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  1. #1
    3 Star Lounger
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    CD Rom / DVD drives

    Bought an Optiplex G110, used. Many problems in the past. Tired to play some music on the CD (a commercially purchased CD, not a download), and it skipped. Moved the CD to the DVD drive, and it skipped......badly, all through the album. Does this mean that the CD and DVD drives are messed up and will have to be repaired or replaced? Obviously, I don't know much
    about computers, so "talk down" to me so I can understand what's happening? Thanks for past help.

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    A one-off sample may not be enough to make a reliable answer, so:

    Try that CD in another player somewhere.
    Try another (known good) CD in both drives.

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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    I tried the CD in a regular stereo CD player, but will ask a friend to run it in his computer, then get back to you.
    The basic question is: IF the music skips consistantly, am I going to have to replace the drives? I can't imagine they're
    repairable, but I really don't know that much about them.

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    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    I really think you need to try another known good CD in the drives before writing them off.
    You could try one of the proprietary cleaning kits, but I would suspect if it is a hardware problem, it may be more than a bit of dust. Personally, I expect the standard PC drive is not built with the lifespan of drives built into Hi-Fi equipment - three years or so would be my guess.

    However, there may be other factors like available ram, drivers and the software you are using to play back the audio. Does it help if you unload any unused processess or applications running in the background?
    What O/S and RAM does the pc have?

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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    Thanks for the reply. I did try it again, on two different machines, and they did not skip. My machine is always 85 to 90% empty,
    so I don't think it's about RAM or other applications running. (I always do ctrl/alt/delete) before getting into any long-winded operation (like Photoshop). As I said in the original, this was a used machine, so I'm afraid it was more used that I thought.
    A friend also did the "cleaning" I think you mentioned, but it didn't help. I have this sick feeling that I'm about to buy two more drives, unless there's anything else I could do to escape that fate. Think I've covered the bases??

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    Plutonium Lounger Leif's Avatar
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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    If you are sure you are sure, there probably isn't any option!
    You could possibly save money by buying a combined CD/DVD player unless you need two drives, and if you do need the two, I would just get the (cheaper) CD player first and check that solves the problem.

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    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    The fact that you have two, and not just one, drive that exhibit the same behaviour leads me to wonder if it truly is a problem with the drives. It would be odd (although not impossible) for two optical drives to tank at the same time.

    Audio playback is not the best test in the world, either. There are many things that come into play there, from the software to the sound card. All of those items must be working properly in order for audio to play properly. If it is at all possible, I would take the drives out of the system they are in and plug them into another computer temporarily. If the skipping follows the drive(s), then you can assume they are faulty. If not, then it is a problem somewhere in the original PC. It may well be worth the time to take the unit to a local PC shop and ask them to try this for you if you don't have any friends willing to play the guinea pig role. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    In regards to how repairable the drives are, certainly it can be done - but the real issue is cost. It's simply not worth the investment to repair them when replacements are as cheap as they are. You could easily spend more on a repair than a straight out replacement unit. I tend to agree with Leif that computer drives do not have the longevity of a hi-fi system's units. I have replaced more than one in my time when things started to get flaky.
    -Mark

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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    Thanks, folks - I definitely will do the CD rom first, to see if that fixes anything - didn't think of that! I was just re-reading my history, and with all the weird and goofy problems I've had with this computer, I wouldn't be surprised that both Drives tanked.
    I'm beginning to believe I've made a really big mistake buying a used machine in the first place. I gave the my old computer to my brother and he's had no problems at all! Oh, well. I wanted big HDD and fast speed, so I'm paying the price. I really
    appreciate all the good advice, and thanks again.

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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    Hi Ray,

    Just a thought: What's the transfer mode for each of the drives? Have a look in Device Manager under the section IDE/ATAPI Controllers, Primary/Secondary IDE Channels. I've had problems before with stuttering playback on a DVD if the drive's transfer mode isn't set to 'DMA if available'.

    Worth a try?

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    Re: CD Rom / DVD drives

    Again, thanks for the interest and replies. It is now a done deal. The "bad CDs and DVDs" are running smooth and clear, so if it wasn't the drives, replacing them seems to have done the job. And, I did double check that the DMA was enabled, even
    though Windows "warned me" that it could disrupt the operation of my machine. I just love Microsoft............

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