you seem to be quite novice and confused. nvm, here we got many ppl who can enlighten you.
if u are not putting in a DVD-R/+R media into ur nec3520, check the nero burning speed option. u will see 16x.
once you pop in a media, you will see the maximum speed in the speed option, and this is determined by the write strategy in nec3520 firmware for that particular media.
in your case, your media is obviously not possible for >8x burning.
i guess these answer all ur queries here.
to make things clearer, u can use CDSPEED that comes with any Nero or DVDINFOPRO from www.dvdinfopro.com
Please note caps are used for emphasis, since it seems that some of my statements were accidentally missed.
1) I'm not a novice to computers. I've been a tech for 20 years and also taught everything from subatomic theory to global wireless networks and have applied it in the real world as well.
2) I am new to DVD burning specifically (I have burned many CD's).
3) Nero reported 8X as the max, but did manage to read about 9.5X by the end of the disk.
4) I had never previously heard of a drive somehow detecting the write speed of a media, when a blank media is installed. I am not saying that isn't the case with DVD's. I had just never heard of that before, since it is blank media. What is it "reading"? Maybe you can educate me there, as I am always willing to learn and I don't know everything.
5) Please don't misunderstand me. I'm not trying to be rude here. But I don't know how I can get this across any clearer. Please read my post CAREFULLY, thanks. I do NOT get 16X when I DON'T have a blank in the drive, using Nero. At that point, before I hit "BURN", I should be able to set the speed to whatever the drive is capable of, since there is NO BLANK in the drive. I CANNOT however, do that. It stays at a max of 8X, although ONCE since my original post, it did show 16X and that was with an 8X disc (from the same stack) in the drive.
6) I am NOT trying to burn at 16X on an 8X disc. I just want to know if something is wrong with my drive, since I CANNOT set it at 16X, even though there is NO DISC in the drive, when I get to that screen in Nero.
7) If I have not been clear, please let me know. I won't take offense and I appreciate the responses. I really do. But it just seems that people are responding with answers that I have already disqualified.
I.e., "Try it without a disc and you should see 16X".
I already said that I DON'T get an option for 16X, even WITHOUT a disc in the drive, even though there is no media for the drive to read, to set it at 8X.
Thank you in advance for your time. It is genuinely appreciated.