LG GMA-4020B DVD Writer

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LG GMA-4020B


OEM:
Hitachi-LG
Chipset:N/A
12xCDR CLV
8xCDRW CLV
2xDVD-R CLV
1xDVD-RW CLV
DVD-RDL
DVD+R
DVD+RW
DVD+RDL
2xDVD-RAM ZCLV
BD-R
BD-RE
BD-R DL
BD-RE DL
HDDVD-R
HDDVD-RW
HDDVD-RDL
HDDVD-RWDL
HDDVD-RAM
32xCD
10xDVD
BDROM
HDDVD
EIDE, 2MB
More info
$150 8.4/10
53 votes
Read 60
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DVD Media comments for this DVD Writer (click on the link to read the comments):
1 Bulkpaq 2xDVD-R (TDKG02000000) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 CompUSA 1xDVD-R (PRINCO......) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
4 E3Works 4xDVD-R (LEADDATA01..) comments, 4 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 E3Works 2xDVD-RW (OPTODISCK001) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 EMTEC 1xDVD-R (OPTODISCK001) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Esperanza 4xDVD-R (GSC001......) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Fujifilm 2xDVD-R (PVC001001) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Generic/Unbranded 4xDVD-R (AN32........) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
2 Generic/Unbranded 1xDVD-R (GSC001) comments, 2 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
2 Generic/Unbranded 4xDVD-R (LONGTEN 001.) comments, 0 good, 1 mixed, 1 poor.
1 Go Tech 4xDVD-R (AN30........) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Hypermedia 4xDVD-R (LONGTEN 001.) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 Imation 1xDVD-R (CMC00RG200..) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Imation 1xDVD-R (RITEKG03....) comments, 0 good, 1 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Infiniti 2xDVD-R (SONY........) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Intenso 2xDVD-R (PRODISCG02..) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 Laser 2xDVD-R (TDKG02000000) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
2 LG 4xDVD-R (LGE04.......) comments, 2 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Magnex 1xDVD-R (OPTODISCK001) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Master G 1xDVD-R (CMC00RG300..) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Maxell 1xDVD-RW (JVC/VictorT7) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Maxell 2xDVD-RAM (M01J0005) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Maxell 1xDVD-RW (MCC 00RW11N9) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Maxell 2xDVD-R (MXL RG01....) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Maxell 4xDVD-R (MXL RG02....) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Maxell 8xDVD-R (MXL RG03....) comments, 0 good, 1 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Maxell 8xDVD-R (RITEKG05....) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 Maxell 2xDVD-RW (TDK502sakuM3) comments, 0 good, 1 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Memorex 1xDVD-RW (ProdiscDVDRW) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 Mirror Platinum 4xDVD-R (AN31........) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 MMore 1xDVD-R (EuroDig-Disc) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 Octron 2xDVD-R (RITEKG03....) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
8 Optodisc 1xDVD-R (OPTODISCK001) comments, 5 good, 0 mixed, 3 poor.
1 Panasonic 2xDVD-RAM (M01J0005) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Philips 8xDVD-R (FUJIFILM03..) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Pine 2xDVD-R (MXL RG01....) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
6 Princo 1xDVD-R (PRINCO......) comments, 3 good, 0 mixed, 3 poor.
2 Princo 1xDVD-RW (PRINCO......) comments, 0 good, 1 mixed, 1 poor.
3 Princo 4xDVD-R (PRINCO......) comments, 3 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Princo 2xDVD-RW (PRINCO......) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 ProMedia 1xDVD-R (UTJG01001...) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
4 Ritek 1xDVD-R (RITEKG03....) comments, 4 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Ritek 4xDVD-R (RITEKG04....) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Shintaro 1xDVD-R (TDKG02000000) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Sky 4xDVD-R (AN32........) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Sony 4xDVD-R (TYG01.......) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 StarLogic 1xDVD-R (PRINCO......) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 StarMedia 2xDVD-R (MXL RG01....) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
2 Supermedia 2xDVD-R (MXL RG01....) comments, 1 good, 1 mixed, 0 poor.
2 TDK 2xDVD-R (TDKG02000000) comments, 2 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
2 Verbatim (DataLifePlus) 2xDVD-R (MCC 00RG200) comments, 2 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Verbatim (DataLifePlus) 1xDVD-RW (MCC 00RW11N9) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Verbatim (DataLifePlus) 4xDVD-R (MCC 01RG20) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
Post your DVD Media comments here
Comments
60 comments, Showing 1 to 25 comments
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I have had this drive for a year, at first other than the standard media compatibility issues it worked fine. However I did note a few things. Movie backups that required re compression in DVDshrink seemed to have playback issues, stopping, stuttering, ect. Movies that do not require re compression worked fine. Very few bad burns initially, however this number has gone up significantly as the drive has aged and I only burn maybe 3 discs a week. This week it took 4 dics (all the same media Princo 4x -R) to get a single good burn and I had to burn a +RW 3 times to get a good burn. I'm replacing it with a NEC burner in a external enclosure. All in all it wasn't a bad burner but at the same time it has given me a lot more trouble than friends have had with other brands. One last thing, a month or so ago the button to eject the disc started to fail intermittently and the only way to eject a disc would be to use the eject command via windows. Not a big deal but one more sign that the drive just has NOT aged well.


Comments posted by ReactiveLlama from Canada, May 01, 2005. Rated this writer 5 of 10.





*Update*
Having problems with data verification using the 8x Maxell Made In Japan.....every second disk...
Confirmed the 4x MIJ Maxell's are NOT having the same problem.....
Drive is clean and no problems otherwise....
Any one else having this problem and time for a new drive?
Dave


Comments posted by Dave F. from Canada, April 17, 2005. Rated this writer No rating.





(Update)

Ok, I managed to use another DVD writer to erase all those DVD-RW's which were unerasable on the LG. Since I've erased them on the other drive, I've been careful to burn them only in ISO format on the LG. When I use them now in only ISO format I have no problems erasing and reusing the media (Princo).

What a bizarre problem. Since LG doesn't even support this drive anymore, it's unlikely they'll ever do anything to correct this issue. It seems to be a firmware problem, not a hardware one, as once the disk is erased, it seems to work fine again on the LG.


Comments posted by satviewer2000 from Canada, August 26, 2004. Rated this writer No rating.





Cons:
1. For some bizarre reason, any DVD movie I produced using CloneDVD and Princo DVD-RW disks can no longer be erased! I always get an error msg when trying to erase these disks. I cannot format them either. However, all disks which were burned with ISO format can be erased without any problems, and rewritten to. Is this a firmware problem or software problem? Has anyone else had a similar experience? I've tried 10 programs including those which came with the drive to try erasing these disks, but no luck.

2. No longer supported on LG's website. There are no more firmware updates available, and in fact, this drive isn't even listed in the support section anymore!

3. Very irratic behavior when trying to burn CDRWs. Actually, I have not been able to successfully burn a single CDRW in this drive, even though it is supposedly supported. For DVD-RW's it seems to be ok though.

Pros:
1. When used in ISO mode, it produces good reliable copies. I have not had any problems erasing DVD-RW disks when written in ISO format.

2. I've had it for over 6 months and haven't had any mechanical issues with this drive (unless #1 in cons is a mechanical issue).


Comments posted by Satviewer2000 from Canada, August 19, 2004. Rated this writer 6 of 10.





Didn't have any problems writing DVD-RW under Windows (B's, others) or linux (k3b/cdrecord).

Regular CD's are another matter. I've tried to burn numerous audio CD's both from mp3's or doing a direct CD copy under both Linux and Windows using various programs, but they all fail to be recognized by regular CD players. They are recognized as audio CD's by computers or enhanced cd/mp3 players.

Data CD-R and CD-RW are written under windows without any problem usually, but under linux it will almost always produce a coaster. It seemed that firmware update A109 caused ALL writes to CD-R's to fail under linux. Even dummy writes fail.

I've tried both Memorex and Sony CD-R's.



Comments posted by swingincelt from Canada, March 16, 2004. Rated this writer 2 of 10.





I've had one for 4 months, it has worked flaulessly after
the firmware updates.


Comments posted by Adrien from Other, December 25, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.





I have had this drive for 2 months and I have mixed views on it. The best I can say about it is that it is tempermental about the media it writes to - it "hates" Memorex and TDK. It writes fine to DVD-RAM, "sometimes" to DVD-RW (this depends on the media, it only like Maxell) and the LG support is pitiful (check the LG Canada site as an example). It reads all media just fine and I had no problems playing back DVD movies etc. The software that accompanies the drive is not mainstream (so there is not much help for it available on the internet) and the minimal manuals and help files (some of it is so poorly written in English that it makes absolutely no sense) are big drawbacks, especially for a newbie like myself who is competent but not an expert.

Lastly, and most importantly, it the 4020 is not (yet?) widely supported by various software packages, so you take a chance when you buy software. I cannot overemphasize that you should use the trial version of a piece of software first before doing an actual purchase (even though the software site may claim it supports the drive).

An example (I have a couple of others)- I tried 8 (yes 8!)different trial software packages for doing HD backups (work data) to the DVD writer (using DVD-RW disks). My criteria for the backup software - it has to support spanning (a typical backup of 13Gb of data files takes 3 DVD-RW disks on average), Win 98 and XP and allow access my home network (5 machines). Only 2 packages out of the 8 actually worked and backed up and restored correctly my data drive on my main work machine. If I had purchased based on claimed support of the drive by several of the software companies, I would be stuck with software that does not work with my DVD unit and that most likely would not be refunded. This little exercise in finding something that actually worked with the drive cost me about 1 and 1/2 weeks of my time.

After much consideration, many evenings and days struggling with the DVD writer, too many coasters this past week and poor support, I am returning the DVD writer today to Future Shop and will get another brand. The effort, the time (a lot) and the additional costs to find media that it "liked" and several coasters were not worth it and if I had to do it all over again, I would buy a "better known" brand, with a user forum that could support you directly.

So, based on my experience, I can only give this drive a 5 rating.


Comments posted by Stu from Other, November 08, 2003. Rated this writer 5 of 10.





Great Drive, I am very happy with it. It doesn't like bad media, but so do I. I am happy using Ritek, PowerDisc and LC/Prodisc. The new firmware (A109 has been released already) can be downloaded here:
http://forum.rpc1.org/dl_firmware.php?download_id=1450


Comments posted by vmesquita287 from Other, October 27, 2003. Rated this writer No rating.





it's very good writer, i'm tested with many dvd-r's, and all works fine. And with hdd-style DVD-RAM is superb.


Comments posted by xaver from Other, October 11, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.





My experiences:

1. GMA4020B+USB 2.0 external case.
DVD-r: TDK 2X scratchproof

I wrote tdk -r discs at 2x speed.
I tested 3 drives in 2 external usb 2.0 cases.
I used Nero 5.x and 6.x to write dvd-s.
The verify process fails at random position with every drive in every case. I tried to change to cases/drives, but the verify process was unsuccessful.

I compared the content of the written dvd-s manually, the contents of the dvd-s are the extract copy-s of the original source.

2. Internal test
I tried to burn discs in 3 different computer, using internal IDE connections.
1 drive worked perfectly as internal drive.

Result: GMA4020b - suxxx





Comments posted by Peter from Other, October 09, 2003. Rated this writer 1 of 10.





Thought this drive was a great buy, burns everything and my standalone has no problem playing the dvds...until I started testing with DVD-RW. It will format a blank dvd-rw fine, as soon as you have written to it the drive will not erase the media. I've tried different types of media, updated firmware, tried all kinds of software, even DVDinfo Pro, enabled DMA and blah blah blah...you get the picture. I've returned this drive 3 times, some ran quieter than others but still had the same bad attitude with -rw. So to make a long story short...burn a dvd-rw and try to erase it, if it doesn't do it take it back asap. Some software will indicate a successful erase but check it after...Nero will give an "Internal Target Error" message. This drive is a joke, buy a Pioneer for the extra $20 CAD you'll be glad you did. To all the other people that have had "other" burning problems that posted their comments that they bought DVD+R/RW, the drive is DVD-R/RW not +.


Comments posted by RiG from Other, October 09, 2003. Rated this writer 1 of 10.







Comments posted by Spycatcher from Other, October 06, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.





excelente velocidad de lectura y grabacion, 100% seguro en DVD TDK,Verbatin. lo unico que me falla es al momento de querer leer un DVD region 4 que casi nunca se puede y lo rechaza. sin embargo el equipo es 100% confiable y rapido.


Comments posted by Jose Ventoza from Other, October 01, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.







Comments posted by Reaper from Other, August 27, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.





Very, very good drive for the price. Burns perfectly even on cheap media, and I do check all the disks after writing with Nero 6.0
A tip: beware of what you got on the same IDE channel. I set up the DVD burner as master and a LG cd-burner as slave on IDE-2. For the first 2 hours I was desperate, because the DVD drive read fine, but failed to write everything. Problem was GMA-4020B is a Ultra-DMA (ATA-33) drive and the old LG burner is multiword-DMA mode 2 only. After I disabled Ultra DMA in the bios for the GMA-4020B, it worked perfectly. No performance penalty also, because 16,6 Mb/sec is much more than it can handle.


Comments posted by Rev_B from Other, August 26, 2003. Rated this writer 9 of 10.





I bought the drive 2 days ago for 129 euros (with 1 -RAM and 1 -RW free). At this price, it's really a deal: the drive is working great, does 1x and 2x as expected (both on -R, -RW, as on -RAM). The software which comes with the drive are not so great, but for specific jobs (movie backup) you can find really good freewares anyway. For data storage (on -ram, or -r), my old version of easy cd creator 5 works ok.
By the way, and as a minimum requirement, this product is said to work with "at least a pentium II 400 Mhz or higher". This should'nt be taken so strictly: I use an old Celeron 333Mhz and the drive do its job perfectly: I can use parallel other applications (internet, mp3 player, word, email altogether), no problems neither.
You can certainly get something more when you are ready to give 250$ and more for a dvd-writing device, but this LG do the job well for almost the half of the price.


Comments posted by Finnegan from Other, August 17, 2003. Rated this writer 9 of 10.





Hey
itz Josh again! Im a big fan of LG! Writer works excellent with Princo 1x DVD-Rs. Never write at 2x this dvd writer was meant to write at 1x and i find that the quality is much better yet alone that u get a gurantee sucessful burn with no errors!!! Stephen and Soni i will answer both ur questions. Stephen, DVD RAM is mainly to backup ur HD and DVD RW is mainly to backup n e thing else...it is also good to use ur DVD RW to test before u burn a movie on ur actual DVD R in case it will not work and therefore u dont waste a DVD R. Soni, do not have n e doubts. U can burn DVDs and it will play on a standalone player. Basically it is a backup of the movie but it does work. I can sugguest buying a new dvd player which will play the dvd u make no problem. It is called NORCENT u can buy it at WAL MART for 75 dollars. I have one of them and it works like magic!!!! It also plays MP3, DVD R, DVD RW, JPEG, SVCD, VCD. you can check it out on this site under dvd players. Write back and let me noe if everything is good i will give u my email add if u need more assistance or if n e 1 else needs more assistance,

JOSH

and1ballah@hotmail.com


Comments posted by Josh from Other, August 13, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.







Comments posted by Claudio from Other, August 07, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.





I commented on this burner about four weeks ago when I first bought it, and nothing much has changed - it's still a lemon!
It has taken three trips to technicians to determine its reason for failing to burn to DVD's - It does not "like" my Seagate Barracuda hard drive!
The only way it will function 100-per-cent is when I "isolate" the Barracuda drive.
So apparently it's rather "picky" about its neighbours?
Incidentally, me' machine is a reasonably modern clean unit running Windows XP and all that stuff, blah, blah.


Comments posted by Ron Cahill from Other, August 07, 2003. Rated this writer 1 of 10.





Well I've got the disc problem sorted. I got DVD+R discs instead of DVD-R ones. Works perfectly now I've exchanged them. Just burnt my first DVD using Nero in 12.38 which for 2.15 Gb isn't that bad I don't think, without any glitches. Now to try A DVD-RW and see if that's as good which I suspect it is. Now going to rate the drive much higher.

Ian


Comments posted by Ian from Other, July 25, 2003. Rated this writer 9 of 10.





I agree with the majority of users, this is an excellent drive for the price. I've used other LG equipment before, and they have always been very reliable. I've been able to burn DVD-RAM files, and burn DVD-RW DVD movies without problems, using the guides on this website.

The only problem I've had is trying to burn CDRW with it, but it may just be that I'm not using the right program, or the program has not been updated to be compatible with this drive.

One user asked where the WinDVD serial is ... well I hope you didn't throw away the disk jacket that came with the CDROM, cause the serials are all on that paper disk jacket!

The best results I've found so far for movies is using Pinnacle InstantCopy, which does pretty well everything with the exception of ripping.


Comments posted by Frank N. Stein from Other, July 16, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.







Comments posted by Flávio from Other, July 14, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.





VERY VERY VERY VERY GOOD DVD WRITER!!!!
Can't say something else...
Burn's everything on 2 speed,
due the 1 speeds disks....
Untill now NO SINGLE drop out.... (burned over 50 dvd-r's now.....)
i have a crappy dvd player, butt untill now with very cheap dvd-r (sentinel)
everything runs smothely.....
VERY GOOD QUALITY......
And the dvd-ram option is great,
have got extra Hardrives now :)
only the software is crap,
WIN DVD comes without serial so you can't install the program :(
weird,

I burn dvd>dvd with Nero burning rom, (already copy's)

for originel dvd>dvd
for ripping i use DVD Decrypter
and to make it smaller i use DVD2ONE
and burn them finally with DVD X Copy

I have bought this writer for 240 euro including 50 empty dvd-r (sentinel)
by Media Markt in the Netherlands the price is 180 euro for the player only...

Last word.
VERY GOOD WRITER, ESPESCIALY FOR THE MONEY!!!!



Comments posted by aladdin from Other, July 14, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.





Nice price and great compatibility.

It write at 2x speed every DVD-R you put in it!

I suggest to use Quixo 1x ID:Avistar, Princo 2x ID:TDK and every support with ID:Ritek


Comments posted by ManOwaR from Other, July 14, 2003. Rated this writer 9 of 10.







Comments posted by KirkyRanger from Other, July 11, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.




60 comments, Showing 1 to 25 comments
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1 DVD Writer hits, Showing 1 to 1 DVD Writers
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Column Explanation:

Click on this for more technical information.

New comments= New comments since your last visit.
New Writer = New DVD Writer since your last vist.

OEM
Original Equipment Manufacturer.


Chipset

The manufacturer of the main chipset the DVD writer/recorder is based on.


Write support / Read support
DVD-R
= Works
DVD-R = Is not supported
DVD-R? = Not tested


Single Layer(4.7GB) write speeds
1x (CLV) = about 58 minutes
2x (CLV) = about 29 minutes
2.4x (CLV) = about 24 minutes
4x (CLV) = about 14.5 minutes
6x (CLV/ZCLV) = about 10-12 minutes
8x (PCAV/ZCLV) = about 8-10 minutes
12x (PCAV/ZCLV) = about 6.5-7.5 minutes
16x (CAV/ZCLV) = about 6-7 minutes

Dual/Double Layer(8.5GB) write speeds
1x CLV = about 105 minutes
2.4x CLV = about 44 minutes
4x CLV = about 27 minutes

Single Layer (4.7GB) read speeds
1x read speed is 1.321MB/s = ~56 minutes
6x CAV (avg. ~4x) read speed is max 7.93MB/s = ~14 minutes
8x CAV (avg. ~6x) read speed is max 10.57MB/s = ~10 minutes
12x CAV (avg. ~8x) read speed is max 15.85MB/s = ~7 minutes
16x CAV (avg. ~12x) read speed is max 21.13MB/s = ~5 minutes


DVD Write types
CAV = Constant Angular Velocity, the DVD is written at a constantly increasing speed.
CLV = Constant Linear Velocity, the DVD is written at a constant speed.
ZCLV = Zone Constant Linear Velocity, the DVD is divided into zones. After each zone the write speed is increased.
PCAV = Partial Constant Angular Velocity, the DVD is being written at an increasing speed until a certain speed. After this speed it will not increase anymore.


Connection
Desktop = Standalone desktop DVD Recorder
EIDE = Computer DVD Writer with EIDE/IDE connection
SCSI = Computer DVD Writer with SCSI connection
USB = Computer desktop DVD Writer with USB 2.0 or/and 1.1 connection
FireWire = Computer desktop DVD Writer with IEEE 1394/FireWire/i.Link connection (some standalone desktop dvd recorder supports this also but then it is usually to connect your DV camera to the recorder)


Rating
The first rating is based on a weighted rank (the true Bayesian), it requires at least 5 votes to get a weighted rating.
The second rating between the ( ) is a normal average rating.


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