Is this DW1620 unit defective ? PLEASE HELP!

I’ve had nothing but trouble ever since I’ve bought this drive.

At first I had it installed on a older system, and after much experimenting and many coasters (but also some finely burned discs along the way, strangely) I finally decided to move it to a new and more up to date machine.

Right now it’s like this:

CPU: P4-3.0Ghz Prescott (slot 478)
MB: Foxconn 865A01-PE-6EKRS (i865 chipset)
OS: Windows 98SE

Master Controller: 2x Seagate Barracuda 7200rpm HD - UDMA, set to DMA in Windows (BIOS = ATA 100)

Secondary Controller: only the BenQ DW1620 at the moment, set as master and set to DMA in Windows (BIOS = ATA 33)

Cabling: 80 wire UDMA cables for HD and DVDRW

Device Manager: sees HD controller as “Intel® 82801EB Ultra ATA Storage Controllers” (for those of you using Windows 98/SE with Intel chipsets, is this what you’re supposed to see ?)

BenQ Firmware: B7T9

Now for the problem: 75% of the times I’m going to burn a DVD, shit happens. That’s right, 75% of the times. Effectively, sometimes the drive seems to be working just fine and burns discs neatly, sometimes it’s not and burns fail systematically. When they’re failing, I notice a low noise (similar to the StarWars Millennium Falcon’s hyperdrive failure, I swear :stuck_out_tongue: ) coming from the drive as it starts the burning process. I don’t remember hearing this noise when the drive is burning discs normally.

What bugs me the most is the completely erratic behaviour. Just yesterday I’ve burned several DVD’s with no problems whatsoever. Today, as I woke up and turned on my PC and prepared to burn a few more, my BenQ was at it again. There was no hardware or software change of any kind that I’m aware (it’s only me using the PC anyway) in between.

I already tried:

-Trying the drive as slave coupled with a DVDROM drive in the same controller, or as a standalone master
-Flashing BenQ with different firmware revisions (P9, T9)
-Uninstalling controllers in Windows, reboot and let them be reinstalled
-Reinstalling chipset controllers from the MB install CD
-Several different DVD-R and DVD+R brands, all included in BenQ’s official supported list of media

I’m at my wit’s end. One day the drive seems fine, the next day wastes me a full pack of discs, then seems fine again in the morning, then reverts to crap again in the afternoon…

Is there something I can still try to hopefully sort this out permanently, or should I just go back to the place I’ve bought it and try to have it replaced ?

Thanks in advance.

It might not make much difference but its worth a try anyway but try these Intel chipset drivers the ones that ship on the MB CD tend to be rather old.

Also try installing ForceASPI heard it helps for Win9X systems

I’d say if your older PC was also having trouble it could be a defective drive and best save yourself some frustration and RMA it (Personally speaking though, Win9x is a fairly flaky OS & I would if I could at least try it with Win2K or XP before returning it)

If what 8T8 doesn’t work I suggest try this:

  1. Download B7L9 from BenQ’s Website
  2. Boot Into Safe Mode
  3. Flash the Drive with B7L9
  4. Restart the computer into normal mode
  5. Burn a test disc on known good media to ensure a good burn at rated speed!
  6. After successful burn flash to B7T9 (or P9 but I prefer B7T9!)
  7. Reboot again and see if it works

Sounds like a drive with a failing/failed flash and this might procedure might help clean it up. :wink:

That sound could also indicate a faulty power supply. Wasn’t that it in Star Wars too? :slight_smile:

I had the unit replaced today. So far the new one doesn’t produce the weird sounds I mentioned (but then again so didn’t the first unit for a while). I’m performing several tests as I type this.

One thing I noticed and which I hadn’t noticed before is that some of the DVDR’s I had burned previously only give me unrecoverable read errors both with Nero DVD Speed and DVD Decrypter in ISO read mode when using my older model DVDROM drive to test. If I test the same discs with the BenQ drive itself no read errors are produced.

You think this means the BenQ drive might not be too reliable to do post-burning quality tests, or it’s other way around and it’s my older DVDROM (which otherwise seems to be working just fine with CD’s and factory pressed DVD’s) which might just not like those burns or maybe some DVDR disc brands and is producing false alarms ?