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Category: Optical Drives

The LG WH14NS40 Blu-Ray Writer

The LG WH14NS40 Blu-Ray Writer

Hi everyone,

On Saturday, I received the LG WH14NS40 Blu-Ray Writer Drive. This is my 3rd Blu-Ray writer and it will replace my LiteOn iHBS112 which was causing several bad burns. The other drive is the Panasonic UJ-260, which is a slim drive that burns discs successfully.

This drive is one of the cheapest Blu-Ray XL writers available on Amazon. It is also able to read and burn CDs and DVDs.

Here, we will see the drive unboxed and teared down.

Unboxing

The drive came in this simple box:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Box

There’s no branding. Just a box with the part number printed on a label.

Opening the box we see the drive:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Box Opened

Just the drive. No cables or software are included.

The drive is protected in bubble wrap:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive in bubble wrap

Also also comes inside a plastic bag:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive in Plastic Bag
LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive in Plastic Bag (Front)

Taking it off we see the drive itself:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Front

Now, let’s take a look at the top, where we will find some useful information:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Top

The drive is the WH14NS40, with SVC code NS50. It was manufactured on January 2020 and comes with firmware 1.04:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Model, Firmware, and Manufacture Date

Finally, this is the drive with the tray opened:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Tray Opened

Teardown

We will begin the teardown by removing the 4 screws on the bottom:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Bottom

We can then remove the bottom cover:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Bottom Opened

Let’s take a closer look at the drive chipset:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Chipset
LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Chipset

It is using a MediaTek MT1959HWDN chip.

Let’s now see the Eject Button, LED and Tray Motor board:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Tray Motor Board

A look at the bottom tray mechanism:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Internals

The internal tray loading mechanism and Optical Pickup Unit:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Tray Internals

A closer look to the Optical Pickup Unit:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive Optical Pickup Unit

And finally, here’s how the drive looks in my Desktop PC:

LG 14X Blu-Ray Writer WH14NS40 Drive in the Desktop computer

Drive Summary

This Blu-Ray writer can be crossflashed to the WH16NS60 16x variant. In fact, that was the first thing I did.

The drive is identified as HL-DS-ST BD-RW WH16NS60.

Here is the drive capabilities according to ImgBurn:

So far, I was able to successfully burn a BD-R with media code RITEK-BR2-00 and a BD-R DL with media code RITEK-DR3-000. Both discs were burned with ImgBurn and verified successfully.

Look forward as I test Blu-Ray media with this drive!

The M Way External DVD Drive Teardown

The M Way External DVD Drive Teardown

Hi everyone,

In this post, I will be tearing down the M Way External DVD Drive.

This is a slim external CD-RW/DVD-ROM Combo drive that can read and write CDs but can only read DVDs.

Let’s begin with the teardown.

First, we must remove 2 screws that are found on the back to open the drive enclosure:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - 1

We can then open the enclosure:

We can see the DVD drive along with the board and USB Cable. We can also see that it seems that the USB cable is not actually soldered to the board.

Removing the DVD drive from the enclosure, we can see that the cable is in fact a Mini USB cable. This means the cable is not an actual USB 3.0 cable:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - 4

The fact that the cable is not soldered to the board is good news for us since we could replace it if the original cable goes bad or we want to use another cable.

On the back of the drive, we can take a closer look at the USB board:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - 5

Taking it off reveals a nice surprise:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - 6

The board is a USB to PATA/IDE adapter. This is interesting and somewhat makes sense, since the drive is just a CD-RW/DVD Combo Drive, and back in the days, we could see tons of CD writers for laptops. It uses the Initio INIC-1511 IC.

Here, we can see the PATA/IDE conector of the drive:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - 7

I decided to take off the sticker that it has on the top, revealing something more:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - 8

The included TEAC DW-224E-C drive was manufactured in November 2005. This could mean they are recycling old DVD drives or using refurbished drives. If this is true, this is good news for the environment, since they are repurposing drives that are in working conditions.

Here, I have the original drive connected to my computer without the enclosure:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - 9

Because the drive is basically an internal drive on an IDE to USB enclosure, we should be able to use it with other drives. I tested it with an old Optiarc AD-7561A drive. This drive is a CD/DVD writer with Lightscribe technology, which I haven’t used it for years:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - 10

When I connected the drive to the board, and to the computer, it recognized it without any issues:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - Optiarc Device Manager

And here we can see its capabilities as reported by ImgBurn:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - Teardown - Optiarc Capabilities

The Optiarc drive still works after a lot of years of not using it. This also means that we should be able to use other PATA/IDE drives with this particular USB board and exchange the original drive if it ever goes bad.

That’s basically it for this teardown. If you’re interested in getting this CD-RW/DVD drive, you can get it on Amazon here.

The M Way USB External DVD Drive

The M Way USB External DVD Drive

Hi everyone,

In this post, I’ll show you the M Way USB External DVD Drive.

This is a slim External CD-RW/DVD-ROM Combo drive, which is quite interesting, given that most units today are DVD writers. This one just reads and writes CD-R/RW, and reads DVD’s, but can’t write them.

The brand is unknown, too, but it was on sale a few days ago and decided to get one, just to have just in case one of my other drives goes bad. While CD/DVD usage has degraded over time, I do have music CD and I listen to them sometimes, so having a drive is handy to listen to them.

Unboxing

Let’s start with the box:

It is pretty colorful, and has a description of what it contains, as well as its features.

Opening the box we find the drive inside a bag:

We then find that the drive is wrapped in bubble wrap, and that there are some cards inside:

We can see that the faceplate of it is generic, with no CD or the actual DVD logo.

Taking off the bubble wrap, we see the DVD drive:

On the back, there is the USB cable:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - 10

The USB cable contains a USB-A 3.0 plug as well as a USB-C plug. Both can be used depending on the device you wish to use this DVD drive.

The documentation included is a manual, a thank you card, and another card telling to send an email to get a free 32GB USB drive.

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - 12

Once the drive is plugged in the PC, I’m able to open the tray:

The drive is detected as a TEAC DW-224E-C drive:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - 15

The following is a screenshot of the capabilities of the drive as shown in ImgBurn:

M Way External DVD Drive - Colorful Flame Pattern - 16

As we can see, it reads most major CD and DVD formats and can write CD-R and CD-RW. Interestingly, it reports that it can’t read double-layer DVD+/-R. I’ll need to test this to confirm if this is in fact true.

I tested the drive with my Music CD collection and it reads and plays them fine. This is really great, and will be my main usage for it.

You can get this External CD-RW/DVD Combo drive on Amazon here.