Plextor 708a Problems



I’ve been a longtime reader of these forums, but just registered today due to frustration with a new Plextor 708a I bought last week.

For the price I paid for this, in comparison with other DVD writers, I would expect to be able to put a piece of bread in the drive and have it burn toast. Unfortunately this seems to be a massively picky drive about media, which may be my real problem. In any case, I have to ask myself, why would I want to keep a drive that is so picky when I could buy one for half the price that burns and reads my disks just fine? I have a friend that just bought a Lite-On, and he hasn’t experienced any of the problems I have, and we both have been using the same media.

I’ve read the sticky FAQ in this board, and have tried just about everything in it except removing the device and IDE channel from the Device Manager and rebooting. I’ll try that when I get home. I’m using the latest firmware (1.06) and the drive is the only IDE drive in my computer. I’ve tried it as master on the primary and secondary channel with no difference. It is running in DMA mode. I ran the self-diagnostic, and it passed, so that was no help.

Here are some of the problems I’ve experienced with this drive:

  1. Burned a movie ISO image to DVD (StarLogic), ejected, reinserted the DVD, and the Plextor would not read it. It would lock my computer until I ejected it again. That same DVD then read fine in my Lite-On DVD reader, as well as the DVD player in my entertainment system.

  2. The stack of Imation CDRs, which I’ve been using without issue in my Lite-On 52x24x52 drive, have been 75% rejected by the Plextor 708a. Before even attempting to write, I get an error in both Nero and Alcohol 120% and the drive ejects the CD. I have had some success retrying these rejected CDs if I burn at the slow speed of 4x.

  3. I burned a data DVD in the Plextor, took it to work, and got so many read errors trying to read the DVD that I gave up.

  4. I burned a movie ISO image to DVD at work on a Pioneer burner, took it home, and the Plextor would read the first 5 minutes of it before choking and getting read errors. Again, the DVD read fine in my player and my Lite-On DVD reader.

I’m probably going to RMA the thing and just get a Lite-On or NEC, but I figured I’d try everything and get as many suggestions as possible first.



G@M3FR3@K wrote this in another posting:

A lot of the problems people here report can be traced back to media. People often buy cheap media and expect the drive to be able to write the discs without problems. This is not the case with the Plextor DVD recorder. It requires quality media in order for it to make a quality back-up. There have, of course, also been problems with hardware malfunction but this happens with every brand. I’m personally using a Plextor PX-708A, first revision, and it has never let me down so far. I tend to use quality DVD media such as Taiyo Yuden, Ricoh, Ritek and Samsung.

In my experience it’s best to use the “recommended” media that Plextor supports. They have a compatibilty chart for other brands but it doesn’t necessarily mean or guarantee they would work on the 708A. The starlogic brand is “PRINCO” media according to dvdrhelp site. I’ve used PRINCO DVD-R from Compusa and they burn and playback fine.
Check the Plextor site:

What software are you using? Nero burn? Dvd Decrypter to make ISO images? I use Nero version and use IMATION (RICOH) 4X DVD+R, MAXELL DVD-R, RITEK G04 DVD-R 4X & TDK DVD-R. I have had no problems with my 708A. Others have upgraded their firmware to 1.06 but had problems so they flashed it back to 1.04 perhaps you may want to do the same. Every brand of burners have their problems, Plextor isn’t the only one. Check out the Liteon, Pioneer and Nec forums in here. Too many people blame the drive if they burn coasters when it could be the brand of media being used, type of software and how the drive is hooked up in the pc. Memorex 4X DVD+R manufactured sometimes by CMC didn’t work for me. Hope you give the Plextor 708A a chance. Try using the recommended dvd media. Let us know how it goes!:slight_smile:


Thanks for the reply!

I’m using Nero (which I’ve read seems to be problematic with the Plextor, but I haven’t experienced the same problems others have reported [bad burns halfway through]) and Alcohol for data cds, and CloneDVD to make the movie images. I’ve just been using that for speed and simplicity as I test the drive’s capabilities.

The drive shipped with 1.04 firmware, and I had the problems before upgrading to 1.06. Nothing really seems to have changed with the upgrade.

It very well could be just a really bad batch of these StarLogic DVDs, but if they’re Princo and supposedly compatible with the 708a, I’m disappointed in their performance!

I got a free pack of DVD-Rs from NewEgg with the Plextor, and I’m going to try various tests with them today. I’ll let you know how it goes with different media.


Well, the new media was no different. Burned a movie to the media at work, read fine in a couple of drives there, brought it home, Plextor will read about 15% into it and get read errors. This thing just feels like junk to me.


longshot wrote:

Well, the new media was no different. Burned a movie to the media at work, read fine in a couple of drives there, brought it home, Plextor will read about 15% into it and get read errors. This thing just feels like junk to me.

Have you used any of the recommended media that plextor supports? Like Maxell DVD-R, IMATION RICOH) DVD+R or TDK? Using cheap media will not work well with the drive which has been stated to you. What software are you using to compress and burn?