Plextor 708A is leaving unburned rings near the outside of discs when burned at 8x

Hi everyone! This is my first post, so please bare with my ignorance.

I have had a Plextor 708A drive for nearly 3 years. It has served me well and done a remarkable job keeping up with how many discs I feed through it. Recently, though, I noticed that there were these rings around the outside of the discs (approximately 1 to 2 mm in size). I thought it may have been the media (Verbatim 16x +R’s), and I tried Sony (16x +R’s) and got the same result. The problem only occurs when I burn at 8x. If I burn at 4x, there has been no problems - so far. The rings make the discs unreadable MOST OF THE TIME when I try to re-read them (sometimes, they are still able to be ripped to the hard drive).

Does anyone know what the issue MIGHT be and if it can be fixed? I am preparing to buy a new DVD burner and am wondering what new burner would be best. The Plextor 760A looks great, but its twice the cost of the LG GSA-H22N and Pioneer DVR-111D, both very well rated drives. If I must buy another burner (I know this might be a loaded question in a Plextor subforum), does anyone have any recommendations?

Thank you very kindly for your time!

While the 708 has received firmware support for the latest 16x media it seems that some of these writing strategies could need an overhaul.

I haven’t tried Sony, but I’ve definitely have had problems with Verbatims +R 16x (MCC004) at 8x speed in the 708. Others too, it seems:
(The red BETA and blue Jitter line going thick in the third graph in posting #2 will lead to a clearly visible discolored ‘ring’ on the disc @ the 3.8GB position. This is where the burn quality gets really bad and the disc becomes unreadable)

So it’s probably not your drive that is defective but you might want to try other media. I’ve had good results with Yuden (both + and - R) 16x media:

Thanks very much for the information. The “discolored ring” does always occur at that same point (3.8 GB) on each disc - when it happens. I am running the 1.11 firmware but will upgrade to the latest and see if that makes any difference.

I will certainly also look into getting different media. When I’ve used Verbatim before (I burned through over 800 of them in the fall), I never had any issues, and that’s why I jumped the gun and thought that the drive itself was failing.

Thank you VERY much for your time!

anyways it sounds it’s the time to buy a new burner; i have encountered similars rings with my old PX716A a couple of months before it died.

I had that problem too. I wasn’t able to get burns without those rings. I RMA’ed and got a TLA 01xx burner back which had that problem fixed. In your case I think the only chance is to either limit burning speed or get a entirely new burner.

If you don’t need features like GigaRec, DVD-overburning and quality scanning the LG is an excellent burner.