EAC Drive Options
From Hydrogenaudio Knowledgebase
The EAC Drive Options dialog (shortcut: F10) offers several options for configuring how EAC reads and writes audio data from the currently selected drive.
Used EAC version: V0.99 prebeta 5
 Extraction Method
Drive Setup (done once):
Select: Secure mode with the following drive features (recommended)
You will need to detect & apply drive features when using secure mode. Even if you chose to use the configuration wizard, it's a good idea to repeat the test a couple of times in order to be sure that the results are consistent (see link). Beware that these features are unique to every drive.
 Drive Features
- Accurate Stream/Drive has 'Accurate Stream' feature
- Drives without this feature are not capable of addressing audio data down to the exact sample in a consistent way. In order to compensate for this problem, EAC will perform additional synchronization.
- If EAC reports "Accurate Stream : Yes", it is safe to check the "Drive has 'Accurate Stream' feature" box. This will tell EAC not to perform additional synchronization and provide an increase in speed.
- Caching/Drive caches audio data
- In order for secure mode to work properly, every read request made by EAC must cause the drive to seek data from the CD. If your drive caches audio, subsequent requests for the same data may result in the drive fetching it only from its buffer, rather than from the physical disc. To prevent this from happening, EAC has a routine to ensure previously requested data gets flushed from drive's cache. This is done by having the drive read extra data from the disc; more data than the cache can store.
- If EAC reports "Caching : Yes", it is important that you enable the cache flushing routine by checking the "Drive caches audio data" box.
- If EAC reports "Caching : No", it is not necessary to enable the flushing routine. Checking the "Drive caches audio data" box with drives that are reported by EAC as not caching will not improve EAC's accuracy. It won't improve EAC's ability to detect errors nor EAC's ability to correct them. What it will do however, is reduce your ripping speed and shorten the life of your drive.
- Tip #1: If you're concerned that your drive caches audio data even though EAC is saying otherwise, try ripping a scratched disc (one known to produce errors easily). Make sure you uncheck the "Drive caches audio data" setting AND uncheck the "Drive is capable of retrieving C2 error information" setting. Make sure you also set the error recovery quality to "Low". If EAC is capable of displaying a read error then cache flushing isn't necessary.
- Tip #2: Tip #1 is all you need to know, but if you're still paranoid that your drive caches audio, feel free to try Feurio's audio caching test (Ctrl+Alt+P\Test device\Cache test) or spath's cache explorer. If either determine that your drive doesn't cache or caches less than 64 KB of data, then cache flushing isn't necessary (ignore the reported buffer size when using cache explorer). The reason for the 64 KB barrier is that EAC will never request less than this amount while ripping (link).
- C2 Error Info/Drive is capable of retrieving C2 error information
- This setting was designed to speed up the ripping process by relying on the drive to report all uncorrectable errors instead of reading everything twice and comparing the result. Unfortunately not all drives adhere to the same standard as to how this should be done. As a result, errors can go undetected. EAC actually has two tests for this feature. The "Detect Read Features..." test only checks if the drive says it can provide C2 error information. The "Examine C2 Feature..." test determines whether the drive can actually report an uncorrectable error. Neither test can be used to determine whether the setting can be used reliably.
- You may be able to determine if your drive's C2 reporting is reliable in EAC by using DAE Quality. This involves creating a special CD and testing it.
- Unless you know that you can use this setting reliably, disable it. If you choose to enable it, make sure you also rely on either Test & Copy or AccurateRip.
EAC works well with almost any decent drive available in the market to give you near-perfect results; provided EAC is configured properly as per instructions given above. However, it is always recommended to read some drive reviews at sites like CDRInfo.com or CDFreaks.com and choose a drive with good Digital Audio Extraction (DAE) capabilities.
 Gap Detection