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4KUS DRW-3S167 Review

Date: 2005-8-3

   4KUS DRW-3S167After a successful four-way merger that comprised of GVC Corp, LITE-ON Technology Corp., LITE-ON Electronics Inc., and Silitek Corp in late 2002, LITE-ON Technology (the resulting...

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4KUS DRW-3S167

After a successful four-way merger that comprised of GVC Corp, LITE-ON Technology Corp., LITE-ON Electronics Inc., and Silitek Corp in late 2002, LITE-ON Technology (the resulting name from the merger) is currently the largest manufacturer of optical disc drives in Taiwan with an estimated monthly output volume of 700,000 ?800,000 units. Apart from selling drives under its own LITE-ON brand, the majority of optical disc drives (ODD) produced are mostly shipped out to its long running list of ODM/OEM clients, some of which include big names like Gigabyte, Imation, Sony, TDK, and more recently, Fujitsu Siemens Computers.

Given that the bulk of the company's annual revenue is from ODM/OEM orders, it's not hard to comprehend that drives bearing the LITE-ON badge would, in effect, be biting the same hands that are feeding the third biggest global manufacturer of optical disc drives. Unsurprisingly, something would have to be done to ease off the mounting pressure from its clients. So in a move that's generally practiced though not always publicized by companies catering to huge ODM/OEM orders, a new company was spin-off and it goes by the name of 4KUS.

4KUS DRW-3S167 Review
4KUS DRW-3S167 16x16x Internal DVD writer.

Wholly owned and operated by LITE-ON, the whole business strategy behind the conception of 4KUS is to have a brand that specifically targets the value segment ODD market. This would basically see less competition from LITE-ON themselves who cater to the middle and top tier ODD segments, which are being pursued by nearly all of its ODM/OEM clients. In the greater interest of its clients, products sold under the newfound 4KUS brand are positioned in a lower price rung and are set to be more affordable than drives sold under its more reputable and illustrious parent "LITE-ON" brand. In the process of nurturing 4KUS, the Taiwanese ODD giant was able to avert the damaging phase of downplaying its parent brand for not just its own name, but also its clients as well.

However, if we were to look beyond the facial value of brands and look at the situation from a product standpoint, 4KUS optical disc drives are basically just marked down versions of LITE-ON drives that are packaged and distributed differently. What we have here today is the 4KUS DRW-3S167 16x16x Internal DVD writer, the repackaged version of the LITE-ON SHOW-1673S, and with this drive, we'll soon learn how similar or different the 4KUS drive is under real world usage.

4KUS DRW-3S167 Technical Specifications
  • DVD-ROM Read: 16x, Max
  • CD-ROM Read: 48x, Max
  • DVD+R Write: 16x
  • DVD+RW Write: 8x
  • DVD+R DL Write: 4x
  • DVD-R Write: 16x
  • DVD-RW: 6x
  • CD-R Write: 48x
  • CD-RW Write: 24x
Supported IDE mode
  • PIO mode 0/1/2/3/4
  • DMA mode 0/1/2
  • UDMA mode 0/1/2
Buffer Size
  • 2MB
Writing Mode DVD
  • Disc-At-Once, Incremental Recording, Restricted Overwriting, Sequential Recording and Random Recording
  • Track-at-Once
  • Disc-at-Once
  • Multisession
  • Packet Recording (fixed & variable packet)
Disc Size
  • DVD: 120 mm
  • CD: 80 and 120 mm
Supported Formats DVD
  • DVD+R DL 8.5GB
  • DVD+R 4.7GB
  • DVD+RW 4.7GB
  • DVD-R 4.7GB (closed session)
  • DVD-RW 4.7GB (closed session)
  • DVD-Video
  • DVD-5
  • DVD-9
  • DVD-10
  • DVD-18
  • CD-DA
  • CD-ROM XA (m1, m2f1/m2f2)
  • CD-R
  • CD-RW
  • Bootable CD
  • Karaoke-CD
  • Photo CD (single & multi-session)
  • Video CD
  • CD-Extra
  • Mixed-mode CD
  • CD-Text
  • CD-Graphics
Physical Characteristics
  • Dimensions (W x H x D) : 145 x 41.3x 170 mm
  • Weight: 0.9kg (approx)
Firmware Update
  • Flash memory upgradeable

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