812S : is it really bad?



Is the 812S really as bad a drive as I’m lead to believe. From everything I’ve seen about it it seems to suck. Seems almost every other brand of 8X drive does better. Any opinions?


Well let’s see. Pioneer is better and Plextor is better and NEC is better. Other than that it is open to dispute. I have a Liteon 812S and it does a great job on quality +R media, even my NEC isn’t better there. And it is faster than many drives for CDs. It also is unrivaled for use with Kprobe although now CDSpeed has added a number of other drives…but not Pioneer and NEC. Lastly Liteon can enable bitsetting for +R media and neither Pioneer nor NEC (for SL media) can so if you compare the Liteon at $60 to the Pioneer and NEC at $80 there is a reason for it to exist. As for people saying it sucks I have never really seen that. One last thing it does better than any other drive. It appeals to those of us who love to tinker.


I don’t know what you’ve been reading, but the LiteOn 812S is a very reliable and supported drive. LiteOn has many followers, especially since the newer drives can be tweaked for even better burns. I just bought my second one. And a really nice thing about it is that it can be upgraded to an 832S model to do dual layer writing.


I liked my 812s. I just like my 3500a even better. I do miss Kprobe though. Just stick with quality +R media. I used Ricohs, TYs and MCCs with great results.


I think you have to tweak it, but once you have it seems to work well.


i would try flashing with the new sony dru-700a (rebadged 832) firmware on codekings page this seems to have a lot more media support than fake media codes…i flashed with this 2 days ago and have changed a couple of write strats and my - burns have become very good indeed.there are also tips about getting best burns. heres the link to the advice i followed and man am i glad i did…i have tried 5 different firmwares, 9 types of - disks and throws 65 discs in bin…now i feel confident i can use any media as even the cheapest media they sell where i am from in UK (datasafe red v3) are well within dvd limits…

check this thread out



SOHW-812S is a perfect drive, compared to others. Using good media this drive will give you some of the best burns on DVD+R´s (+).
Convert the drive to an “832” and you will also have DL (+R9) support.

@the_hetster, with all respect, but you better learn more about “Lite-On” firmware. It´s superior over any Sony FW.
And with the c0deguys patches and tweaks “Lite-On” firmware outperforms “all” in this segment. :wink: (Forgive me Herrie).

BTW PsychoCat, I´m interested to hear which drives you are comparing with…


I’ve got to agree that the 812 is great. Prior arguments of it’s “stock” worthiness would have been arguable, but if you know enough to visit this site, then you know enough to flash your drive’s firmware, and significantly improve it’s burn quality/capability. Of course, you should always attempt to use quality media such as Taiyo Yuden, but then, that’s up to you, and your results will vary based on disc type (as with every dvd burner). I’m running 851@832 and 812@832 on two diff comps… Pick your poison. Plus, the price is right.


I’ve had the opportunity to compare it with an older NEC and a new Plextor 712a and the others don’t seem to have the problems mine does. I tried Verbatim 8X +R and TY 8X +R and the scans are so bad they go in the trash whereas the Plextor does a fine job on disks from the same spindle and the NEC does ok but at a slower speed. The 8X Verbatims do work at 4X though but I’m not using 8X media at 4X in an 8X drive. My 812 does work ok with Maxell 4X +R and Verbatim 4X +R but for 8X the only brand it works with is Legacy which are Prodisc R03 and I’ve noticed even some of them have problems near the outer edge but that’s probably media. My 812 is a joke on all -R media I’ve tried even though the Plextor does a fine job with it. Oddly enough, I’ve had very few disks fail data verification even though many won’t play back in my standalone and kprobe says they suck. I gave up on Ritek when I got varying results from disk to disk. Optodisc doesn’t do very well either but at least it plays and CMC Mag F01 does better but I don’t plan on getting any more of them either. I’ve read numerous posts where people complained about the burn quality of this drive and I don’t blame them. If all brands burned as bad as this thing I wouldn’t come near DVD writing.


Okay, I know this is not the “KProbe result thread”, but I just have to prove my above statement of 812S quality when it comes to burning.

Yes, I have used c0deguys Omnipatcher to change RICOHJPNR01 write strategy to _R02, and yes, force-fallback and bitsetting are enabled.

There is a thread about “Lite-On´s DVDRW´s learning ability”, started by 40tacos. What I think of this theory is off topic!
Gentlemen, I have been changing firmware every other day. One day 812S C0deKing_FW, nex day at 832_stockFW, then back again on 812, then back to 832 and so on.
Still the same eeprom as originally. (Yes, I have a backup if needed.)

Last four discs burned with this drive were; 4.th-MCC003, 3.&2.-OPTODISCOR4 (2pcs) and a MCC002.
Havent burned a RICOHJPNR01 for some time, so I have hard time to evaluate “the last four” theory. I think you all better do your own judgement!

Note. The attached pics of tests are of the same drive burned and scanned. Speedtest was done with my NEC3500 to stress the media even more.
Drive; SOHW-812S Omnipatched firmware US0Q
On disc 4.3GB data (HDD backup) burned with Nero Express @8X.
Enjoy. :smiley:


Cheater…using RICOHJPNR01. As you have shown this drive is very well matched to this media. If I could get it reliably at -R prices I might actually start using my 812S for burning.


I concur. Using good media is one of the keys; however, isn’t it the key for all drives? I mean, you can get good burns with crap media with other drives, but will you trust that media overall in terms of longivity?

On the other hand, I gather that some people have problems with 812s/832s and their stock burn patterns. Otherwise I misunderstand the main purpose of the Quality-patched 832S firmware for 451S, 851S, 812S, 832S thread.

BTW, I don’t really like the attitude of the subj question. “Is it really good” would’ve been more appropriate :slight_smile:


The appropriateness of the topic stems from my attempts to find media that this drive can burn well. So far I’ve blown a small fortune trying various brands of media and this drive seems to do a great job of creating disks that don’t play worth a crap. I’m pretty sure the drive works the way it’s supposed to since the disks rarely fail data verification but the burns are so bad most media won’t play back or skips. Whereas the same media burned in other drives does much better. I’ve seen this drive ruin Tayo Yuden and Verbatim DLP plus while a NEC and a Plextor produces decent burns on the same media. Seems most people are in agreement the stock firmware needs a lot of work. And the manufacturer claiming this drive works with -R media seems a misreprepresentation of its capabilities. I’m really feeling like I’ve been had by the manufacturer after seeing how well it performs. If Plextor produced a drive that could set the booktype I’d replace this thing.


My 812S is a POS, I returned the first one because I could not believe the bad quality of discs it was producing. The replacement drive is just as bad, the burns are terrible at any speed, irrespective of disc quality.

I tested a pioneer 107 in the same system for a short period of time and I regret buying the liteon - even good +R liteon burns could not match –R 107 burns.

If you want a burner that “just works” do not get a liteon, liteons are for people that like to tweak and waste dvds trying to get a half decent burn strategy.


Okay, what about MCC002 (Verbatim) rated 4x burned at 8X. :smiley:

Originally posted by VAD
…Using good media is one of the keys; however, isn’t it the key for all drives? I mean, you can get good burns with crap media with other drives, but will you trust that media overall in terms of longivity?

Yes, you are right. But not many seem to care about longivity… Cheapo crap is more important to them.

Originally posted by PsychoCat
The appropriateness of the topic stems from my attempts to find media that this drive can burn well…

Hmm, what media are you using then. You say; TY and Verbatim DLP. Show us some scans and/or speedtests… :cool:

Here we go again. Media Verbatim DataLifePlus (MCC002) 4X rated burned at 8X
Drive; 812S on firmware US0Q omnipatched to burn at 8X, force-fallback and bitsetting.
On disc; data HDD backup, burned with Nero Express.
My new NEC3500 was used to run the speedtest in CD/DVD Speed.
Enjoy! :wink:


mcc002 works ok but mcc003 sucks. Same for the 8X TY disks (don’t remember the code yuden002 maybe?). I can’t provide scans because I threw them in the trash. So far the only disks I’ve found that produce usable results are ricohjpnr01, cmc mag f01, mcc002, optodisc?? and prodiscr03. And of those the cmc mag and optodisc aren’t good enough to buy any more of. I’m using the prodisc right now and plan on staying with that unless something better comes along.


I previously would have agreed with PsychoCat, I wasted a small fortune on memorex, verbatim, and fuji brand +r only to get skipping in my settop. I believe I found the culprit though. I had noticed that everytime I burned with nero, the disc had skipping or just some frustrating error but burning .iso’s with dvd decryptor worked flawless. I started converting all data and video to .iso and cutting out nero…flawless burns. Don’t feel the need to use kprobe anymore, cause no more problems, so I don’t have scans to show but give it a try for yourself. Also, I get even better burns with mcc media by using yuden strat (-r as well). Good Luck!


My 812S is great… Granted the RICOHJPNR01 is media that this drive likes, its also the most common being sold around where I live… I love the fact that Im getting such great burns at 8x using 4x media…

I dont want to go off-topic, but if you had asked about the 811S, then that drive would be a POS…

Im very happy with the 812S and I dont see any reason to upgrade at the moment even if SL burn speed is up at 16x at the moment…


PsychoCat, I can’t relate to your experience at all. I’ve burned about 250 DVD+Rs with the drive (most as 832 firmw). A total of eight discs have failed. None were the drive’s fault: 2 are bad discs from no-name; 5 were from a bad batch in a Memorex 50pack that is being replaced. The one I initially blamed on the drive turned out to be an interface issue.

A couple of friends have the same drive. Both are happy.

I have not had problems with -R media but that’s probably because I’ve used very few.

The only blank DL disc that I’ve burned (and bought) worked like charm.

This is all sent just as feedback. I know how it feels to get a lemon unit, which may have happened to you.

oops…forgot to mention…the only media that I’ve burned at less than 8X were the DL disk, a few RWs and a few test disks. Even the Memorex +R,4X media burns great at 8X (except for the batch they are replacing).


I’ve burned quite a few with this thing too. Mostly prodiscr03. So far I’ve found only three types out of the many available that this drive does a respectable job with. Three? That doesn’t seem like a very good track record out of all the available media. Seems most people either find one or two types that work and stick with that or resort to strategy swapping. Correct me if I’m wrong but when the manufacturer gives a list of recommended media and only a few of those actually produce decent results that says something about the drive.