Plextor, Plextor 716a, Plextor Review, Buy Plextor - Page 1 / 7
Home   News   Reviews   FAQ's   Message Boards






Plextor, Plextor 716a, Plextor Review





Plextor 716A Review

Plextor 716A Specifications

Write Support






16x: 22.160KB/s (CAV)

16x: 22.160KB/s (CAV)

48x: 7.200KB/s (CAV)


12x: 16.620KB/s (PCAV)

12x: 16.620KB/s (PCAV)

32x: 4.800KB/s (PCAV)


6-8x: 8.310-11.080KB/s (PCAV)

6-8x: 8.310-11.080KB/s (PCAV)

16x: 2.400KB/s (CLV)


6x: 8.310KB/s (CLV)

6x: 8.310KB/s (CLV)

8x: 1.200KB/s (CLV)


4x: 5.540KB/s (CLV)

4x: 5.540KB/s (CLV)

4x: 600KB/s (CLV)


2.4x: 3.324KB/s (CLV)

2x: 2.770KB/s (CLV)







4x: 5.540KB/s (CLV)




2.4x: 3.324KB/s (CLV)



Read Support






6-16x CAV


20-48x CAV


5-12x CAV


17-40x CAV


3-8x CAV


14-32x CAV


2-5x CAV


10-24x CAV


2x CLV


8x CLV




4x CLV

Re-Write Speed






6-8x: 8.310-11.080KB/s (PCAV)

4x: 5.540KB/s (CLV)

24x: 3.600KB/s (PCAV)


6x: 8.310KB/s (CLV)

2x: 2.770KB/s (CLV)

10x: 1.500KB/s (CLV)


4x: 5.540KB/s (CLV)

1x: 1.385KB/s (CLV)

4x: 600KB/s (CLV)


2.4x: 3.324KB/s (CLV)




Access Time <100ms (CD) <150ms (DVD)
Data Buffer 8MB
Error Rate Mode1: less than 10-12bits
Mode2: less than 10-9bits

Dimensions 146 x 41,3 x 170 mm
Weight 1 kg


Our Test Machine's Specs:

Pentium 4 1.7GHz (not over clocked)


DELL (Custom) Motherboard

1 x Western Digital 120GB Hard Disk








CD/DVD Mastering

Nero Express 6 SE

Power2Go 3.0
(30 days trial)

Instant CD/DVD 8.3 LE
(Limited Edition)

(30 days trial)

Burn Now
(30 days trial)

Video Editing

Nero Vision Express 2
(30 days trial)

PowerDirector 3.0
(30 days trial)

Studio 9
(30 days trial)

(30 days trial)

Video Studio 8
(30 days trial)

DVD Authoring

Nero Vision Express 2
(30 days trial)

PowerProducer 2.0 Gold
(30 days trial)

Studio 9
(30 days trial)

(30 days trial)

DVD Movie Factory 3.5 SE
(30 days trial)

DVD Player

Nero ShowTime
(30 days trial)

PowerDVD 5.0
(30 days trial)

Instant Cinema
(Limited Edition)



MultiMedia Player

Nero Media Player

Media@Show 2.0
(30 days trial)

Instant Audio






Instant Copy




Nero Recode 2
(30 days trial)

PowerBackup 1.0
(30 days trial)

Instant Backup



Plextor Introduction

The Plextor PX-716A is the sequel to Plextor's PX-712A DVD writer. The PX-712A was a 12x speed DVD writer with some exclusive features such as: SecuRec, Q-Check and GigaRec. The 712A drive also also had features like 48x CD reading and writing speeds, 24x re-writing speeds and a new 8MB buffer.

The 716A drive is Plextor's first and currently only dual layer 4x speed DVD writer (this means that it can write 8.4GB of data onto a single side). The PX-716A also writes at 16X for DVD+R, 16X for DVD-R and of course 4X for DVD+R DL (Double Layer). It is rumoured it will also support 2x DVD-R DL with a firmware upgrade in the future.

The Plextor 716A is also feature packed offering advanced technology that other drives do not, this includes VariRec, AutoStrategy, IntelligentTilt, PoweRec and SMARTBurn..

Some of these we have already discussed on the 708A drive:



VariRec, the Variable Recording function allows the user to adjust the laser power when writing to an AUDIO disk ensuring that a better quality CD disk is produced. The VariRec technology only works at 4x and 8x CD-DA Recording on CD-R discs and at 2.4x and 4x recording (writing) on DVD+R discs; 2x and 4x recording (writing) on DVD-R discs.

VariRec can change the value of the laser power. The resulting effects are:

  • change of sound quality of recorded disc (there should be a slight change, some kind of effect when VariRec is used on the different settings)
  • change of playability or compatibility with Home CD Players or Car CD Players (some players need a slightly higher or lower laser power)
  • Most audio professionals have a personal preference for higher/lower laser power (some even say they can hear the difference between a recording at high speed and at 1X)


PoweRec stands for Plextor Optimised Writing Error Reduction Control and the Plextor PX-716A uses version II of it (which is compatible with DVDs).

The PowerRec feature checks disks that are inserted and compares them to see if they are supported. The disk is checked with a table in its firmware and it knows what laser power to select and the correct speed at which to burn at. PoweRec will monitor the progress of a CD / DVD continuously checking its characteristics and if its creating too many write errors it will adjust the write strategy for the disk.

To obtain maximum writing speed, you can disable the PoweRec option using the software that is supplied with the PX-716A/PX-716SA.


Buffer UnderRuN Proof is a technique that whereby if the Plextor's 8MB recording buffer empties, recording is halted until the buffer is full again. Normally on older drives this would cause an error and also a wasted disk, since the recording laser couldn't remember where it stopped.


This new feature optimises the writing strategy for each disc by calculating the optimum laser power and adjusting it in real-time. It then stores the strategy to the Drive’s Flash memory or local HDD. The drive thus learns the appropriate strategies by itself, guaranteeing wide compatibility with any new media (only works for DVD media 4 speed and above).


This new feature corrects laser wave aberration using a liquid crystal in the optical pickup unit and a 3-dimensional tilt actuator mechanism. This system ensures that the focal point of the laser is positioned exactly on the disc’s surface during recording which enables high quality recordings on any media, including DL media.


With Plextor’s GigaRec technology, you can increase the writing density of your drive. This allows you to extend the capacity of normal CD-R media by up to 30%. It’s also possible to decrease the density by 40% for extra data security and reliability. GigaRec recording is only possible at 4x and 8x and not on DVDs.


Plextor’s SecureRecording technology lets you use your PX-716A/PX-716SA to encrypt personal and business information you record on a data CD, and protect the CD with a password.

Discs that have been encrypted and locked with SecureRecording, can only be accessed by entering the correct password in the supplied PlexTools Professional software, or in the SecureRecording Reader software.


Plextor’s Silent Mode technology lets you reduce the level of noise your PX-716A/PX-716SA produces. You can do this by:

  • Lowering the maximum write speed
  • Lowering the maximum read speed
  • Raising the disc access time
  • Lowering the disc tray opening and closing speed

Although the PX-716A/PX-716SA has a maximum read speed of 48x for CDs, but it is set to 40x by default.

To decrease the noise level during playback of a DVD-Video disc (with CSS), the read speed is limited to 2x by default.

If you want to read CDs at 48x or DVD-Videos at 16x do the following:

Step 1: Make sure the disk tray is closed and empty.
Step 2: Press the Eject button and hold it for 3 seconds.

The SpeedRead option is enabled and the PX-716A/PX-716SA will now read at 48x. You can disable the SpeedRead option again by pushing the Eject button or by cutting the drive’s power supply.

What the package includes

The package contains:


  • Plextor PX-716A DVD±RW Drive
  • Bag of screws and emergency eject tool & 1 Jumper
  • IDE Cable
  • Plextor PX-716A Quick Installation Manual
  • Front Bezel Replacement Guide
  • Manual & Software on a DVD-ROM
  • Black Replacement Bezel

The software DVD contains:

  • Nero Software Suite - see table at the top of the page.
  • InCD
  • Cyberlink Software Suite - see table at the top of the page.
  • PlexTools Professional
  • Operation Manual (on DVD)
  • Ulead Software Suite - see table at the top of the page.
  • Sonic Software Suite - see table at the top of the page.
  • Pinnacle Software Suite - see table at the top of the page.


Depending on which country you purchased the drive from you may see a different software package.

On the front of drive you will find that the headphone socket on the 708A has now been removed an emergency eject hole and one multipurpose LED. According to sources you can determine the drives writing speed by monitoring the blink rate.

This is also one of the first drives to support Dual-Layer DVD "-" R disks and Plextor will release a firmware to make this drive compatible:

Dual Layer Disks

The drive is also smaller than the previous Plextor 708A:

Smaller size of the 716a

The top drive is the new Plextor 716A and the bottom drive is the 708A.

In the picture below you can see it still features a black strip on the front of the drive (this is the tray). Plextor claims that black tray lowers jitter and produces better CDs / DVDs.


Front of the 716A

The back of the drive looks very similar to any other ATAPI CD drive.

You will find the usual connectors: jumpers for making the drive a Master/Slave/Cable Select, an analogue audio output connector, a digital audio output connector and a power connector. BTW: The drive has an extra jumper for disabling UDMA 33 support (on by DEFAULT and since its the best transfer mode we left the jumper alone).

Back of the Plextor 716A

Page 1 - Last Updated: 6 January 2005



© 1999 - 2018. DVD Writers. All Rights Reserved.