Pioneer DVR-212

Pioneer DVR-212
  • Pioneer DVR-212
  • Pioneer DVR-212
  • Pioneer DVR-212
  • Expert Rating

    4.75 / 5


  • It was a reliable and quick performer in our tests, it has a SATA connection


  • The fast burn speeds make it a fairly noisy drive

Bottom Line

This drive has been on the market for a couple of months now, and it's definitely worth considering if you're after a new and fast DVD burner. It was reliable in all our tests, and best of all, it has a neat SATA connection.

Would you buy this?

On the whole, Pioneer's 12th generation DVD burner is one of the best devices in its class. Capable of writing single-layer DVDs at a rate of 18x, and double-layer DVDs at a rate of 10x, it's a very quick burner, and our lengthy test period showed it to be a reliable one, too. It read many scratched discs without any qualms, which means you'll no longer have to use CDs or DVDs as a coaster.

Perhaps the best part about the DVR-212 is that it has Serial ATA (1.5Gbps) data and power connections. It's Pioneer's first SATA-based DVD burner and it means users can finally rid themselves of those bulky, flat IDE ribbon cables. While having it plugged in to the JMicron SATA controller on a Gigabyte GA-N680SLI motherboard, we didn't have any problems installing Windows XP and Windows Vista with this drive. The motherboard detected the SATA burner and proceeded to boot off it.

However, using this controller, and once Windows XP was installed, the drive ran in PIO mode, which ate up plenty of CPU cycles and made life difficult when reading and writing to discs. (It stayed in PIO mode when we connected to the motherboard's nForce 680i SLI controller, too.) We had to update the JMicron drivers in order for the drive to work in DMA transfer mode. The same problem wasn't present in Windows Vista.

As for its write performance, the DVR-212 can burn a 70min audio CD in just 3min 06sec (at 40x). Our 8x TDK DVD-R discs were written at a rate of 16x, and it took 6min 03sec to burn 4.1GB of data to these discs. Using single-layer Verbatim DVD-R discs rated at 16x, the drive was able to write to them at a rate of 18x, cutting the total writing time to 5min 18sec. Double-layer Verbatim DVD-R discs rated at 4x, were burnt at a rate of 8x, where 8GB of data was burnt in 18min 12sec.

The drive read back all of our burnt discs without any major problems. Our 4.1GB single-layer burns were transferred back to our 7200rpm hard drive in 6min 11sec. Using iTunes, the drive took a swift 3min 02sec to rip 70min worth of audio files to 192Kbps MP3s (we tested on a PC with a 3.2GHz Core 2 Duo CPU). It took 19min 07sec to read back 8GB of data from our double-layer DVD-R discs, which is almost spot-on considering the drive has a read rate of 8x for these types of discs. However, the transfer stuttered at the halfway mark during this particular test, which was probably caused by the layer change.

When the DVR-212 is in full flight, the air that's generated by the spinning CDs and DVDs creates a very audible whir; it's definitely not a quiet burner. In our mid-tower ATX case, the drive was stable - hardly any vibration could be detected when the drive spun at its maximum speed.

As this is an OEM drive, it doesn't ship in any packaging (just an anti-static bag), and it may not have any software with it, depending on where it's purchased from. Our purchased test drive came bundled with Nero 7 Essentials burning software, and this is what we used for our writing tests. While our drive has a black faceplate, beige drives are also available.

This drive has been on the market for a couple of months now (at the time of writing), and it's definitely worth considering if you're after a new and fast DVD burner.

Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?