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ASUS DRW-1612BL Lightscribe Drive

We take a close look at ASUS’ DRW-1612BL LightScribe drive in this review. How does it perform, and is LightScribe worth the extra cost and time?


The ASUS DRW-1612BL is ASUS’ latest internal DVD writer. It supports DVD±R writing of up to 16x, DVD-RW writing up to 6x, DVD+RW and DVD+R (DL) writing up to 8x, and lastly even DVD-RAM writing up to 12x. (Whew!) It also comes with support for LightScribe, a disc labelling technology that claims to solve your disc labelling woes.

The DRW-1612BL also features several ASUS-branded technologies, namely QuieTrack, FlextraLink and Flextraspeed.

We will test the DVD read and write performance of the DRW-1612BL, and take a deeper look into LightScribe. But first, the specifications according to the ASUS website.

Specifications (as according to manufacturer)

Write Speed
DVD-R: 16X, 12X, 8X, 6X, 4X, 2X, 1X
DVD-RW: 6X, 4X, 2X, 1X
DVD+R: 16X, 12X, 8X, 6X, 4X, 2.4X
DVD+RW: 8X, 6X, 4X, 2.4X
DVD+R(DL): 8X,6X, 4X, 2,4X
DVD-R (DL): 8X,6X, 4X, 2X
CD-R: 48X,40X, 32X, 16X, 10X, 4X
CD-RW: 32X,24X, 20X, 16X, 10X, 4X DVD-RAM: 12X
Read Speed
DVD-ROM (Single): 16X max. (CAV)
DVD-ROM (Dual): 8X max. (CAV)
CD-ROM: 48X max. (CAV)
DVD+R (DL): 8X
CD-RW: 40X
Access time
DVD: 140 ms
CD: 150 ms
Writing Mode
DVD-R & DVD-R (DL): DAO, Incremental Recording (Multi-Border Recording)
DVD-RW: Restricted Overwriting, DAO, Incremental Recording (Multi-Border Recording)
DVD+R & DVD+R (DL): Sequential Recording (Multi-Session Recording)
DVD+RW: Random Recording CD-R/RW: DAO, TAO, SAO, Packet Recording (Multi-Session Recording)
O/S Compatibility
Windows XP / NT / ME / 2000 / 98SE
Enhanced-IDE (ATAPI)
Data Buffer
2 MB
Bundle Software
Latest Burning Software
Disc Formats
Write: DVD+/-R, DVD+/-RW, CD-R, CD-RW
Read: DVD-ROM, DVD±R/RW, Photo CD, Video CD, CD-DA, CD-Extra, CD-Text, CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-RAM
Disc Diameters
12 cm and 8 cm
100,000 Power On Hours
Operating Duty Cycle (Read) 20% POH
Operating Duty Cycle (Write) 2% POH
30 Minutes
Mounting Orientation
Vertical and Horizontal ( +5° ~ -5° )
Dimension (W x H x D)
148.5 x 42.6 x 173 mm
800 g
Power Requirements
DC +5V ± 5%, DC +12V ± 10%
Operating: 5℃ to 45℃
Storage: -20℃ to 60℃
Operating: 5% ~ 85% (Non-condensing)
Storage: 5% ~ 90% (Non-condensing)
Operating: 0.2 G peak (at 10~500 Hz)
Storage: 1.5 G peak (at 10~500 Hz)

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