DVD Burner questions...alot of them

First post here so please pardon the ignorance…

I am going to build a new computer to capture tv video ( I haven’t built a machine in about 3 years so am having to do alot of research) and want to get a DVD recorder for my old machine that will work in the new machine. My main uses will be data backup and tv video burning.

I have read through many of the posts here and have compiled a list of questions that I have.

  1. I use nero 5 for my cd-burner and Alcohol 120 for my image. I don’t have any dvd software so would it be better to buy the retail version for the extra software or the oem version and an after market software? Also is the documentation better in the retail as far as using the burner?

  2. I want to be able to capture video off of my cable and burn it to a dvd that will play in a regular dvd player at my school. Are any of the dvd-burner brands more compatible with regular dvd players?

  3. Is a DVD/CD burner combo as good as a straight DVD burner? I already have a CD burner but don’t mind spending a little more money to get a better combo burner.

  4. What brand of burner seems to burn best across the brands of media? I never know that brand I might be able to get locally.

  5. I see that BENQ, lite-on, and nec are the most common brands mentioned. Any certain model of these brands that you would recommend? I like bargins :slight_smile: but don’t mind spending a little more for a better burner and/or software set.

  6. Do I install the dvd or my present cd burner as the master on my ide cable?

I know this is alot of questions but I hate to buy anything twice. If I have missed anything please advise.

Thank you for your time…


If you want to record off tv- the easiest way is a stand alone dvd recorder,which is also a dvd player. to record off tv you will need a tv card in your computer plus software and cables etc,etc… Walmart had a stand alone for about a 100. If you want a new dvd-rw for your computer you can get a benq or nec for less than 50 dollars at newegg.com. Hope this helps you a little?


Thanks for the comments. I have other reasons to record from the tv to the computer which may or may not work out…I guess we will see :bigsmile:

I guess I also like to see just what I can do with my computer.

I am very new to this dvd burning thing so any comments are helpful…


hmmm I have a cousin in CO with that name J Wally

  1. No. The supplied software is either Nero or player software. You might want to grab Nero 6 if it is offered but it should only be a few bucks more. The documentation is non-existent in both versions and other than BenQ, the firmware is the same.

  2. All the same. Media is different and some like -R while others like +R bitset.

  3. No and the combo burner will not burn DVDs, only play them so it isn’t what you want in any case.

  4. Hard to say. I would say you should open up to the world of online media as you will get more reliable media codes. Most branded media varies. Newegg.com, rima.com,supermediastore.com, meritline.com, all sell good media. Stick with TY and Verbatim and avoid Ritek and any drive you choose should do very well.

  5. The BenQ 1620 is proven but had failure problems in the past. The NEC 3520 is the most established, and the Liteon 1693 is the current best. The Newer BenQ and NEC models will most likely prove to be as good when the firmware matures. BTW, as much as I like NEC, the Liteon and BenQ do a better job of ripping and support scanning.

  6. Doesn’t matter, avoid the same cable as the HD, most here would put the DVD as master (superstition).

Welcome to CDFreaks.

Thanks for the post chas0039

You answered all of my questions. I will be ordering the Liteon 1693 this evening. I am sure the questions have just begun.

Thanks for the welcome


Any time. And do come back. BTW, the 1693 loves TY media and Verbatim +R burned at 6X. You will find all the firmware you need here:

The bitsetting tools here along with Kprobe:


And an explanation of scanning here:


I had all your issues and questions 6 months ago when I built my system.

“My” experience is that stand alone recorders for some reason I can’t find out DO create a better product ((ie-sharper picture with less cabbaging or pixilation)) than do computer based capture cards.

I now use my stand alones to record tv onto rewriteables and I then copy the rewriteables onto my computer for editing. For me, this is only a little bit of additional work for the satisfaction of a better final product.

I’ll try another computer based capture system when High Def and Blue Ray are available but I’m already resigned to the fact that again the stand alones will probably be the better solution for me.

I got the BenQ burner and have been happy with it–the Sonic software that comes with it is simpler than Nero which for me works erratically. I use Nero when Sonic doesn’t work.

Come back and let us know what you finally create and how you like it.///bobbo.

have to agree with above post standalone dvd recorders are simple to use give outstandind results and ther is no recoding etc thats my way converting tv shows weddind etc to dvd you then simply place the dvd in your pc if you require to edit it maybee we should have a pol on standalone vs capture card?

I used two different computer based capture systems (Ulead tvr 2000 expert–??) and the Plextor usb solution. both tuners gave an excellent picture to my monitor but both gave “noticeably” inferior captures at the lowest settings. Of course, the capture card gave excellent results at higher bitrates just as they should but they could not hold a candle at the 352x240 1150 kbs settings which is “fair” given the signal source and viewing source were both ntsc standard tv.

Again==I don’t know what the standalones are doing to create the better picture–but all three standalones I have are better than the two computer solutions I compared. Standalones also allow confident multi-tasking (smile!)

BTW–nice graphic you got going there myke!! ((Made me laugh!)

Hi, How many dvds can you burn in a row? How much time should you wait b4 burning another one?

I have not noticed any increased failures on 2-3-4th burns in a row. Since its not an issue for me, I haven’t really kept track but on days I do back-ups I must approach 5-6 burns immediately back to back. I have noticed my Ilo burner runs hot in my opinion so I have a “standard” personal fan sitting on top of the unit blowing air on the case 24/7.===So, my back to back burns are done only on my computer which is well cooled and uses a Benq burner.

In the fun never stops department==>I stopped using TY media on my Liteon5005 as it creates 2-3 glitches every other disk making disks that play just fine but will not direct copy–they need to be decrypted first. So I have switched to Verbatim and they work without fail but BUT [B]BUT[/B] if I put a partial burn Liteon 5005 disk into my Liteon 5045 to copy one or two files to make a full disk, the Verbatim disks are not recognized and are made into coasters. Of course the TY disks work perfectly for this copy process but they have the glitches on 50% of the disks. Nothing about this “hobby” is fun!!!

Hi, thanks. So if I don’t have a fan should I wait like an hour between or?

I think you should just burn as you please and “most likely” you won’t have any problems at all. Of course, if you start to get bad second burns, then “maybe” heat build up is a cause and waiting an hour would help that. So would putting a fan on the unit for a few minutes to cool it off? I kinda doubt all this heat build up talk and hope I haven’t jinxed myself???

I also think if heat build up on a second burn is an issue then it would still be an issue on the very first burn and more cooling would be mandatory??? Fans are small and cheap and easy to install if that is your issue.