PX-716A won't operate in UDMA

This is not a Plextor problem, but I’m running out of places to turn to find a solution. “Saphire”, one of the pros at the VIA forum suggested I might get help here, so, I take liberty in posting this here.
I recently bought a PX-716A drive, and installed it as master on my secondary IDE channel. I have an AOpen DUW 1608/ARR DVD burner as slave on that channel. My pri channel has a Maxtor 120 G HD by itself. My HD runs along fine in UDMA on it’s channel, but the 2 optical drives are in Multi-Word Mode 2. Both drives are capable of UDMA. So, I put each of them, one at a time, on the pri channel as slave, and each immediately switched to UDMA. So, it’s not a drive problem. I checked my BIOS, and both IDE channels are set to “Auto” for Ultra DMA. I have reinstalled both IDE channels several times, put in the latest VIA chipset driver ( for VT8237 chipset), tried a new IDE cable all to no avail.
I have tried to get an answer from ECS, but I don’t think they know anything about the problem. The guys on the VIA forum have run out of ideas, so I turn to you in hopes that someone here may have seen this problem before, and found a solution.
My system:
ECS PT800CE-A mobo (latest BIOS 1.1E), 3.0 G P4 Processor in hyperthreading mode
Maxtor 120 G HD
1 G (2 X 512) DDR 400 RAM
NVidia FX5200 video card (8198 driver)
Soundblaster Live Value Sound card
2 optical drives as described above

If all else fails, I may have to ditch my ECS (El Cheapo System) mobo for something better.
Any help you can pass on would really be appreciated.
Thanks. :sad:

When you attach the Plextor alone as MASTER device on the SECONDARY IDE channel it switched to DMA you say. Which mode does it use? UDMA mode 4 should be the right mode for your drive and if it doesn’t run in that mode but in UDMA mode 2 instead then it could be that you’re using a 40 wire IDE cable instead of an 80 wire version.

I don’t know which steps you’ve already taken of course but the first things I recommend is to run the Plextor on its own channel as MASTER (use the last connector on the IDE cable and don’t use Cable Select). Then if the Plextor is running in the correct UDMA mode you can try adding a SLAVE device. It has been reported before that Plextor drives don’t like other devices on the same channel and even though I have not experienced any problems with this myself this doesn’t mean it can’t happen.

It also can’t hurt to enable DMA in your BIOS for both optical drives just to see what the effect will be. Report back with your findings!

I had the Plextor set as master by itself on the sec IDE channel, with the same result. It’s supposed to run in UDMA Mode, but the whole sec IDE channel runs in Multi-Word Mode 2. I can move it to PIO, but can’t get it to go into UDMA with “DMA if avail” selected.
Both channels are set to operate in UDMA in BIOS, but only the pri channel seems to want to do that. I put the Plextor on the pri channel as a slave, with my HD as master, and it went directly to UDMA with no trouble (same thing with my AOpen drive). So, it appears that the problem is in my IDE management system somewhere. I know this is not a Plextor problem, but you guys do a lot with drives, and so I’m hoping that you can come up with a solution.
Thanks very much for the reply. Hope you can solve the problem for me.
Bill. :confused:

Try going to your device manager and find the secondary IDE channel under ATA/ATAPI controllers and uninstall the Secondary IDE channel (only), Restart your PC and Windows will reinstall your drive, hopefully in DMA mode. Sometimes Windows gets a glitch and doing the above resolves the issue. Also roll your IDE drivers back to STD Microsoft IDE drivers. See Here. Let us know.:slight_smile:

I have tried reinstalling both Pri and Sec IDE channels quite a number of times, with no luck. However, I had not tried changing the driver for the entire bus. So, following the directions in the link you provided, I did that. I changed from the “VIA Bus Master IDE Controller” to “Standard Dual Channel PCI IDE Controller”. No change, I still get Multi-Word Mode 2 on the sec channel and UDMA Mode 6 on my HD on the pri channel.
Before I forget (again). I am using an 80 wire cable on the sec channel, as queried my G@M3FR3@K before. I just forgot to include that in my reply to him.
I queried ECS about this, in hopes that they had seen the problem on their boards at some point. I haven’t received a response to date.
If you have any other thoughts, I’m all ears.
Thanks for the response.

Yeah I don’t get what’s up with with ECS and VIA chipsets they all seem to be different, I have an older ESC system with a VIA KM266 chipset and tried installing a 3520 UDMA 2 drive (secondary Master) with a Lite On Combo drive Secondary slave. Only the the Lite On would show up. Seems the Lite On was UDMA 3 and when I swapped positions it installed them both properly. You can try thisit may work for you and doesn’t seem to cause any issues… Again let us know.:slight_smile:

Thank you…Thank you…Thank you!!! :bow: :bow: :bow:
I switched the HD to the Sec IDE channel, and the opticals to the Pri channel, and they’re ALL now in UDMA. Why do I even try getting info out of the Manufacturers’ Tech (??) people? I was always under the impression that the HD was supposed to be in the Pri channel. Silly me.
Thank you again Crossq, from a country cousin in Nova Scotia. Your efforts are really appreciated. I’ll pass that info on to the guys at the VIA forum, just in case it ever comes up there again. I might even give it to the ECS Tech guys, but they would probably only forget it. LOL
Again, many thanks for the help.
Bill Fraser.

Glad to hear it worked. Happy burning.:wink: