Nec 3540 Burning problems @16x with Verbatim certified 16x Media

Hi guys,

I’ve got this strage issue regarding my old NEC 3540 and its starting to bother me: during the last 2 years, since i bought this great burner, ive used Verbatim media, and at this time i only use Verbatim DVD+R MCC004 (16x Certified). The thing is that when i burn a DVD using the 16x speed, like ive used to do sometimes without any problems, when i use “Nero Discspeed” to check the reliability of the DVD i’ve got the following results:

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: DVD+R (MCC 004)
Selected speed: Maximum
PI errors
Maximum: 5511
Average: 342.02
Total: 4386072
PI failures
Maximum: 748
Average: 1.76
Total: 180131
PO failures: n/a
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 4:24
Number of samples: 12580
Average scanning interval: 8.16 ECC
Glitches removed: 0

This results repeats 10 out of 10 DVDs i burn, all dvds get a score of 0 ZERO.

I’ve noticed that sometimes the led on the drive starts blinking when it passes the 60%-70% of the burning process and stays like that until the end.

I can’t tell when this started to happen but i can advance that my PC were recently formatted and it got a fresh new XP on it. I use, like always, Nero Burning Rom, now using v8.3.2.1, my HDD are both Fujitsu MAP3735NP (yes, im a speed freak :smiley: ) and there is no way that the problem is from the speed from the HDDs, plus i used them before witj sucess with this burner. I’ve got the UDMA activated in the IDE controller and i use the Nvidia drivers for it. I thing this is prety much for now…

Any ideas on what can i do to get this back on track and burn 16x without this issues?

Thanks in advance

How does a Transfer Rate Test [in the Benchmark tab, click Run Test > Transfer Rate]?

Don’t use maximum speed to test the disk. Use 5x.

[QUOTE=pfloyd1;2122648]Don’t use maximum speed to test the disk. Use 5x.[/QUOTE]
I always scan my discs at 16x with my 3540 :o
But different drives seem to give different results

[QUOTE=Albert;2122609]How does a Transfer Rate Test [in the Benchmark tab, click Run Test > Transfer Rate]?[/QUOTE]

Albert, thanks for your reply. I’m going to test it right now…Here it goes:

At this point of the test it stops and appears an error message: “Error! No seek complete (030200)”

Not good i think…

I´ve got to say this also, i forgot: if i burn @8x the DVD cames out with a score of 97-98 and the PI Failure stays as low as 0,01 or sometimes 0,00.
Please don’t tell me to use 8x…i’m used to 16x.:frowning:

[QUOTE=pfloyd1;2122648]Don’t use maximum speed to test the disk. Use 5x.[/QUOTE]

Thanks for your reply Pink Floyd. I usualy test all my media at maximum speed and so far i didn’t have any trouble. But here it goes the test result @5x:

Until 60% ± it goes like this (like in Maximum speed):

And then goes to this:

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: DVD+R (MCC 004)
Selected speed: 5 X
PI errors
Maximum: 5358
Average: 713.93
Total: 12579372
PI failures
Maximum: 1621
Average: 39.71
Total: 5596954
PO failures: n/a
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 15:54
Number of samples: 17599
Average scanning interval: 8.01 ECC
Glitches removed: 0

It’s not good also…:frowning:

[QUOTE=Liggy;2122709]I always scan my discs at 16x with my 3540 :o
But different drives seem to give different results[/QUOTE]

Thanks for your prompt answer. Yes, i usually use Maximum speed to test all media. So far didn’t have any problems, now its different…:confused:

Can you do us another favor, and create a data disc using Discspeed? [In the Create Disc tab, with a blank DVD inserted, click start, and post a screen shot when the burn finishes]. :slight_smile:

In addition to the re-installation of XP, have you gotten a new batch of media that could cause this?

Its the same batch of media, all media from the same pile. They are almost running out with this tests. I have to buy some more earlier then i expected :slight_smile:

Here it goes the graph after the disk creation. This one have odd lines, but they are almost equaly spaced. An other thing i’ve noticed is that the drive led blinks when the down spikes appears, this must be related for sure. Finaly i can say that the final step (after 3.8Gb ±) the drive led started to blink and never stoped until the end of the disk creation.

The SCSI error is because i have Overburn activated, correct?

This is a drive to coast? I hope not, it have been a good drive until the last few days…:confused:

Well, the downward spikes are supposed to be there, as a quality check. That’s normal.

What is NOT normal is that, after the last check, the drive never recovers to its normal burn curve.

I’ve never seen an SCSI error before. I want to suggest that you uninstall the nVidia IDE drivers and try one more time. Also, for good measure, make sure overburning is disabled…it may not write any more than normal, but we have to be sure. :wink:

Well, i went to system manager, removed the nvidia drivers (v2.6) and restarted the PC. When i restarted it the drivers were instaled again (Windows XP stock drivers, not nvidia). The Nec drive were found and it was instaled.

After this i’ve disabled the Overburn test on Nero Discspeed and here are the results:

Same story as before. Here it goes the Disc quality test also:

As bad as before. I don’t understand why the errors start at 2.5Gb if the drive only fail during the burning process at 4Gb±. Its not a strange issue?

I’m going to try the latest drivers provided by Abit, i will post in a few minutes after i test the drive with the new drivers.

By the way i run a Abit NF7-S v2.0, AMD XP 3200+, 1Gb Ram with Win XP SP3. Dont know if it is important but here it is…

If you look at the data side of an empty disc, you do not see any visible damages or something like that I suppose?

Are you able to burn these discs with a different drive or use a different batch of discs on the 3540?

All the media are in mint condition, no problem at all. Ive passed the DVD media through a straight glass to check if there are any deviations, avoiding the possibility of too much vibration. All media has passed ok on this test i made. At this very moment i’m using some crap media DVD-R (OPTODISCR016) that i have here to mess around. Next in line is an Pleomax DVD-R, from Samsung, but i thing they aren’t as good as the Verbatim media i have here. Finaly a Sony DVD+R 16x and a Verbatim CD.

At this moment i’ve installed the latest drivers from nVidia, and here are the results for the OPTODISCR016:

Disc Quality (Not good but better then Verbatim. Strange…):

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: DVD-R (OPTODISCR016)
Selected speed: Maximum
Recorder information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Write speed: 13 X
PI errors
Maximum: 4643
Average: 97.36
Total: 1747468
PI failures
Maximum: 153
Average: 0.18
Total: 26410
PO failures: n/a
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 5:17
Number of samples: 17834
Average scanning interval: 8.05 ECC
Glitches removed: 1

Now here it goes the Pleomax, also OPTODISCR016:

This time the burning speed stayed on 4x earlier than before and never recovered.

Disc Quality test:

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: DVD-R (OPTODISCR016)
Selected speed: Maximum
Recorder information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Write speed: 4 X
PI errors
Maximum: 3525
Average: 44.41
Total: 797182
PI failures
Maximum: 183
Average: 0.20
Total: 29236
PO failures: n/a
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 5:16
Number of samples: 17850
Average scanning interval: 8.05 ECC
Glitches removed: 0

At this moment i’ve got to ask: Why sometimes in the “Type” square is writen CAV and other times is P-CAV? It should use the same write strategy for the same media i think…

Now the Sony DVD+R 16x (SONYD21):

And the disc quality test:

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: DVD+R (SONY D21)
Selected speed: Maximum
Recorder information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Write speed: 4 X
PI errors
Maximum: 108
Average: 19.14
Total: 343030
PI failures
Maximum: 37
Average: 0.06
Total: 9204
PO failures: n/a
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 5:17
Number of samples: 17864
Average scanning interval: 8.03 ECC
Glitches removed: 1

Finaly a Verbatim CD, just in case…:

And the quality test:

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: Data CD (Prodisc)
Selected speed: Maximum
Recorder information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Write speed: 40 X
C1 errors
Maximum: 805
Average: 6.36
Total: 30467
C2 errors
Maximum: 899
Average: 0.25
Total: 1207
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 2:30
Number of samples: 22642
Average scanning interval: 7.41 sec
Glitches removed: 1

Well, i think that here is plenty of info to try to figure this one out. The DVD and CD burning are experincing problems on the same physical point. Hardware problem? Dirty Lens? :sad:

Try reinstalling the stock firmware and test a disc.

At this time i’m going to post a DVD burning @8x just in case you guys ask me one…

For the same OPTODISCR016 as before:

And the disk quality test:

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: DVD-R (OPTODISCR016)
Selected speed: Maximum
Recorder information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Write speed: 8 X
PI errors
Maximum: 63
Average: 8.32
Total: 149305
PI failures
Maximum: 8
Average: 0.01
Total: 1611
PO failures: n/a
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 5:17
Number of samples: 17701
Average scanning interval: 8.11 ECC
Glitches removed: 0

The Sony DVD+R 16x burning @8x:

And its disc quality test:

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: DVD+R (SONY D21)
Selected speed: Maximum
Recorder information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Write speed: 9 X
PI errors
Maximum: 169
Average: 18.17
Total: 325660
PI failures
Maximum: 7
Average: 0.03
Total: 3632
PO failures: n/a
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 5:17
Number of samples: 17886
Average scanning interval: 8.02 ECC
Glitches removed: 0

Finaly the Verbatim 16x Certified burning @8x:

And its disc quality test:

General Information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Disc: DVD+R (MCC 004)
Selected speed: Maximum
Recorder information
Drive: _NEC DVD_RW ND-3540A
Firmware: 1.W9
Write speed: 8 X
PI errors
Maximum: 265
Average: 7.91
Total: 141782
PI failures
Maximum: 10
Average: 0.02
Total: 2622
PO failures: n/a
Jitter: n/a
Scanning Statistics
Elapsed time: 5:16
Number of samples: 17808
Average scanning interval: 8.05 ECC
Glitches removed: 0

The write strategy is completly diferent but at least i can burn at a decent quality, but why cannot do it @16x? damm it…:a

[QUOTE=pfloyd1;2122934]Try reinstalling the stock firmware and test a disc.[/QUOTE]

Hy Pink Floyd,

I had before this one v1.04 (original from NEC) and the problem were the same. At this time i have modified FW, 1.W9. All around this forum ppl say that its a good FW. Do you think i should go for the old 1.01? It was the original one that came with this drive. Or do you think that i should try an other FW, or none at all?

Thanks!

Ok, flashed back to the v1.01, the very first one from NEC for this drive and here are the results for the Sony DVD+R 16x:

It seems a normal burning process…

Disc Quality at 5x:

Same old story…the journey continue…:a

Ok, i tried out a different media, this time TDK 003. The results were almost the same as usual: a 0 score…

At this time i have to ask: i do i roll back to the windows XP stock drivers? I already tried to go to System, removed the Nforce2 v2.6 drivers but as soon as i restart XP installs it again. How can i force Win XP to user older drivers? And where i can get them?

Thanks…

You will have to manually “update” your drivers to the Windows generic drivers. Go to Device Manager, find the main PATA controller [NOT the Primary and Secondary IDE channels!], right click, select “update drivers” [or something similar], and manually go through each step [don’t allow it to automatically search for you] until you get to the screen which gives you the option to install the “Standard Dual Channel PCI IDE Controller” driver, select it, and click “next” to install it.

If this doesn’t work, I suggest settling for 12x/8x or getting a new drive, if possible. It looks like it just can’t do 16x anymore…

II’ve done that now. Yep, it just can’t do the 16x…after the 50-60% of the process it looses its buffer and never recover it again. I will have to burn at 8x for now until it can, after that i will have to spend a few bucks buying a new one.

By the way, at 12x the problem repeats, i’ve tested it already.

For a new drive, what do you suggest? Plextor? i had a few years ago a PX32 and if i had it mounted on my pc i bet it would be just fine :slight_smile: