Slow USB2 DVD Burning / Confusing Test Results


Although I’ve been making DVD’s for years with (generally) good quality results I’m a nube as far as performance testing and enhancement are concerned. After reading many postings I decided it was time to test my DVD-RW burners, all of which are in USB2 enclosures. Using the latest Nero CD/DVD Speed test utility (version 4.11) I was quite surprised to see that my transfer scan results for DVD-R were rarely better than 4X (average speed 3.8X). Also seemingly odd, the fact that although my DVD-R writing is slow, I can easily burn CD-R media at 25 - 30X with no problem. With this in mind I have a 2 part question.

  1. If these Nero benchmark tests are accurate, why am I often able to burn a 2 hour video DVD-R in less than 18 minutes? Basic math would indicate an actual burn rate of around 6.7X, not 3.8X as reported by Nero… or am I not calculating this correctly?

  2. What steps can I take to troubleshoot my slow burning issues? All of my writers are capable of 16X (+R/-R) and my external enclosure are definitely USB2.

I’ve tried testing my drives in a number of different enclosures connected to various USB2 ports including both hub and primary. I’m using good quality cables and my drive models seem to be fairly well respected by the burning community.

I’ve read that a firewire connection is possibly more likely to offer a better chance of faster external burning (Oxford, Prolific chipset, etc…) but isn’t there anything that can be done for those like myself who use only USB2?

Aside from the slow burning problem, my PC tends to run very well (problems or conflicts of any kind are rare) and is 100% free of spyware or virus.

I’d love to burn at 8X, 12X or better yet, 16X. Any comments or suggestions would be welcome.

Thanks for your time :slight_smile:

USB2 DVD-RW Drives:

BenQ DW1655 (BCDB)
Sony DRU810A (1.0d)
LiteOn (KS0B)


Windows XP, SP2
Intel P4 HT @ 2.8Ghz
2.0Gb DDR (PC2700)
HDD: 120Gb (internal), 900Gb external USB2