LG GSA-4120B: What is the Best Way to Flash DVD-RW Firmware?

I purchased the LG drive model GSA-4120B which originally came with firmware “A102”. I flashed with the latest official firmware “A111” and not sure if the problem is related to the new firmware or not, I just noticed that the drive no longer read the DVD-RAM discs that I recorded with the firmware “A102”, it is showing as a blank disc asking if I want to format.

When I called LG technical support, I was informed that I should never “Jump Up” when flashing firmware, the recommendation is to always “Step Up”, in another words start with original “A102” than go to “A104”, next “A110” and last “A111”. Also technical support told me that I can’t flash back to the original firmware.

Please let me know what is the correct way to flash firmware, not sure if are different recommendations depending who is the manufacture or if this is a standard procedure.

I appreciate your comments.

Thank you,
Wilson :bow:

Was it really an LG tech support person? You can not only jump UP but also jump DOWN. Hm… it’s not a ladder but a flat playground. Whenever you call someone in HP or LG, it’s highly likely the support person is ignorant of almost everything. Why should a knowledgeable person work waiting for phone calls when there are millions of people wanting to call at the same time? Better to employ the same person to write FAQ’s or write better firmware or design better hardware.

The problem you had with the DVD-RAM disks is probably not related to firmware, but the disk itself.

Tried to flash again to any other firmware? Visit http://kenny.storageinfo.co.kr/firmware/lg and choose anything next to GSA-4120B.

I also went from A102 to A111 and no problem with the DVD-RAM issue you stated.
But, I have two DVD-RAM disks ( Maxell 2X and Panasonic 2X ) in their original factory
format gone bad with some “unrecoverable read errors” after just four months of use.
Luckily, they were just mp3’s that I, …ahem… , downloaded. For the most part they are
readable with a couple of bad blocks in each. They were both perfect with no errors before,
maybe a month ago, and I also treat my disks with utmost care too.

Once, I even thought DVD-RAM is so robust that it is invinsible to data corruption. Now,
I am going to check back more often. Maybe I have to reformat both disks to clear up
the errors on the bad areas.

So, just a warning: even our coveted reliable brand name DVD-RAM disks are NOT PERFECT!
Save yourselves some grief. Check back more often if you got VERY IMPORTANT information
stored on them!


Thank you for your fast reply and comments. I called the LG USA technical support 3 times, hoping that I could get somebody else with a different answer, unfortunately every time I called at different days and time the response was the same. Nothing beats the knowledge and experience of this forum.


Lessons learned. I used to buy Panasonic DVD-RAM and Maxell (made in Japan) media, now I realize that I can’t rely on DVD-RAM as I was originally expecting. I purchased a 250 GB external drive to store all my data instead of archiving in the DVD-RAM discs.

Thank you,
Wilson :iagree:

DVD-RAM was meant to be used in cartridges and that was why DVD-RAM was regarded as “safe” in the first place. Even without cartridges, it is safer than RW-type media. But cartridgeless-RAM media are not even as safe as floppy disks. It’s going to be same with Blu-ray. Blu-ray was first promoted to be THE format because it uses cartridges. Later, they announced Blu-ray was also going to be mostly without the protective casing to make them more compatible and easier to make. Usually, those cartridges seem like for marketing only. Same about the x100 strong TDK DVD media. What’s good about them if they are not available at reasonable cost?

BTW, the very first and only 5x DVD-RAM of mine also had some defects. No full format allowed at all. 3x DVD-RAM was bundled with GSA-4082B and it was perfect. The 5x DVD-RAM disk was not a new disk.

To me, multiple HDDs is the safest backup media. Not one, but multiple. Not software backup but on my own, very manual. For even more important things, even HDDs on remote servers of my own and web-hard services and GB email accounts. I never trust an optical media for backup use. :bigsmile: It’s true both HDD and ODD are unreliable. But HDD is much faster and easier to use so it’s far easier to have redundant backups with HDDs than ODDs. When I feel a 200GB HDD seems to be unreliable, I can copy the contents to another HDD which just takes a few hours (unattended backup, that is.)


It would be nice if LG drives in the future would also accept DVD-RAM discs with cartridges. Not sure why it is not offered with the current drives, maybe it is to save cost towards royalty payments.


It has to do manufacturing cost. Unlike Matsushita, LG targets very mass users. Like 50 million per year and more. Matsushita DVD-RAM drives are very expensive compared to LG DVD-RAM drives. I noticed Matsushita also has drives that do not accept cartridge-type DVD-RAM disks and those drives are much cheaper than the ones that do.

I bought LG DVD writers because they were cheap. If I wanted maximum data security and performance, I should have bought Sony blue laser SCSI recorders. :bigsmile:

Good point. I purchased 2 LG drives 4120 and 4163 and I am very happy with the price-performance and still checking compatibility with different media and formats. I will visit the link you sent me to flash my 111 firmware back to 102 and see if can recover the data I may still have on DVD-RAM disc to copy to the HD.