PX-708A in external enclosure USB with Plextools?

I have a PX-708A that I use in my desktop, but I’m moving abroad and taking only my Thinkpad. I’m trying to decide if it makes sense for me to purchase an external USB enclosure and try to use the Plextor with it. Here are my questions, if anyone can help:

  1. Does Plextools recognize the PX-708A if it is connected via an external enclosure (IDE to USB 2.0)? That is, would I be able to use Plextools?

  2. How about Nero?

  3. Further complication: my Thinkpad 600E (only 400 MHz, has Win2K Pro) does not have USB 2.0, so I have a USB 2.0 PCMCIA card. I expect the maximum speed would be much lower than the Plextor is rated for, but will it work at all?

Thanks in advance to anyone who can help.

USB2.0 is USB 2.0, whether on a PCI controller or PCMCIA. Whether the drive can work with the USB bridge board is another question. I’ve seen on the forum where some enclosures don’t work. Most IDE-USB enclosures should and you should be able to get full performance.

I just wanna know the max burning speed an internal 708A will burn in an external USB2 container.


I would suggest using a FIREWIRE enclosure because I’ve seen too many people post having problems with USB enclosures. If a USB PORT is not 2.0 the transfer speed will take a long time. FIREWIRE products seem to work better when burning DVD’s and doing video tasks. :slight_smile:

i would support the firewire connection. my sony drive in a dual external box is more stable, with better burns connected via firewire. in addition i found the usb2 connection crashed my computer on a regular basis when the box is turned of. Never happens with the firewire, can turn it on and off even when multitasking, no problems. i can also confirm plextools works on both connections my plextor premium was tried in the same box.

PlexTools and Nero should both see the drive and use it. Both the internal and external versions of the PX-708 drives are the exact same drive. I don’t know though if you will be able to record discs at 8x since it’s recommended to use a CPU of at least 700MHz. Lower recording speeds will probably work ok.

Yes. But, what’s the fastest speed anyone here has recorded with the 708A externally (fw or usb) ?? thanks!

I’ve recorded at 8x using Verbatim 4x media on a 667MHz desktop system with an Adaptec PCI USB 2.0 card and 708UF.

Like G@M3FR3@K says, the system will make a difference. The system still has to sustain 10MB/sec to the USB interface to avoid a lot of burnproof events. Your laptop may not be able to do it. Throughput to the drive will affect the write time. The drive may write to the actual media at 8x, but if you get a lot of BP events, the overall time will be longer than a typical 8x burn since the buffer has to fill and the disc has to resync for writing. The drive will still try to maintain 8x writing if the media is high quality.

the 708a internal drive doesnt work with IDE to USB2 cables/enclosures, plextor has installed some kind of protection against it… so you would have to buy their USB2 version…

I’ve tried to connect it, and it doesnt work… does anyone no a way to pull it off?

I seriously doubt that is possible GregToR. I think you’re just having problems yourself.

from plextor:


  • Can I install my Plextor PX-708A into an external usb2.0 / Fire Wire box?

The Plextor internal units are designed to operate inside a pc connected to a normal IDE controller port.

Should you experience any problem with such a setup in an external usb2.0/FW box.
We can advice you to either purchase the PX-708UF (the external version of the PX-708A) or to contact the manufacturer of the external box so they can resolve your problem.


Well I think they would say that, after all they want to sell as many of their units as possible!
Note that they say “Should you experience any problem” and not “You will experience problems”.
Any decent external box (and not some generic POS) should overcome any problems.

Indeed. That FAQ blurb is just Plextor way of saying “Since we have no clue what the manufacturer of the external box glued together we cannot help you with it and you’ll have to contact him, but we assert that our drives have a proper IDE implementation.”

you gave me new hope, and I succeeded! (lol) :

problem solved, works after all…

unplugged everything, tried different usb ports, now it recognizes it!