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Why will my external DVD burner only write to one brand's disc?

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September 20, 2009 5:38:06 PM

I have an external LaCie CD/DVD writer that used to work great with anything I put inside it when it was new three years ago. Then it started getting picky. About a year ago, I could only burn to either discs without labels (shiny on both sides) or Sony's brand DVD-R. Now its stopped working with the Sony discs too. It only works with the discs with no kind of label at all (shiny on both sides). Is this just a sign the drive is old and tired? It's not like I've run thousands of discs through it over the years.

I've had similar problems with picky burners in the past from Iomega, NEC, Toshiba, and Apple too. Any ideas?
a b G Storage
September 22, 2009 7:14:36 AM

How often do you burn discs anyway? Sounds like you wear them out quickly.
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September 22, 2009 8:30:52 AM

I don't burn discs often, but I've had several occasions when I've needed to burn 20-50 at a time.
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a b G Storage
September 26, 2009 4:49:20 AM

It's possible your drive is just giving out. 20-50 at a time is no small feat. It also possible that blank manufacturing is getting let stringent and your drive isn't able to deal with lower quality. Have you used a lens cleaner disk on it yet? I could just be dusty...

Lastly if you think it is just going out, and seeing that you've gone through a few drives, it might be a better idea to get a bare DVD drive enclosure and an internal drive. That way if the next one goes bad all you have to replace is the drive. Drives are allot cheaper than full enclosures.

It's possible your drive is just giving out. 20-50 at a time is no small feat. It also possible that blank manufacturing is getting let stringent and your drive isn't able to deal with lower quality. Have you used a lens cleaner disk on it yet? I could just be dusty... Lastly if you think it is just going out, and seeing that you've gone through a few drives, it might be a better idea to get a bare DVD drive enclosure and an internal drive. That way if the next one goes bad all you have to replace is the drive. Drives are allot cheaper than full enclosures. This one's pretty future proof:
http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other%20World%20Computing/MRSFW8U2/

I'm sure there are others if that investment is too steep, but the benefit is that you can get dvd burners for $25 to $50 a pop. Shoot you can even move on to Blu-ray with this baby.
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