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CD drive failure analysis

By fgan ·
CD-RW CRX160E (Sony) drive in Dell Optiplex GX1150 seems to have failed. Will not read or write CD-R, CD-RW with data or music CD. These CDs play ok in another GX150. Device manager shows drive is working properly. Drivers uninstalled and reinstalled. Using Win XP SP2. Looking for reasons this drive seems to have failed. Tried a variety of troubleshooting. Cables have been reseated. Has anyone with lab experience isoated failure reason to worn parts, electronic, or operator error? Is there a failure trend with this type of drive? Sony and Dell diagostics will not detect CD drive.

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by fgan In reply to CD drive failure analysis

GX1150 should read GX150

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by willcomp In reply to CD drive failure analysis

CD-RW drives have a fairly high failure rate in general. I wouldn't worry too much about failure mode but appears to be electronic failure since diagnostics don't detect drive.

Plextor drives are the most reliable and also the most expensive. Lite-On drives are more reliable than most and are competively priced. Sony drives are among the cheapest, enough said.


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by korgmeister In reply to CD drive failure analysis

try to remove your CD-RW and install it on another system. if it doesnt work too. the CD-RW is damaged.

i have similar problem with this too, guess what. i just bought the CD-RW for 1 weeks it is already not working. however i got another replacement for free. :)

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by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to CD drive failure analysis

The main reason that I've run across for ant external drive failing is related to not having positive pressure inside the case and actually having a partial vacuum in the case so that any opening sucks in dust and grit.

I've used a lot of Sony CDR/W drives but over here they are not the cheap ones but closer to the top price drives and as yet over a 5 year period haven't seen any major differences in failure rates with them but as I say I only use the top of the range ones and as yet haven't had a single failure that can be attributed to the drive.

I've only had one that was destroyed and that was by a CDR that exploded while burning it was a cheap nasty one and was the first on a 100 Disk spindle. Needless to say none of the rest of those Cd's where every used for anything computer related, I think that all ended up being used as drink coasters.

As for Device manager stating that the drive is working OK that only means that it is being seen by Windows and appears available it doesn't actually mean that the drive itself is actually working only that there are no conflicts with the hardware installation. If the Sony utilities are failing to see the drive it has an electronic failure so it's time to replace the thing after all a CDRW which I no longer use retail for about $35.00 AU. Now days I replace these with single or dual layer DVD RW drives as these are far more cost effective and the blank DVDs even the single layer are so cheap that unless you are making a lot of Cd's are pointless as the DVD has so much more storage space on them for about the same price per disk. Of course you can make Cd's on a DVDRW Drive so it is the better option.


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by thomas.peary In reply to CD drive failure analysis

I had another drive that did the same thing and installed it on another computer and it would not work on it either. I ended up getting a DVD Burner

You may want to consider getting a DVD Burner as well. They can burn CD's and also DVD's, and some are comparable in price to CD burners. The plus side is the DVD can store more data, which is good for backups.

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by retstg In reply to CD drive failure analysis

Yes, I've had the exact same problem with several of these drives that people have brought to me get checked. I now have the Sony link bookmarked for this drive model.

It doesn't appear to make any difference if it's a Dell or other PC. After several emails to the Sony support line and using the live chat assistant (requires Java), both of which provided no relief,I now suggest replacement of the inop drive with a DVD burner (single/double layer). I have dissassemled and inspected a couple of these drives now and can't find any mechanical reason for failure. I even tried swapping controller boards around in them to no avail. This leads me to believe that the boards have some inherent defect be it component level or just plain lousey design. As stated in other answers here the Plextors seem to have the best reliability and the lower priced LG follows a close second.

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