It is just me or do plextors suck?

Ok, I’m having some issues with a plextor 716al burner. This is me third drive and I can’t figure out what the problem is. Here are the basic stats on my machine. It’s a dell optiplex. It’s not over clocked or anything. I’m running 2 80 gig hard drives, 2 gigs of memory, on board video and sound, pcmcia to pci card with my Alltel data card, a plextor 716al drive, and a Samsung cd-rw drive. I’m using nero6 with all of the updates to burn, and I’m burning to good media. The latest version of dvd43 is what I use to take care of any regional encryption. I also have an apc battery back up on the system. The first drive worked fine for a week or two, then it began giving me errors when burning. The burn would stop during the burn process where it’s still copying files from the original DVD. I called tech support and they told me to put the latest firmware on the drive. I did that and it still didn’t help. The drive complete died. I couldn’t do anything with it so I got an rma for it. The second drive went in fine. I burned a DVD or two no problems. After a little while it began to error out during the burn process too. Same thing it would die during the copying of the original DVD, so I know it’s not a media issue. I got an rma for it and returned it thinking it might have been damaged during shipping. Now the third one is doing the same thing. When I boot my machine the apc spins the power supply and the machine does a false boot kind of thing, but doesn’t really boot until I press power and turn it on. Could this be messing up my drive? I’ve done the Nero data test on the drive and it gives me an error also. Any help would greatly be appreciated.

Also, I’m running Nero 6 with all of the updates. The other thing I noticed is that when I open Nero and try to do system info it freezes. It finds the plextor drive and that’s it. I do have two IDE drives hooked up. The master is the Plextor and the slave is a Samsung cd-rw. I have them connected via the ide ribbon cable that came with the plextor. When I go into my device manager I only have 2 primary IDE channels. Shouldn’t there be 2 secondary channels also?

Maybe your using non-MS IDE drivers if only seeing two Primary Channels? Are the HDs SATA?


Any ideas as to why the drive is dying? I really do like the drive. I wish I could get though all of these problems and just enjoy it.

try it in another PC (friends, family members, etc.)…

It’s the drive. I’ve checked it in a few other machines and the same problem. It appears that the disk is showing a jitter and that is stopping the burning process. When I run disk info this it the error (L-EC uncorrectiable error (031105)). The problem is that I now get that error with all dvd’s that I try to backup with the drive. Any help?

have you tried the self-test (as outlined in the manual or stickied FAQ here) with a piece of recommended media (e.g. TY, Verb/MCC)?

Bad power supplies can slowly kill optical drives over a period of time — I would look into that if you’re on drive #3 and still having strange issues.

i agree that low-quality PSUs can have a significant effect on your optical drives (not to mention everything else in your system)…

After going through two Plextor 716A drives that both died within a relatively short time (one was an RMA unit that died in less than a few months), I am inclined to believe the problem is the drive and not the PSU – my 712A has worked great and I’ve had it much longer.

I’m giving Plextor one last shot with the 760A I just purchased, and I am not all that pleased with the noise. After spinning up and reading the CD, there is a low-level spinning sound that continues for around two minutes that I didn’t hear with either the 712A or 716A.

My PX-716A works great… it doesn’t excel at anything, but it’s good at everything. I sure did earn it, though (see sig).

Anyhoo, all of my previous PX-716A’s (those that weren’t DOA) sucked in decidedly different ways. If you’ve gone through three in a row that very quickly develop the same problem, there’s a good chance that something in your rig or usage is causing it.

I am beginning to question the quality of Plextor. I’ve had two Plextors so far. PX-708A and PX-716A. They both died about a year of operation. It wouldn’t burn properly and not able to detect most of media being fed (mostly with CDs). Both were upgraded with the latest firmware.

I called Plextor tech support about 716A for RMA. They wouldn’t give it to me because I do not have a receipt and the manufacture date on the drive was 2/2005. I am two month past one year warranty period according to Plextor.
But actually, I only had this for about 9 months. I thought I paid much more for Plextor reputation but didn’t know what I was getting into.

People here say good things about Plextor, but I have two dead drives and greedy, yet uncourteous customer support experience to prove that Plextor SUCKS!

How else are they supposed to determine that the drive is indeed covered under warranty? Keeping the receipt for stuff still under warranty is, well, kinda necessary.

I understand what you are saying but let’s say I picked up the drive from the factory as soon as it was manfactured on 2/2005. That’s still 14 month. Would you be happy paying over $149+tax for 14month of use?

But then again, the newegg user review tells me there are plenty of plextor-716a users whose drives went bad after about one year.

Plextor costs at least 2 or 3 times more than other drives. I would expect little more life out of it, maybe…

No, I would not be happy. FWIW, if you looked up my posts here over the last year you’ll see I’m no fan of Plextor (the company) and I’ve switched to buying OEM “disposable” drives for - like you say - 1/3 the cost. If they fail, I will just chuck 'em and get another one, and not have to bother with receipts and shipping and RMA status…

My 712 is coming up on 2 years old and has burned 100s of CDs and DVDs and still performs well. When I bought it, it was a little bit less than double the price of the competitor units. Since then, prices have dropped to about half of what they were.

Except Plextor. When you have the receipt, the warranty service from them is generally good, but let’s face it: is one drive with a good warranty worth 3 new (say, LG or BenQ) drives? Opinions differ, but mine is “no”.

INHO it entirely depends on your needs. For me, for example, the ability to overburn DVDs is worth it alone. Many times i’ve had data compilations that would just not fit on a DVD because of a “%&*#” extra megabyte or two. No problem with a Plextor but you’d be sunk with any other brand.

This feature is a great one for me too. But remember the new Benq offers it aswell, also on DVD-R and well my 712 can burn only at 4x. (at least if I want to have a readable disk at the end…:D) So quality of today’s Plextors can be really questioned. I have had 2 PX SCSI CD-ROMs since 1996-1997 and both work fine. Now, reading these pages, looks like for that high price there are TOO many problematic Plextor drives. I say, most of us would expect much more reliability from a product of such a company like PX, and for such a high price what they sell their products for. :rolleyes:

regards, Stephen

Totally agree.
I don’t mind paying a premium for a solid drive, which Plextor had a powerful reputation for in the past, but these days their drives seem to be made no better than cheap LiteOn drives!!

They need to sort that out or many people will just leave them…

My $50 BenQ 1640 says different… :kiss: :bigsmile:

I wonder how many Plextor buyers actually use the whizzbang features that come with their drive? When I first got mine, I tried out VariRec and quickly learned that I’d go through an entire spindle of discs just getting one to scan as good as using the default writing strat. GigaRec, well, I used that a couple of times, but if I want more storage I just use a DVD instead of CDR. And 18X burning on the 760? I bet most people just drop it back to 16X for quality reasons anyways.

I guess if you do use those features, though, the extra price might be worth it.

Yes I myself also left Varirec alone a long time ago because of the same reason as ftp1020 did.:smiley: I used Gigarec once a while, created some readable disks so it is worth a try in some extra cases. Scanning is ok, but other “extra” functions are not really needed (except the overburning) I mean, seems the number of problematic posts in this thread are just the same as in other threads while the number of sold units may be much smaller. :frowning: So seems the number of problems compared to the number of sold units is very high here. And yes, even PX offers 2 years warranty (where at all they offer :D) none is that happy to RMA a drive in every 3rd month. looks some people RMAed 4 or more drives already For me the answer is easy, yes I am done with Plextor.

regards, Stephen

pS: I was wrong in my last post, the Benq can do overburning on DVD+R media only… unfortunatelly I was unable to edit my post.:slight_smile: