I've been having an issue with external DVD drives and my iMac...please help!

Discussion in 'iMac' started by distemp, Aug 13, 2015.

  1. distemp macrumors regular

    Mar 18, 2011
    I've searched around and can't seem to find a solution to this problem. Whenever I try to rip a CD with *any* program, the drive begins spinning and the rip starts...and then the entire drive disappears and the rip fails. This is ONLY CDs, DVDs work fine, and it's a problem that just randomly started it. I actually replaced my external drive and had the same issue: worked for awhile, stopped being able to rip CDs, DVDs worked fine.

    Has anyone had this problem and been able to fix it? It's driving me insane!
  2. distemp thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 18, 2011
  3. Taz Mangus macrumors 68040

    Taz Mangus

    Mar 10, 2011
    Have you tried running a disk cleaner on the external DVD drive? I had a similar problem with a external Blu-Ray driver that would work fine for DVDs but had issues with Blu-Ray discs. Using a disc cleaner on the drive solved it for me.
  4. MacTech68 macrumors 68020


    Mar 16, 2008
    Australia, Perth
    Going out on a limb here;

    Is the optical drive self (USB) powered or does it use it's own AC adapter?

    It's just possible that when using CD only, the laser assembly draws just a little more power, and the USB port can't supply enough. Although this should produce a warning message in the OS, I've observed situations where that doesn't happen, and giving the drive a second USB port's power with a "Y" cable or separate AC power source solved the problem.

    What model is the external drive?
  5. distemp thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 18, 2011
    Hi! The drive is shown here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MLXA1HG?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00

    It's USB-powered so I can try a Y-cable. Problem is, I had this exact problem with my previous external drive that plugged into the wall :-/

    I hadn't even thought of that, I'll see if I have one

    Thank you both!
  6. MacTech68 macrumors 68020


    Mar 16, 2008
    Australia, Perth
    The web-based user manual does say you may need the Y cable for more power -


    You might also need to connect the drive directly (bypassing any USB Hubs you may have).

    There is also a Mac based firmware upgrade (use as a last resort) Though oddly, it says it's version "TS00" which sounds like the original version.

    Click on the "Apple Mac" tab to get the Mac firmware loader and ".bin" file

  7. distemp thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 18, 2011
    Wow, thanks!
  8. InAustralia macrumors 6502


    Oct 7, 2013
    Sydney, Australia
    I would think MacTech68 s right. You need a Y cable.

    I have a Samsung external drive (not the same one as you), and experienced a similar problem where the drive would disconnect after a few minutes of use if I was not using a Y Cable.
  9. cynics macrumors G4

    Jan 8, 2012
    I hate to ask. Is it the same disc?

    I have a Samsung bluray burner and it has done what you are experiencing on occasion. One of two things are the problem in my case, the drive USB needs to be unplugged and plugged back in (power cycle). Or the disc is damaged and the drive momentarily vanishes.

    The disc can look like it's in mint condition but as soon as it hits a error when ripping it's done. I've verified this being the issue by watching or listening to the entire disc on a stand alone player at approximately the time it fails I'll hear or see a blip in playback.
  10. aliensporebomb macrumors 68000


    Jun 19, 2005
    Minneapolis, MN, USA, Urth
    I've used both Samsung and Pioneer external bluray/dvd/cd drives on Macs and they do require the Y cable. One connection alone isn't quite enough power to drive it.
  11. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    Give this a try:

    Put your "problem" CD into the drive.
    Let it mount on the desktop.
    Now -- copy the tracks from the CD into a folder of your choosing.
    Does the copy go ok?

    Can you then convert the "copied" files in the folder?

    Granted, this involves extra steps, but sometimes one has to go with "what works"...

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