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(Nikkei BP Group)

(No.1 High-Tech News Site in Japanese)

News from NET and COM '99

  • Kenwood to Launch Sales of 52x CD-ROM Drive
  • February 10, 1999 (TOKYO) — Kenwood Corp. said it will soon start selling its new UCR-412 CD-ROM drive, which reads data at an average of 50x (7,500KB/s) and a maximum of 52x (7,800KB/s).
    The new product was jointly developed by Kenwood and ZEN Research Inc., a company based in Israel.

    The new drive employs the same TrueX multi-beam playback technology used in the UCR004010 40x drive that was unveiled in the spring of last year, except that the data transfer rate has been increased.

    A single laser beam is split up into seven separate parallel beams by means of a diffraction grating. Each of the seven beams then is used to read data from a different recording track on the CD-ROM disk at the same time.

    Because the drive uses constant linear velocity (CLV) technology for disk-rotation control, almost the same data transfer rate can be maintained over the whole surface of the disk. By contrast, many currently available high-speed CD-ROM drives employ constant angular velocity (CAV) technology, with the drawback that the data transfer rate drops when data is read near the center of the disk.

    With the new drive, when data is read from the innermost tracks of the disk at 4,750 rpm. For reading data it is read from the outermost tracks, so the speed is kept down to 1,900 rpm. The drive also has low power consumption and very little vibration and noise.

    Disks are loaded into it via a tray. Its average seek time is 70ms and the size of its data cache is 2MB. The drive is linked to a host computer via an ATAPI-compatible enhanced IDE interface.

    The drive unit measures 148mm x 42.5mm x 201mm, and weighs around 900g.

    Shipments are scheduled to start in mid-February. The monthly production volume is likely to be around 20,000 units. For the time being, the drives will only be made available on an OEM basis to manufacturers of PCs and peripheral equipment.

    The price for samples of the product is 30,000 yen (US$260).

    (Nikkei Electronics)

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