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Especially for Plextor PX-716A owners: is ASUS better!?

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Especially for Plextor PX-716A owners: is ASUS better!?

Postby Axonn on Sat Mar 04, 2006 4:26 am

Hello. This is my first post here and I salute all of you with my deepest respect. This post is mainly targeted at people that own Plextor PX-716A. I used PlexTools to discover a problem with my first drive but even after changing it, it still seems I got an issue. I appreciate any bit of help and information anybody has in this matter.



PLEXTOR

Plextor PX-716A is (as far as I know) one of the top Plextor models, armed with a Sanyo chipset, 8 MB buffer and pretty much anything Plextor could throw in. Of course, they do have some better models now-a-days, but this is still a top product. So I bought it.

Was I stupid? Don't know. First unit was broken. Partially. The Beta value in all tests performed was very strange, with weird "jumps" in its grafic (if you know, Beta has to be as straight as possible). However, the written DVDs were readable and behave fine. But in the TA tests the quality was only good and sometimes not good or even bad!

1. Not because of my computer, I also tried it on another system.
2. Not because of the media, I wrote at least 10 different media types.

Wrote to Plextor, they said to go to the store and change it. I did. They tested it. They changed it. I got a another PX-716A. First was TLA #0309, this one is #0308. First produced in November 2005, this one in September. So it's basically the same drive.

Wrote DVDs again, the TA tests came a bit better: Very Good / Good and rarely (and almost only on DVD RW - imagine that!) Excellent. However my graphics show still a problem in the Beta !! The jitter isn't too beautiful either. When the beta jumps, the jitter also shows weird.



ASUS

A friend of mine has an ASUS. Two times cheaper than this Plextor. Up until now, I burned everything with that drive. So of course I tested some of those DVDs. Guess what. The TA levels are almost ALWAYS above good. Usually very good / excellent!!! The Beta does NOT have jumps. The jitter is more ok.

The only area the Plextor wins is PIE errors where it has a bit lower. But EVEN there it's not good all the time, and currently, my DVD with the lowest PIE is still one burned with that ASUS.

But the TA is really fantastic. ASUS-written DVDs have an excellent TA. They are almost always on EXCELLENT. Whereas Plextor barely reaches EXCELLENT and usual slops with GOOD and VERY GOOD (the new one) and GOOD, NOT GOOD AND BAD (!!) (the old one).



PROOF

I uploaded screenshot and you can see what I mean.

Take a close look at the Plextor pictures. You can see that the Beta value has a lot of jumps... more like stairs! But the ASUS burns without those things and the TA in ASUS is almost always EXCELLENT whereas Plextor is rarely more than VERY GOOD. I didn't upload TA tests but they are what I say.



CONCLUSION

Is ANYBODY out there which has THIS PX-716A drive in his/her computer??? Can you use PlexTools to make some tests on DVDs burned by you with THAT drive and upload them here? I have a feeling this drive is broken too!

What's this? This is how Plextor writes? I never saw tests performed with Plextools and it seems such tests escaped professional testing. Or were all the tests rigged to favor Plextor!? Because really I don't see perfect quality in this drive. It's good quality but ASUS beats it. Why? Is my second drive broken too?

Please help me as I really think I'm going nuts seeing a 50$ ASUS beating a 120$ Plextor. It's NOT that I don't LIKE ASUS. I DO! But I find it annoying that such a good drive (and it's a good drive in all aspects) does that weird Beta things and the TA is so bad in comparison with ASUS.

So... please if you can... make some Beta/Jitter tests with PlexTools and tell me what you find. Also try to tell what TLA your Plextor drive has (it's written on the box and on the drive).

This is very important... 'cause I might take the drive back for replacement again depending on what you advice me to do.

Thanks a LOT in anticipation!!
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ASUS1.jpg
ASUS 1
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ASUS2.jpg
ASUS 2
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PLEXTOR 1
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More screenshots

Postby Axonn on Sat Mar 04, 2006 4:26 am

More.
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Postby Gen-An on Sat Mar 04, 2006 9:51 am

The ASUS is really a Pioneer. I'm assuming the discs in question are DVD-R/RW based on your initial comments, so it's not surprising the Beta/Jitter graphs look a bit better on the Asus drive as Pioneer drives tend to excel at DVD-R burning (Pioneer being one of the foremost members of the DVD Forum promoting the DVD-R format). Don't base everything on B/J tests though; how does PIE and PIF look?
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Postby hoxlund on Sat Mar 04, 2006 12:29 pm

as you can see from my sig, i own the 716

at this point i would guess ive put couple thousand dvd-rs through mine

still burns top notch and i do scan of one burn after about 100 or so

the results are the same as when i first got the drive

my TLA is 03 and the most current firmware

out of all those dvd-r ive burned, i would say 3/4 of them are tyg02
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Sat Mar 04, 2006 2:12 pm

hoxlund wrote:as you can see from my sig, i own the 716

at this point i would guess ive put couple thousand dvd-rs through mine

still burns top notch and i do scan of one burn after about 100 or so

the results are the same as when i first got the drive

my TLA is 03 and the most current firmware

out of all those dvd-r ive burned, i would say 3/4 of them are tyg02


But how often do you scan for Beta/Jitter?
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Postby Justin42 on Sat Mar 04, 2006 3:06 pm

My gut instinct is you may be worrying too much about graphs that, from what you provide, both are pretty good scans.

I'm a novice compared to many here in reading the graphs, but my take is that the Plextor's jitter values stay much lower (Even with the jumps) than many of the Asus scans. Similarly, the beta value jumps around but stays close to 0 whereas the Asus is a straighter line but farther away. (or am I missing something that the scale in red is irrelevant) The jumps, in general, aren't that severe.

What throws a monkey wrench in the whole thing is it looks like the media on each scan is different! you need to burn the SAME discs, preferably from the SAME spindle, at the same speed/settings/etc and then scan. What type of media was the 'Plextor 1' scan from? (Plextools seems to not like to put bitset DVD+R media codes on scans)

And of course, a PlexTools graph only states how that one drive reads that one disc. As you say, the Plextor discs are working fine. It's quite possible for the media that you buy, the Asus IS a better burner. Don't treat media like it's all equal, because it's not. As someone else stated, the Plextor definitely likes +R media better and Pioneer/Asus likes DVD-R better.

Please post scans using high quality media burned similar ways in both drives for a better comparison of what's going on. (like try using MCC03 DVD-R and MCC04 DVD+R. Ritek and Prodisc aren't the best media for testing..)

My gut instinct is you're worrying too much, you have 2 excellent burners, and the Plextor gives you the ability to do media scans and the like. I have a 716 I use for DVD ripping, DVD+R burning, and scanning. If I want to burn DVD-R or DVD-RAM, I use my LG 4167. Just like with anything, you need to use the proper tools to get the job done. :)
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Postby Gen-An on Sat Mar 04, 2006 3:43 pm

Justin42 wrote:My gut instinct is you're worrying too much, you have 2 excellent burners, and the Plextor gives you the ability to do media scans and the like. I have a 716 I use for DVD ripping, DVD+R burning, and scanning. If I want to burn DVD-R or DVD-RAM, I use my LG 4167. Just like with anything, you need to use the proper tools to get the job done. :)


I automatically assumed my Pioneer A09 would do a better job with DVD-R than my Plextor burners, but truth be told, TYG02 burns on the 716A look better in terms of PIE/PIF level than those the Pio puts out. Craziness, I know. MXLRG03 is definitely better on the Pioneer though.
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Postby Justin42 on Sat Mar 04, 2006 4:15 pm

That's true, but it does seem like it's fairly limited to TYG. Plextor seems to love TYG* (well, I've only tried TYG01 and TYG02, never have gotten any TYG03) media, but my LG does a better job on pretty much any other DVD-R brand. (ESPECIALLY Maxell, which the Plextor botches horribly and the LG can write almost perfectly)
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Sat Mar 04, 2006 4:43 pm

Justin42 wrote: (or am I missing something that the scale in red is irrelevant) The jumps, in general, aren't that severe.


It looks to me like the scale is about the worst possible choice available. He needs to change it to -0.05 - +0.05. The way he has it now is squishing all the results together, and it makes it look too hard to read. Another idea would be to use PXscan/PXview, which displays Jitter/Beta scores *MUCH* better then Plextools.
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Thanks!

Postby Axonn on Sat Mar 04, 2006 5:18 pm

Hello to all of you and thank you for your answers. I really appreciate it. I did notice some screenshots from that PXScan software on some other forum but I didn't know if it's really so important. After all, the jumps can be seen in another software too. Anyway, from where can I take PXScan and PXView? I Googled but found no useful download links in the first page of results.

Gen-An: PIE and PIF are largely ok. Between 25000 and 500000 on SUM8. I do have however a +R burned with the ASUS and that one scores only 11000, cool.

hoxlund: "tyg02"?? Guess that's a disc producer. And what about TA / Beta tests.

Justin42: Thanks for all those words. Indeed I did not know about the preference towards +R. I will use those more myself from now on. Don't worry, I also tried MCC (Verbatim) and other +R / -R. Ritek and Prodisc aren't the only ones tested, just the screenshots I uploaded. I got about 50 more screenshots ::- D.

Yes, I do worry, because of those beta jumps and mediocre TA results which made me think that my DVDs won't be read so good on other drives or might even fail in the future.

dolphinius_rex: I don't think I can change the scale in PlexTools. So do you mean the scale is too "far out" (large) and actually the jumps are even greater? *sigh* ::- (.
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Re: Thanks!

Postby Scour on Sat Mar 04, 2006 11:12 pm

Axonn wrote:"tyg02"??


This is media from Taiyo Yuden, maybe the best manufacturer for optical media.

TYG02 is the Code for 8x -R, TYG03 for 16x -R

Yuden000 T02 are 8x+R, Yuden000 T03 is 16x +R
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Postby hoxlund on Sun Mar 05, 2006 3:07 am

sorry yes my tests do the jitter or however you spell it

there always within normal operating parameters
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+R

Postby Axonn on Sun Mar 05, 2006 3:54 am

hoxlund: How about the beta? Is it with those stairs represented in my screenshots???

Scour: but still, Plextor doesn't like -R as it does +R ::- D. At least from the things you guys told me. So it's probably recommended to use +R. So then hoxlund, why did you burn so many with -R instead of +R? And anyway, as far as I heard, +R is better.
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Postby MediumRare on Sun Mar 05, 2006 5:20 am

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Re: +R

Postby Scour on Sun Mar 05, 2006 8:55 am

Axonn wrote:Scour: but still, Plextor doesn't like -R as it does +R ::- D. At least from the things you guys told me. So it's probably recommended to use +R. So then hoxlund, why did you burn so many with -R instead of +R? And anyway, as far as I heard, +R is better.


Yes, Plextor like +R more. But with TY-media Plextor do well, because the firmware are fine-tuned for TY-media. You know that Plextor sell TY-media under Plextor-brand?

I read many discussions about DVD+R and -R. And still I can say that +R is NOT better than -R. It depends on what your writer likes. I use mostly DVD-R because the compatibility is better with critical/older drives and players, -R works in every of my drives very well, with +R I have sometimes problems.

At least, TY 16x-media was tested in stability, and the -R looks much better in it.
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+R

Postby Axonn on Sun Mar 05, 2006 9:58 am

MediumRare: thank you for the link.

Scour: I can't find any TY media to buy in this shithole country ::- S. I live in Romania, a city called Brasov. Maybe if I go to the capital I would find but so far I have a good supply of TraxData +R.
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Re: +R

Postby Scour on Sun Mar 05, 2006 10:39 am

Axonn wrote:
Scour: I can't find any TY media to buy in this shithole country ::- S. I live in Romania, a city called Brasov. Maybe if I go to the capital I would find but so far I have a good supply of TraxData +R.


Do you can get Verbatim-media?
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Yes

Postby Axonn on Sun Mar 05, 2006 2:06 pm

Yes. I already got and tested with Verbatim media by MCC. Same annoying "stairs" in the Beta graphic. I can find here pretty many brands... but TY is missing.
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