Optiarc AD-7173: Help required!

Hi all,

Today I finally received my new Optiarc AD-7173. Before that I was using a NEC ND-3520 burner, for both burning and reading, however at some point, that drive stopped reading the DVDs I burned. Even though my TV’s dvd player read them just fine (the ones with video, of course). Since I was able to read DVDs before with the ND-3520, and it did not happen after a firmware upgrade or anything, I figured it’s a problem with the drive itself. I’ve had it for a while now so I figured it was time for a new driver.

Sadly, the exact same problem repeats with Optiarc’s AD-7173: I can burn DVDs containing videos that are read fine in my tv’s DVD player, I can burn and read CDs fine with the burner, I can even read pressed movie DVDs. But I cannot seem to read the DVDs I burn with the drive itself - and I have tried with both Ritek media and Verbatim media.

After googling for a bit I saw this might be a problem with my motherboard/chipset: I use an Asus A7N8X-E Deluxe motherboard, with nVidia nForce2 chipset. The few tips I could find recommended removing nVidia’s IDE drivers and using Windows stock ones, however, I seem to be having the exact same problem when using Linux as well, so I don’t think it’s a driver issue.

Is there any way to fix this incompatibility between NEC burners and nVidia chipsets? Or should I just kiss NEC goodbye and get a different brand of DVD burner? I’m aware another solution would be to stay with Optiarc and buy a drive for reading DVDs… But to be honest I don’t really need two drives so I think I would prefer to change the Optiarc driver to a different brand if there’s no way to make it read properly.

I would appreciate your feedback on this, as it has been frustrating for me trying to get the drive to work today, and if changing to a different brand is the only solution I would like to return this Optiarc drive as soon as possible.

If you can burn DVD media then the drive must be able to read the blank media TOC.
Some things you may like to check.
Un-Install Alochol if you have it installed.
Make sure Windows burn engine is disabled for the drive.

You also need some DVD player software such as PowerDVD to play DVD Video.

I have been using NEC drives (now including an Optiarc) on an nForce 2 chipset since god was a lad and never had any problems, sorry mate i cant see it being the chipset at fault.

I have done both of your suggestions, but still the same problem occurs. I will say again that I am unable to read burned DVDs in both windows and linux, so I suspect this is a hardware issue and not a driver issue.

It is indeed a very strange problem. I will also add that when I run Nero InfoTool, I can see the label and filesystem type of the burned DVD, yet it appears there as a DVD with 0.1MB of data or something like that (even though it is more like 2-3gb). I have tried five different brands of burned DVDs, all with the same result.

That doesn’t say much: Same brand can still be made in different places, and in most products you can see that when there’s a flaw it is in a whole production series and not always exist in other production series of the same product. I have read other posts of people having similiar problems with NEC drives and nForce chipsets. Sadly, I do not have any other DVD writers, so I cannot try this with a different brand. I think I will return the new Optiarc drive, and take a LiteOn drive and try with that one. I am still thinking about what to do…

Today I also tried moving the DVD from Secondary Master to Primary Master, it identified alright but still the same problem occurs. I also tried to change the ATA cable, didn’t help.

All of this leads me to the conclusion that it is either a problem between NEC drive and my nVidia chipset, or the more unlikely conclusion, that this brand new NEC drive (that surely cannot be refurbished or something since it is a new model here in Israel) has the exact same defect as my older ND-3520 drive. And how likely is that?

Right now I think I will either return the Optiarc drive and get a Liteon drive instead, or try to buy a DVD-ROM drive for my reading purposes, as I see is recommended here in the forums by many users.