NEC3500 Burns Slowly & Badly

I’ve had this burner for about eight months. I’ve not used it a great deal, but on the whole it’s been OK.

Yesterday I tried to burn a DVD for the first time in over a month. I started it off then went to make a cup of tea - when I returned, Nero (6.6) was reporting a recording speed of between 1.1x and 1.5x! In all, it took nearly 50 minutes to complete the job.

The disc was 8x Datawrite -R, from a batch which in the past had indeed burnt at 8x. I then tried a simulated burn with another Datawrite and again, when the ‘recording’ started, it was at just over 1x. I also have some Fuji -Rs rated at 8x but which have burnt at up to 12x; yet the result was the same with one of these.

The disc that had been so slowly burnt contained video clips, and when I played them back, the sound quality was bad on some, which suggested to me a problem with the way the disc had been burnt.

Although this was the first DVD I had tried to burn for some time, a couple of weeks ago I burnt a CD: that seemed to take a long time, though at the time I thought nothing of it.

Any ideas what is going on?

Check and see if you are still in UDMA mode, or if somehow it changed to PIO.
That could definately be the problem.


Again Rob is Spot On with his assessment IMO-


Thanks, guys - yes, it is in PIO mode (as is the DVD-ROM on the same IDE channel). How on earth it changed, I’ve no idea!

But how do I change it back to DMA? I’m on Win XP, and if I go into Device Manager, IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers, Secondary IDE Channel, Properties, Advanced Settings, I can change ‘Transfer Mode’ from ‘PIO Only’ to ‘DMA if Available’ - but the ‘Current Transfer Mode’ stays stubbornly on ‘PIO mode’. I did try physically unplugging the IDE cable, rebooting then replacing it in the hope that Windows would re-install the devices on the next reboot, but no joy.

If I try the ‘uninstall’ option in Device Manager, it just hangs.

What am I overlooking?

Any advice greatfully received!


I would try booting into safemode and the try unistalling in Device Manager. You may have to uninstall everything to do with the IDE controllers.


Actually, after posting my last message, and a couple more reboots, I was able to uninstall the secondary IDE channel. Further rebooting, and Windows successfully recognised both drives in UDMA mode. I didn’t have time to burn a DVD last night, but I started a simulation, and that looked much more healthy.

Thanks everyone for your help - I must try to remember about rebooting into safe mode if Device Manager plays up again.



Another happy cdfreaks customer-eh!