The Great Plextor Scam

For a long time I’ve been a proponent of Plextor drives. They’ve worked perfectly, given high burn quality, allowed ripping of discs that other drives choked on, and recently featured features on their DVD burners that were simply unparalleled like Silent Drive, and burn quality scans. The newer features are a result of Plextor’s included software bundle by the name of Plextools Pro. Lately, also SATA connectivity although in reality all they’ve done is include a ATA to SATA convertor in the drive housing.

Even though Plextor often commands a 100% price premium over similar drives, the features they have and Plextools Pro have convinced many, including myself, that the extra cost is worth it and we have bought Plextor drives.

Well, it seems that Plextor has decided that a 100% premium and the resultant profits are not enough and have devised a new way to bilk the consumer.

What am I talking about? Why Plextools XL of course. On the face of it Plextools XL doesn’t seem like a bad thing as it features a few new features over Pro:

The PlexTools Professional XL GUI consists of 3 independent windows with a redesigned look

The test functions have been updated with new, stylish graphical displays.

PlexTools Professional XL automatically checks the software’s and all drives firmware for the latest version and updates it immediately if necessary. A similar version is available for the PlexTools Professional software version.

Both the AudioCDMaker and Disc Extraction functions have been expanded with CueSheet support and extra options.

The Disc Maker function has the option to load and save projects and a new DVD-Video project has been added that allows burning an existing DVD-Video image to disc.

Several smaller changes and options have been added and are planned for future releases.

Okay, so far what’s the big deal you ask? IF you don’t like the crappy “new” features simply don’t buy it and at $54 FREAKING DOLLARS you’d be well advised not to. Well, Plextor has decided that they’re not going to give you a choice because THEY’RE TAKING AWAY the free Plextools Pro software in upcoming drive releases.

Of course you may ask how do I know this. Well, quite simple really. Let’s look at Plextor’s latest DVD burner release the PX-716 in ATA (716A), SATA (716SA), and no tray (716AL) flavors released in that order. Note also that the 716AL was announced right around the same time as Plextools XL. So let’s look at the pages for the drives on Plextor and pay particular attention to the software bundle included:

Notice the GLARING omission in the bundle for the most recently released drive, the 716AL, which as I noted before was announced right at the same time as Plextools XL. That’s right, you’ll be paying through the nose for Plextor drives and they won’t even include Plextools.

Thanks Plextor. Way to screw your customers. This has been a PSA for those thinking about buying the PX-716AL and future Plextor DVD burners.

Well, Plextor has decided that they’re not going to give you a choice because THEY’RE TAKING AWAY the free Plextools Pro software in upcoming drive releases.
If that is true, then someone will have to make a free replacement, no?

:stuck_out_tongue: :iagree:

I have yet to see someone that can reproduce Plextor’s advanced DAE algorithms …

But then again … DAE does work in the actual version of PTP so there is no need for an upgrade if you stick with your existing drives … as long as they last, of course.

I have yet to see someone that can reproduce Plextor’s advanced DAE algorithms …

How can you know that they are, in any kind, advanced?

I wouldn’t worry too much.

My 716A’s box doesn’t list that it comes with PlexTools either, so I was pleasently surprised when I found it on the DVD that comes with it - I hadn’t bought a Plextor for ages, and had assumed PlexTools was still a seperate pay-ware like it had been originally!

And if you look at the other specs, they list PlexTools Pro ONLY for the Premium, but clearly it does come with other drives like my 716 and the 712 as well. And even if they didn’t bundle it, it’s a free download!

Try and be a bit less knee-jerk when posting stuff in future please - You scared the crap out of me when I read that.

One thing I am getting annoyed about 'tho, and this applies to all burner mfg’s - WTF don’t they provide full versions of Nero any more instead of the sickeningly evil Nero Express Lite LE Crap version???!
Or worse, Roxio!
That’s the one thing that bugs me. Plextor had a pretty poor showing here, with almost all the bundled apps being 30-day trials to rub salt into the wound…!

I can’t argue with the original point - I pextor do away witha free version then they are being a little greedy.

BUT my 716A runs fine without Plextools and I can still scan with my BenQ1620 so if I stick to Taiyo disks do I really need to install Plextools ?

No, but if you want the features plextools provides, like burn quality scanning then no plextools=feature no worky :slight_smile:

On really damaged CD’s, the results obtained with PTP are mostly far superior to those EAC (which has been proven on multiple occasions to be the best overall ripper) can achieve … since I 1) know how EAC works and since we (the community) 2) have discussed many times how Plextor’s approach to error retrieval works, there is only one explanation with the additional fact in mind that Plextor drives aren’t doing miracles in terms of error correction performance (there are a lot of drives that outperform any given Plextor on damaged reference discs like the ABEX series) … this explanation is that Plextools Pro itself (software only) uses extensive CIRC information (maybe even ‘real’ multipass CIRC operations on one sector instead of simple re-reading) for error retrieval which implies that special knowledge of the command set structure and chipset (Plextor uses Sanyo chipsets IIRC) capabilities is needed to create algorithms as capable as PTP’s.

André Wiethoff (EAC coder) tried and couldn’t get it to work so the feature (it was called 'use C2 information for error correction) has been removed in an earlier EAC version.

  1. not everyone can afford to buy 2 DVD writers …

  2. The PX-716AL is being advertised with Q-Check feature which needs Plextools Pro or XL (Pro isn’t bundled and, additionally, can’t be bought so you have to get XL unless you are aware of Alexander Noe’s freeware solution which you are only if you happen to be a well-informed member of the various CD/DVD forums) …

  3. The 716’s dimensions make it the ideal drive for barebone solutions that can handle one 5,25" drive only, so you’d have to buy an external LiteOn/BenQ DVD writer for quality assessment which leads to extra $$$ (once again assuming you don’t know PXScan/PXView …

Has anyone bought the 716AL, no they just anpunced it. Maybe that feature will be in the next version of Pro. Maybe it will come With XL we already know it will probably cost more. These are just Knee jerk reactions to the Fact that Plextor came out with a new software they are charging for. Once we actually “Know” more can we really say whether they made a huge error.

AHA!! That’s what I was looking for:

Do a text search for “Includes PlexTools Professional”

Thank you and good night :slight_smile:

From Plextor’s 716AL page:

:confused: :confused: :confused: :confused: :confused: :confused:
What do you mean?

Well, maybe you meant exactly that Plextools Professional is listed there…

As I said previously (in another thread), IMO Plextor will keep including Plextools Professional with the Premium, the 712A, the 716A and upcoming drives.
Most probably, when they will develop new functionalities of the software (NOT of the drives), they’ll add them only to the XL version.
So it looks reasonable that at the beginning the XL version has only few features more than the non-XL version, but probably things will change in the future.

Regards, :wink:


That’s great, thanks for checking the link I PROVIDED. Apparently, it seems that only North American users are being screwed. Great job Plextor.

If you read the first post in this thread, Bar81 was worried that Plextor were going to force everyone to buy PlexTools Pro XL by NOT bundling PlexTools Pro with drives any more, citing the omission from the 716AL as proof.

I find it highly unlikely that PTP isn’t going to be bundled in North America, especially when the XL tool sales seem to be largely Euro-centric: they’re even priced in Euros. It’s just another way for them to make more profit, plain and simple.

The proof is in the pudding as us yanks say and the evidence does not lie.

I have a 716sa and plex tools pro was inside. I’m living in the usa too. :stuck_out_tongue:

Speculations, speculations. So, Plextor America doesn’t list PlexTools, that must mean that they don’t include it. It could simply be an error you know… Maybe it would be better to wait until you can actually buy the PX-716AL and then draw a conclusion instead of starting a thread about “the Plextor scam”. If the retail drive indeed doesn’t include PlexTools then I fully agree with you that it’s ridiculous since you need this software to take full advantage of the drive.

Just my €0,02…

Not including the software would be shooting a bullet in the foot. However, what could happend in the future, is that certain advanced functions would be accessible only from the XL version.