As far as scanning properties go.. what do you compare it to? Lite-On's other drives? Plextor's PlexTools? A CATS scanner? Then too, which CATS do you go with? As well all know, scanners from different companies give different results.
Everyone has their own ideas on how to determine which drive is best for media and/or writing quality testing. This is not something I want to get into right now. For now, I'll leave that up to you guys.
Sorry I took so long in answering (been busy)- this is
an important question for me.
Ian- you're probably right to stay out of it until quality scanning devices become affordable.
On the other hand, you do
get to try a lot of drives and can gather information and experience that most of us can't. What I was thinking of was a simple comparison that could indicate the capabilities of various drives and uses a method available to normal users too:
Take 2 or 3 discs (say a good one, a marginal one and a bad one) and scan them for PI/PIF with every drive you test that is capable of reporting these error counts. Use whatever tool is supported (KProbe, CD-Speed, PlexTools or whatever) and show us the result.
Most of us do not have more than one burner (if any) that can report PI/PIF counts (I'll call this error scanning as opposed to data reading). So what we'll do is scan our discs and get a relative indication of the burning quality. I realize that there can be significant variation of the scanning capabilities even from drive to drive for the same model, but through a comparison with the same discs, you could get at least an estimate of what they report.
There is a lot of blind faith rampant in various forums regarding the absolute numbers reported in (mainly KProbe) scans that isn't justified (at least for DVD's). Showing the variation in scans could help to relevate that too.
Let me show an example with my drive, a LiteOn SOHW-1213S. I was worried about the burning quality (even @4x and 8x) because of the high PI-count it reported (although most of the discs worked fine). The following scans are for a disk burned with the 1213S fw TS09. First scan with fw TS09:
Here is a scan of the same disc
on the same drive
after cross-flashing to BS0C (1633S):
A transfer rate test with my (picky) LTD-163 DVD-Rom is impeccable (it reads DVD+R @16x !!):
My conclusion is that the scans performed as a 1633S are more representative of the readabilty on other drives. I've observed similar behaviour with most discs I've burned.
This is the kind of information that could be picked up from comparitive scans in your tests.