GSA-H10N - Read speeds suddenly very low

Hey guys, first time posting here, hope somebody can offer some assistance. I’ve done some searches, and I’ve been reading threads here for quite some time, but I haven’t seen any particular reference to my problem.

I recently bought a 48 disc set for Star Trek DS9, so this is all I’ve been using my DVD drive for, for the last week or so (I just about never use this drive otherwise). Everything was fine, but 2 days ago it suddenly started pausing, hitching and skipping occasionally during playback… Sometimes it gets as bad as to stop for an entire minute before resuming playback, all the while the little light on the drive is blinking it’s little heart out. I am unable to tell what media these discs are, as there is no appreciable information on the inner ring of the discs, and the entire topside is coated in logos and information (as you’d expect). Regardless, these DVD’s were working perfectly just two days ago. I ran Nero CD-DVD speed, and this is the result I get every time I try it;

I’m currently on firmware version JL11, though I have also tried JL12, and it made absolutely no difference. This drive is set to Master, and is on a flat 80pin cable and definitely running UDMA 2. To date I have tried the following;

Flashed to Firmware JL12. Changed IDE cable between 3 different brands, one extremely expensive and high quality. Tried Slave and Cable Select modes. Cleaned off and reinstalled chipset (IDE / SATA) drivers, also tried default Windows drivers. Tried multiple different DVD’s in this set, all show the same results (again, 2 days ago these discs worked perfectly). I’ve tried different playback applications (I always use MPC, but I’ve tried PowerDVD and VLC, barf, but they each made no difference).

This has essentially destroyed my ability to watch these discs…

Does anyone have any suggestions? I’m all out of ideas. This drive isn’t that old (about 6 months), has been used probably 5 times prior to this for light transfer work, and has never skipped a beat.

Can you use the drive to read any other DVDs or any CDs?

It may be that the drive is just [somehow?] worn out.

Hey. It didn’t even occur to me to try another DVD movie… I’ve only got a few around, but I’ll certainly test one out tonight.

If it makes any difference, I used the ScanDisc test to test each of these DVD’s, and at all speeds they all came back in perfect shape.

Interesting. I watched Hot Shots : Part Deux, and it worked absolutely flawlessley. No stuttering, no hitching, nothing. I ran CD-DVD Speed on this one too, and these were the results;

So overall lower transfer speeds than what I was getting with these DS9 DVD’s (before they tanked), but no errors in sight. I’m just going to test another DS9 DVD again and see what happens.

Guess we can just about rule out a dead drive. :confused:

edit Nope, still no luck with these other discs. One of them I ran a little earlier in a friends Samsung DVD drive, and it worked fine… But I still get the same failure in CD-DVD Speed, and the same stuttering / hitching / pausing during playback for me. I’m fairly certain that the video on the DVD’s themselves is intact and fine, as the hitching and such never occurs at the same place twice… it’s entirely random. It’s almost like watching an online video, but being unable to buffer quickly enough to compensate for the playback speed. It’s good for a bit, but then it catches up to the streaming and hitches, waits for some more data, resumes, stops, and so on.

Which exact DL media is it, MID/mediacode?

The reading speed depends on the drive, firmware and the quality & content of the media used.

I honestly don’t know sorry. As I mentioned earlier, there are no visible markings on these discs as everything is obscured by logos and the printed cover… Unless there is another way of finding out? Even then, how does it explain these discs functioning just perfectly a few days ago?

Insert the disc and start Nero CD-DVD Speed and go to the Tab “Disc Info”.
There you can look for the Media ID.

I checked that tab, unfortunately for these discs it doesn’t seem to show anything. The Hot Shots 2 DVD showed all the relevant information about the medic, but with these discs all I get is this;

I’ve been watching one just now… The first 25-30 minutes or so played fine, but beyond that (now at 40 minutes) it just got progressively worse, pausing and hitching to the point now where I’m staring at a still frame longer than I’m actually watching anything. During the first 25-30 minutes, I paused it and ran CD-DVD speed’s speed test, and got a fairly solid 4.5x transfer rate. Now that it’s starting to crawl and die, the transfer rate is barely hovering around 1.05x. I think tomorrow I might invest in another DVD burner, this time from another brand since drives are so chea these days.

Any suggestions on a drive to get?

Are these discs Pressed Discs, or are that burned DVDRs?

When they are pressed, are they damaged? Any scratches?

Again, sorry for being daft, but what are the major differences between a pressed and burnt DVDr? They’ve got a professionally printed surface on them, if that’s what you mean? (no low-low-quality poor printjobs).

For the sake of it, I picked up a brand new ASUS DRW-1814BL as it was on special for just $15. This new drive doesn’t even READ the discs, let alone get me to a point of seeing how / if they work. It does all of the expected work, spins up, makes me wait 5 seconds as the little CD icon comes up and it sits there reading the disc… Then nothing. No disc inserted.

Sucks to be me :frowning:

At least Hot Shots 2 DVD seems to be a pressed one.

Test it in another drive.

[quote=chef;1972612]At least Hot Shots 2 DVD seems to be a pressed one.

Test it in another drive.[/quote]

I gave Hot Shots 2 a run in this new ASUS drive, and it works perfectly. The discs I’ve got (that don’t work) were a bit cheap, which is why I got them in the first place… I understood at the time that there was a chance I might have some issues with them, but at first everything was ticking along nicely and I had nothing to worry about. Even if they are cheap ripoffs or something, I’d really still like to do everything humanly possible to get them watchable again, since I know they work (when they want! :stuck_out_tongue: )

In all seriousness though, what are my options? Obviously I can waste money on just trying random brands / models of drives in the hopes that something will play them well… But is there anything besides firmware to try? Obviously I’ve tried reinstalling drivers, but perhaps there’s something I missed? The fact that the LG drive can play them tells me something, but how do I improve from that?

Thanks for your help too, by the way :wink:

Best way is to test the drive in another computer or do some testburns using Verbatim media.

I’ll certainly keep that in mind… Though for some strange reason, everything is suddenly fine. :eek:

It just suddenly stopped having problems, I’ve managed to watch two full discs that previously refused to work properly (over 160 minutes per disc of total viewing) with only 2 noticeable half-second hitches (where I believe it was switching between VOB files).

MPC reported (while it was malfunctioning) that the average jitter was about 50ms+. It’s now sitting at a pretty steady 15-20ms, devoid of any problems.

Go figure :confused: