Expert troubleshooting help needed with external Blu-Ray drive

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by StephenCampbell, Oct 8, 2014.

  1. StephenCampbell macrumors 65816

    Sep 21, 2009
    I have the OWC Mercury Pro 16X External Blu-Ray Burner, and it has worked great for the past year.

    Yesterday, while watching a Blu-Ray disc in Mac Blu-Ray Player, the movie froze suddenly. I quit everything, restarted the computer, and continued playing from a bit before where it froze. It went through the same spot fine.

    A few minutes later it froze again. This time I quit everything, verified and repaired disc permissions, and reset the P-Ram upon restart, and then continued again from a bit before the second freeze spot. This time the film completed successfully.

    Today, while ripping a DVD using Handbrake, it froze during the process. So now I know it's definitely something hardware related. I restarted that rip, and it finished fine, and I'm doing another one right now which is going fine so far.

    Could it be the USB 3.0 cable? Could dust inside a cable socket anywhere cause this kind of thing?

    To the best of your knowledge, what might the problem be?

    Thank you so much!
  2. StephenCampbell, Oct 8, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2014

    StephenCampbell thread starter macrumors 65816

    Sep 21, 2009
    Please, does anybody have any thoughts, any experience with something like this? Is it the mechanics in the drive? A bad cord? A bad plug? Any guesses that might send my investigation in the right direction? We watch Blu-Rays a lot, and we can't have the risk of it freezing and have to restart the computer hanging over the entire film. Especially if it can happen again within a few minutes of restart.

    But most of the time the drive seems perfectly fine and functions great.. so I'm hoping that this issue is some sort of little mechanical thing that can be fixed.

    Edit: And if I need to get a new drive, what would you recommend?
  3. priitv8 macrumors 68040

    Jan 13, 2011
    The weak spot on any modern optical reader is the laser itself.
  4. StephenCampbell thread starter macrumors 65816

    Sep 21, 2009
    What does that mean? Do you think I would have better luck if I bought this same drive again?
  5. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    My opinion only...

    I would NOT "buy that same drive again", if the first one failed so soon...

    I'd suggest a Samsung, or perhaps a drive that also supports burning to M-DISC type blanks...
  6. drsox macrumors 65816


    Apr 29, 2011
    I second the choice of Samsung. I've had many versions - none have failed, they have all just been superseded. Currently I have an internal and an external Blu-Ray in use.
  7. StephenCampbell thread starter macrumors 65816

    Sep 21, 2009
    How do we know that my drive is failing? What is it that you're hypothesizing happens when the playback/ripping freezes? The laser just stops moving? I don't know anything about lasers.

    Most of the time the drive works.. but obviously I can't have it freeze sometimes while watching a movie.
  8. StephenCampbell, Oct 9, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2014

    StephenCampbell thread starter macrumors 65816

    Sep 21, 2009
    Is this a good drive? USB 3.0 14x Blu-ray Disc Rewriter&cp=1&lp=1

    Or this one?

    I'm worried about USB 2.0.. how does it handle Blu-Ray playback? And how much slower will a 6x drive rip DVDs through handbrake, compared to the one I have now?

    Edit: I just ordered the Samsung in the second link. It's the #1 external Blu-Ray seller.. I suppose I can't go wrong. Hopefully it'll also be quieter than this beast I've been using.

    I'm only concerned about the USB 2.0 connection and Blu-Ray playback. I have some Blu-Ray discs that are encoded at AVC 40mbps... I know the theoretical bitrate of USB 2.0 is more than that, but the real-world bitrate is always less.
  9. venom600 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 23, 2003
    Los Angeles, CA
    USB 2 is more than enough bandwidth for BluRay. I've had no problems using a USB 2 BD burner in the past.

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