I found out something interesting.
I returned my drive back to where I bought it from and told them of the problem to see if they would replace it. I gave them one problematic cd out of the ones I have to test the drive to see for themselves.
I got a phonecall a week later to come and pick up the drive and was under the impression that over the phone that they had fully replaced the drive but when I got to the store, I was able to talk to the technician about the drive. At first he said that it was the cd as it was slightly scratched and I stated that no it wasn’t the cd as I have perfect brand new ones the drive will not read and I have tested the cds on several stereos and other pc cd drives and they worked fine. I told him I had put a post on the web about the problem with this drive and that a guy in the US has the same problem (Daffy).
He then asked if there was a known problem with the drive and I said no not at the moment, but I am trying to garner support to see if any other people have the same problem.
The technician then told me that he has tested the disc on another Plextor 24/10/40A and it didn’t work on the drive, I then asked him to check the TLA# of the drive and it was TLA#0100 which is the same one as mine. He even flashed my firmware to the different ones to see if it still had the problem and it still did. This was something that I had already done.
He said that he could give me the drive that he had in stock as a replacement but I said if its not going to play the disc, it wont be able to play any of the other problem discs I have, so I didnt want it.
The tech then said that he could send it back to the Australian distributor and see if they would replace it and I said that would be fine but it would have to be with another TLA# as it obviously shows that TLA#0100 is incapable. He said thats fine but it’s unlikely that it will be replaced because they might not find the problem with the drive.
Now this brings this to the conclusion of my research at least for now. I stongly feel that the Plextor 24/10/40A drive has a problem. Now whether this problem is just down to a TLA# I do not know I am hoping to get a later or latest TLA# that is in our country as a replacement. Whether this fixes the problem or not, I don’t know. But I have narrowed it down thus far.
To reiterate this is not an easy problem to find, from what I have seen the drive has only manifested problems with audio cds but as shown in the above posts whether the cd is marginally within specification as quoted by Plextor, the drive should read the fucking disc. I would expect a cheaper writer not to read discs not a premium writer. This maybe something like the VIA PCI chipset problem - only affects a few people. It entirely depends on what discs you put into your drive and whether the drive will read it or not.
I had not one problem with the 24/10/40A writing it was really good but if its labeled as a cd reader and it isn’t, I’ll be getting a full refund.
As I have said above, I greatly stress for anyone who has had any disc reading problems with the Plextor 24/10/40A (regardless of TLA#) to post here so we can see how far the problem extends.