Understanding CD Burner Speeds
Have you ever wondered what all those numbers mean when you go to buy a CD burner?
Have you ever wondered what all those numbers mean when you go to buy a CD burner? When you see a configuration that looks like 12x2x24 (three numbers separated by the letter "x"), these numbers indicate the drive speeds of the CD drive. The "x" stands for the transfer of 150 KB of data per second, and each number represents a different action that the CD drive can take.
A CD-R drive has two actions -- recording onto and reading from compact discs. A CD-RW drive has three actions -- recording, rewriting (erasing and recording over) and reading. When looking at the drive speeds, the first number ("12" in the above example) indicates the speed at which the CD drive will record data onto a CD-R compact disc. So, in the above example, the CD drive will record data at 12 times 150 KB/second. The second number ("2" in the above example) indicates the speed at which the CD drive will rewrite data onto a CD-RW compact disc.
So in the above example, the CD drive will rewrite data onto the compact disc at 2 times 150 KB/second. Typically, the second number, the rewrite speed, is lower than the first number, the write speed, because rewriting is a slower process than writing. The last number ("24" in the above example) indicates the speed at which the drive will read data from a compact disc. So in the above example, the CD drive will read data from a compact disc at 24 times 150 KB/second.
CD-R compact discs are discs that can be recorded on only once. Once the data has been burned, it is permanent and cannot be erased. CD-RW compact discs are discs that can be recorded, erased and re-recorded over. Most audio CD players, especially older models, can only read CD-R discs, so it is best to record music onto CD-Rs. CD-RWs are typically used to store data or used as back up files.
This article was originally published on June 24, 2010
Stay up to date on the latest developments in Internet terminology with a free newsletter from Webopedia. Join to subscribe now.
From A3 to ZZZ we list 1,559 text message and online chat abbreviations to help you translate and understand today's texting lingo. Includes Top... Read More »Huge List of Computer Certifications
Have you heard about a computer certification program but can't figure out if it's right for you? Use this handy list to help you decide. Read More »
Computer architecture provides an introduction to system design basics for most computer science students. Read More »Network Fundamentals Study Guide
Networking fundamentals teaches the building blocks of modern network design. Learn different types of networks, concepts, architecture and... Read More »The Five Generations of Computers
Learn about each of the five generations of computers and major technology developments that have led to the computing devices that we use... Read More »