How long should it take to burn a DVD?


I’m sure this is a much more basic question than this board is used to getting, but I need to know how long it should take to write a DVD?

(By the way, I did try the search function before I posted this as I am sure this must have been discussed at some time, but for some reason it wasn’t working.)

Specifically I just purchased a DVD writer and I’m not trying to do anything sophisticated like copy a Movie DVD or anything like that, I’m just trying to back up my data files, and while I have been successful at actually copying files to a DVD, it’s taking what I think is an awfully long time, but I really have no idea how long it should take.

The DVD writer is a Pioneer DVR-710. At least that’s what the box says although Nero Info Tool identifies it as a Pioneer DVD-RW DVR-111D. Firmware version shows 1.23 which is the current version according to Pioneer’s site. I have the writer hooked up as the secondary, or slave, on my #2 IDE channel because there is a previously installed CD writer in the primary, or master, position

The disks I am writing to are 4X DVD+RW. Purchased at Fry’s electronics, they carry the GQ label, but Nero Info Tool identifies them as OPTODISK OP4. It further states that they support 4X to 2.4X speeds.

The software I am using to burn with is Nero Express from Nero OEM v. 6.6.

If it matters, my computer is a home build with the following specifications:

Via P4XB-SA motherboard with P4X-266A chipset.
Via 4 in 1 drivers v. 4.33
P4 2.4 GHz processor (Northwood core)
Western Digital 100GB Ultra DMA/100 hard drive
nVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 graphics card
Creative Audigy 2zs sound card
Windows XP home edition SP1

As I said above I need to know about how long it should take to burn a backup data DVD of, say, 4GB using the above mentioned DVD+RW’s, writer, and software? I need to determine if I am getting something at least close to the speed I should, or not, because if not I want to return the writer while there is still time.

If I am not getting the speed I should is it possible that having the DVD writer connected in the slave position could be a problem?

Oh, one other thing that seems kind of strange to me and I wonder if someone could tell me if this it proper, or not.

When I click on My Computer, if there is no disk in the writer, it shows up as DVD-RW Drive (E:), but if there is a disk in the drive it shows up as CD Drive (E:). Shouldn’t it always identify as a DVD Drive?

Thanks for your help.

Doug D.

4GB of data onto a 4x disc should take about 14 minutes to burn.

As a rule of thumb burning 2hours movie (4.38GB file size) takes:

1)Burning @ 4X 14-16 Minutes
2)Burning @8X 8-10 Minutes
3)Burning @12X 6-7.5 Minutes
4)Burning @16X 5.15- 6.5 Minutes.

Hi & welcome to the forum.

You need to check that the Pio 111D is running in Ultra DMA mode 4 and is connected by an 80wire IDE Cable (aka Ultra 66/100/133). These are [B]MUST[/B] haves for successful operation of Pioneer burners.

Many suggest the Pioneer burners need to be the Master drive, connected to the end connector. You may find that this is necessary.

On the subject of RW media, if the data is important I’d strongly suggest that you switch to Verbatim or Ricoh RW media. I find Ricoh 8x +RW media to be very good if you can find it. The Verbatims are easy to find. Anything else is too risky.

The thing about My Computer / Windows Explorer is that it does for some strange reason do exactly as you state. This is normal , if somewhat confusing, behaviour.


First, I’d just like to say thanks to all who responded. I appreciate you taking your time to solve my problems. I’m only sorry that it has taken me so long to follow up.

In the mean time, I did do a clean install of Windows XP, and of Nero on a spare HD I have and the Pioneer burner seems to work much faster, so apparently my installation of Nero on my primary HD is corrupt, or there are other problems. Of course I know this installation has problems. That’s the reason I want to copy my data to DVD RW in the first place:)

Regarding the setting of Ultra DMA mode 4, I had no idea what this meant, or where I might find it, (I never cease to be amazed by the new things I learn in forums!) but I finally found the setting under Advanced Settings in the Secondary IDE Channel in Device Manager. I guess that’s what you were talking about? There, it shows Current Transfer Mode of Device 1 (Device 1 is the slave device I believe) is Ultra DMA Mode 4, so it looks like I am ok there.

While I was there I did notice that the Current Transfer Mode of Device 0 (the master device I believe) which is my CDRW, is listed as Ultra DMA Mode 2. Is this as it should be? I hope so because there appears top be no way to change it.

Of greater concern to me, (and although I understand this is CDFreaks, and not HD Freaks, but still somebody might be willing to offer some input on this) while I was there I decided to look at the Current Transfer Mode for my HD which is Device 0 on the primary IDE channel and it is listed as PIO mode. This does not sound right to me, but can anyone tell me if it is or not? The HD itself is a Western Digital 100GB, 7200 RPM, Ultra ATA/100 drive with a 2 MB buffer. It sure seems like this should have a higher transfer rate than PIO Mode. Under Transfer Mode; DMA if available is selected, but it’s only getting PIO Mode. Any thoughts on this?

Getting back to my DVDRW, I’m not sure how to tell if an IDE cable is 40, or 80 wire, but apparently, based on what you wrote, if the cable is rated at Ultra/66 or above then by default, it is 80 wire. Is this correct? If so my cable, which is a Mad Dog, 24 inch, Premium ATA 133 round cable, would qualify, so I guess that is all right. Does it matter if the cable is round, or flat? Oh, also I am using the same brand, and rating of cable for my HD except it is shorter, and supports only one device.

Certainly I can switch my Pioneer DVDRW from master to slave, and I will try it to see what difference that makes. Currently I am using CSEL on it, and the CDRW on the same IDE channel. Is this the best way, or would I be better off moving the jumpers on both devices, and designating one the master, and one the slave?

Thanks for the tip on the RW media.

Currently quality doesn’t matter that much since I can use anything while I am just trying to get the thing to work, but once I actually start making back ups, quality very well could matter. Also I’d love to be using 8x rather that4x for obvious reasons. I’m sure I am not a very good internet searcher, but I cannot find 8x +RWs by Ricoh, or Verbatim for sale anywhere, well not from the states anyway. I found a couple of leads from UK vendors, but I’d rather avoid the added shipping, and time, costs, if possible. Any ideas?

By the way, the only reason I chose +RWs over –RWs is that the maximum speed of this writer for +RW is 8X while the maximum speed for –RW is 6X, and that seems to be true with a lot of writers. Of course this doesn’t matter much if I can never find 8x +RWs but I am confident I will be able to find them somewhere, eventually.

What I am really curious about is the relative merits of the + format versus the – format. I’m sure this subject has been written about at great length here, and in other places as well. If someone could point me in the direction of some of this information, I’d appreciate it.

Well, once again, thanks for the help, past and future.


Doug D

The hard drive should be set to DMA that will for sure slow down your burn change it.

info on how to change here


Thanks for the tip!

I followed the instructions on the link provided and after two reboots my HD shows Current Transfer Mode: Ultra DMA Mode 5

While my DVD burner is still burning slower than it should, it made some definite improvement, and I saw improvement in some other areas as well.

I can’t imagine how it got out of Ultra DMA mode in the first place though. Based on the method used to reset it, it seems that when I first booted the computer, the HD should have set to Ultra DMA Mode 5 and stayed there. I know I didn’t change it, since I was unaware of the setting in the first place, but somehow it got into PIO Mode.

Oh well! I guess that’s computers for ya.

Thanks again,

Doug D.

Yes I knew that would make a big change. Windows will step it down if it runs into problem withouth even letting you know. This in most case happens when you first gett the computer or install xp but I for one check the DMA every three months or so or if I have a problem

Hi Doug.

Looks like you’re getting it sorted OK.

If I don’t refer to anything in your last 2 posts then that’ll be because it’s OK.

On the Pioneer, I’d try switching the 2 devices to that the Pio is on the end connector & the CD-RW is connected to the middle one. I use CSEL on all my devices & that works OK for me.

Regarding RW media. Verbatim 4x +RW is fine as is Verbatim 6x -RW (reckoned by some to be the best). I was lucky enough to get some 8x Ricoh some time ago but haven’t seen then recently. And finally on this there are , I believe, Verbatim 8x RW around but never seen them myself.

Not sure if your burning speed is OK now, but do note that on any high speed media like 16x that the 16x speed is only achieved towards the very end of the burn. It’ll start at about 4/6x & slowly work up.

Thanks for the PM btw.

Thanks for the responses, and the help!

I will switch the Pioneer to the master position to see if it improves things further, but it has already made a big difference when I got the HD switched back to DMA. I sure was glad to learn about that, and I will be checking on it from time to time.

I do understand that high speed media does not burn at a constant rate. I imagine this is even true with 8X. Still, it is still nice to have as fast a media as possible. At least for longer burns.

I’ll keep looking for some 8X +RWs by one of those reliable companies. Actually, the only 8X +Rws I have found were from Memorex, but according to Nero Info Tool they actually rate at 2.4X. What a gyp!

On another note, in a completely unscientific survey, I conducted tonight in a couple of stores I happened to be in, it sure looked like there was a lot more + media on the shelves than – media. Has anybody else noticed anything like this?

I realize that all machines support both media types, so unlike the VHS versus Beta format war of the late 70’s/early 80’s, there is no strong reason one DVD media type should push the other out, but does anyone think it might be happening anyway?

Doug D.

I learned a long time on cdrs never buy if it say memorex and would never by one of there dvds.

That’ll probably be because the burner’s firmware doesn’t support this particular RW media.

I bought 8X Ridata DVD-R. Turns out they were junk 2x media that made more coasters then backups. I would say try a variety of media. And yes make sure your in DMA mode and not PIO. That would slow ya down to.

Taiyo Yuden and Verbatim is my choice.

auctually i was thinking of buying Memorex 8x dvd-r are they really that bad all i want is 2 burn home movies from my hd to dvd

anyway advice will b helpful

If it says Memorex (or Ritek/Ridisc/Ridata) on the packaging then best to ignore it.

I just checked to see if perhaps they had any 8X RW media. No dice there.

I’m definately in the same camp as Flopbuster. I use only Verbatim and Taiyo Yuden media myself. I avoid Ritek like the PLAUGE! I guess the quality of the Ritek CD’s is ok, but after having been badly burned on their DVD+R media, I have vowed never to give them another penny of my hard-earned money.

Memorex is a company that buys alot of their product from Ritek. They just put their own name on it. I don’t use that media at all. You will find, as you learn more and more about this stuff, that there are actualy only a handfull of companies that actualy MAKE media. Most brand named media was actualy manufactured by one of these few companies.

Taiyo Yuden is one of the very best, (Although their recent offering of 16X medias has been a big dissapointment.) You will find that there are a few companies, such as Sony and until recently, Fuji, that buy quite a bit of their stock from TY.

The Verbatim stuff is largly produced by Mitshbishi Chemical Corp. (MCC), although now MCC is contracting this production to two companies, CMC and Prodisk. There are ways to determine which of these two companies actualy pressed the disks, both with, and without opening the package.

DVD + or - RW media does in fact burn slower that R, and further, it is in fact, less stable. What I have found for myself is, when it comes to backing up data files, I’m far better off doing so with an external hard disk drive. It’s faster, I don’t have to switch disks every 4 gigs, I can erase and re-record to it RELIABLY a virtualy unlimited number of times.

Perhaps I’m a little obsessive, but I actualy run a raid 1 (Mirroring), AND back up my data files to an external disk. Then if I get a virus on the machine that’s destructive, the extrnal drive is not affected.

So, anyway, welcome to 'Freaks. :slight_smile:


I’ve had this problem since i got this DVD-Writer, Pioneer DVD-RW DVR-110D, i have the newest firmware updated and have burn many successful DVD-R (before i updated firmware, since firmware i get nothing but trouble writting on Memorex 16X disks, but no problem 99% of the tine on writting on the 8X disk). WIth the firmware update it detected that the DVD-RW can do a max of 12X.

Onto my problem, with the “How long should it take to burn a DVD” i was chatting wtih a friend complaining about how long it takes me to burn a successful DVD (45 FREAKING MINUTES!!! no matter what it says it’s writting at), and he was shocked as he can make a dvd at 8X in like 15 min or so… So i ask, WTF is wrong with my DVDRW if ‘says’ it’s burning at 8X but taking 45 minutes to completely burn + verify. :a :a :a :a :a

I am just backing up files from the HD since my 3rd 250gig HD is failing, i can recover some data with scndsk /f? or something like that, but it will still fail and make folders unaccessable to reading (i fully downloaded Black Blood Brothers, 1-12?) from bittorent the next day the folder was unaccessable, haven’t bothered to recover the folder atm as i’m trying to download other anime. :doh: :sad:

Now is this normal? even a 32X? CD takes a good 1/2 hour to burn. I don’t have that much ram in it, but should that matter? i can have absolutely nothing running but what ‘has’ to be running but that doesn’t make it burn any faster. :a

I burn using Nero 6.something, we have 7 but we lost the serial code too lazy to find one atm on the net. I have tried others that are free burning and it automatically for “fastest” detect burned at 1X to take 45 mins, even forcing it to write at 12X, still said it’d take rougly 45mins+ to burn. :a

This goes for no matter how long the DVD is, if i’m only putting on 2 gigs to 4.4gigs, dunno if that matters at all. Sure the DVD’s were cheap, but so were the 8X disks that i baught that worked, but am i going nuts or is 45 mins for any amount of megs/gigs right on a dvd-r? :confused:

PLEASE HELP!!! :bow: :bow: :bow: :sad: :sad: :sad:

It sounds very much like you have your burner set on PIO mode as opposed to DMA.

Read post 6 in this thread on how to sort it.

I agree with Anthony.1uk above, although I believe he meant to say your HD instead of your burner.

In any case you should follow the instructions in post 6 above to verify that your HD is in DMA mode.

I did this, the instructions are fairly easy to follow, and it made a world of difference, and not just in DVD burning either.

Apparently a DVD writer can only write the data as fast as the HD can transfer it, and PIO mode is very slow indeed.

Doug D.