Newly purchased OEM benq DW1620 attached to the slave channel on my secondary IDE, master drive on secondary is a Pioneer 106s DVD-ROM. According to Nero Info tool DMA mode is on for both drives, device manager shows Ultra DMA mode 5 transfer mode, Windows XP SP2, Intel P4 2.8, using Intel 82801EB Ultra ATA controller embedded into DFI Lanparty motherboard.
The drive came with a few blank media from various manufactures, I tested the drive with a couple of Ridata 8x DVD+R discs using the G7M9 firmware, factory default for this particular drive. One was a DVD movie and the other a CD-Speed generated data disc, both burns turned out just fine with both my Pioneer 106s being able to read both discs and my DVD set-top player being able to play the DVD movie.
Satisfied that the drive worked okay I cross-flashed to the retail B7P9 firmware, I read a post on here that the benq qscan program only worked with the retail firmware so I was anxious to try that out (Iâ€™ve sense figured out that it works with OEM firmware too)
I purchased some â€œGreat Qualityâ€ GQ DVD+R 8x media from Fryâ€™s Electronics, they come up as Prodisc R03â€™s as you can see from the scans below. Iâ€™m still trying to research the best DVD media for the drive. I know there a lot of people on here that are â€œcross flashingâ€ from the OEM firmware to the retail firmware, I havenâ€™t read any posts that say whether or not this is a good thing or something that shouldnâ€™t be done. My guess is that it may depend on the media with which works the best with the drive/firmware, newest version not always being the best.
Using Nero CD-DVD Speed 3.55, I decided to test out the various firmwares with these apparent cheapo discs. I didn’t see a way of controlling the burn speed of the “create data disc” routine, under qscan these “GQ” discs show 12x being the max. For each version of firmware I burned a seperate disc and ran the Quality Test on them at 4x scan speed:
First up, B7P9: Very ugly towards the end, using the ScanDisc function of CD-DVD Speed the end of the disc has nothing but red squares using the Pioneer 106s, surprisingly the 1620 reports no problems being able to read the end of the disc.
How about that B7S9: Quality score pretty much says it all :Z
Lets crossflash back to OEM firmware G7M9, maybe retail firmware isn’t so great of an idea on an OEM drive: Rather high PI errors, but a quality score of 96, DiscScan reports no unreadable errors with either drive.
I thought I might as well try out the unofficial OEM G7Z9 firmware: Most definitely a step backwards.
So it seems obvious, flash the G7M9 and problem solved right? I did that and used Nero 188.8.131.52 to burn six large .avi files to one of these “GQ” Prodisc R03â€™s at 4x speed (thinking lowering the speed might equal a better burn for these discs). The 1620 wonâ€™t copy the files back onto the hard drive, CRC error (I can play them from the 1620 just fine though) â€“ yet the Pioneer can read the files just fine, both playing right off the disc and copying them to the HD, after copying them back to the HD I did a file compare with FC command in dos and they compare 100% okay.
I then burn several DVD .iso files again at 4x, 1620 can read them just fine, Pioneer has problems just loading the disc (takes a long time) and doing a DiscScan shows problems reading towards the end of the disc, 1620 doesn’t have a problem.
I’m not sure if my problem is from Nero, the burner or the chepo discs.
Cliffnotes: Just because you get a good looking scan from CD-DVD Speedâ€™s â€œDisc Quality Testâ€ doesnâ€™t mean that itâ€™s a â€œreliable and multidrive redableâ€ disc, and using retail firmware on an OEM drive is not necessarily a good thing, I guess.