anonymous
    Very informative review. Tedious reading and loading it though...It would have been nice to see a chart or graph at the end of the article with all the drives together. This loading page after page after page sucks big time. too much other crap. Otherwise, I did find what I was looking for. Thanks Tom's Hardware!