Problem with DVD-RAM discs and Panasonic DMR-E85

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by SteveDangerous, Sep 27, 2004.

  1. SteveDangerous

    SteveDangerous
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    Well, I bought an E85, but I am having a rather expensive problem with DVD-RAM discs :(

    I can record to them OK - edit, protect, format them as well. However, once I have inserted them in my PC's DVD-RAM drive (an LG 4120B) I cannot write to them again on the E85. I cannot format them (get an error), and if I try to record on them the E85 reboots. I have disabled all packet-writing software on my PC and terminated all the associated processes. Recording for the drive is disabled in the properties dialogue of Explorer. All it takes is for me to put the disc in the DVD-RAM drive and wait for it to load, then eject it! I am not knowingly writing to the disc at all! I have so far "lost" three discs like this.

    The reason I want to read the discs on my PC is to produce standard video DVDs as described in this forum's sticky. Any ideas anyone? Anybody know how to reformat the discs so that the E85 can use them again? And anybody know what can be writing to the discs to render them useless as far as the E85 is concerned?

    Steve
     
  2. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    Well this is a problem I haven't seen before :eek:

    Do you have InCD running? That could be attempting to write content to the DVD-RAM disks when you put in the disks. Also what other DVD burning software/utilities do you have installed and running? And what make of DVD-RAMs are you using?

    A few things to try:
    - Format a DVD-RAM on your PC (UDF2.0). Are they then readable in the E85?
    - Uninstall the drive and ALL associated software. Then reinstall the drive - but do not install ANY of the software.
     
  3. SteveDangerous

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    If I format a RAM disc on my PC using the Panasonic DVD-RAM drivers "DVDForm" utility the E85 goes crazy. When I put the disc in the recorder I get "BYE, SELF CHECK, BYE, SELF CHECK" ad infinitum. I can only get out of this loop by pressing the ON button for 10 seconds to force standby mode and then stop and channel-up together for 5 seconds to force the disc tray to open.

    I'm using Panasonic DVD-RAM discs (LM-AF120LE). I'm not running InCD, I'm running the BHA utilities - B's Clip, etc. However, before I put any RAM disc in my PC I disable all these utilities and terminate the processes.

    Before I uninstall everything (which I am very reluctant to do), I will try running the PC in Safe Mode and see what happens. I will report back.

    Steve
     
  4. SteveDangerous

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    The same thing happens when running in Safe Mode with just the Windows cdrom.sys running.

    My theory is that Panasonic recorder and the LG drive are just not on the same wavelength. I suspect that when the disc is inserted in the LG drive it finds a large number of "bad" sectors and marks them as such before any software gets involved. From memory, I believe that (at some time in the past at least) if a RAM disc has more than 256 bad sectors (at the physical level) it is marked as read-only - this would explain why the E85 cannot write to it again after it has been inserted in the PC. Presumably, when the disc is formatted on the PC it's the recorder's turn to see a large number of bad sectors and cannot cope. I'm clutching at straws really, and not at all sure of my facts! I'm off to talk to the men at Richer Sounds now...

    Steve
     
  5. SteveDangerous

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    Right, problem sorted. :thumbsup: It was the E85.

    I took the RAM discs that were giving me trouble into Richer Sounds and tried them on one of their machines. No problems! I could edit them and format them without any trouble, including the discs that sent my machine bananas.

    So, I swapped my machine for the one we tried and all the problems I had have gone away. I can swap discs between my LG drive on the PC and the new E85 without any bother.

    I cannot for the life of me work out a reason for the problem, but then that's hardware for you!

    BTW: while I'm here, as it were, you all might like to know that for some reason E85s do not loop RGB signals through if the SCART cable on the out side is an RGB Special Edition i.e. vision only, no audio. I have never seen this sort of behaviour on any other bit of kit, but it's completely constant and reproducible - at least on my set up. I've had to use a fully-wired SCART on the out side and filter the sound out elsewhere. Weird :rolleyes:

    Steve
     
  6. glenferry

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    I'm having exactly the same problem as you experienced on your original E85 (I've also got the LG 4120B).

    You don't remember the serial no. of the E85 do you? Mine is: KW4DA002494 if your s/n was close perhaps we've found a dodgy batch!

    Funnily enough I bought mine from Richer Sounds (Bristol). I'm going back to see them tomorrow!
     
  7. SteveDangerous

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    I'm sorry but I don't have the original E85's serial number.

    Unfortunately, the new one has developed the same fault now (and I can't get to the serial number at the moment). I guess I'll have to take this one back as well, but not until after I've archived everything off.

    I'm beginning to wonder whether the LG4120B isn't the problem after all - perhaps the specific ROM version? Mine is on the original A102. I'm seriously considering purchasing a new DVD-ROM drive (not a writer) just to read the DVD-RAM discs onto my PC. It would have to be an external one, as all my internal drive bays are used up. Can anybody recommend one?

    Steve
     
  8. Kabelnet

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    Dear All,

    I have the same problem with E85/LG4120.
    The problem that the E85 detects thet the DVD-RAM is 'write protected' when it was in the LG writer.
    I contacted with Panasonic Hungary. They use the Panasonic product (software) MovieAlbum on there computers. This software detected that my DVD-RAMs are 'write protected' (after the LG drive). They formatted the DVD-RAMs with this software, and after that they are usable in the E85 again. (Now I use DVD-ROM to read them!!!)
    Panasonic Hungary said that they tried the MovieAlbum-LG4120 combination and it was working well, without problem - but I did not see that.
    The MovieAlbum software does not available separatle, it is bunded to Panasonic products.

    Tamas
     
  9. OARDVD

    OARDVD
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    So the problem appears to be with the LG drive. I wonder what they've changed because my older model LG GSA-4040B doesn't have any such fault?
     
  10. SteveDangerous

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    This seems to be a common problem - I found someone writing about this on CDFreaks. He swapped his LG4120 for a Panasonic DVD-RAM drive. The strange thing is the problem occurs for me in Windows Safe mode with absolutely no CD/DVD writing software installed. It seems to be the hardware/firmware.

    I have purchased a Samsung DVD-ROM drive to read the VR files off the DVD-RAM discs. I am now on my 3rd E85, but now I know what the problem is I don't suppose I'll be swapping it again!

    Steve
     
  11. Kabelnet

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    Of course, I wrote to LG too, but they replied me that 'it is impossible', the LG4120+InCD is good. Panasonic said that E85 is good. Everythig is good.

    Now I use LG8163 DVD-ROM. I cut and transfer the movies to my PC with the Womble MPEG Video Wizard (www.womble.com) program, with which I can transfer the edited movie in 'stream copy' mode to my hadrdisk (a normal film is about 10min). The other programs (Ulead, Cannopus, Adobe) want to re-compress the movies after editing. This Womble product is a very useful program....
     
  12. glenferry

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    I've changed my E85 for another which I tested in the shop prior to taking away.
    I have also changed the firmware on the LG 4120B to A111.
    So far (fingers crossed) everything still alright.
     
  13. midiman

    midiman
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    It would appear I am experiancing the same problem as described in this thread :thumbsdow . I have just bought an LG 4163B. At first I thought it might have been that I'd origionaly set protection on the disc. Then it happened on one I hadn't protected. Was starting to suspect the LG as the one disc I could erase successfuly hadnt been near it

    Has anybody come across a definative fix? Would Panasonic be willing to make available the software they supply with their DVD-RAM drives seeing as I own a far more expensive peice of kit in thier DVD recorder?
     
  14. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    The issue was nailed down to a compatibility issue between Panasonic 3x DVD-RAM discs and the LG drives. Just to make sure try the DVD-RAM driver from this site and, if that fails, try the latest firmware for your drive (see this site.
     
  15. midiman

    midiman
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    Thanks Rasczak

    I've updated firmware from A100 to A102. Will give the DVD-RAM Driver ago and see if I can format in UDF mode andsee if that helps. As it happens the disc I have are the Pannasonic 3x. What discs are reccomended to use with the LG drives?
     
  16. midiman

    midiman
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    Ok, downloaded the driver but am getting "DVD-RAM Driver to be updated is not installed. Cancelling setup program." Anywhere I can get the DVD-RAM driver ?
     
  17. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    Any DVD-RAMs, it would seem, bar selected Panasonic 3x ones. Try Maxell - everyone seems to have had success with them.
     
  18. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    What Operating System are you using? You can get the core drivers from here but if your using XP then it should be already there.
     
  19. midiman

    midiman
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    I am running XP which as you say should already be supported. Doesent even appear to have drivers on the link you indicated above. :confused:

    Basicly I have 5 Panasonic 3x DVD-RAM discs all of which have now been in th LG drive. If I get all the right drivers/software. Wil I be able to restore these to normal use in the E85 or are they permenantly corrupted?

    Is it all 3x DVD-RAM discs or just the Panasonic ones? I have seen Maxel 3x discs on ebay and was wondering wether to give them a go or to avoid and stick to 2x
     
  20. Rasczak

    Rasczak
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    Just Panasonic ones.

    There are no XP drivers because they should be there already as part of Windows. Do you have instant write software (such as InCD) running? If so disable it (and preferrably uninstall it) as this could be what is causing the drivers to refuse to install.
     
  21. SteveDangerous

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    They will appear permanently corrupted as far as your particular E85 is concerned. However, you should be able to reformat them on another Panasonic DVD-recorder if you can get access to one (not sure why!).

    I think it is the copy protection (CPRM) on the discs that is the problem. This is not found on any 2x DVD-RAM discs that I have come across, but is found on all Panasonic 3x discs. The latest Maxell 3x discs also have CPRM, and consequently I have avoided them.

    Steve
     
  22. bigsby

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    Can somebody post a link to a source for RAM discs that they have had success with with a panny/lg setup?

    I only seem to be able to find 3x media, which I don't want to risk.
     
  23. midiman

    midiman
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    Ok I eventualy managed to get the drivers installed did a physical format to UDF 2.0 and the panny went crazy. Guess I am just going to have to accept that I have 5 discs for PC backup only.

    Found this link - http://www.ukdvdr.co.uk/shop/home.php?cat=264 but havent yet been able to determine what speed they are. Anybody know or even used these ?
     
  24. SDHoward

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    You need to do it UDF 1.5 I think as thats the one for av files...
     
  25. midiman

    midiman
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    According to the PDF that comes with DVD RAM Form it should be 1.5 for data and 2.0 for A/V. Just gonna cut my losses and find some 2x discs (if I can)
     
  26. Kabelnet

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    I had similar problem.
    I tried the TDK DVD-RAM (Type II/Rewritable/Single sided) , and there was no problem: I could format it on PC, write some pictures it, play on E85, and after that format the DVD-RAM on E85.

    There is a very interesting program, its name is DVD identifier. It displays information about the media placed in a DVD-writer. It says

    TDK DVD-RAM:MXL7 speed 2770kbps (2.00x)
     
  27. midiman

    midiman
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    Dont suppose you know where I can lay my hand on some 2x discs? Seem to be rarer then Rockin Horse Sh%t. Just tried JVC 3x disc with the same results as the Panasonic discs :( sigh.....
     
  28. SteveDangerous

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    Do the JVC discs have CPRM?

    Comet have been selling 2x Memorex DVD-RAM discs.

    I was lucky - I found an electrical retailers with a few old 2x Panasonic discs in stock. I took all eleven!

    Steve
     
  29. midiman

    midiman
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    Dont actualy know . How can you tell?

    On a plus point I pcked up 25 blank DVD-r's for £4 today (16p each). Havent tested them yet but if they work might just settle for useng them as temp storage and then bin 'em (or give them away) after i've tansfered them to PC
     
  30. Kabelnet

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    I bought them in an electronic department store in Hungary, not online. Sorry...
     

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