CDFreaks presents: The Sony AW-G170A preview

CDFreaks are proud to present: The Sony AW-G170A preview.

You can read the preview here
Please feel free to comment on the preview in this forum thread.

Good job, Dee! Why do you think the speed drop happens on layer break even on pressed DVDs?

Yeah! Cool!
But please make a full review for an Optiarc drive this time.
I see they have cloned the LiteOn style front, maybe to make the customer think of continuity…?

I will need to investigate this further, and compare with a Transfer Rate Test on another drive with the same disc. I’ll post the findings here later.

I guess Sony just wanted a different look from NEC’s usual matt finish on the drive front. The front is an NEC front and a Sony curved bezel, finished in Sony’s usual decoration.

Great Preview Dee-27

Just 2 Questions:

Why Untick “Show Graph” For Buffer & CPU Usage When Create Disc ?
Might Be Just Me But I Would Of Liked To Of Seen Those Included.

Does G17xx Series Only Do The Nasty PIF Spikes On DVD+R’s And Not DVD-R’s ?
What I Spotted In The Preview Was DVD+R’s Had PIF’s As High As 7, And DVD-R’s No Higher Than 3.

Apparently the DVD-Video DL disc used in the read test was contaminated. I cleaned the disc and ran the test again. The result can be seen in the screenshot below. (preview article updated as a result)

The buffer and CPU usage are removed in most of the graphs for image clarity. I did however leave them in for the reference burns in the [B]‘features’ [/B] page of the article for DVD R media.

Regarding PIF spikes. Yes they do tend to show up more with DVD+R media. Although with this particular drive, this didn’t happen often.

I ran some scans on the BenQ drive, basically to see how high jitter was on 16x and 18x burns with the Sony drive. The jitter levels are pretty good.

What the hell is happening here? SAME burn scanned on the pio11L and sony ???

The PIO scan is 1ECC, the dony is 8ECC (cannot change with CD SPEED). However, still the difference is too huge

The drive is a crap scanner.

Bought this drive so I could free up some space on my hardrive and watch my dvds on my dvd player. However I have a problem. I installed the drive correctly and everything seemed to be going well. However I noticed a problem, when in ‘My Computer’ it is shown as a ‘DVD-Ram Drive (E:)’ but when I inserted one of my Verbatim 16x Certified, 4.7GB blank dvds, it showed up as a ‘CD Drive (E:)’. As a result I can transfer anything I want over to my blank dvds as data but if I choose to make a video dvd I am not able to do this.
If someone could please help me I would really appreciate it.

P.S. I am really rubbish at this type of thing :confused: so make your explanation as simple as possible please :stuck_out_tongue:

if not really sure what type of response youre looking for. what you describe is normal behavior. if youve never burned a dvd_video before (ie. a DVD that can play in a stand-alone DVD player), youve got some reading to do. burning those types of DVDs as opposed to data DVDs is not as simple as dragging-and-dropping, unfortunately. again, im not entirely sure what youre looking for, but i would suggest going over to and reading up. specifically, if youd like to know how to burn a DVD that will play in your stand-alone player (it sounds like maybe youve done this before, but just in case you havent…), try looking here:

Can someone recommend Dual Layer DVD media to use with this drive? (which is available in UK) I am having patchy results and would appreciate some input. Media details below:

Datawrite 2.4

Unique Disc Identifier : [DVD+R-DL:CMC MAG-D04-000]

Disc & Book Type : [DVD+R DL] - [DVD+R DL]
Manufacturer Name : [CMC Magnetics Corp.]
Manufacturer ID : [CMC MAG]
Media Type ID : [D04]
Product Revision : [Not Specified]
Blank Disc Capacity : [4,173,824 Sectors = 8.55 GB (7.96 GiB)]
Recording Speeds : [2.4x , 3.3x-8x]

Note the above media appears in Nero at minimum burning speed 4x, also offers 8x!! - does not burn reliably at any speed, and I cannot select 2.4…

RiDisc 2.4

Unique Disc Identifier : [DVD+R-DL:CMC MAG-D01-000]

Disc & Book Type : [DVD+R DL] - [DVD+R DL]
Manufacturer Name : [CMC Magnetics Corp.]
Manufacturer ID : [CMC MAG]
Media Type ID : [D01]
Product Revision : [Not Specified]
Blank Disc Capacity : [4,173,824 Sectors = 8.55 GB (7.96 GiB)]
Recording Speeds : [2.4x]

The second media seems to be generally OK at 2.4, although I have had a couple of coasters out of 10.

Thanks in advance.

Welcome to the forum.
The only DL media i would really say is good is Verbatim. I have had some good results with RICOH 8x DL media, but the Verbatim media is still the only DL media i would recommend.

I just purchased this drive at Fry’s here in Arizona. It will read and burn CD’s put can’t get it to read blank DVD-r’s. I replaced it with a NEC-3550A same problem. You think perhaps there’s a problem with one of my drivers, I’m using dual boot with WinXP and Vista. I can read and write the blank disks in my HP laptop. Any help will be greatly appreciated. By the way the disks are “Great Quality”… Don’t have any ideal who makes them. Have a nice day…

Discs having such a name are merely a sign for being “Lowest Quality”. Try using a quality brand DVD-R disc like TY or Verbatim.

Thanks lots, appreciate the quick reply.
By the way, they were shoddy disks. Took them back and voila everything works.

Have a nice day and life.


I recently purchased the AW-G170S, and it hasn’t been a pleasant experience so far. When I go to burn a regular 4.75 gig DVD, I don’t get very far before I get a DMA driver error and a CRC error as well. Someone said on another site to update the drive firmware, but unless I am wrong there is no way to get tech support of any kind from the SONY NEC-Optiarc web site. I am wondering how much the fact that this is a SATA drive has to do with this problem/ I have also found out that this problem is not an uncommon one, but I don’t know how common with SATA burners. Without supplying tons of system info which I can’t do now anyway because I am at work, does anybody have any ideas as to how to solve this problem? Thanx in advance for any help you can give me.


I have a AW-Q170A, which I read elsewhere is the same drive except it doesn’t support DVD-RAM. That said, my ripping speeds during DVD backup with DVD Decrypter never get to 4x. Is this normal? Any suggestions?

iv had this writer for a few months,its been good all this while. but lately,its not able to read the discs which it just problem reading other media,but when i insert the dick which i wrote,it shows as empty. iv tried different media,speeds. i have the 1.73 firmware. anyone got any opinions?

[QUOTE=alwayssummer;1919505]I have a AW-Q170A, which I read elsewhere is the same drive except it doesn’t support DVD-RAM[/QUOTE]

Are you sure? I ask because in the cdfreaks review the top label of the AD-7173A, which of course has DVD-RAM support, says “SOK-AW-Q170A”! So SONY does not call the PATA Labelflash drive “173A” (which would be the logical model name). Couldn’t that mean that (a) having/not having DVD-RAM capability is not encoded at all into the SONY naming scheme and (b) “Q” means Labelflash and not the missing DVD-RAM capability?