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Definition: DVD drives

Most optical drives today are combo CD/DVD drives that support all the DVD and CD formats. The speeds of the drives are rated by their DVD-ROM and CD-ROM transfer rates. The original DVD drive (1x) transferred data at 1.39MB per second, sufficient for movies. By doubling the spindle RPMs, the data transfer rate increased to 2.77MB/sec (2x) and so on.

Nine Times the CD-ROM Rating
Each DVD X is equivalent to roughly nine X's of CD speed because a DVD 1x is 1.39MB and a CD-ROM 1x is 150KB. See DVD player and CD-ROM drives.

               DVD-ROM Data
    DVD-ROM    Transfer Rate
    X Rating   (MBytes/sec)

       1x       1.39
       2x       2.77
       2.4x     3.32
       4x       5.54
       6x       8.31
       8x      11.08
      10x      13.85
      12x      16.62
      16x      22.16
      18x      24.93
      20x      27.70
      22x      30.47
      24x      33.24

A Lot of X's
This is the label from a Memorex combo CD/DVD drive. Each "X" number means X times 1.39MB for DVDs and X times 150KB for CDs.