Hi-Val? Well, I was shopping for a CD-RW drive for myself, and since I wanted it quickly, I had no choice but to visit Comp USA. Browsing the product line, the only CD-RW drives under $300 were the Hi-Val ones. Being the cheap guy that I am, I purchased the 2x24x2 drive, since it was only $200 after a $70 rebate. How does this el-cheapo drive measure up? Find out...

Important Specs

2x CD-R write

2x CD-RW rewrite

24x CD read

2MB buffer

EIDE interface

Drag + Drop Data CDs, Record Audio from any input source, complete w/software

CD Copy (of course!)

Installation

Installing the Hi-Val 2x24x2 (IDE, more on this later) wasn't any more difficult than installing a regular CD drive. Ideally, even if you have another CD-ROM drive in your system, there shouldn't be any problems. Luckily, if you want to call it that, I didn't have any problems getting both of my CD-ROM drives working together. Whether or not you need your old CD-ROM drive and the CD-RW drive simultaneously depends mainly on whether or not you want to replicate CDs without wasting HD space for images or if you want to rip audio tracks to create a mix or whatever. The Hi-Val drive provides a more than adequate 24x read speed, so if you are using the CD-R(W) mainly for data copying, it isn't really necessary to keep the other CD ROM drive attached.

Buffer Size, EIDE vs SCSI, and why it matters

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