Best Drives for CD Riping with EAC

I am not sure if this is the right subforum for my post. If it is not, let me know where I should post it. Anyway:

I have been reading a lot trying to find out recommended optical drives for EAC, but I am amazed that no such information seems to exist. Why not put together the collective wisdom and come up with a list of drives that would be ideal for EAC?

Here are some questions to start with:

  1. Is this the best forum for this type of information? If not, let me know which forum I should try.

  2. What are the best sources for drive reviews? Here are the ones I know:

d.DAE Drive Features
. The data is unfortunately old here, it seems.

  1. When specifying a good drive, here are some aspects that we need to discuss:
    I. C1/C2 error correction: Sometimes EAC seems to recommend disabling this feature, so their importance is questionable.

II. Caching: For ripping this seems to be a bad thing, yet almost all drives have this feature. So the question is how bad is this and are there drives that allow its disabling.

III. Accurate Stream: I don’t know anything about this and even how to find out if a drive has it. But perhaps it is obvious that this is a very important feature. A “must.”

IV. Overread: Again, I don’t know much except that source “d” listed above says that “Lead Out” is superior to “Lead In.” I don’t know if this affects only the burning.

V. Ability to read scratched CDs: this is a very important feature as sometimes the smallest scratch can render a drive useless.

VI. Ability to handle read errors: my drive is never able to get over read errors and I always end up canceling the extraction.

VII. The speed of secure ripping: this is not as important for the eventual result, but it is desirable.

VIII. Please refer to the first post in this thread. It has some additional great points.[/b]

I have been using EAC for years now. My drive has been BenQ 1655 (no error correction), and I am not too happy about it. It seems that the smallest scratches on media render it useless, especially on DVDs. Ripping is a very tough job with this drive. When it encounters a Read Error where the red dots begin filling in, it ALWAYS goes to Sync Error, and IT NEVER ACTUALLY IS ABLE TO FINISH THE READ (one time it took it over 10 hours to make a two second progress). That is very vexing. Every time I see a read error, I automatically cancel the extraction because I know that this damn drive can’t handle it. I have found out that LiteOn does a MUCH better job ripping the DVDs - this was accidental - and now I am wondering whether all those CDs that I was unable to rip I could have ripped using the LiteOn. I also read a post that said LiteOn and Asus take just a few seconds to correct read errors and fill up all those red correction dots in EAC. The drawback is that when I read the review at CDRinfo, it said that while LiteOn is pretty good with DVDs, the CD ripping is not as good. This made me cross off LiteOn as a good CD ripper. People usually keep talking about Plextor, but I am NOT going to use Plextools, so it is irrelevant. I have heard some good things about ASUS, but I am not familiar with that brand at all, except in motherboards, so I am not sure about their quality as a drive.

Hi. I’m going to tell you all the points that you have mentioned, with the drives that I have, and the conclusions that I got.

I. All my drives support C2, with the exception of BenQ 1620 and Pioneer 112.

II. The drives that don’t cache are the BenQ 1620, LG H62N, Samsung W162D and Optiarc 7200S. LG 4160B cache 37Kb, but it’s not important since EAC requests 64Kb.

III. All my drives support this feature.

IV. Only Plextor 760 will overread.

V. Most of my drives can read scratched discs with no problems. Best are the Lite-On’s.

VI. Again the Lite-On’s. I will also add the BenQ 1620, Samsung W162D (Pressed CDs) and the LG 4160B (CD-Rs). Worst are the LG H62N and Optiarc 7200S, they have poor error handling.

VII. Hmm, faster ripper, I don’t know but LiteOns can be very slow if your disc has a lot of errors.

PS: My english is not the best but hopefully you can understand it.

Well, after some thinking and reading, I must say that ASUS DRW-2014L1T appears to beat LiteOn LH20A1S. First, both of these drives support C2 error correction and have no caching - which is excellent for EAC. LiteOn seems to be great for reading DVDs that have errors, but so is ASUS. However, tests show that ASUS has a far superior CD error reading. Refer to these links:


And this is the link that shows ASUS does not do audio caching and supports C2 error correction, just like the LiteOn.

Finally, on, ASUS has received the highest customer satisfaction awards out of all drives there: NEWEGG. ASUS costs $35, vs $26 for the LiteOn, but I think it is definitely worth it and I am going with it.

Plextor seems to be the other contender, but there are so many mixed reviews and opinions, including Plextools vs EAC, plus very high prices - almost $200 for Premier 2 - and some opinions that some Plextors are just rebadged Pioneers, that I am not going to read into Plextor anymore. It’s just market hype, unless you shell out the $200 and get feature like gigarec, whatever that’s supposed to do.

So I am going with the ASUS DRW-2014L1T. Any additional comments are welcome.

The only Drives I’ve used for Ripping with EAC are:

1)NEC ND-3530A, DVD+/-RW DL this is my current primary drive.
It’s fast… it’s VERY fast… I let it pick it’s own speed and it just
chews through the job.

2)Panasonic SR-8586 DVD (read only), NOT +R compatible that I can determine and I haven’t tested it with RW discs at all
EAC thinks this is the “Better” drive in my computer, but I don’t agree, it’s slower than the NEC and “hangs” on tiny glitches
making it even slower.

And EVERY attempt at a rip results in a wave form disagreement between this drive and the fdb waveform on either track#2 or Track #3

3)LG-8080B CD-RW drive accurate and forgiving but kinda slow.

Not sure how useful this information is


I. C1/C2 error correction: Sometimes EAC seems to recommend disabling this feature, so their importance is questionable.

II. Caching: For ripping this seems to be a bad thing, yet almost all drives have this feature. So the question is how bad is this and are there drives that allow its disabling.

As far as I understand it (and I could be wrong):

I. EAC recommends disabling this feature because many drives will report that they do C2 error correction when in fact they really don’t, or at least do not to the extent that they can handle all types of C2 errors. So unless you know for 100% sure that your drive can handle all types of C2 errors it is better to just turn this off in EAC so that EAC doesn’t rely on the drive regardless of whether the drives says it can report on C2 errors or not. I think that having a drive that reports on C2 errors correctly will let EAC rely more on the drive doing its thing to handle some issues in the drive instead of being checked with EAC, so from that standpoint getting a drive that does good C2 helps EAC extract faster since the program doesn’t have to do as much work (?).

II. The reason caching audio data is considered “bad” for EAC is because EAC reads data off the CD then goes back and reads the same data again from the drive (several times) and compares what it read previously with what it just reads, and if the samples match then it assumes all is OK and it goes on to read some more and so on and so forth until all is completed. But if the read data is cached that means that when EAC goes back to the drive to reread the data for comparison sake instead of it actually rereading anything off the drive it will be simply reading the exact data AGAIN from the drive cache in memory, thus defeating EAC’s error checking design, since it is simply checking against something it ALREADY read instead of reading it off the drive again. Afaik if your drive caches audio data you can’t “disable” that in the drive, but by selecting the switch in EAC for “drive caches audio data” you compensate for that by telling EAC that the audio is cached, so then EAC flushes the cache each time so that it reads from the CD instead of the cache, insuring that what it is doing is comparing fresh reads from the disc. Again as I understand it this will be a little bit of a speed boost for EAC if your drive does not cache audio because EAC then won’t have to flush the cache every time.

The reason so many drives have audio caching is because in general that IS a good thing performance-wise; but for EAC it is a BAD thing, since EAC wants to go back reading the same sectors on the drive itself, not from a memory cache.

Hope this makes sense. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong in my understanding of the above.

So I am going with the ASUS DRW-2014L1T. Any additional comments are welcome.[/QUOTE]

Good luck with that, please let us know how it is working out.

In my experience I’ve never found a combo drive that works well enough, and fast enough, with EAC to suit me (getting no more than around 2-3x read speed), so I keep a seperate CDROM (or CD Burner) drive in my PCs to use exclusively with EAC for audio ripping and leave any DVD reading/writing to a seperate DVD burner.

In this PC (a Pentium 4) I am using a Lite-on 52327s & get about 8-9x extraction speed with EAC. In my old Pentium II with SCSI I get about 12-14x with my ultraplex 40 max.

If anyone knows of any DVD burners that can get anywhere near 8-10x extraction speed with EAC please let me know!

Well, it’s been a while! I am in the market for another ripper and my thread is one of the first links that comes up in Google. Anyway, my ASUS has been working GREAT. It has error correction and no caching. I have had no issues with it and been able to make accurate rips. Playback is VERY quiet. Ripping not so much, but much quieter than my BenQ. At this point my BenQ is dying - has become too loud, too slow, and the tray sticks.

So, are there any new recommendations for a great CD ripper? Since ASUS has been so great, I am thinking of getting another one:


It has the best reviews on Newegg - 5 stars at almost 600 ratings! Has won an award. I just need to confirm that it does not cache and can handle C2/C1 Error correction. Any input would be appreciated.