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My CD drive is kind of erratic. It can read some new blank Cds but cannot read most old ones. Any ideas on how to restore the drive to its normal function?

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This is normal, most Cd/Dvd writers become weak when they are used over and over. But, in rare cases, they themselves restore the same condition as they were, there is no reason, perhaps the lens or the internal parts regain their functions. Sometimes replacing the lens solves this issues. The result is even better on some drives. I suggest you to replace the lens. I had the same problem with mine (two drives), after replacing, one of them is very much better and the performance is excellent, unfortunately the other one was thrown away since i became useless. But before you do it, please check your cable connections and the condition of the cable (Ide or sata or power cables), in most cases they are the culprits. I hope this helps. I wish you good luck.

Posted on May 27, 2010

  • francis_tail May 28, 2010

    Thank you for your advise. Can I replace the lens without replacing the drive itself? If I can I think that would be cheaper and better.

  • Lebanon Raingam
    Lebanon Raingam May 28, 2010

    Yes, of course you can replace it, but I don't recommend if you are going to take it to the repairing shop to get it repaired. When they ask you additional charge for servicing, that'd be not much different than buying a new Dvd writer. In India a reliable Dvd writer costs around $25.
    In case if you know how to replace the lens, that's your chance to get started.
    Good luck and once again thank you for using FixYa.

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hi,there is no problem in drivers .
check the hardware parts
there are 2 possibilities in your case
1.the laser beam which reads the dvd or cds is malfunctioning
2.ensure that the cable & buses are properly connected

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in case laser beam is damaged you got to get it repaired for proper functioning



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Because they handle two kinds of media, combination drives essentially have two optical pickup assemblies in one package. CDs and DVDs both look the same, but they need different laser light wavelengths to read and write them. It's not uncommon for a drive to go bad the way you're describing, where one kind of disc begins not working while the other kind is unaffected.

An optical assembly is two parts: the laser to generate the light for reading and writing, and a sensor to pick up the light that is reflected for reading. Over time the laser power drops, and there's not enough light for the disc to be read reliably or, as in your case, to even detect the disc. Since you say you've burned numerous CDs, you've put more wear on the CD side, so it's probably just worn out.

There are internal adjustments to tweak the laser power and information is out on the Web about how to squeeze a little more life out of the drive. But the cost of a new combo drive is so low now that there's no reason not to simply replace one when it fails. TigerDirect is one company I buy lots of parts from, and they have two drives that are just $20: this one if your current drive is a SATA type (narrow data cable), or this one if your old drive is an IDE drive (a wide 40-pin data cable). I'm just using those for examples, since there are many other sources.

Another option is to get an external USB burner, and then you'd have a drive you could use on different computers if you wanted, and you wouldn't have to go through the effort of replacing an internal drive (although it's not difficult).

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new dvd writer for desktop computer will cost around 1100rupees....
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Kindly give a feed back to Improve my statistics and to see If it was helpful for you...

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