Sony DRU-120A DVD Writer

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Sony DRU-120A

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$200 8.0/10
18 votes
Read 21


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DVD Media comments for this DVD Writer (click on the link to read the comments):
1 Bulkpaq 1xDVD-R (PRINCO......) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 CompUSA 2.4xDVD+R (OPTODISCOP1) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 DVD-ON 2.4xDVD+R (RICOHJPNR00) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
2 Fujifilm 2.4xDVD+R (RICOHJPNR00) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 HP 16xDVD-R (CMC MAG. AM3) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 Memorex 4xDVD+R (RICOHJPNR01) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Memorex 16xDVD-R (RITEKF1.....) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Meritline 2.4xDVD+R (RICOHJPNR00) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 RiData 4xDVD-R (RITEKG04....) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
2 Ritek 2.4xDVD+R (RICOHJPNR00) comments, 1 good, 1 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Sonic 4xDVD+R (LONGTEN.002) comments, 0 good, 0 mixed, 1 poor.
1 Verbatim 16xDVD-R (MCC 03RG20) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Verbatim (DataLife) 2.4xDVD+RW (CMC MAG.W01) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
1 Verbatim (DataLife) 4xDVD+R (RICOHJPNR01) comments, 1 good, 0 mixed, 0 poor.
Post your DVD Media comments here
21 comments, Showing 1 to 21 comments

anyone find a firmware upgrade so this drive can use 8x media?

Comments posted by david from United States, September 29, 2004. Rated this writer 6 of 10.

I've had this DVD writer for almost 1 year with very little problems.
The first thing to do is throw away the bundled software. I immediately purchased neoDVD 4.0 standard. This is a pretty good program. My only gripe is it doesn't include a 'pause' control. Otherwise, everything is good. Nero and the neoDVD 4.0 program seem to clash so I've gone to Roxio 5.0 platinum. No problems here except
for my screwups. Haven't had too many coasters. Writes equally well to DVD+R and +RW. I use everything from brand names to bulk DVD+R discs with no problems. I just wish the price for the discs would come down. Even the bulk ones run about $2.00/disc. Expensive if you screw up.

Comments posted by jqanderson from Other, June 19, 2003. Rated this writer 8 of 10.

We have used this unit for the past few months with outstanding results, after a long deliberation over DVD-R/W or DVD+R/W I finally chose this one as most of my burns are video.
I use "imitation" DVD+RW media as the DVD+R is not much cheaper in this part of the world and I have not made a wrong turn using DVDdecrypter, DVD x CopY, and DVD2One then burning with the latest Nero.
For those who have had problems with Nero should read this article/post >

I have also burned many CD-R's on the fly using a LG CD-RW and a pioneer 116S DVD reader in unison with the DRU120A, we have used every brand of media available locally without a single coaster, impresive.

My only regret was not having enough money to buy the DRU500 but still I am very happy with what I have got!

Comments posted by Scotty from Other, April 01, 2003. Rated this writer 9 of 10.

I have had this drive installed for 11 months now and have not been able to burn a single DVD with it!
It is second of two drives as the first did not work at all without trashing the various types of media we tried to burn. It took three months to get a replacement which turned out to be a Ďservice repairedí second hand one. This did not have accompanying drivers and software and it took a further three months to acquire some.
Surprisingly enough, it works with most pieces of software on CDR that we have thrown at it, but still have not been able to burn a single DVD-R and DVD+R. Nothing has worked despite several software upgrades and re-installation processes. Common error messages include "cannot record onto this type of media" or it locks up when trying to identify the media(DVD-R, DVD+R).
Needless to say, we have all but given up with it.
Info: Running on Athlon 650 Duron (being upgraded to 2gig), Gigabyte M/board, 256M Ram, Riva 64 3D VGA, etc.

Comments posted by Rob from Other, March 14, 2003. Rated this writer 2 of 10.

Well, to see that people are havimng problems with different types of media with this DVD is quite surprising, I have used Phillips (dvd+rw), Intenso (dvd+r), Sony (dvd+rw) and I have had no problem at all. The software that comes bundled with the DVD can be put straight into the bin, as it is CRAP, if you want to copy DVD`s you need to use DVDdecrypter and DVD2ONE, if you are making your own dvd`s from mpeg2 files, then I found Ulead DVD Movie Factory very good, but I used nero to burn the finished image/folders. Roxio did have some problems early on with there opacket writing, but that seems to be ok, for data and back-up I always use Nero, it just seems to do the job ( trust Nero..*8?) ).I also make back ups of my dreamcast images and the Sony dru120a does this 100%, unlike my Liteon 32x12x40, which has trouble reading audio tracks under 4 seconds long.So if you have a bit of money saved away for a DVD writer, you will not go far wrong with this one

my system
CPU = 1800+
MEM = 1Gig pc2700
GFX = GeForce4 (64ddr+tv out)
SOUND = On Board
1 x DVD-rom
1 x Sony dru 120a
1 x Liteon 32x12x40
1 x HP 9200i 8x4x32 (scsi)

Comments posted by Magnetic Neo from Other, February 18, 2003. Rated this writer 10 of 10.

Bought the writer from Ubid and installed well. No luck w/NeoDVD EXCEPT for DVD copy (more on that later). Used a demo copy of Ulead DVD Workshop which worked OK (the menu navgation is a little funny) then burned to the Sony DVD+RW that came with the drive. Played fine in my Sony DVP-C660 player (picky thing) and in my Toshiba TV/DVD combo.
Then, bought some Ritek DVD+R media and made 5 coasters with DVD Workshop. Looked like it wrote it every time, but crapped out at the end. Ended up using NeoDVD to copy from the Sony +RW to the Ritek +R and it worked fine in both players. Must be something funny w/Workshop and the Ritek Media.
All in all happy with the drive, still looking for the perfect application to use with it, currently using a trial version of DVDit and it seems to take a long time AND I have not been able to burn a DVD yet, though I do like the interface and themes better than Workshop.
Any hints on getting Workshop to write to DVD+R would be appreciated, if I could figure that out, I would probably buy the Ulead product.

Comments posted by mprue from Other, December 22, 2002. Rated this writer 6 of 10.

My DRU120A creates +R and +RW discs just fine. However, not many of the DVD players being sold seem to be able to play these discs. I wanted to set the compatibility bit to DVD-ROM to remedy some of those situations. However, the utility doesn't work for this drive. I tried to follow the path indicated by the comments of TLALOC and Jake Smalligan and download the Ricoh MP5125A firmware first. However, that load failed, with the message "Cannot update for different Type Code".

Comments posted by Ken from Other, December 22, 2002. Rated this writer 8 of 10.

Had this drive for 6months:-
+R discs were 70p instead of £1.20 the pioneer would not stand a chance!

Comments posted by GIXXXER from Other, December 20, 2002. Rated this writer 9 of 10.

After several tries, it is unable to burn DVD+R (DVD+RW works fine). It seems this to be a general problem and it seems to work on very expensive proprietary media only.

It failed burning properly DVD+R from HP, Intenso and Verbatim.

I will return it this week.

Comments posted by obeflow from Other, November 11, 2002. Rated this writer 2 of 10.

Purchased this drive (Sony dru120A, a repackaged Ricoh MP5125A) from Fry's for $279.00 ($349-$50 rebate) on 09/18. Installation under XP was simple. I flashed drive to 1.38 Ricoh firware, used DVD bit setter to flag +RW media as DVDR, junked neoDVD and created disks using Ulead DVD Workshop 1.2. NO COASTERS with +RW nor +R Sony, Memorex media. This drive is FAST, full DVDs take ~25 mins to burn. Resulting disks play flawlessly in my Apex 600A.

Comments posted by Tlaloc from Other, October 20, 2002. Rated this writer 10 of 10.

I purchased some Ritek DVD+R media from Rima. The prices were good but NeoDVD would not recognize any of the media, so I'm looking to return. I've tried FujiFilm and 9 out of 10 worked fine.

Comments posted by rmcmille from Other, September 22, 2002. Rated this writer No rating.

Received the DRU120A for birthday after doing much research. Installed it and have been creating DVD+rw and DVD+r discs with no problem. I have done several home movies each around an hour long. Movies were shot with digital 8mm on Sony, transfered using Pinnacle 7 Studio, edited using the same software (which is awesome and easy), then output by Pinnacle 7 Studio in MPEG2. Then I use NEODVD (which came with the 120A) to write to a hard disk. I test playing it with PowerDVD and then if it is fine, I copy it to CD-R using NEODVD. The only challenge is creating "chapters" by shortening the edited movies so I can fit them into the the 1 hour capacity of the DVD+R.
Have not experimented a lot with the DVD+RW other than writing several files using B's Recorder (also came with DRU120A).
Only negative is finding lower cost DVD+R discs. Lowest I've seen is about $3 for 25.

Comments posted by roblmc from Other, September 07, 2002. Rated this writer 10 of 10.

I haven't installed the Sony yet, but it's available for $300 (after rebate) from

It's $450 - $50 in the store,
but their web site has it for $350 - $50

They have free shipping, or you can pick it up in the store. I recomend the free shipping as the in-store pickup didn't work as smoothly as I had hoped

Comments posted by Jason B from Other, September 04, 2002. Rated this writer No rating.

Installed easily without problems. First test DVD+RW, (from our own DVCam production) looked and sounded great on Sanyo set top player.

Test audio cds also came off fine.

Comments posted by VanMan from Other, September 03, 2002. Rated this writer 9 of 10.

Thanks David, I have gotten this model for $249 at CompUsa last week. Now you are telling me I get a $50 rebate from sony! Man, so I got a great deal on this model cause now I be only paying $200 for this sony. Thank for the rebate info!!!

Comments posted by Jazzfest from Other, August 30, 2002. Rated this writer 8 of 10.

Jazzfest: Thanks for the info on the Sony DRU120A. I went to CompUSA also and got the Sony at the $249 pricematch of the unavailable Memorex. If anyone bought the Sony between 5/1 and 9/30 make sure you get the $50 rebate form either at CompUSA or the Sony website. Will let y'all know how it performs.

Comments posted by David from Other, August 23, 2002. Rated this writer No rating.

Just purchased The Sony DRU120A DVD+R DVD+RW *@ Best Buy $350*!!! I must say I am excited to see what potential this drive has and DVD+R to say the least. After owning it for 2-days I have successfully converted two retail DVD(s) to DVD+R & DVD+RW that both formats play flawlessly on my Pioneer DV-333. Tested a copy of South Park DVD+R *Bigger, Longer, & Uncut* on a Sony DVP-S360 that ran beautifully as well.

Created various Data backups of roms, Mp3(s), etc. All copies including open session DVD+RW worked on both my Toshiba (SD-M1402/SD-M1502) DVD-Rom drives.

I was also lucky enough to find 10 DVD+R blanks and 1 DVD+RW for $27 @ Best Buy to get me started properly.

Running most recent version of NERO for all testing.

Comments posted by coda304 from Other, August 22, 2002. Rated this writer 10 of 10.

I bought this drive about a month and half ago for $399. I was really frustrated w/ it at first because I couldn't get anything to play in my set top player. I had been using the Sony discs that came w/ it and then tried some Verbatims with no success. After much frustration I picked up some Memorex discs and have not had a SINGLE problem since then. I have found that FujiFilm discs work fine as well. I know that Sony doesn't keep their firmware current like the other manufacturers so I just flashed mine w/ the Ricoh 5125 firmware. The drive works great. Overall I couldn't ask for anything more from the drive and I love it!

Comments posted by Jake Smalligan from Other, August 22, 2002. Rated this writer 9 of 10.

I bought this writer at Compusa at a bargan. I got it for $249 this week because they advertised an item that they didn't have so I called the 1-800 number and they told me that they had a different model than I can have for same price. I jump on this model because it was $449 but got it for $249. Anyway, I love this writer and I would recommand to anyone to buy this unit. Had no problems installing this model.

Comments posted by jazzfest from Other, August 22, 2002. Rated this writer 9 of 10.

This unit installed in minutes with ease. Would not burn DVD+R using Sonic MyDVD which was factory installed at Dell. It did burn DVD+R using NeoDVD standard. The +R would not play on the Apex 600A DVD player but the +R and +RW both played on the Sony DVPNC615 changer.

Comments posted by jetester from Other, July 31, 2002. Rated this writer 10 of 10.

Bought this around a month and a half ago, Works great, fast, Burns +R/+RW DVDS in about 23 minutes (My Sons A04 takes over 50 Min to burn -R). The Sony DRU120A Installed in my computer with out any problems and worked the first time. DVD+RW plays in Sony DVP-S530D with no problems but will not play in a PS2. DVD+R will play flawlessly in both Sony DVP-S530D and PS2. I used ULEAD DVD Workshop to author and Neo dvd to burn authored vob files from Hd directory to DVD, no coasters at all. Menus work, I would like lower cost +Rís. I would give this a 10 but the software is not the best, Sony could do better then Neo DVD, Neo DVD is good and real easy to use if your satisfied with ~1 hr DVDís Which have high quality video so Neo DVD is not too bad, I just donít like only 1 hr video per DVD. If you want good video with menus use ULEAD DVD Workshop to author, easy to use but errors out when making image then use Neo DVD to burn Vob directory to DVD. If ULEAD fixes this the error on image generation then I am going to save my money and buy full version, the trial version is limited for obvious reasons.

PS: Download Neo DVD update to allow burning 4.7 G DVD+R vice 4.3 G

Equipment info:
Compaq 7AP190 type computer AMD-751 (north bridge) chipset
1 GHZ old school Athlon (512 K L2 Cache clocked 1/3 proc speed)
384 M ram
Ti IEEE 1394
ATI AIW 128 Rage
60G Maxtor HD
Win 98SE with 97% resources free at bootup

Comments posted by gbvideo from Other, July 17, 2002. Rated this writer 9 of 10.

21 comments, Showing 1 to 21 comments

1 DVD Writer hits, Showing 1 to 1 DVD Writers
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.

Original Equipment Manufacturer.


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

Write support / Read support
= 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.

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)

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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