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In House Review - Plextor PX-716A 16x DVD±RW

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

Postby dolphinius_rex on Sun Feb 06, 2005 12:48 am

Scour wrote:Hello!

Seems to be that Benq is one of the best manufacturer for DVD-writers now. But I wonder why Benq brings out new FW sometimes in regular temporal times. Plextor brings new FW when they make some improvements.

BTW, can you tell me why Benq make so extremly ugly drives? When I see a Philips Reatil-drive with the same technic like Benq, I don´t understand it.

Maybe I buy a Philips and try to flash to Benq?


Well, they were bringing out new fimwares almost weekly trying to quickly get a few bugs sorted out... but now they're taking their time and working hard on the new releases. I'm quite interested to see what B7U9 will bring... although I have some concerns from what I've already seen :-?

As for drive design... I think they could learn a lot from Pioneer! (or the Pioneer XL series at least :P). But I think drive design is very subjective. Personally, out of all the drive I own (or have owned) I think I like my LG 4163B's design the least. I just don't like the circular eject button for some reason.

I actually really like the Plextor's front bezel, simply because it's quite simple looking, yet the little black bar on the white bezel adds a certain something to it that many other drives don't have. It's a small thing, but I like it.
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Postby Rich on Sun Feb 06, 2005 1:47 pm

Hi Ian,

Just curious, knowing you appreciate the Plextor 712's, working with Plex's recomended media, say 8x +R Taiyou Yuden media and/or 4x +RW Verbatim media and not pushing it faster, how do you think the write quality would stack-up between the 712 and the 716?

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Postby RJW on Sun Feb 06, 2005 4:22 pm

Scour wrote:Hello!


BTW, can you tell me why Benq make so extremly ugly drives? When I see a Philips Reatil-drive with the same technic like Benq, I don´t understand it.

Maybe I buy a Philips and try to flash to Benq?


Funny in Holland people allways say that Philips designs the most ugly drives.
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Plextor px-716

Postby dellboy on Sun Feb 06, 2005 7:47 pm

I found that with the latest f/w 104 installed , the latest plextools
does not show that it can write to dvd-r d/layer or read it .
Maybe this will change with the next plextool update.

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Postby Scour on Sun Feb 06, 2005 9:14 pm

@dolphinius_rex

Yeah, i love the design of my LG, too. I saw a picture of this design in black, looks real pretty, too.

@RJW

The Philips-bulk-drives are not pretty, but not ugly like Benq (my opinion) and the retail-drives are real nice with this cool LED´s
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Postby alexnoe on Mon Feb 07, 2005 1:30 pm

My PX716 totally screwed up my verbatim 4x +rw/-rw when doing a *real* overwrite test (writing k * 200 MB in the k-th pass, 22 passes) #-o
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Postby jsl on Mon Feb 07, 2005 1:52 pm

Ian wrote:RJW.. PM and let me know what sorts of things you'd like to see in our next review. I can't promise all will be done, but I'll see what I can do.

I'm not RJW and this is not a PM ;) but one thing I'd like to see in your future reviews: Burn full discs, not just ~4GB. Because the last part of the discs are usually where most burners have problems, with slow-downs or with bad burn quality and I also think most people would like to see the burn times for a full disc instead of ~4GB. Besides I believe dolphinius_rex has burned full discs in his reviews so you would be able to compare the burn times in your reviews.
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Postby Ian on Mon Feb 07, 2005 2:03 pm

Good point jsl. It wasn't a big issue with the Z-CLV or CLV drives, but now that writers don't reach 16x until the end, a full disc is better. This won't make it into my next review, but I will after that. There goes my comparisons. :P

As far as the PX-716A goes... the slow downs I saw occurred before the 4GB mark. Burning a full disc probably wouldn't have mattered that much. Writing quality wise.. in my experience, if you're going to see bad quality, there are going to be some indicators before the 4GB mark. Of course, that's not all cases and your experiences may vary, etc, etc...
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Postby alexnoe on Mon Feb 07, 2005 2:07 pm

I've seen Benq drives fux0ring up Verbatim 4x +R discs at 8x speed during the last 50 MB of a full 4480 MB burn ...
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Mon Feb 07, 2005 3:52 pm

Ian wrote:This won't make it into my next review, but I will after that. There goes my comparisons. :P


You can always compare to my burn times :wink:
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Postby Wesociety on Mon Feb 07, 2005 3:57 pm

I agree! the last written portion of a DVDR is crucial!
I've seen many discs that are burned "perfect" up until the point past 4GB.
Especially with lower/average quality media.
These high error rates and spiking near the end of the disc can lead to skips and pauses in DVD Video when the disc is filled to capacity.
I wonder if the results and performance rating would differ if the full discs were utilized.

Other than this, the only thing I miss is a transfer rate test (16x preferably) on the DVD±R media. I would rather see Q Check + Transfer Rate or Kprobe + Transfer Rate instead of Q Check + Kprobe.

Other than that, I enjoyed the writing, your comments and the review in general.
It's good to see a review with the 1.04 firmware.
Good job Ian.
Too bad those Plexy folks force you to return the drive #-o
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Postby RJW on Mon Feb 07, 2005 4:20 pm

Why not make it a topic (or can we abuse this topic) instead of pm.
I think with a open topic people can much better contribute.
In other words I might have some idea's based on some facts some other
persons might have some input that proofs that we might actually do not need this all and there is a faster, cheaper better way.
In the end a open topic will be result in the best quality I think but then again I might be wrong.

So what shall it be.

A just a open topic - Were anyone can add and discuss there idea's to improve the quality to perfect quality (In other words really blow the competition away !)
B just a pm. with just my comments.
C just take this topic more offtopic and post the stuff here.
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Postby Ian on Mon Feb 07, 2005 4:48 pm

Wes, the transfer rates were ommitted to save time. As it is, I spent more time than I would have liked on the drive. But hey, you might get your wish with the PX-716SA.

RJW wrote:A just a open topic - Were anyone can add and discuss there idea's to improve the quality to perfect quality (In other words really blow the competition away !)
B just a pm. with just my comments.
C just take this topic more offtopic and post the stuff here.


PM is fine. Otherwise take the discussion here:

http://www.cdrlabs.com/phpBB/viewtopic. ... 765#134765
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Postby alexnoe on Mon Feb 07, 2005 4:53 pm

A transfer rate test is actually taking *much* less time than a quality check :P

A PIE+PIF+J/B - Scan on a DL disc takes 2h 34m :O
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Postby Ian on Mon Feb 07, 2005 5:04 pm

alexnoe wrote:A transfer rate test is actually taking *much* less time than a quality check :P


Add in the time it takes to test all of the discs, go through them to find the ones you want, resize them and upload them to the database.. it takes awhile. :roll:
Last edited by Ian on Mon Feb 07, 2005 5:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby alexnoe on Mon Feb 07, 2005 5:05 pm

I'm currently doing my 7th, but I someone else is going to upload the pictures file by file for me :P
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Postby ETP on Thu Feb 10, 2005 6:52 am

Ian! Thanks as always! You da man!
I wasn't going to buy a 716 PLEX at the listed price, but for $79 after rebate/why not.

As far as this forum and Freaks! You both do great work and I enjoy both forums. This forum is a little more low key in the language, which I like 8) .
If I am not mistaken, I think you and CDFREAKS have a very close working friendly relationship. =D> =D> =D> =D>

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Postby Ankerson on Thu Feb 10, 2005 9:49 am

I am picking my 716a up today, I will post back after I run some tests myself. :D

Edit:

I would have had it sooner but it was taking way too long to get it from Dell so I cancelled my order and am picking it up from Best Buy today.
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Postby Ian on Thu Feb 10, 2005 12:23 pm

ETP wrote:If I am not mistaken, I think you and CDFREAKS have a very close working friendly relationship. =D> =D> =D> =D>


Yep, I really like the guys over there. The people that run the site, their reviewers and most of the forum mods are good people.
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Postby alexnoe on Thu Feb 10, 2005 12:28 pm

Even the Plextor zealotry in their administration seems to be gone nowadays :)
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Thu Feb 10, 2005 12:35 pm

alexnoe wrote:Even the Plextor zealotry in their administration seems to be gone nowadays :)


If AviationWiz lost the faith, how could anyone not?
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Postby Ankerson on Thu Feb 10, 2005 2:41 pm

Well I ran some quick tests Sony 52X CD-R and Verbatim 16X DVD+R media.

All I can say is AWESOME!!! :D

I flashed the firmware to 1.04 right away..was 1.03.

Using Nero 6.6

Burn a CD-R in 2:36.

Burned a DVD in 6:01 including Lead in an Lead out.

Write quality is very good.

I knew there was a reason why I use Plextor and this drive hasn't let me down. Quality is excellent.

:D

Installation was a no brainer and the Plextools Pro is good also.
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Postby alexnoe on Thu Feb 10, 2005 2:46 pm

Plextools Pro is good also.
What do you mean? The user interface of the Q-check part is so bad that I rewrote it (and still busy with TA)...

And does anyone know why Plextor has reduced DVD+R DL read speed, compared to its predecessor? And why does it fail with 32x RWs? The PX712 can write them...
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Postby Ankerson on Thu Feb 10, 2005 2:50 pm

alexnoe wrote:
What do you mean? And does anyone know why Plextor has reduced DVD+R DL read speed, compared to its predecessor? And why does it fail with 32x RWs? The PX712 can write them...


I don't use RW media so I dunno.

DVD+DL is rated at 4X as per drive specs.
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Postby alexnoe on Thu Feb 10, 2005 2:53 pm

First, it is not, 2nd, it is no answer to my question about READ speed
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