I have on my living room a Philips DVDR 3305 DVD Player/Recorder. I've opened it to clean the lens since it shows almost everytime 'Unknown Disk Error'. I also tried to find the potentiometer screw but I could not find it (or it might be something I think is sealed with plastic/glue).
I've noticed that it has an IDE drive inside with a molex plug. Can I just connect and old DVD-ROM drive from the PC and make it work?
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I've done the exact same thing before so the answer's 'yes'. Be sure the DVD-ROM will fit. Some standalone DVD players might only have room for the skinny DVD-ROMs, like the ones for laptops.
Perfect manono! I will then just replace this internal with a DVD+RW from a PC. Since it is connected via IDE I was expecting it to be a standard protocol. I just wasn't sure if the drive needed to have a specific firmware to be integrated with the LSI MPEG2 decoder board.
The drive on the photo is a full size 5.25" and it has a big large tray, so it will fit. I just hope that the eject button stays in place, because there is no eject button on the remote control.
Who says the burner has to stay inside the unit? A fully functioning replacement burner without an eject button would NOT stop me from using it....somehow.
Guys, unfortunately for me it didn't work the way it was supposed to. I connected an LG DVD-Player PC unit, instead of the DVD Burner, and when it plays the movie it just shows a black picture. I can press eject, play, stop, all that works, but when the movie is playing I just see the timecode running on the TV and (on the DVD display). I cannot even see the DVD menus.
Sorry it didn't work for you. Several years ago I replaced the drive in my Oppo DVD player with a PC DVD-ROM and had no problems at all. I'm sure there are reasons why it might work for one but not another, but I don't know enough to say what they might be.
IDE (PATA) drive? They have setup jumpers that can cause problems. Though I'm guessing you are aware of that.
Maybe the original drive has custom firmware.
It was an IDE (PATA) drive yes. The jumper in the replacement drive was in the same position as the original.
Probably the original had some custom firmware that is causing an incompatibility. Also the original was a DVD burner and the replacement was just a DVD reader (when I press "Recording" it would show a warning "Not supported" when the DVD reader was connected).
Thank you all for the comments.
The problem is you're dealing with a "famous-brand" dvd recorder: as a nod to Hollywood paranoia, almost NONE of these will accept a generic PC drive to replace their original when it dies. 90% of recorders require either a completely custom proprietary drive (like your Philips) or a generic drive that has been tweaked with special firmware chip or controller board (Pioneer, Sony).
The only instances I've seen reported where a random generic dvd burner transplant fully succeeded in a recorder were a couple of older LG models, one RCA model, and a couple of Polaroid-branded models. Partial success was possible with the Toshiba XS recorders, which would kinda/sorta tolerate a handful of LG and HP PC burners (albeit with significant burning restrictions). Several Pioneer and Sony recorders would accept the generic PC version of their special burners if you swapped out the controller boards, tricking the recorder into thinking nothing had changed.
But most recorders were like your Philips 3305: the burner was custom-designed for that brand and model year, and nothing else will be recognized properly. Your only chance is to find a similar Philips model from the same year, and transplant its burner into yours. There wouldn't be much point, however: the 3305 was a dvd-only recorder with no HDD (so there's no urgency or need for a new burner to copy any videos trapped on a hard drive). If you find another similar dvd-only Phillips that works OK, just use that and discard your 3305. Any Philips-brand recorder will be able to read your 3305 discs and finalize them if necessary.
Some premium DVD players like the Oppo mentioned above were niche brands built around generic drives, but most players like Sony/Panasonic/Philips used proprietary slim, skeletal DVD-ROM drives.
Can you determine who made the original drive? When I was still using my Liteon DVD Recorders I was able to replace the DVD drives with Liteon PC DVD burner drives but not with any of the other makes I tried. (I had some sitting around and tried them before buying a new Litoen drive.)
"Orsetto" on the post above made a very good explanation of what is going on. Thanks for that. The only 100% safe replacement would be a drive from the same brand and year from another Philips DVDR 3305.
Thank you all for your comments.