Well I'm on my 2nd SATA Plextor PX-716SA drive after me sending the 1st one back because it was burning too slow and the buffer fluctuating up and down while burning. Only to find the 2nd does the same thing. Sent a cross but polite email to plextor again and here's what I got back (start from the bottom of the bold text):



What use is the information about only some SATA controllers work with optical units on the packaging?! What about the poor souls who buy the drives from the web?!

I want to ask for a refund on this drive, or at the very least a replacement IDE drive equivalent to the one I've got. Do you think I've got any legs to stand on?

Or could all this be solved buy buying a SATA PCI controller?





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****FROM PLEXTOR****

Dear sir,

This information is clearly mentioned on the packaging of the unit.

Kind regards ,

Peter Vermeulen
Technical Support Engineer

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****FROM ME****

Thank you for raising this issue with me. However. It would have been handy if you provide this information on your website. Just a simple sentence, say for instance "Not every SATA controller supports optical units, please check your hardware specifications before buying".

There are no minimum system requirements on your site, which I referred to on a number of occasions before buying this drive. I am not new to buying hardware, I make a living from it, and if I'd have been informed of this problem I would have bought the PX-716A.

So you see this is a problem you can help me with since you failed to provide all the information you should have done.

I will look forward to your response

Stephen Crawford

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****FROM PLEXTOR****

Dear sir ,

The problem you're experiencing here isn't related to the unit. But to a performance problem in your system.
Since that's clearly indicated by the fact the unit always needs to wait for new data to arrive before he can proceed with the recording.
I see that you're using a Via SATA controller.
To our information this controller doesn't support optical units.
Therefore I woudl rather advice you to contact the manufacturers from your mainboard and check if they have a bios update so that they fully support optical units.
Because not every SATA controller supports optical units.
In fact only a minority of the SATA controllers on the market supports optical units in a decent way.
Further the media you're using isn't the best media around.
We would rather suggest to use media from a decent quality like from for example from verbatim.

So in the end the problem isn't created by the unit itselve.
That unit works perfectly.It's just the controller that you're using who's creating the problem and possibly a bottleneck in your system;
However these are problems you need to solve yourselve.
We can't do anything about that since they aren't related to the unit itselve.

Kind regards ,

Peter Vermeulen
Technical Support Engineer

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Error message you get when trying to write a disc.
No error messages when writing data in Nero the burn process runs slow, it takes 25 minutes to write a full DVD. The buffer is fluctuating between 0 and 100%. The burning of full a DVD+R is quicker on my slower 4X drive (15 minutes) and has no buffer fluctuations. This is in Nero 6.

When burning images in Alcohol120% and ImgBurn I get errors before ANYTHING is written! Saying there is a problem with the drive. But when burning from my old drive the burn process finishes successfully with no problems and at an acceptable speed.

Further can you tell me exactly what data your burning?
Video files (WMV, AVI, MPG etc)
Disc Images
MP3s
Image Files (PSD, JPEG, EPS etc)

What's the original source of the data you're burning?
Images are from Photoshop
Videos are from different websites
MP3s are just exported from Audio CD using iTunes
All burn fine with my old drive

What device is being used as a source unit?
120Gb SATA Baracuda HDD on SATA port 1 on motherboard
80Gb IDE Western Digital HDD on IDE port 1

What brand and type of media is being used at that moment?
RiDisc 16x DVD+R
Infiniti 16x DVD-R
Sony DVD+RW
Imation 52x CD-R
(So not cheap media)

Do you perform any other tasks during recording?
No. But I shouldn't have to stop working just to burn a disc.However, I've even tried closing all processes that are running in the background that are not required for the burning process. I should not have to do this everytime I want to burn a disc either.

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****FROM PLEXTOR****

Dear sir ,

This would be very strange since the unit you received is a brand new unit.

Therefore can you send me again a new pxinfo read-out and error message you get when trying to write a disc.
Further can you tell me exactly what data your burning?
What's the original source of the data you're burning?
What device is beeing used as a source unit?
What brand and type of media is beeing used at that moment?
Do you perform any other tasks during recording?

Kind regards ,

Peter Vermeulen
Technical Support Engineer

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****FROM ME****

I received my replacement/repaired drive and the same problem is still happening. (see below)

My RMA No. was XXXXXXXXX

I am very disappointed about this. I have never had a problem with any optical drives I've bought in the past and expected a lot more from a brand that (so I've been lead to believe) is meant to manufacture higher quality optical drives, hence the higher price tag. I have wasted a lot of time trying to sort this problem out which in effect has cost me money.

I would like to return this drive once again so I will need a new RMA No. and would also like my money refunded.

Stephen Crawford