NEC 3520: CD-part broken (twice!)

vbimport

#1

Hi all!

Can somebody tell me if recording software (Padus DiscJuggler v4.5) can kill the CD-Part of a DVD writer?

Three weeks ago I bought the NEC 3520 and burnt a couple of CDs successfully; last weekend I tried to burn some data on an DVD(+RW). After some starting problems DiscJuggler managed to put the data on the disc.

Monday morning I was shocked to see that the drive didn’t recognize any CDs anymore; even on a different computer after inserting the disc the green light on the front was on for about 1 minute and then nothing. DVDs could still be read without problems.

So I went to my computer store an I got a new drive; a quick test showed that everything was all right! Then I tried to burn a DVD with DiscJuggler again (how could I know…?). And now the big crisis: after the burn the CD-part of the drive was broken again!!!

Can recording software kill cd CD-laser but leave the DVD-head intact? Does anybody know about this problem? Has someone an explanation? Ist the drive dead for goood or just a firmware problem? I need Help!

Bye.


#2

Hello magneto42.

The short answer to your question is no, absolutely not. What is actually happening and what you perceive to be happening can be completely different.

Software developers follow various specifications when developing software that can write to drives. Examples of these specifications include Multimedia Commands (MMC) and Mt. Fuji Commands for Multimedia Devices. We all use these same specifications and the guidelines they contain to create software capable of writing. If you had the means to log the sequence of commands sent from two different software applications to your drive, you would see that the sequences are relatively similar, if not identical.

I can guarantee you that there are no commands in these specifications that can be used to “kill” a drive or any part of a drive. There is a remote possibility that a defect in a drive or its firmware could result in the drive “dying” after a command sequence was issued from software, but I have experienced this only once in my years of experience and it was with early firmware on an early engineering sample.

From what I can gather from the limited details in your post, you could very well be experiencing an issue caused by a software conflict. Have you installed any new software with CD/DVD writing capabilities lately? Is the software running? Is any software with CD/DVD writing capabilities running when you experience this issue? It could be that some software is filtering the drive as soon as a blank disc is inserted, and it is a mere coincidence that it happened after you burned a DVD with DiscJuggler.

Still, this could be a hardware issue that we need to do a few tests on before you proceed with your own solutions. It would be best if you sent an e-mail into support@padus.com with an unmodified event log (can be generated by using File » Export once the task is complete) of you burning a DVD with this drive. This would provide me with the necessary details of your system and configuration so that I can regress the issue. I happen to have a few NEC ND-3520A that I can use for testing, and if I manage to “kill” them, I know where to get more.

Thanks!


#3

Hello Joel.

Thank for the reply.

First, a conflict with other software can be completely eliminated. I tried to read different CDs (pressed, self burnt, blank) on different operating systems (Win NT, Win 98SE, DOS) with different computers; my computer store made their own quick test with the same result.

Since I brought back the second dead drive to my computer store and they wouldn’t give me a third one, I am not able to make any hardware tests myself at the time.

But I try to recollect what I was doing at the time I tried to burn the DVD and how the computer was responding. First I put some Files/Folders from the Explorer into a new session of the disc project. Since I wanted to add data to the disc at a later time I unchecked the ‘Close disc’ option. After hitting the ‘Start’-button the ‘Cycle’-progressbar started to fill until it showed 100% and then dropped to 0%. The green light on my writer went on and off a couple of times and then…nothing really happened! After a couple of minutes I had to kill DiscJuggler from the task-manager and restart the program. Then I tried the same procedure but this time with the ‘Close disc’ option on and the burn was successful with the exception than I couldn’t read CDs afterwards.

I am still at loss what happened to the drive. The guy at the computer store made a guess that it had something to do with the recalibration of the laser.But I cannot believe that DiscJuggler or the NEC drive would need to do such things. Why is the CD-laser affected when I try to burn a DVD?

Sorry that I cannot give you an event log but I still hope you can help me.

Bye.


#4

Hi.

After you experienced issues with DiscJuggler freezing, did you restart your system? This is highly recommended as it is likely that the interface your drive was using was locked. Once your system was restarted, the NEC drive should be back to normal. Is it still not able to write CDs on this system and other systems you put the drive in?

Do you know what firmware you are using? It’d help me test this issue if I could use the same firmware. If possible, I’d also like to know the brand and type of media you are using.

I should also point out that DiscJuggler does not have support for multi-session DVDs. The “Close disc” check box should be checked by default and disabled, but it is only checked by default and allows users to change its status.


#5

The same thing happened to my 3520 but i dont use DiscJuggler i ended up RMAing the drive.


#6

Hello.

To Joel:
Yep, I did restart my system several times, even disconnected it from the current supply. Especially after putting the drive into a different computer the restart can be considered very cold. Still the drive didn’t recognize ANY CDs, not blanks or any other. DVDs were recognized and could be read though.

The firmware was v1.04 8th wich can be found here . And no, I didn’t flash my drive, I was just making a firmware dump (I’m not into deliberately messing up my things within warranty time).

As to your last point, when the ‘Close disc’ option shouldn’t be touched by the user, what did DiscJuggler do then? What commands were sent do the drive? Is multi-session DVD planned in the near future?

To Slimey:
What software were you using? Were you still able to read/write DVDs?

Bye.


#7

nero, dvd decrypter, and alcohol 120%

yes i could do anything and everything with dvd media just not cd


#8

It really sounds as if the drive and/or firmware has a defect. If Slimey experienced the same issue with different software under a completely different environment, it is certainly a hardware issue.

The firmware was v1.04 8th wich can be found here . And no, I didn’t flash my drive, I was just making a firmware dump (I’m not into deliberately messing up my things within warranty time).

So you aren’t using a hacked/community firmware, but the official NEC firmware? Is it the latest firmware? New firmware might be the solution to this issue. Have you attempted to contact NEC?

As to your last point, when the ‘Close disc’ option shouldn’t be touched by the user, what did DiscJuggler do then? What commands were sent do the drive? Is multi-session DVD planned in the near future?

DiscJuggler will always close the disc, if the option is checked or not. Support for multi-border/multi-session DVD is still on the table. The development team has not made any concrete plans at this time in regards to DiscJuggler.


#9

So you aren’t using a hacked/community firmware, but the official NEC firmware? Is it the latest firmware? New firmware might be the solution to this issue. Have you attempted to contact NEC?

I am not using unofficial firmware (I’m not against it, I’m just old enough to wait until warranty time is over AND a necessity occurs). I was using the firmware that came with the drive which is the latest official from NEC. A new firmware is announced but not yet published. I made contact with NEC support service here in Germany. They asked for some more information, so I wrote them my story and now I am waiting for a helpful reply…

DiscJuggler will always close the disc, if the option is checked or not.

But DiscJuggler wouldn’t burn at all with the option un-checked. There was no error message either. And because it wasn’t responding to any of my actions I had to kill with the task-manager. So - at least on my system - there IS a difference if the option is checked or not. Seems DiscJuggler sent some commands to the drive and waited for a response that never came.

Regards.


#10

Under normal circumstances, DiscJuggler will always close the disc, if the option is checked or not. I’m fairly certain at this point that your drive/configuration doesn’t fall under normal circumstances. Something is not right with this drive; it is my hope that NEC will be able to provide you with assistance.


#11

There is no reply from NEC service to date and I’m still puzzled what happend to my drives. But I tend to agree with you that if DiscJuggler is using normal MMC comand sequences with a drive and it goes broke there has to be something wrong with the drive. Pity I was too fast with returning the defect drives without making a log-file…

Joel, I thank you very much for your helpful service so far and I still think DiscJuggler is a great piece of work :D.

Bye.


#12

Hi magneto42.

Thank you for your comments. I hope that you will be able to get service from NEC, either directly or by means of a future firmware update.

Take care.