Tips on adding another cd player please

  Old PC man 13:32 02 Jan 2003
  Old PC man 13:32 02 Jan 2003

Hi there, Happy new year.

I have a new(ish) Dell 2600 1.7Ghz Pentium, 256Mb Ram running XP home.

It has a CD/DVD combination drive that can write CDs.

Question is, can I add an old 32x internal CD drive, that I have, so that I can back-up CDs direct from the old drive rather than copying to HDD and then burning from there??

I've never had the back off the Dell so I don't know what spare cables there are.

I don't want to delve inside if there is no chance of this working.

Any help would be appreciated.



  Tog 13:45 02 Jan 2003

You will have to take a look inside to see how the current drives are connected. If Your HDD and DVD/CD-RW are on the same cable you will need to get hold of another IDE cable to fit your old CD-ROM.

  Old PC man 15:50 02 Jan 2003

Thanks for that. If the HDD and DVD are on the same cable, where will I attach the new cable? I know it will need power and control from the MoBo but that's about the best of my knowledge.

  Tog 19:35 02 Jan 2003

The Power Supply should have a spare connector, most do, take a look at the one already fitted to either your HDD or DVD and use the same type. The data cable fits in to the IDE slot on the Motherboard. It should be located right alongside the one that is already fitted. Make a note of the orientation of the cable that is already fitted and make sure the new cable is fitted the same way round. Some IDE cables have connectors with lugs on and/or a blanking pin fitted to one of the holes which will line up with a missing pin on the Motherboard/CDROM to prevent it being fitted the wrong way round.
When you get a replacement cable explain it is for a CDROM.
The back of the CDROM has some jumpers and there should be a guide on the top of the case that shows which position does what. Set the jumper to master. Make sure the power is disconnected before starting.

Any probs, post back here.

  Old PC man 10:34 03 Jan 2003

Thanks for those very in depth details. You guys should get a medal for the work you do.

One thing puzzles me though. If I set the jumpers to master on the additional drive, do I have to set the jumpers on the DVD to slave?

A little knowledge on my part makes me dangerous.
Do I have to set anything in BIOS to decide which is the master/slave?

I want to attempt this but my confidence is on the shakey side of nervous.



  €dstow 11:08 03 Jan 2003

You are much more likely to succeed in copying CDs by the method you say you don't want to do, that is copy to HDD first. Copying CD ROM to CD writer can produce errors and is not generally recommended by "those in the know".

By all means fit you other device but keep to your old method of copying.

Note the writer should be MASTER the reader should be SLAVE.


  Old PC man 11:18 03 Jan 2003

Thanks for the advice. I think I'll stick to the old method as you suggest. I've got a reasonable amount of storge space on my HDD so it's not a problem. I just thought that there would be less liklihood of errors if the transfer was done once (direct from cd to cd-r) instead of from cd to HDD then HDD to CD-R.

Well, what do I know?

Once again thanks €d and Tog.

  €dstow 11:24 03 Jan 2003

I think the problem arises in the speed of transfer of information when you do disk to disk (on the fly). Too slow can cause "buffer under run" and wreck the recording you are making. If you do it to hard disk first, these speed considerations don't matter.

A little recommendation is to use your CD ROM as your general "dogsbody" CD player and reserve the writer for doing just that. You will have less wear and tear on the more expensive equipment then.


  ton 11:36 03 Jan 2003

I have a CDROM and a CDRW in my PC. It should work direct from CD to CDR as it does on mine, and your PC is faster than mine. BUT I do NOT use the direct method (on the fly) because as was pointed out above, it IS more reliable to write to HD first.

  Old PC man 13:17 03 Jan 2003

Cheers guys. It amazes me how much knowledge and experience is shared in these discussions.

Keep up the good work.


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