Iâ€™m posting in the newbie section because thatâ€™s what I am â€“ at least to the wondrous yet frustrating world of DVD (I'm also pretty new at this posting thing - so let me know if this one is too long and boring).
I own a Lite-On SOHW-812S (Single Layer, FW level = US0F, which is how it came out of the box about 12 months ago).
The drive is externally housed in a generic brand 5.25â€ box and connected via firewire to a modestly equipped PC (P4-2.66GHz, 1GB, 2*80GB, XP/SP2).
The 812S works just fine â€“ at least it does with 4x TDK and OPTIstorage branded discs (which DVD Identifier tells me are really RICOHJPN - Media Type ID R01 Product Revision 002).
Naturally I now have a few dumb questions:
The firmware on the 812S is probably getting a bit long in the tooth. Is the latest upgrade (US0Q) â€œsafeâ€? IE: given my setup whatâ€™s the recommendation about moving from US0F to US0Q? Yes, No, Maybe?
Iâ€™ve never flashed anything in my life because Iâ€™ve heard so many horror stories about â€œbad flashesâ€ that Iâ€™m very weary. Thereâ€™s an old adage about not fixâ€™n stuff which ainâ€™t broke â€“ but if that were true then it seems half this website wouldnâ€™t exist .
Anyway, Iâ€™ve downloaded US0Q from liteon.com but have also discovered OmniPatcher. If I were to upgrade which one should I be using and why? Iâ€™ve read the OmniPatcher doco and a few of the threads but Iâ€™m afraid most of the concepts donâ€™t mean much to me right now. Obviously OmniPatcher exists to satisfy the needs of advanced users, but what's in it for a newbie?
Irrespective of whether I go with the native, windows-based Lite-On flasher or OmniPatcher â€“ will they work with a firewire connected 812S?
Finally, would it be really annoying to the DVD Gods if I raised the following ancient but apparently unresolved questions?
Can the 812S be successfully upgraded to dual layer. Iâ€™ve read about the 832S and also the Sony DRU-700A (and even have the VS05 and VY05 firmware upgrades), but the Lite-On website driver page shows the 812S as â€œSOHW-812S ( 8x 4x / 8x 4x + 40x 24x 40x ) DVD Dual Firmwareâ€ which to my way of thinking suggests that the latest firmware provides support for dual layer (even though the spec doesnâ€™t appear to include a write speed for +R9, if thatâ€™s the right lingo).
Is it safe to attempt this upgrade, and is it sensible? Are there any downsides (apart from the cost of media?) If the answer is go for it â€“ what firmware and installer should I be using?
I know the price of 9GB media is dropping, but the only reason I want the extra space is that I'd like less compression and more content on my rips. Unfortunately thatâ€™s all a bit academic since my copy of DVD Shrink (v3.2) only seems to support single layer discs. Is there a freebie ripper out there that supports the new 9GB media?
I live in Australia (RC4) and most of my original discs are local, but occasionally I need to import something from the US which I simply canâ€™t buy in Oz.
Whatâ€™s the best, simplest, and safest way to get my Lite-On 812S Burner and also my DVD Reader (LG aka HL-DT-STDVD-ROM GDR 8161B) region free?
Looking forward in anticipation to a response that doesnâ€™t tell me how to use the search function.