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Windows 7: Why won't some DVDs play in my computer's DVD drive?


14 Oct 2012   #1

Windows 7 ULT 32 bit
 
 
Why won't some DVDs play in my computer's DVD drive?

I have a small collection of commercial movie DVDs. Most of them are from the U.S. market place and some are from Asia... ALL of these DVDs play in my Phillips DVD player that is connected to my TV.

But only some of these DVDs will play in my DVD player that is in my Dell Inspiron 531 computer with Windows 7 Ultimate.


This computer has a SAMSUNG HD161HJ SCSI DVD/CD Disk Drive.

Some of the DVDs that will play on my computer are from the U.S. market and some of them are from the Asian market, so I don't think that has anything to do with why some of these DVDs will not play on my computer. Some of the DVDs that won't play on this computer are from the U.S. market too.

The DVDs that play just fine in my Phillips DVD player on my TV that won't play on my computer don't even seem to wind up to play on my computer. The DVDs that will play on my computer wind up (you can hear the sound) in the DVD drive within about 20 seconds and they start playing automatically in the Windows Media Player... but I've allowed all the others that will not play to sit in the DVD disk drive for several minutes each in my tests and nothing at all happens... there is no wind up sound and nothing at all happens on the computer screen.

This does not seem to be a problem with the software driver for the disk drive since some of the DVDs will play.

None of these DVDs are warped and all of them are clean.

I've tried two or three times testing each of the DVDs that won't play, taking them out of the disk drive and putting them back in.

Does anyone have any suggestions?

Thanks,

digiday

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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15 Oct 2012   #2

Win7 H.Prem. 32bit+SP1
 
 

Try installing Downloads :: MPC-HC :: the correct version for your pc. Click 'File' open disk to play.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2012   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

What software Player are you using to play the DVDs on your computer?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


15 Oct 2012   #4

Win7 H.Prem. 32bit+SP1
 
 

He's using WMP version unknown.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2012   #5

Windows 7, 64 bit Home SP1, Win 8.1.1 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Although two DVD's from different areas play and some do not, I wonder if it has anything to do with what region is set (or not set) in the drive?

Usually new drives come with no region initially set.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Oct 2012   #6

Windows 7 ULT 32 bit
 
 

First, thanks for the recommendation Roadrunner... I thought that might be it since, according to the information on the Media Player Classic page on Wikipedia it says,

"Media Player Classic is capable of VCD, SVCD, and DVD playback without installation of additional software or codecs. MPC has built-in codecs for MPEG-2 video with support for subtitles and codecs for LPCM, MP2, 3GP, AC3, and DTS audio."

So I thought that since it has its own built-in codecs that might solve the problem, but it didn't. Since Media Player Classic does not actually install, and it just runs from the folder that the zipped file is extracted to, then I don't see how that would affect the DVD drive itself, right?

And thanks to jumanji and firebird for your input as well.

The Windows Media Player that is on this computer is version 12.0.7601.17514 dated 11/14/2010. I think I upgraded it once since I installed Windows 7 in October of 2010. But apparently that doesn't have anything to do with this problem because Media Player Classic HC doesn't see the same DVDs that WMP won't see.

Let me clarify, with the DVDs that won't play, the DVD drive does not show that there is any disk in the drive when I look at the Computer window that shows my drives... it just appears that the DVD drive is empty, whereas when there is a DVD in the drive that will play, it shows the disk and the name of the disk in the E drive.

The problem is that the DVD/CD drive is just not seeing some of these DVDs, and as I said, many of the DVDs that it will not see are from the U.S. market, and even some from the same distributor will play and others from that same distributor will not. In addition, most DVDs from Japan will play and some will not. At this point after testing about 50 or so DVDs, the ones from Japan have a better play ratio then the ones from the U.S... but a few of the DVDs from Japan will not play.

Could that have anything to do with the fact that this 2006 computer's DVD drive is a Japanese model? Again, it is a SAMSUNG HD161HJ SCSI DVD/CD Disk Drive.

I thought that possibly more codecs would make a DVD drive see more types of DVDs, but I think I understand now that isn't the case. Codecs make a video player play or convert more types of video and video editing apps deal with more types of video formats, but it has nothing to do with what a DVD/CD drive will see, right?

I edit and create some videos in Adobe Premiere, so I have at least a vague understanding of codecs and I've installed some on this computer... but I don't believe that has anything to do with this problem.

Is it possible that a newer software driver for my internal SAMSUNG HD161HJ SCSI DVD/CD Disk Drive would make it see more types of DVDs? Maybe I was wrong with my previous assumption that the driver won't make a difference.

Or is it possible to "set" the region for the DVD drive, as firebird indicated? How does one go about doing that?... and would that be likely to make it so it wouldn't play some of the DVDs that it will play now?


Thanks,

digiday
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Oct 2012   #7

Win7 H.Prem. 32bit+SP1
 
 

The link I posted gives options for MPC installable & portable versions of 32 or 64bit.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Oct 2012   #8

Windows 7, 64 bit Home SP1, Win 8.1.1 Pro 64 bit
 
 

Just a comment on the CD/DVD drive's drivers. There are no drivers for CD/DVD drives (any optical drive) other than the built in Windows drivers.

Second, considering the age of an Inspiron 531 it may just be the drive is defective (laser light) and replacing it with a new drive is a viable option. Those PC's came out at the end of Windows XP/start of Vista. Optical drives are relatively inexpensive and if you have a 531 and not a 531S it will accept a standard SATA optical drive. A new drive can be purchased for $20 to $25 at www.newegg.com If its a 531S it still accepts a full size optical drive but it mounts vertically so you need one that is designed to be operated (and hold the disc) vertically.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Oct 2012   #9

Windows 7 ULT 32 bit
 
 

Hello Roadrunner and Firebird, thanks for your replies.

First, Roadrunner... the MPC-HC download that I downloaded from the page you linked for me was the one labeled "Zip file" next to the "Installer" link, which usually means that it is a Zipped version of the same thing. But I see now that the download link named "Installer" downloads an actual installer... so I get that now.

But are telling me that installing that MPC-HC app will make my DVD drive see DVDs that it will not see now? I mean, even if it installed additional codecs on my system, that doesn't make my DVD drive see anything differently, right?

And Firebird, the Microsoft driver for my DVD drive is the one that I was referring to... which other driver would be available for it, right?... and it CAN be updated, according to the Device Manager interface for that drive, seen in my screenshot attached at the bottom of this post.

The driver for my SAMSUNG HD161HJ SCSI DVD/CD Disk Drive is the Microsoft driver, version 6.1.7600.16385, dated 6/21/2006, and it does give me the option to update it. My concern there would be that it may (for whatever reason knowing how things go) render my DVD drive inoperable in some sort of software glitch if I try updating that driver... Murphy's Law, ya know?

My last question would be, have you ever heard of or experienced a DVD drive's software driver update improving its ability to read more types of DVDs?... or have you ever heard of updating a DVD drive's driver having the opposite effect.

Since this DVD/CD drive is consistently reading the same DVDs properly over and over in my tests, and not reading the same DVDs over and over in my tests, it leads me to believe that this drive is not having an intermittent failure problem, but more of a problem where the drive or the software driver for it is not reading some types of encoding that some DVDs have. In addition, this drive has never had any problem burning any DVDs or CDs or reading any of the DVDs and CDs that I've burnt.

Let me know what you think of my last question.

Thanks,

digiday


Attached Thumbnails
Why won't some DVDs play in my computer's DVD drive?-diskdrive_driverpanel.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Oct 2012   #10

Windows 7, 64 bit Home SP1, Win 8.1.1 Pro 64 bit
 
 

First, there is NO updated drivers. The default Windows/Microsoft driver that comes with Windows 7 is THE driver.

There are firmware updates for drives that can fix some problems. As you have a Dell, with an OEM drive (not a retail version drive) if there is an update from Dell you can install it and see if it helps. However, there is no "Samsung" drives listed in the available Dell optical drive firmware updates, however thare are "TSST" drives listed which are Samsung/Toshiba drives. Can you doublecheck the drive model number listed in the Device Manager. as you will need the EXACT model number to see if there is a firmware update for this drive.

Here is the Dell firmware download listing for the Inspiron 531. If you have the exact model number you can check it against this list and if there is one, download and installed using the Dell listed installation instructions. Restart the PC after the firmware update and then see if makes any difference. If not, I still think a replacement drive is a good option. Drivers and Downloads | Dell [United States]
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Why won't some DVDs play in my computer's DVD drive?




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