Start Nero Info tool. (it should be part of the tools in the full Nero Burning Suite). If you don’t have it, Nero Info tool is free to download and use. I just want to know which firmware you have in the drive now. The last one released was the 1.08 I believe?
I have this old drive but the only media I would try to use in it nowadays would be 8x Verbatim or Taiyo Yuden 8x +R disks. Most of the rest of the newer media just won’t be recognized by the burner, and you’ll get poor or failed burns.
You can order 8x +R Taiyo Yuden online from rima.com or supermediastore.com if you are in the US. You can still find some 8x Verbatim at Best Buy…look for the disks that have the movie reel picture on the top of the disk. Those two media types would be the best bet in this old burner.
You’d be better off getting a new drive though. Look at the NEC Optiarc drives, like this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827118022
or this Pioneer drive: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16827129024 It also comes in black if you prefer.
You’ll need an 80 wire IDE cable…check your current IDE cable to make sure it is 80 wire, or get a new cable when you buy the new drive.
Also, when you install the new one, if you replace the 1300a check to see if the old drive is set as Master or Slave on the IDE cable. There is a little jumper on the back of the drive that has to be set correctly. Any drive set as Master goes on the very end of the cable, and set as Slave, it plugs in with the middle connector.