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Dual-Layers ok on G3; ng on G5?

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John Bertram
Dual-Layers ok on G3; ng on G5?
on May 29, 2007 at 1:12:25 am

I've just posted a similar message on an Apple hardware discussion forum, but was hoping someone here could give me some guidance on a "burning question" that's really got me frustrated:

Do 1st gen G5 PowerMacs have any kind of known "issue" when it comes to playing home-burned dual-layer DVDs? I've just created a few (on a newer Intel iMac), and here's the bizarre result: they all mount and can be read perfectly on my old G3 PowerBook, but just get spat out of my G5 tower! (Dual 1.8 GHz w 3.5GB RAM)


The Full Story:

I have a bunch of dual-layer DVDs (just data, not movies) which I want to back up. While I COULD split the data onto two single layers each, I'd prefer to keep the backup media "in sync" with the originals.

So I'm using Toast 8 to do a straight copy. It takes a while, but eventually the copy is ready. That new disc can then be inserted and read just fine by the Intel iMac on which it was burned (as one would expect), AND by my humble (but still much loved) G3 Firewire PowerBook (aka the "Pismo").

But when I insert the SAME DISK into the Pioneer DVR-107D SuperDrive that came with my 1st gen G5 PowerMac, it gets unceremoniously rejected. Won't mount; can't be read; nothin'. All the disks I'm using are DVD+R DLs, and I've tried two different brands. My G5 has no problem accessing the dual-layer originals, yet rejects the dual-layer duplicates.

But what's killing me here is that the much older G3 PowerBook reads both just fine! (As does, of course, the much newer Intel iMac. FWIW, all three machines are running OSX 10.4.9)

So the problem appears to be not with the media, but with the drive itself. Unfortunately this G5 is the machine I need to be able to use these home-burned disks on. I considered looking for a firmware update, but according to the Read Before You Install file which came with the SuperDrive Firmware Update (v2.0) I just downloaded from Apple, the update applies only to PowerBook G4s, iMac G5s, and Mac Mini G4.

This makes me nervous that if I run the update, I risk making the optical drive in my G5 tower even LESS capable than it already appears to be. But WHY would home-burned dual-layer data disks that all work great in an old G3 laptop (and in an Intel iMac) be utterly unplayable in a G5 tower?


jb

- -

John Bertram
minor gem productions
http://www.minorgem.com
Toronto, Canada

Check out a special project preview at http://www.BondedPairs.com

Member:
Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
(branches: Director/Editor/Screenwriter);
Writers Guild of Canada;
LIFT (Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto)


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cowcowcow
John Bertram
Re: Dual-Layers ok on G3; ng on G5?
on May 31, 2007 at 12:42:06 am

UPDATE:

Just to make things even more bizarre (and frustrating)...

I lent three of the double-layer DVDs I'd burned (the ones that play fine in an old G3 laptop but not in my G5 tower) to a colleague who runs her own independent production company. She just informed me that the three DL DVDs (representing two different brands) ALL played perfectly in BOTH her G4 PowerPC AND in her new Mac Pro.

So what is about the optical drive in a 1st gen G5 tower that will read commercial dual-layer DVDs, but won't read home-burned DLs that all play perfectly fine in G3 laptops, G4 towers, Intel iMacs AND Mac Pros?

Could my particular drive need a repair? Or is it just something peculiar to this particular model (the Pioneeer DVR-107D)?

jb

- -

John Bertram
minor gem productions
http://www.minorgem.com
Toronto, Canada

Check out a special project preview at http://www.BondedPairs.com

Member:
Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television
(branches: Director/Editor/Screenwriter);
Writers Guild of Canada;
LIFT (Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto)


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John Bertram
Re: Dual-Layers ok on G3; ng on G5?
on Jun 14, 2007 at 7:32:39 pm

Figured I should post the resolution I came to on this issue, in case anyone else has a similar problem and searches out this thread:

The short version is that with just a few days remaining in my 3-year AppleCare warranty, the AppleCare "product specialist" to whom my case got escalated decided to send me a replacement optical drive. I swapped it in (had never installed an optical drive before) and it immediately mounted and read all the burned dual-layer discs which the original drive just spat out.


The Whole Story:

I had discovered that the original Pioneer DVR-107D SuperDrive which came with my 2004 G5 (dual 1.8GHz) was unable to mount or read burned Dual-Layer DVDs, while those same discs could be read perfectly in a colleague


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