Firmware version of LG GCE-8481B

I bought a LG GCE-8481B (48/24/48) CD-R/RW drive from a reputable local retailer recently. I noticed that this drive has ROM/firmware version 1.10 installed, and it has only one LED on the front. As far as I can see, this drive was manufactured in December of 2002.

From reading this forum, I know most people had ROM version 1.02/1.03. And, the latest version for this drive on LG 's site is 1.05. I am just wondering if anyone knows why this should be the case. I tried e-mailing LG’s tech support, and they sent back a one liner saying the rom I have is the latest and there is no need to upgrade.

Does anyone have any experience with this?



Well here you find versions 1.02 and 1.04.

I have no clue why LG hasn’t posted this new firmware or why anyone else hasn’t got this firmware.

Can you send the firmware to CDFreaks, so others can try this new release?

Wait until someone reacts which has this drive.

I unfortunatly I don’t have one, so can’t help.

Apparently, the folks at LG Canada have no clue either. They think it is possible that LG updated the unit before it was shipped, and the new version may become available on the official sites in the future.

Unfortunately, I was having problems with the drive, and “upgraded” to the 1.05 version posted on the official site using their Windows’ updater, without knowing the original version was newer. The update program did not offer to backup the old version, and did not warn me. I noticed the discrepancy only when the update process has started. Now, I am searching up and down trying to find out what demage I have done to the drive. :wink: I wish I had come across this site before I did the “upgrade”.

From reading the forums, I know at least on other member, who is also from Canada, has this version (1.10) of firmware on his drive. And I think he said he made a backup. I have sent a private message to him to see if he would share the binary. I have not heard back from him yet.

All right, keep us informed.

I bought this drive locally in Korea back last November with 1.10. I am, however, not pleased with it’s performance. I will be testing to see how many coasters it makes next week with LG brand CD’s. It’s a real shame because I was so impressed with the 8240B. Don’t have a clue how to get the firmware to you, but I’m not sure at this point you would want it if I did. Hopefully I will change my mind when the new CD’s arrive - or else this baby goes back for after service.

Here is the information you may or may not have been waiting for. After purchasing LG 48X certified CD-R’s and burning the same file with the same setup on my 8240B and 8481B the results are as follows" The 8240B burns it at 24X in 4:15 and the 8481B burns at 40X in 5:30. You might ask, why does the 48X take almost 1.5 minutes longer to burn the same file than the 24X - I did anyway. I took it to the LG after service center in Changwon, S. Korea. Turns out the Firmware 1.10 drives were manufactured by LG China, not LG Korea. As much as I hate to admit it my LG Korea drive operates flawlessly while the LG China drive is a piece of junk. Not only that, I really have a case of red @ss today because LG refuses to provide after service warranty. This happened once before when I purchased a drive in the U.S. I had to ship it back for warranty work. This time I went out of my way to purchase one locally in Korea but LG still found an excuse not to honor the warranty. Let the buyer beware. The only other grim choice I face is whether to try to upgrade the drive performance by using a previous firmware revision. My opinion - avoid any LG 8241B drives with firmware 1.10. Better yet, find a company that will honor the warranty.

Thanks for nothing LG.

Thanks for the update, Hsbman.

I was very unhappy with the first drive I got as well. I updated it to use the 1.05 firmware, it still kept producing coasters. I was finally fed up, and returned it to the retailer where I bought it, and exchanged it for another one.

The firmware version on this one is 1.10 as well. Seems like LG Canada only has these cheapo drives. I updated this drive to use 1.05 firmware as well. So far, it has not produced any coasters yet, knock on wood. :wink:

It seems to me that the 1.10 firmware has less features than 1.05. For example, mt. Rainier is not supported in 1.10 but is supported in 1.05. I think their numbering scheme is messed up. The fact that this drive was manufactured in a different plant may explain this. I also don’t think 1.10 is later than 1.05.

I suspect my first drive (and your drive) may have an alignment problem. The manufacturing tolerance may not be as tight in the plant in China vs the plants in Korea. I am suprised, though, that LG would not exchange the drive for you. What was the excuse?

Thanks jimmy_m

Their excuse was that they didn’t manufacture the drive so they don’t have to service it. They did offer to repair the drive if I paid for it. I didn’t even ask for a quote since I had this experience once before (with the drive I purchased in the U.S.) and the repair quote was only slightly higher than the going cost of a new drive.

I wonder if the execs at LG Korea are denied revenue from LG China because the drives weren’t manufactured in Korea. Seems like just a bunch of B.S. excuses to me. They might have a hint of honesty outside Korea, but here it’s not to be found.

I think the next step is to try 1.05. Based on your experience alone I figure I have a 50/50 chance. After I changed CD-R brands I have had very few coasters so that may be a good sign. I would agree with your statement that 1.10 is not later than 1.0x, just designated at a different plant.

I’m mostly ticked that LG left me in the lurch.

One thing you may want to try is to limit your writer to 24X speed or lower. I found my old drive produces less coasters when I was burning at 24X.

I am disappointed that LG has a different face in its domestic market. Companies with such attitudes will not go far in most other places in the world. It is very fortunate for me that the local retailer was very good at honouring the warranty.

Despite the warnings on the LG Korea site that it would not work on non-Korean LG drives, I flashed it with 1.05 from their site. I did back up the 1.10 version just in case. The results were interestingly disappointing. The secodary IDE controller did report and improvement to UDMA Mode 2. Nero reported burning at 48X, although it still took 5.5 minutes to burn the CD. I’m afraid you may have been right about alignment. This doesn’t appear to be a firmware problem.

For those others reading this with Firmware 1.10 problems, run for the hills! I made lots of excuses before - probably poor quality media, probably the burning software is not up to the task of the new hardware, probably… forget it. Probably it’s a crappy drive. Hope you have better experience with after service than I did.

For those of you who want to risk it, firmware version 1.05 from the Korean LG website does appear to work (there are warnings in Korean that it might not work) on these drives although I experienced no improvement in drive performance. For those with LG-Korean drives that may want to experience firmware 1.10 - RUN AWAY!

In response to an e-mail I sent out regarding getting ahold of firmware ver. 1.10 for my LG 8481B (CDN version)

Hi Jimmy. Yeah, I did read the thread (73739) pretty thoroughly.

I too am from Canada (Alberta) and picked up my 8481B at Futureshop.

It does seem that Canada did get the shaft here. Maybe we have better trade-relations with China then the communophobic Americans, which leads to LG dumping their low-quality Chinese crap here. (and it is crap).

My 8481B completely shut down a while back and wasn’t burning anything… It would just sit for 15 minutes, desparately trying to burn, making strange noises, and not responding at all. So, I niavely went to the website looking for updated firmware, ended up flashing to 1.05… and my drive did actually start to work after the flash, which was an improvement… however, I don’t want to be using an unapproved firmware “downgrade” not designed for this particular drive, and I did have some BIOS issues, so now I’m trying to get my drive back to 1.10. (I’d like to take the junk back to futureshop in original form and see what they say as I just bought this drive this summer)…

I actually now have an LG 8523B (the latest, 52X 24X 52X in the yellow box…)… I only just installed it, and haven’t used it to burn much but I’d probably advise to stay away… While it does supposidly support Mt. Rainier, its another “Made in China” special with only 1 led, one eject button and, get this, NO headphone jack or volume adjust knob. As soon as I took it out of the box it reeked of shoddy workmanship, with a slightly greasy coating to the drive and a rattling sound coming from who knows what (sounds like a part wasn’t attached properly).


Hi Daship,

I bought my drive in Future Shop in Vancouver. I was finally fed up with my old drive, and returned to FS to exchange for a new one. This was after almost 6 month. They did not give me any trouble over this. The new drive, same model and same firmware version (1.10), worked much better then the first one I bought. I am running it with version 1.05 firmware and Nero. It has performed well.

It is generally expected that new plants will have teething problems. Manufacturing tolerences may not be as tight as in established plants. With high percision products such as CD writers, this could cause lots of problems. So I am not surprised that the drives from the new plant in China would be more problematic. One would also expect that as the product matures, the manufacturer would try to cut cornors and save on manufacturing cost.

However, any responsible manufacturer, ones who care about their brand name, would not push products out of the door, knowing they are sub-standard. Unfortunately, from Hsbman’s experience, one has to question whether LG is such a manufacture.

So, think twice before buying LG again. If you must, make sure you deal with a reputable dealer with good service and return policy.