BDR-XD05 vs BDR-209EBK vs BDR-S09J-X


As some of you who have read my posts might know, I have been wanting to buy a burner that will give the optimal results during slow burning of audio CD-Rs. By slow I mean a maximum of 8x and preferably 4x. The reason for this is that some high quality dedicated CD players like Rega are extremely fussy not only about the blank media used for burning but also the quality of the burner and the burn speed. The Rega user manuals require a maximum of 8x however in my experience, even a 4x burn will yield an advantage over an 8x burn.

Although I currently have an Optiarc 5280S installed (which does do 8x), I was not impressed with the amount of physical vibration this unit produces - even at the 8x speed. Of course, the vibration is at it’s worst in the first 30% of the burn so that by the time the rotational speeds slows down, the vibration is OK. I suspect this might be a reason why these disks play back fine in my Rega player once I am about 20 minutes into them but all bets are off prior to that (unless I burn them at 4x).

I think I have narrowed my choices down to three candidates, all of which will perform a CD-R burn at 4x:

External USB 3.0 portable BDR-XD05
Internal SATA BDR-209EBK (available domestically here in Australia)
BDR-S09J-X (would have to buy from Japan and by far the most expensive).

The portable BDR-XD05 is actually going to be considerably more expensive than the BDR-209EBK because I will need to buy a PCI-E USB3 card (two ports), given I have absolutely no more free USB ports at all and this drive needs two of them. Jadburner (a member here) has posted some screen shots from a 4x CD-R burn and they look good.

The BDR-209EBK is the cheapest solution since I don’t need anything other than the drive itself. That said, after my Optiarc experience and my experience with internal DVD drives in the past, I am worried about the amount of vibration produced by an internal drive - something which I believe does effect the subsequent ability of cantankerous “audiophile” standalone CD players from reading the disks without glitches.

The Japan-only BDR-S09J looks very interesting as it seems to have features and construction that favour a high quality audio CD burn. Apart from supporting 4x burn speed like the others, it apparently has a more sophisticated anti-vibration mechanism, a tray designed to further reduce vibration and coatings inside the drive to reduce laser “scatter” (OK, you may not think that matters but I think it does). Put it this way, I would be happy to spend the big money on this thing from Japan if it really is as good as Pioneer claims.

So I am just wondering what are the ramifications (if any) of buying hardware sold to the Japanese domestic market but to be used here in Australia on my totally “English” PC. Is there anything I need to know? Will the drive just plug in and work like anything else?

Also, what is this “low resistance cable with Mekkineji connectors” Pioneer talk about with this drive? A Google search wasn’t really helpful. I would have to assume that whatever they are, the cable must be bundled with the drive and the cable will just plug into a standard internal SATA port without problems??

Lastly, if anyone has bought one of these drives have you done any CD-R burns with it and if so, how good (technically) were the results?


Buying an newish and expensive BD burner to perform CD-R burning at 4x?


It might be easier/more convenient to buy a newer drive that’s guaranteed to support what you want, eh?

That said, pragmatically, there’s no reason to get anything more expensive than the basic 209E. It supports 4x writing on CD-R for at least a few disc types (looking at scans on the forum). The fancy S** drives aren’t necessary unless you just want a pretty faceplate, slight tweaks to build quality, and (especially for the S09J-X you’re looking at) value-add software/features that may not necessarily lead to increased quality for you.

But if you have the money, S** drives are pretty, and the Japanese variants are rare outside of…well, Japan. And the S09J-X with its “Mekki Neji” connectors (which is probably nothing more than a switch in the screws used to assemble the drive, looking at some of the pictures available) and more premium materials (added material to increase rigidity and dampen vibration) might tickle your fancy.

The 209E and S09 are otherwise the same drive. They connect the same way (they’re both SATA drives), and shouldn’t be too different in basic use.

This isn’t a knock against the slim external drive at all.

Thanks Albert. Looking at Jadburner’s posts in the other thread over the last couple of days and it is clear both the internal drives are extremely good for slow burning of CD-Rs. Perhaps there is a very slight nod to the S09 model in terms of overall quality and consistency and given this model won’t break the bank I will probably go for it unless there are difficulties getting it from Japan.

The 209 is readily available locally for less than half the price however given how fanatical I have been in the pursuit of quality to this point I’m not going to quibble about an extra $130 odd.

The reality is that the X model might simply price itself out of contention. I’m not sure I want to buy from an un-known company in Japan something that might set me back almost $500 without having dealt with them before. They might not pack it well and I will then wish I just got the 209 locally.

It is a pity that the S09 series are not available outside of Japan but I guess the flavour of some of the posts on this forum suggests strongly that it wouldn’t be appreciated outside of that country anyway.

It is a pity that the S09 series are not available outside of Japan but I guess the flavour of some of the posts on this forum suggests strongly that it wouldn’t be appreciated outside of that country anyway.[/QUOTE]There are S09 variants available outside of Japan; it’s just that the Japanese (S09J) variant is supposed to be theeee most premium of the premium. I know the other models drop a few of the extra software features (not all, but some) depending on region, and support for BDXL is always confusing when discussing the other S09 models for me.

Thanks again Albert. After a lot of further thought I am favouring the S09J-X because my standards are extremely high and the “X” model appears to have no compromises and is an all-out effort to build as perfect a burner as it is possible to make. I like the extra features over the S09J model which in itself is an improvement over the 209 models (better build quality, better tray, better vibration control and the internal anti-reflective coating). And as you would have seen from my earlier posts, vibration control is incredibly important to me - it can mean the difference between a CD-R that plays flawlessly in everything and one that has glitches on playback even when they measure the same using measurement tools such as Nero, etc.

Since both the S09J and S09J-X are a lot more expensive than the average burner, I am not sure I’ll be quibbling over the extra $150 the “X” version costs a year down the track when I’ve burned 200 disks with it. Especially when those disks are the expensive Start Labs SPMPT ones specifically designed for audio mastering.

So the question remains about the best place to buy one from? I am a member of both Buyee and Global Rakuten so actually sourcing one is not a problem. However I really haven’t a clue as to whether there are better companies to deal with than others. The only product I have bought from Japan so far is a 10 pack of Start Labs CD-Rs (through Buyee) and although that arrived perfectly and there was nothing unexpected it was only a $50 purchase. Not a $500 one.

Although both of those companies can facilitate proxy communication between myself and the various vendors, the vendors tend not to answer emails sent by the companies. I’m thus left with a list of dozens of companies selling these things at varying prices and I haven’t a clue as to how reputable these companies are. And of course I want to be sure the unit comes in the full retail packaging and isn’t some OEM version.

So if anyone has bought a burner directly from Japan and you got exactly what you wanted in perfect condition, who did you buy from?


This doesn’t directly answer your question, but if no one else responds and you feel wary of using your preferred site, at least one store sells them by way of …I believe Amazon, at the very least, offers reliable shipping. But I have not done cost conversions, so I do not know how viable that aspect is.

BDR-S09J-X (would have to buy from Japan and by far the most expensive).

Did you ever buy and try this drive?


[QUOTE=Halcyon;2771499]Did you ever buy and try this drive?


Yes I did! And I love them so much I ended up buying three of them! Best drives I have ever bought. Wonderfully slick for burning data to Blu-ray data disks and they create superb CD-Rs too with extremely low error rates. Build quality is excellent and personally I think they are worth every cent if quality matters.