The Ultimate How-To Guide For Copying PSX Games

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Advanced Techniques
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Advanced Burning Techniques

I can't tell you how many times I get asked the question "WHY do I have to burn at 1X or 2X?" ... so here's a little better definition, and some futher explination.  Hopefully it will help you make your decisions a little easier...

First off, know this: not all meida is created equal. In the short of it, better media can not only take a FASTER burn, but take ANY burn 'better' vs. other CD-R media. Media like Verbatim DLP, TDK, Sony, Kodak (just to name a few).  See my section on media for more information on all this.

This isn't to say, however, that you will never get a good burn from CompUSA media. It all depends on a combination of these three items:

1) Your burner
2) The media
3) Your PSX model

Now, as for speed: I tell most people to stay at 1X or 2X speed. However, that's not always the 'best' you can do. I say this because of the simple fact there are SO many burners out there that I can't tell people, "If you have X burner, you can burn at Y speed" - so by blanketing everyone with a "1X/2X" limit, it saves the invevitable, "Why can't *I*...."

Now, for those of you who've ether ended up with a better burner than the rest of the population, either by choice or luck, you can get away with 4X, 6X or even 8X burns (I don't know of anyone who's tried the new S&F 12X burner yet). Personally, I burn exclusevly at 4X. And I read at 32X, even on audio. But then again, I spent more money on my CD-ROM drive (Plextor 32X UltraPlex) than some people have spent on their CD-R. You get what you pay for... that's for sure. There are a few 'jewels' out there... one of them it the Ricoh MP7060. Might not be the toughest drive, but it'll sure suit anyone's needs with only $150 to spend. But if you go SCSI, you can do oh so much more. Let me give you an example...

I always tell everyone to diable all their event software, screensavers, ect... I don't follow my own advice. Why? Because of SCSI. Right now, I'm burning a disc at 4X, typing this message, I'm uploading 3 files at 15k/sec each, and downloading another 30k/sec. I've got Winamp open, playing a list of MP3's... I've got an FTP server and a WWW server (although the WWW server isn't doing anything)... I've got Excel, Word and Photoshop open. I'm running my virus software, and I've got a few TSR's monitoring system performance. I'm moving a few files from one drive to the next... and none of it phases my burn.

Granted, it's a nice machine it's all running off of, but that's the difference between IDE and SCSI.... no CPU overhead. So if you consider your computer more of just a 'burning station', you might well benifit from SCSI.

Your own personal results will vary. But know this in the world of CD-R: money spent well is money well spent. The more you pay for a CD-R(W), in general, the better dividends it'll pay off in the long run (discounting chain stores, local stores, USB and external parallel drives). <cough>

And finally, your PSX... the older it is, the more trouble it's going to have. GET A MOD CHIP IF YOU DON'T HAVE ONE. Well worth the $5-$10. 100x PSX's have trouble reading cheap media - follow directions above. 5xxx PSX's can have trouble reading cheap media... see directions above. 7xxx's PSX's generally will read anything but a CD written with a "4224" model drive <snicker>

I also highly recommend that everyone should have a separate 800-900MB partition on their harddrive just for images.  This not only helps keep buffer underruns from happening, it also negates the need to defrag your system all the time!  And if you've got a SCSI HD and a SCSI CD-R, you're never going across the system bus, and you're not using any CPU overhead to burn.  It's the best possible combination to date I've seen!
 

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