To return or not to return 716SA?

Just finished building my new rig using the NEO4 and liked the idea of going with a SATA burner. The more i read here about the 716SA, the more i want to send it back and go with the NEC ND-3520A.
I do understand that this is a support forums and thats where people go with support issues. But this drive seems have more issues than most. I can find plenty of complaints over in the NEC forum as well.
Right now there is no official support of the 716SA with the NEO4 motherboard, i would expect that to change soon. It seems the consensus is that a SATA drive doesnt buy you much more than the ability to improve air flow. Burn speeds arent much different from IDE burners from what i have read.
I do like cutting edge, but also like functional and stable components. So with that said does anyone think that this drive will just improve with time and a few firmware upgrades? Anyone want to persuade me not to exchange for the NEC?

The Plextor PX-716SA is the exact same drive as the PX-716A. If you don’t really need S-ATA there is no need to buy a drive that supports it and then later find out that it doesn’t work properly. I think the PX-716A is a great drive but I cannot answer the question for you which drive is the best for you. It all depends on personal needs and there are a lot of threads that discuss this topic. A good example of this is this thread. Good luck!

Well, to be fair it’s not Plextor’s fault but rather nvidia and the motherboard makers who are resulting in a lot of the compatibility problems. The whole 716SA issue on motherboards is a result of nvidia’s incompetence and that of its vendors. All of Plextor’s SATA drivers work fine on Intel SATA southbridges but somehow have lots of problems on other chipsets. For example, my PX-712SA only works with ONE specific BIOS, the one that shipped with my board. Later BIOS revisions butchered support for SATA opticals and the Asus support guys just kept feeding me BS and passing the buck. That would not be so bad except the BIOS I have to use doesn’t overclock past about 215HTT. Luckily, I wasn’t paying for my CPU so I could buy a top of the line and not have to OC much but it’s simply unacceptable.

If you can return the 716SA I would unless you knew for a fact that it worked on your board with a specific BIOS. Either get the 716A or the NEC.

A 915G motherboard should cost less than PX-716SA.

I heard the SATA version of the Plextor drive is just the IDE drive plus an IDE-SATA converter. Can’t anyone buy such a converter and use it with any IDE drive? Or get such a converter in the future if needed?

Yup, which is why SATA is pretty crap at the moment.

You get all the compatibility problems of old SCSI with all the slowness and unreliability of IDE.
It was supposed to be backwards-compatible with normal IDE, but this is bunk since you need a driver for the drive. It’s no better than SCSI in that regard :frowning:
They may as well have made Firewire/USB2 the new interface…

The ONLY thing I like about SATA are the interface and power lines. They are things of beauty…!


I have not opened the case of my PX-716SA to determine exactly how the serial interface has been intergrated into the drive. There is no external adapter attached to the rear of the drive to convert it to serial. The dimensions (146mm x 41.3mm x 170mm) of the PX-716A and PX-716SA are exactly the same so I doubt the serial interface is simply internally plugged into a IDE port on the drive. If this is the case it would appear that this type of arrangement would require the case dimensions on the PX-716SA to be deeper than the PX-716A. Maby someone who has actually opened their drive can provide us with a more definitive answer.

I also have a PX-716A and I have noticed that I get better PI/PO scores with the PX-716SA. This may be due to the fact that the PX-716A is TLA#02XX and the PX-716SA is TLA#03XX.

If it is using a ATA to SATA convertor, then it’ll likely just be a single chip on the board somewhere doing the conversion, nothing big.
In external adapters, the bulk of the adapter is just the cross-wiring of the pins. The actual convertor chip is tiny.

Using a bridge chip is a very common thing to do - a lot of SATA hard disks use an ATA-to-SATA bridge because it’s cheaper than redesigning the entire IDE interface board on the drive. We’ve only recently been getting ‘true’ SATA hardware (Bit buggy 'tho…)