What is the Best Blu-Ray BD-R XL 128GB Writer?

There are a lot of Photos and Videos, around 2 TB which I want to backup from my Hard drive for long term storage.

I would like to write these data to 128 GB Blu Ray Discs so that I can have less discs. I already bought SONY BD-R XL 128 GB blank discs Plus Pioneer BDR-XD05B to write the discs. However only after I bought I found out that this drive does not support 128 GB Media even though it is advertised as supporting 128 GB media.

In order to reduce the investment loss it would be less expensive if I bought a Drive that supports 128GB write / Read than buying 100 GB discs to use with this drive. The additional 28GB in the 128GB Media is a lot actually.

However on the internet it seems Blu Ray Writers has got some firmware upgrading / downgradings to do and many reviews saying drives fail etc… Hence I would like to get some suggestions on the Best BD writers (128 GB Media) out there that are long lasting. Also currently it seems like Pioneer has released some new Writers as of the moment I write this post. ( BDR-XD07B , BDR-212UBK, BDR-XD07UHD … )

First, what kind of computer do you have? Is it a desktop or laptop? I would really recommend that you get an internal burner if your computer is a desktop drive since there is much less overhead for a Serial ATA connection versus a USB connection since Serial ATA is a point-to-point connection so protocols for sharing a bus with multiple devices are not needed, and having the drive connected directly to the power supply unit instead of USB will guarantee better power availability. Also, since external burners generally violate the USB power limits (with the exception of USB-C, which does require a power limit high enough to power these drives), several computers whose motherboards are cost-reduced to the point that they can only deliver enough power to meet the USB specification will fail to work with these drives unless those drives are attached to a separate AC adaptor.

Second, Pioneer has released firmware updates for the BDR-209/S09 series (excluding the BDR-209DBK which was never intended or advertised to support BD-R QL media) and the BDR-211/S11 series to support your Sony 128GB discs. However, Pioneer really took its time to release those updates. You might just have to wait for Pioneer to finish developing those firmware updates for your drive.

Third, there are three organizations that currently make BDXL burners that I am aware of: Pioneer, Philips & Lite-On Digital Solutions Corporation (a joint venture between Philips and Lite-On also known as PLDS), and Hitachi-LG Data Storage (also known as HLDS). TSST (a now-former joint venture between Toshiba and Samsung that used to make these burners) is bankrupt. HLDS only makes external Blu-ray burners and quit making internal burners a long time ago. I recommend against TSST since its bankruptcy and probable liquidation will probably mean no more firmware updates. I will also recommend against PLDS (which sells its drives under the Lite-On brand) since it does not deliver timely firmware updates on its own DH-16AFSH-Premm premium internal DVD burner (unlike some rebrands of the same hardware by Vinpower Digital like the Optiarc AD-5290+ and the Plextor PX-891SAF PLUS). This leaves Pioneer and HLDS.

HLDS (which sells its drives under the LG brand, and a few notable rebrands like Asus) generally prefers to rely on generic burning strategies, and includes only a few specialized strategies in its drives for certain media. Teardowns performed by cdrinfo.pl show that LG drives generally are heavily cost-reduced and not so well-built. This makes sense because some people have written good reviews for drives, but others write reviews saying that the drives died after a while. However, the generic algorithms have been really good as far as generic algorithms go. However, no generic algorithm will work well with all media.

Pioneer generally prefers to rely on a large library of specialized burning strategies for different media. These drives will either fall back onto a generic strategy if there is a generic strategy and no specialized strategy for that type of media, or refuse to burn media if there is no specialized strategy and no generic strategy for that type of media. Your drive lacks both a specialized strategy for the Sony BD-R QLs that you bought and a generic strategy for BD-R QLs in general, so it has to refuse to burn the discs. This might be solved in the future if Pioneer releases a firmware to give it a strategy to burn your media.

You might also want to take a look at SONY Japan BD-R QL (128 GB) and Pioneer Writer BDXL QL (128 GB) compatibility to see some people running tests on LG and Pioneer drives on this media. It looks like the LG does a better burn than the Pioneer drive on those Sony discs in those tests.

https://www.pioneerelectronics.com/PUSA/Computer/Computer+Drives#products

Shows BDR-212UBK and BDR-2212 supporting Quadruple Layer.
Some of the slim models also if that is what you need.

There have been incidents of Pioneer releasing drives that advertise that they do support writing QL discs, but they are unable to do so when the user tries to do so. The original poster’s BDR-XD05B is one of these cases. Either the user will have to replace the drive or will have to wait for a firmware update to enable writing of QL discs. When I looked in Pioneer’s archived product page at https://www.pioneerelectronics.com/PUSA/Computer/ch.Computer+Drives.Archived , I found plenty of slim drives that advertise QL disc writing, but I found that their latest supported media directories listed at https://pioneer.jp/device_e/product-e/ibs/device_e/dev00003r_e.html do not yet support writing QL discs with the burners’ latest firmware updates.

Thank you for the Reply! So I am best to go with an LG burner right. (Something like LG WH14NS40) However the durability is the main issue.

Unfortunately it does not work as advertised in case of Pioneer Blu Ray Burners. Issue only comes with QL discs.

I have a Pioneer 209 EBK and apparently the latest firmware issued in February 2019 came out precisely to support those Sony 128 GB discs. I have yet to try and find out though…

Personally I only use BD-R M-Disc 25GB for backing up my data (incl. files of a few GB size). Don’t trust multi-layer stuff…

I currently have 3 machines using LG burners. In each of those machine I have one LG-WH16NS40 and one LG-WH14NS40. If you were to ask me which is better or more stable I would have to say the LG-WH14NS40. I have had some issues with the LG-WH16NS40 where it is not immediately able to read a disc, but after rejecting the disc and reinserting it all is fine. I have also had problems with the LG-WH16NS40 drives where the drive makes random whirring noises (can be really irritating) when the computer is booting up. Not all of the LG-WH16NS40 drives do this so it may have something to do with the drives with service code NS40 versus NS50. Outside of this minor issue with the LG-WH16NS40 drives I have been very pleased with the reliability and longevity of the LG drives. I have been burning Blu-Ray blanks, DVD blanks, and CD blanks for years and years without any problems.