HD/DVD question- Will running them off a IDE card stop stuttering?



Newbie question I can’t seem to find an answer too- I have a AMD 2000+ machine I use for day to day tasks that does light DVD burning tasks. The problem is when the machine is burning a disk it is about usless. I assume this is due to heavy IDE channel usage.

What can I do to offload some of the work so the machine is more usefull while burning? Would installing a seperate IDE or SATA card with it’s own burner and storage drive do the trick?

Machine specs-

MSI Ultra II-R with KT-333
2000+ AMD
1 gig of ram

There are two Seagate 160gig in RAID mirroring with a DVD burner on the regular KT-333 IDE channel.


Could you list your burner make and model number, what burning application is being used, how much hard disk space you have left, and whether you have defragmented the drive(s) recently?

  1. SONY DVD RW DW-U14A (4x speed burner)
  2. Nero 6 Ultra
  3. 50 gig free
  4. Weekly


The machine gets slightly sluggish when there is any major IDE action (like when an antivirus scan is running) but goes to hell in a basket when DVD burning.

I’m thinking a Vantec SATA card with a LITE-ON SATA 16X DVD on one channel and a WD 80 gig SATA on the other (where the target files are stored) will fix the problem.

Upgrading the motherboard isn’t really an option, this is a low power “on all day” box used for browsing, Photoshop, webpages, very light retro gaming, storage (hence the RAID mirror for safe data) etc. and it does them very well.

I’m just looking to spiff up the DVD burning end of things and have the machine a bit more usable. The 4x speed of the DVD burner doesn’t bother me but the machine getting dragged down while burning does.


Hmmm… a 4x speed burner shouldn’t tie your system up like that. Low drive space and fragmentation certainly can but it looks like that may not be the problem. As a final check, does the visible upper Nero buffer empty very quickly when you’re burning, or perhaps fluctuate between 20% and 80%? Normally if the data is getting from the drive to the IDE interface it should be a steady 80-90%. Also you might like to check the drive buffer (smaller display, lower down the window.

Otherwise do you have the Sony burner DMA set to ON? It might be operating in PIO mode which can hammer the system performance.


Bounces back and forth, not sure if it drops as low as 20%, 40% maybe I think.

Otherwise do you have the Sony burner DMA set to ON?



Just ran a system check with Nero Infotools- It confirms DMA is on, funny though it states the Sony burner as 2x.

I’m running some more tests now and will post results when they are done.


Odd- The drive starts off in 4x mode then very rapidly drops down to 2x for the rest of testing. CPU usage seems rather high though, at 2x testing 21% is indicated.