3520 CD-R burn speeds and strats



Long time lurker, first post.

Brand new 3520a running the 1.24 FW from TDB (rpc1 and removed riplock). It refuses (under Nero, anyway) to write Fuji branded TY CD-Rs at anything above 32x, despite the fact that the media is rated for 48x and I’ve got two lite-on drives (one 52x burner, model not available, and a stock 832) that will happily write it at it’s rated speed.

I’m assuming this is a function of the write strats that NEC has in the FW… Any way to correct this? New FW? Hex editor? Sacrafice of a sheep to the east next Thursday? I intend to use this burner for “casual use” to burn DVD-R and CD-R, and would really like to be able to burn CD-Rs (particularly quality media) at the rated speed.

Great site, great forum, BTW.


if you look here: http://www.micheldeboer.nl/firmware/

There are four different versions of the 1.04 firmware, and the 4th revision has a newer CD-R component. I do not know if it will fix your problem, but you might check it out.


Before flashing with any of these firmwares, what speed did you get on those CDRs using the stock firmware? If it were faster with the stock firmware, I say there’s an issue.


32x Max for Yuden CDRs has also been a limit in 3500 firmwares… so I guess no firmware upgrade will burn them any faster.


Only got 32x from the stock firmware.

Two questions (in light of this):

  1. What media should I be looking at for 40x (or faster) burns? TY has always given me the best burns in most burners (as measured by CD-Speed and/or Kprobe).

  2. Is this, like write strats, something that might potentially be altered in future firmware (either from NEC or elsewhere)?

Thanks for the help.


Yes it can be altered… but I don’t understand why you want 48x so much… it’s better to burn at 32x and the time difference is small. My god I used to burn CDs at 4x and never compained.



The eternal “Need For Speed” question - AND the misunderstanding that if it says 48x on the box that all will burn at 48x-

Remember - the speed is set by the firmware - not the media manufacturer-

Like I use TDK (Ritek) 48x CD-R’s and it burns at 48x on my 3500’s - but I back them off to 32x to insure good burns - oh well-



I’ve done testing on my TDK VeloCD/Lite-On 48x CDRW drive and it actually does better burns at 48x than 32x or any other speed. It burns even worse at slow speeds like 4x or 8x. Counterintuitive, but true for me.

48x is 50% greater than 32x. That is by itself, even if ignoring the ignorance of the reply, quite large I think to most enthusiasts. That probably cuts about a minute and a half off of burn time, which is significant to many people, especially those doing multiple burns. I don’t see people buying 32x drives over 48x ones because they are “better”. But I have seen and myself paid extra money to get a 48x over a 32x. And I say this myself having a 4x SCSI CDRW Yamaha burner in my machine right now as I type, and I never complained about it. My VeloCD only burns a 50-stack of crap CD-RW’s I have at 10x vs the rated 12x on the final firmware, and let me tell you that is one thing which really has bugged me.

And suggesting that people ‘put up or shut up’, instead of asking questions about a hardware/media setup which is not working as advertised, is an inappropriate forum post in my opinion. I think the worst kind of forum posts are the ones which question why a person asked a question or has a problem with something not working properly. This is a discussion group. The only time I would tell someone not to post is if they are suggesting to someone not to post (aside from other expressed animosity). People asking questions is the lifeblood of any forum. The original poster is not even tweaking; he’s just trying to get it to work properly, which it isn’t right now, despite matching media & burner specifications, on a newly-released drive & firmware which is being sussed out in these very forums by exactly this sort of question.

So you’re wrong declaring some kind of universal superiority of 32x over 48x, and also wrong to seemingly insinuate that the poster is “complaining” instead of using this forum exactly as it is supposed to be used. I am personally seriously considering this drive and follow such posts with interest. I for one am concerned about surprises if I buy this drive, and hope that these issues are resolved before I do. People like the original poster move everything in the right direction.


I’ve got some HP media here rated at 48x, but nero only wants to burn it at 32x also. Doesn’t really affect me, but it’s the reading speed that’s ticking me off. Took 8 mins for nero to create an image of a full cd and around 2 mins to burn. Are you guys experiencing slow reads on your 3520a also?

Edit: Using beta 2 of L&D’s 1.24 firmware btw.


Just for grins, I tried reading two discs into .nrg images, one a pressed disc running around 700mb, the other a burn disc at 700mb (TY, burned at 40x on a liteon with a C1 average so low as to be silly). Created an image with both in roughly 2min 30sec. Read speed does not seem to be a problem according to CD-speed, either. Clearly, YMMV.

To briefly address some earlier posts, I also find that a faster burn can produce better burns, and that quality burns are drive and media and speed related (I don’t think this comes as a shock to most readers of this forum :smiley: ).

Unless and until I can drive the 3520 to it’s rated speed on media that is capable (well, more than capable in every other burner I’ve run it thru), I’ll never know. I do admit to be slightly aghast (perhaps incorrectly) that the NEC would not like TY media enough to burn any faster than 32x, but it may be a limitation I’ll need to live with. And to a certain degree, it does reduce the utility of the drive somewhat for me, as I’d hoped to make this unit my “utility” burner. Perhaps, since this is my first NEC drive, I’m setting the bar a bit high on CD-R/RW functionality, but I don’t believe that’s the case (yet).

Thanks for all the replies thus far.



Seeing the multiple firmware releases in a very short period of time for the 3520 - looks like NEC brought this drive to market way before it was ready - me - I’ll stick with my two 3500’s until something very compellingly better comes along - know what I mean Vern?



Sorry… I didn’t saw this earlier.
You’re right… I apologize to you and ClueByFour.
I haven’t said that writing on 32x is better for all drives than 48x… only on Nec 35x0 drives burning at 32x is better than 48x. And I have to dissapoint all of you who think that buying a DVD burner you’ll get a great all around drive for burning CD and DVD. None of the current DVD burners is as good in burning CD as a CD burner.