1. Introduction / Retail Package
2. Drive Information
3. Used Software
4. Explain Test Method
5. CD Reading Tests
6. CD Defect Disc Tests
7. DVD Reading Tests
8. DVD Defect Disc Tests
9. Blu-Ray Reading Tests
10. CD Writing Tests
11. DVD-R Writing Tests
12. DVD+R Writing Tests
13. Blu-Ray Writing Tests
14. PureRead 4+ - Page 1
15. PureRead 4+ - Page 2
Pioneer when announced their latest lineup of Blu-Ray recorders also introduced several external USB-connected Blu-Ray Recorders. The external X13 series recorder lineup follows the exact path as with the internal drives and users can find two external recorders.
External BD/DVD/CD Writer
The following table illustrates the main differences between the BDR-X13U-S and BDR-X13UBK, as we can see there is no premium external USB drive like what happened with the Pioneer internal BDR-S13U-X.
The two drives are capable of reading and writing BD and BDXL standard discs and archival optical media M-DISC. Apart from the 16x writing speed for BD-R (with specific media), the new products support 6x writing speed to M-DISC (BD) Single Layer 25 GB and M-DISC (DVD), achieving higher writing speeds and improved writing quality.
In addition, BDR-X13U/J-S and BDR-X13UBK are equipped with features for enjoying music on a PC, such as PureRead 4+, which faithfully reads audio CD data, and RealTime PureRead, which reduces the frequency of data interpolation in real time, while BDR-X13UBK is equipped with PureRead 3+. As you can understand both of those drives are based at their internal partners (BDR-X13US-S is actual the BDR-S13UBK, while the BDR-X13UBK is actually the BDR-2213).
The BDR-X13U-S has a better and more appealing front bezel and tray cover, with a simpler design of smoked acrylic with a hairline finish from which blue light seems to emerge with floating blue light and line accents creates a high-quality feel. The BDR-X13UBK has a simple, flat design that uses blue LED lighting and a hairline finish to create a contrasting texture. Other features include a new Custom Eco function that reduces power consumption for both drives.
Today we will test the BDR-X13U-S (USA Market) that also can be found as BDR-X13J-S (Japanese market) model. Most of the drive's features can be found at the official website and we will list the most important of them below.
The BDR-X13U-S is a high-performance external model offering excellent reliability and stability. Ideal for recording and playback of audio & video content. BDR-X13U-S is read and write compatible with BDXL² discs including BD-R Triple Layer (TL) 100GB media, BD-R Quadruple Layer (QL) 128GB media, and BD-RE Triple Layer (TL) 100GB media, as well as conventional Blu-ray discs (Single Layer (SL) 25GB media and Dual Layer (DL) 50GB media). Up to 16x1 maximum write speed on BD-R media, up to 14x maximum write speed on BD-R DL media, up to 8x maximum write speed on BD-R TL media and up to 6x maximum write speed on BD-R QL media.
This product is equipped with features for enjoying music on a PC, such as the latest and most powerful version, PureRead 4+. PureRead 4+ is a function that minimizes the occurrence of error data interpolation when importing (ripping) audio CDs. BDR-X13U-S also has performance features such as Custom Eco function using Pioneer BDR-X13U-S Drive Utility. Custom Eco helps reduce the device's power consumption. Pioneer's excellence in optical disc technology delivers quiet operation, high reliability and superior quality. As to software, CyberLink Media Suite 10 for Windows OS is available for download free of charge . PowerDirector 19 allows you to import, edit and author your home movies.
Some special features, compared with the internal drives are listed below
Displaying PureRead mode
With the device not operating, press and hold the eject button for at least two seconds. The busy indicator flashes, and the current PureRead mode setting is displayed. You can check the mode in advance without launching the Drive Utility on your PC.
Can be placed vertically on either side, and features ridged construction that offers high performance and a pleasing design
Comes with four insulators for use in a horizontal configuration and eight for use in a vertical configuration. In addition to the horizontal configuration, the drive can be placed vertically, allowing you to use it in a configuration that suits the layout of your workspace. With a simple matte body, the product features distinctive metallic lines and a blue light that stands out for an elegant front appearance. Grooves on the sides contribute to the attractive design and improve rigidity.
AUTO power supply* function links with PC power to provide power savings
The drive power is turned on and off according to the power supply of the connected PC, keeping unnecessary power consumption down. *Drive power is turned off when the USB is not connected or when the drive detects that the connected PC is off.
Custom Eco function reduces the drive’s power consumption
If the drive does not receive any commands (instructions for operation) from the PC for a specified period, this function will reduce the drive’s power consumption, such as by stopping the disc from rotating or reducing the disc rotation speed. Shortening this specified period will make the drive enter the power saving mode earlier.
High-performance sound dampening, dust resisting, and heat dissipating mechanisms
Τhe BDR-X13U-S is built with Pioneer’s own honeycomb pattern used in audio component products and the silence tray. Noise is reduced by controlling the air currents created by the spinning disc. This also controls local temperature increases in the pick-up and disc surface that occur during high-speed or extended disc rotation.
Furthermore, the position of the dust-resisting and sound-dampening pad has been adjusted to boost the air-tightness of the dedicated front bezel and help create a quiet product. Pioneer’s multifaceted noise-reduction design makes quiet and durable operation possible.
- Retail Package
The BDR-X13U/J-S (U for USA market, J for Japan) is expected to cost around $230 according to the official press release. Retail price may be lower by the time it hits the retail market. The drive has only one color (black). The retail box includes all the needed logos and information for users. We got a sample review unit, retail package may include further stickers at the box.
Inside you will find
- External Drive
- Owner’s manual (including application product key and warranty information)
- USB cable (USB Type-A → USB Type-B) (1 m (3 ft. 3 in.))
- AC adapter (1.2 m (3 ft. 11 in.))
- Power cord (0.5 m (1 ft. 8 in.))
- Insulators for horizontal placement × 4
- Insulators for vertical placement × 8
The included adapter uses 100/240V and outputs 12.0V with 3.0A to power up the drive.
The drive has USB3.2 connection interface and has 160 mm(W)×50 mm(H)×220 mm(D) dimensions with almost 1.1kg of weight. Τhe drive is made out of nice feeling plastic ABS and at the sides you can find air vents for the internal cooling of the Blu-Ray recorder. At the top, users will find the Pioneer Logo.
At the front you will find only the forced ejection hole, a power indicator (When power off Off When power on On When reading Flashing When writing Flashing When tray opening/closing On) and the eject button.
At the back, you will find the power jack input among with the USB 3.2 Gen1/2.0 connection interface and label ID.
Users can check the below quick links for downloading several important information/software for the drive.
- Supported Media List
- CyberLink Software
- Firmware Updates
- Drive Utility
- High-Speed Filter Driver
- To test that your system is ready to play UHD BD content - CyberLink UHD BD Advisor Tool
In our case we installed the High-Speed Filter Driver (windows only)
while, the Pioneer BDDriveUtility is offered for free
With this utility you can set various performance features enabled/disabled according to your likings.
16X BD-R writing should be enabled here in order to reach it (with specific media)
At the Setting2 tab, users can find the PureRead4+ features and the Quiet Drive features
At the status tab, users will find information about possible errors and disc information
while at the Utility Tab, you can set the "ECO" build-in function of the external drive.
Lastly, the CD Check function doesn't work with this drive and its disabled.