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In House Review - NEC ND-3500A 16x DVD±RW

DVD-R/W, DVD+R/RW, DVD-RAM

In House Review - NEC ND-3500A 16x DVD±RW

Postby Ian on Thu Dec 02, 2004 2:56 pm

Today, CDRLabs brings you an in depth look at NEC's new double layer DVD burner, the ND-3500A. While affordably priced, the ND-3500A offers some pretty impressive specs including 16x DVD±R and 4x DVD±RW writing speeds and has a maximum DVD read speed of 16x. More importantly, it's one of the first drives to feature 4x DVD+R DL writing speeds. The ND-3500A also includes features like 48x CD reading and writing speeds, 24x rewriting speeds and a software bundle from Ulead Systems.

In this review we'll take a look at some of the features found on the ND-3500A and see how it compares to some of the 16x DVD±RW drives from the competition. Does the ND-3500A have what it takes? Is it the best bang for your buck? You'll have to read the review to find out.

[url=http://www.cdrlabs.com/reviews/index.php?reviewid=249]Image
NEC ND-3500A 16x DVD±RW[/url]

As usual, if you have any comments or questions about this review or the NEC ND-3500A, please post them in the forum by clicking the link below.
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Postby dodecahedron on Thu Dec 02, 2004 2:58 pm

hehe...
i was just thinking...the NEC review is up, but he didn't post his usual "In House Review" message in the forum yet...
was gonna post it myself but you beat me to it :D

great review, Ian, as always.
keep up the good work.
we all appreciate it and love you :D
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Postby jberry on Thu Dec 02, 2004 3:23 pm

thanks for the super efforts......as always.

most appreciated........ 8)
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Postby Ian on Thu Dec 02, 2004 4:01 pm

dodecahedron wrote:i was just thinking...the NEC review is up, but he didn't post his usual "In House Review" message in the forum yet...
was gonna post it myself but you beat me to it :D


Yeah, I was busy this morning. I didn't have time to make a news post. #-o
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Postby TCAS on Fri Dec 03, 2004 1:25 am

Being NEC-3500 owner for the last 6 months and reading a lot about it also involved in firmware modded testing (Test Only) in other community, this test and analysis represent thorough and realistic performance of this drive. Although with recent development of firmware modding the drive performance is more shining but Ian testing shows excellent view of the drive performance. Thank Ian for this long over due review.
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Postby Ian on Fri Dec 03, 2004 1:28 am

No prob TCAS. Thanks for the feedback.
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Postby Dartman on Fri Dec 03, 2004 3:20 am

Good review, pretty much hits the stock 3500 right on the head. Too bad you can't really mention the reworked firmwares that make it even better but I guess that wouldn't be fair to the average non geek user or NEC.
The drive does do very well right outa the box and even supported some 4x media at 8, plus the 4x DL, thats one of the reasons I bought mine. I also have a 2500 and it really impressed me with the quality of burns I was getting so the 3500 was a easy choice.
Keep up the good work Ian =D>
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Postby ETP on Fri Dec 03, 2004 7:20 am

Yep! With 2.18FW and the turkey day special for $62 shipped, this was a no brainer. I have the 2510a and two 3500a and burn at 16x and 8x with a variety of media, Vey nice indeed. With TY +R media these smoke enough to please me. It is time for those 20GB recorders to hit the market. :D

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Postby alexnoe on Fri Dec 03, 2004 8:30 am

Verbatim 16x DVD+R media:
Image

Writing to 8x DVD-R Maxell media:
Image

On cdfreaks, they reported slowdowns during writing, i.e. their drives didn't go up to 16x for those discs, but I don't see any problem here....

Quality scans for Maxell 8x -R media at 8x, 13x and 16x write speed coming in 3 hours

.... 3 hours later ...

Image

Image

Image
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Postby Scour on Sat Dec 04, 2004 7:34 am

Hello!

Again a great review, Ian :)

The drives seems to be very good with the most media, even with DVD-R.

I had a NEC 1300, that have bad quality with many DVD-R, the 3500 seems to be much better, congratulations to NEC.

But if somebody know something about the read-issue´s? I read the NEC 1300, 2500 and 2510 have sometimes problems read the media burnt by it´s own, is it a problem of the 3500, too?
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Postby alexnoe on Sat Dec 04, 2004 7:36 am

The NEC 3500 can even read Ritek G04 at 16x :) Though it b0rked when I tried to read a Vivastar DVD-R (also b0rked in plextor and pioneer drives, but worked in LG and toshiba)
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Postby Scour on Sat Dec 04, 2004 9:30 pm

alexnoe wrote:The NEC 3500 can even read Ritek G04 at 16x :) Though it b0rked when I tried to read a Vivastar DVD-R (also b0rked in plextor and pioneer drives, but worked in LG and toshiba)


What means "borked"? I know you´re a german, tell it me please in german :)
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Postby alexnoe on Sat Dec 04, 2004 10:30 pm

The drive failed :)
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Postby Scour on Mon Dec 06, 2004 6:54 pm

alexnoe wrote:The drive failed :)


Aha ;)

BTW, the LG´s are really great reader´s
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Postby alexnoe on Mon Dec 06, 2004 6:55 pm

Yeah, they are the total opposite to the old LG DVD-ROMs :D
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Postby Scour on Tue Dec 07, 2004 5:53 pm

alexnoe wrote:Yeah, they are the total opposite to the old LG DVD-ROMs :D


..and LG´s 52x CD-Rom
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Postby VEFF on Thu Dec 09, 2004 4:40 pm

I'm looking forward to trying this unit out.
I bought a rebadged NEC 3500A (i.e. Mad Dog) for only $44 INCLUDING TAX after $30 rebate and $30 off $100 coupon today.
Couldn't resist the deal...
I had been looking at the PX-716A, but I figured it wasn't worth double to me, especially since I will be getting a faster (8X Dual Layer write speed) burner in 2005 anyway and selling the Mad Dog at that time.

Any firmware tips? I know Mad Dog's version is not as up to date.
Can I flash it to an official NEC ND-3500A?
Burners only:
Pioneer DVR-115D
Pioneer DVR-111D
Plextor PX-716A TLA0304
Plextor PX-716A same TLA

LiteOn 52246S 52X CD-RW
LiteOn 52246S (another)
LiteOn 52327S 52X CD-RW
TDK 40X USB 2.0 CD-RW
TEAC CD-W540E 40X CD-RW
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Postby TCAS on Thu Dec 09, 2004 9:37 pm

VEFF wrote:I'm looking forward to trying this unit out.
I bought a rebadged NEC 3500A (i.e. Mad Dog) for only $44 INCLUDING TAX after $30 rebate and $30 off $100 coupon today.
Couldn't resist the deal...
I had been looking at the PX-716A, but I figured it wasn't worth double to me, especially since I will be getting a faster (8X Dual Layer write speed) burner in 2005 anyway and selling the Mad Dog at that time.

Any firmware tips? I know Mad Dog's version is not as up to date.
Can I flash it to an official NEC ND-3500A?

There are several modded f/w for this drive in CDFreaks.com that they are based on Maddog or NEC stock f/w on NEC Forum. Upgrading to any of these modded f/w with (RipLock Removed, RPC1, Write Strategy) you can improve your writer performance. As for the $30 rebate if the rebate is from Maddog then you would be better off to consider that you bought the drive for $77 which still is not bad for the retail version of repackage of NEC-3500.
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Postby VEFF on Thu Dec 09, 2004 10:38 pm

TCAS wrote:
VEFF wrote:I'm looking forward to trying this unit out.
I bought a rebadged NEC 3500A (i.e. Mad Dog) for only $44 INCLUDING TAX after $30 rebate and $30 off $100 coupon today.
Couldn't resist the deal...
I had been looking at the PX-716A, but I figured it wasn't worth double to me, especially since I will be getting a faster (8X Dual Layer write speed) burner in 2005 anyway and selling the Mad Dog at that time.

Any firmware tips? I know Mad Dog's version is not as up to date.
Can I flash it to an official NEC ND-3500A?

There are several modded f/w for this drive in CDFreaks.com that they are based on Maddog or NEC stock f/w on NEC Forum. Upgrading to any of these modded f/w with (RipLock Removed, RPC1, Write Strategy) you can improve your writer performance. As for the $30 rebate if the rebate is from Maddog then you would be better off to consider that you bought the drive for $77 which still is not bad for the retail version of repackage of NEC-3500.


Thanks for the details on the modded types available; that is just what I was looking for.

Yes, you're right:
Considering newegg raised prices on the 3500A and DVR-108 and that they now charge tax + shipping; the price I paid before rebate (just over $74 not $77) is not bad, as you stated, especially for the retail version.
I originally thought it was a store and not mfr rebate, although after ordering I found out that it is apparently a mfr rebate.

I am confident that I will get the rebate, since I got $100 and $50 owed on QPS and Cyberdrive promotions AFTER both companies went bankrupt.
CompUSA and OfficeMax came through...
I have also received rebates from firms like Buslink.
It sometimes took some calls, but for the most part I have not had too many problems and am batting 100% on rebates the past two and a half years.

OfficeMax is pretty good about resolving things though - they honored a CyberDrive $50 mfr rebate a few years ago when CyberDrive went belly up and left stores holding the bag, so to speak...
People have reported that MadDog rebates take as long as 3 mths but they do come eventually, which is all I care about... :)
Burners only:
Pioneer DVR-115D
Pioneer DVR-111D
Plextor PX-716A TLA0304
Plextor PX-716A same TLA

LiteOn 52246S 52X CD-RW
LiteOn 52246S (another)
LiteOn 52327S 52X CD-RW
TDK 40X USB 2.0 CD-RW
TEAC CD-W540E 40X CD-RW
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Postby Jim on Fri Dec 10, 2004 1:27 pm

VEFF wrote:Considering newegg raised prices on the 3500A and DVR-108 and that they now charge tax + shipping; the price I paid before rebate (just over $74 not $77) is not bad, as you stated, especially for the retail version.


I just went through the checkout process for something at NewEgg and there is no tax added. Do you live in one of the states they have a warehouse perhaps? I hope none of these online companies build warehouses in my state. The lack of taxes makes online purchasing attractive and compensates for the shipping charges on smaller items.
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Postby VEFF on Fri Dec 10, 2004 2:46 pm

Jim wrote:
VEFF wrote:Considering newegg raised prices on the 3500A and DVR-108 and that they now charge tax + shipping; the price I paid before rebate (just over $74 not $77) is not bad, as you stated, especially for the retail version.


I just went through the checkout process for something at NewEgg and there is no tax added. Do you live in one of the states they have a warehouse perhaps? I hope none of these online companies build warehouses in my state. The lack of taxes makes online purchasing attractive and compensates for the shipping charges on smaller items.


Yes, I am unfortunately in one of the three(?) states where they now charge tax due to having a (warehouse) presence there.

The strange thing is that as many nice deals as newegg has had, someone has always beaten them for products I was looking for due to coupons, PriceMatches and other special deals or lower price (e.g. Staples, OD, OM, BB, CC and CUSA) or less-known cometitors (jazztechnology e.g. for a 40X TEAC burner), so I have only ordered once from them and it was bad Optodisc 1X DVD-R media way back when that would supposedly burn but then not play on any DVD drive, even though every other brand of media that I burned with the Panasonic DVD-R/DVD-RAM drive played fine.
Newegg was good about the return and giving a partial credit for return shipping after special request, based on instructions posted on their website, I believe.
Burners only:
Pioneer DVR-115D
Pioneer DVR-111D
Plextor PX-716A TLA0304
Plextor PX-716A same TLA

LiteOn 52246S 52X CD-RW
LiteOn 52246S (another)
LiteOn 52327S 52X CD-RW
TDK 40X USB 2.0 CD-RW
TEAC CD-W540E 40X CD-RW
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