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Super Multi-Drive (with DVD-RAM writes) Recommendation?

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

Super Multi-Drive (with DVD-RAM writes) Recommendation?

Postby js26pub on Wed Feb 01, 2006 2:29 pm

I'm looking for a recommendation on an all-around super multi-drive that supports DVD-RAM writes as well. My main purpose is long-term data backup, so I don't care too much about speeds of writes/reads, much more about quality of writes for archiving.

My main priorities are:
- supports all +/-R, +/-RW, DVD-RAM writes
- good overall write quality

There seem to be a fairly limited set of super multi-drives that support DVD-RAM writes:

1) LG 4167B - good just about every way in cdrlabs review
2) LG 4166B/2166B - poor write quality in cdrlabs review, but has LightScribe which is a nice-to-have
3) Pioneer 110/ASUS DRW-1608P2S (not the 110D/ASUS DRW-1608P2) - other sites report good write quality for 110/1608P2S, but only 1608P2 reviewed on cdrlabs and showed poor write quality (and rumors that they are all the same chipset).
4) NEC 4551A - other sites report good write quality, but only 4550A (non DVD-RAM writes) reviewed on cdrlabs and showed poor write quality
5) BenQ DQ60 - can't find any good reviews, but cdrlabs forums say it's got poor write quality

So any recommendations?

Also, any plans to review the DVD-RAM write versions of the multi-drives above that haven't been reviewed yet?
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Re: Super Multi-Drive (with DVD-RAM writes) Recommendation?

Postby Scour on Wed Feb 01, 2006 5:12 pm

js26pub wrote:
1) LG 4167B - good just about every way in cdrlabs review
2) LG 4166B/2166B - poor write quality in cdrlabs review, but has LightScribe which is a nice-to-have
3) Pioneer 110/ASUS DRW-1608P2S (not the 110D/ASUS DRW-1608P2) - other sites report good write quality for 110/1608P2S, but only 1608P2 reviewed on cdrlabs and showed poor write quality (and rumors that they are all the same chipset).
4) NEC 4551A - other sites report good write quality, but only 4550A (non DVD-RAM writes) reviewed on cdrlabs and showed poor write quality
5) BenQ DQ60 - can't find any good reviews, but cdrlabs forums say it's got poor write quality


1. LG 4167: Not perfect, but LG is a good choice for allround-quality
2. LG 4166: With newer FW i had seen some nice results in writing-quality

I´m not sure about the other drives...heard that NEC doen´t do well in DVD-RAM-things. And the review here don´t looks fine when media was scanned with a Benq. Pioneer/Asus, they offer nice quality, but only with some media, not with all. About the DQ 60 I don´t heard any good things.
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Postby Justin42 on Wed Feb 01, 2006 5:13 pm

I have both an LG 4163 and 4167 and am quite happy with both drives. They definitely seem to like -R media (although are fairly good at +R as well) and offer very good performance. I had been waiting for a Pioneer A10XL model but it never seemed to make it to the US, and it seems like the drives are kind of iffy.

It helps LG has had quite a few generations of DVD-RAM capabilities so their drives pretty much handle it quite well.
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Postby Ian on Wed Feb 01, 2006 5:53 pm

The GSA-4167B and ND-4551A are both very good drives. I won't kid you, I am a little concerned about the spikes with the ND-4551A but they only show up when testing with BenQ drives.

I have heard that the GSA-4166B is better with the 1.01 and 1.02 firmware but for whatever reason LG refuses to release an official update. Maybe older drives cannot be updated? I really would like to know what's going on over at LG.
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Postby Scour on Wed Feb 01, 2006 7:03 pm

Ian wrote:The GSA-4167B and ND-4551A are both very good drives. I won't kid you, I am a little concerned about the spikes with the ND-4551A but they only show up when testing with BenQ drives.

I have heard that the GSA-4166B is better with the 1.01 and 1.02 firmware but for whatever reason LG refuses to release an official update. Maybe older drives cannot be updated? I really would like to know what's going on over at LG.


http://forum.rpc1.org/dl_firmware.php?download_id=2209

Is this still not official?

I know some guys who updated their 4166 to 1.01, so it should work

I heard newer drives have FW 1.02
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Postby ItalianJob on Wed Feb 01, 2006 7:06 pm

Scour wrote:Is this still not official?


Not official. It's a copy of the one licked by MP3Mogul@cdrinfo. He got the 1.00 and 1.01 (the good one) firmware from a friend at LG.
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Postby bill on Wed Feb 01, 2006 7:09 pm

Newegg has Liteon's 165P6S in stock. Any word on how that drive perfoms? It might be another altenative.


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6827106256
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Postby Scour on Wed Feb 01, 2006 7:14 pm

bill wrote:Newegg has Liteon's 165P6S in stock. Any word on how that drive perfoms? It might be another altenative.


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6827106256


Here´s a review of the 5S

http://cdrinfo.com/Sections/Reviews/Spe ... leId=16184

Liteon often produces many drives with only one hardware
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Postby Ian on Wed Feb 01, 2006 7:18 pm

Scour wrote:Here´s a review of the 5S

http://cdrinfo.com/Sections/Reviews/Spe ... leId=16184

Liteon often produces many drives with only one hardware


That is the 6S. They just made a typo.

It's good to see that Lite-On is finally catching up. Hopefully Lite-On Americas has some review samples. Otherwise I'll be hitting up the 'egg for one.
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Postby bill on Wed Feb 01, 2006 7:36 pm

Scour wrote:
bill wrote:Newegg has Liteon's 165P6S in stock. Any word on how that drive perfoms? It might be another altenative.


http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6827106256


Here´s a review of the 5S

http://cdrinfo.com/Sections/Reviews/Spe ... leId=16184

Liteon often produces many drives with only one hardware



Thanks, Scour :D

It looks like they used the latest official firmware for the review. So far, not bad overall.
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Postby Scour on Wed Feb 01, 2006 10:18 pm

bill wrote:[

It looks like they used the latest official firmware for the review. So far, not bad overall.


Hm, some crazy results, i guess.

hile the transfer-tests looks good with most media (except DVD RW), some scans show very high error-rates
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Postby frank1 on Thu Feb 02, 2006 4:24 am

So nobody talks about the DVD-RAM capabilities of the Plextor PX-750
which is a rebadged of the BenQ DQ60 I suppose
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Postby bill on Thu Feb 02, 2006 6:24 am

Scour wrote:
bill wrote:[

It looks like they used the latest official firmware for the review. So far, not bad overall.


Hm, some crazy results, i guess.

hile the transfer-tests looks good with most media (except DVD RW), some scans show very high error-rates


I should've added a eye roll when I made that statement. #-o The drive has potential but it looks like it needs another firmware update from Liteon.

Any thoughts regarding the Mediatek chipset?
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Postby Scour on Thu Feb 02, 2006 9:12 am

bill wrote:Any thoughts regarding the Mediatek chipset?


Liteon shows good performance with Mediatek-Chipsets, better than Samsung or Toshiba.

But overall I prefer drives from LG, Benq (with Nexperia-chipsets, not the DQ 60), NEC or Pioneer.

For DVD-RAM my favorite is still LG
Benq DW 1640, LG GH-20N, Pioneer BDR-208
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Postby ItalianJob on Fri Feb 03, 2006 9:46 am

Ian wrote:I have heard that the GSA-4166B is better with the 1.01 and 1.02 firmware but for whatever reason LG refuses to release an official update. Maybe older drives cannot be updated? I really would like to know what's going on over at LG.


Someone reported to me that the he 1.02 firmware is available through the LG auto-firmware update software 8) (in france at least...)

I hope we will have a direct link soon (as for the LG 4163 A106 : http://lgodd.lge.com/fwdrv/DVD-WRITER/GSA4163A106.exe )
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Postby Ian on Fri Feb 03, 2006 11:07 am

I could never get that stupid auto update utility to work right.
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Postby ItalianJob on Fri Feb 03, 2006 11:22 am

Doesn't work for me too => getting a strange error under XP SP2... Work without error in W2k compatibility mode but I'm getting nothing :o

I'm trying to get the 1.02 firmware directly from the guy :P
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thanks, 4167B sounds like the one to go with

Postby js26pub on Sat Feb 04, 2006 1:43 am

Thanks everyone! Sounds like LG is the way to go at the moment for DVD-RAM + all around good writing quality across most media. (Pioneer/ASUS being a close 2nd, but not quite as much media compatibility.)

I think I'm going to go with the 4167B, since it's half the price of the LightScribe 4166B and at least has proven good firmware. Heck, if the 4167B has trouble in a year, I can buy a new drive (either a 4167B, or the 4166B if it's come down in price and has proven firmware by then), and in the end I'll spend as much as I would've if I bought **one** 4166B now! Not worth 2X to get Lightscribe for me.

By the way, Ian, there is a typo on the 4167B review on the conclusion page. The little summary box at the bottom says: "LG GSA-4166B 16x Super-Multi" when it should be "LG GSA-4167B 16x Super-Multi".
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Re: thanks, 4167B sounds like the one to go with

Postby ItalianJob on Sat Feb 04, 2006 5:23 am

js26pub wrote:Thanks everyone! Sounds like LG is the way to go at the moment for DVD-RAM + all around good writing quality across most media.../...

I think I'm going to go with the 4167B, since it's half the price of the LightScribe 4166B


Remember that LG drive do support DVD-RAM but cannot verify quality (no PI/PIF scan). You must have a 2nd drive for that : a BenQ, a Liteon or a Plextor 716.

"4167 half the price of the 4166" ? You must be mistaken somewhere.
Best prices in france are :
4167 => 37 euros
4166 => 49 euros
12 euros for LightScribe is cheap.
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Postby js26pub on Sat Feb 04, 2006 4:07 pm

Wow, sounds like Europe has a much better deal on the 4166B.

The best I can find in the US for both products is from NewEgg.com (retail like BestBuy does carry the 4166B, but for +$6-10 over NewEgg):

4167B - $39 US (32 euro) oem, $46 US (38 euro) retail
4166B - $90 US (75 euro) retail

So at least in the US market, the 4166B (retail) is priced 2X the 4167B (retail). (Unless someone else can find a cheaper place for the 4166B in the US.)
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Postby ItalianJob on Sat Feb 04, 2006 5:12 pm

js26pub wrote:4166B - $90 US (75 euro) retail


This is the price of the external (USB 2) LG GSA-2166D here :wink:
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Postby ItalianJob on Sat Feb 04, 2006 5:14 pm

ItalianJob wrote:Doesn't work for me too => getting a strange error under XP SP2... Work without error in W2k compatibility mode but I'm getting nothing :o

I'm trying to get the 1.02 firmware directly from the guy :P


Well this sound like a XP SP2 conflict with the LG Odd auto-update software (working well with XP SP1) :
http://club.cdfreaks.com/showpost.php?p ... ostcount=9
"how many of you are running xp service pack 2 (sp2) because you may find this interesting I recently reformated my machine with xp sp 1 and odd auto update ran fine and was updating when I installed sp2 I was getting the error 7 code and It wont run this leads me to believe that it is a xp sp2 confilct with the program. and thoughs. and by the way hi to you all from oz"

Fuck :-?
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pricing

Postby js26pub on Sat Feb 04, 2006 5:33 pm

Yeah, the 2166D here is $136 US (113 euro) through BestBuy. Basically, I think they are trying to charge a huge premium for LightScribe in the US. I figure that will change in a year, so the 4167B is the better deal right now. Too bad, if I had the option of an extra $14 (12 euro) for the 4166B, I'd definitely go for it (although it's a bit strange they haven't released the official firmware yet).
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Postby Ian on Tue Feb 07, 2006 9:04 am

Yep, the 1.02 firmware is going out over their goofy update util:

http://www.dvdrwinfo.net/bbs/zboard.php ... news&no=29

Why can't LG just do it the normal way and put it on their website?
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