Sony firmware is not that great. Release 1.51 blows away your ability to read double density DVDs (e.g., DVD9’s). Also, with Sony firmware, you can’t use the bitset compatibility trick to make DVD written with it work with many players, so it is better to switch it to Ricoh firmware.
Since the firmware update (Rflash or RWFlash) doesn’t allow this kind of conversion from one brand to another you have to fool it. As documented in “BZ’s”: post and also “BB’s”:
Here are the instructions customized for converting Sony to Ricoh firmware conversion:
# If you are using Windows, change from DMA mode to PIO mode. How to do this varies significantly depending on your version of Windows. If you have XP, the exact sequence is: a) Choose Start/Control Panel/Performance and Maintenance/System, b) Choose Hardware/Device Manager, c) Choose IDE ATA ATAPI Controller/Secondary IDE Controller/Properties (or whatever controller the DVD recorder is on), d) Choose Advanced Settings/Transfer Mode and select PIO Only, e) Select OK
# Copy the Rflash program and a Sony firmware update in a directory, for instance “\Sony”. Rename the firmware to a simpler name, for instance sony.ric.
# Copy the Ricoh update in a second directory (for instance “\Ricoh” and rename it with the same name as the original one, or to \Ricoh\sony.ric
# Open Windows Explorer so you can easily make *LATER* a copy of ricoh\sony.ric to replace sony\sony.ric. Reduce the size of this explorer window and place it to an edge of your screen.
# Execute the Rflash program in the “\sony” directory. It will display your drive and the Sony firmware (with your drive denomination). Place the window to allow you to see also the explorer window we have seen in the previous step concurrently with the Rflash window.
# In RFlash, press the “Start” button to begin flashing. If the firmware has the right code, the program will begin to save your drive’s firmware to the disk. Once the backup is in progress, as quickly you can, copy *NOW* the
ricoh\sony.ric to replace sony\sony.ric. If you succeed, the RFLash program will update the drive with the Ricoh.ric firmware that is masquarading as sony.ric.
# You will probably see the RFlash program is frozen. Don’t worry, it is still properly working. If all is OK, it wiill tell you at the end of operation (several minutes, be patient !) the upgrade is done.
# Simply reboot your computer and now, you will have a new drive drive which now thinks it is a Ricoh. You should see Windows XP recognize a “Ricoh M5125A” drive if it worked.
# Now change that drive back to DMA mode otherwise writes won’t work and the drive will be slow. So follow step 1 agove and then choose the DMA if found transfer mode option.
Finally, for future reference
Here’s a list of places to learn about Sony and Ricoh for future reference plus a guide to converting the Sony DRU-120A drive into a Ricoh by a firmware change:
* Google Search: sony dru-120a to ricoh firmware The HP writer dvd 200i/e is an oem Ricoh MP-5125a DVD+R DVD+RW writer. Firmware versions 1.06,1.27,1.36 and (1.51 being the newest). Other variations of the drive are the Aopen DVRW 2412, Memorex DVD100, Traxdata RW5125a, Sony DRU-120A, Philips DVDRW6002, Philips DVD RW-D28.
* “Ricoh Support”: This is the official site for firmware
* “Firmware Forum on Ricoh”: This is the firmware information page with the latest information on Ricoh drives. The Ricoh DVD MP-5125a has firmware versions, 1.13,1.18,1.27,1.38, 1.51 and (1.64 being the newest). You can get the utilities and things at “Download”:
* “Sony Firmware”: Here’s the latest on Sony firmware downloads.

One response to “Sony DRU-120A becomes a Ricoh DVD MP-5125A”

  1. Rich Tong Avatar

    See for the latest location of the posed version. Right now, folks are up to version 1.7x and I’ve been runing with 1.64 and its fine.

I’m Rich & Co.

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