DVD burner recomendations?

I’m about ready to fork over the cash for one so I’m looking for any info. I think I’ve narrowed it down to an NEC 8x or a Liteon 8x, both are around 80-90 bucks.

Just be sure to get one that will burn -R discs, rather than a +R only drive. I’ve run into quite a few set-top DVD players that won’t play +R discs. Only ever found one that didn’t like -R.

I’m in the throes of reviewing a bunch of DVD burners. All are +/- R/RW these days.

The Sony dual-layer drive (DRU-700A) works great, but is expensive.

The Lite On drive is cheap, fast and fragile. I dropped a pile of drives onto a table top from about a foot up and the Lite On was the only drive that stopped working.

I haven’t tried the NEC.

The Plextor drives rock.

The Sony 8x (non-dual layer) with the latest firmware is solid

Drives based on the Pioneer mechanism (Pioneer, Memorex, Asus) all work well, provided you get the latest firmware.

The Aopen was the weakest drive, mainly due to being atypically slow at the outer tracks.

Is there any simple way to check the “real” manufacturer of the drive’s guts if you bought a no-brand DVD+/-/R/RW burner on the cheap? :)

Is there any simple way to check the “real” manufacturer of the drive’s guts if you bought a no-brand DVD+/-/R/RW burner on the cheap? :)[/quote]

Not short of testing the drive; burn curves as seen by Nero’s benchmarking tools are pretty informative. But even a firmware check will only show the OEM name. You’ll almost never see that info printed on the box, unless it’s simply a repackager.

I own the NEC 2500, which is lovely… and rumours (which I find hard to believe) persist, that it will be firmware upgradeable to burn dual layer dvd’s.

I think it’s BenQ, that is producing one, which will definately be firmwareupgradeable to dual layer burning. But I know nothing else about it.

The lite-on is a pile of poo. I’ve got teh NEC and so far it’s been ok… it’s cheap , but in the world of DVD burning you get what you pay for. As far as I know the Pioneer’s are suppose to be the top for value/performace.

Lloyd, is the Sony the only Dual Layer drive currently available? Any idea when a Plextor will be released?

Thanks again :)

I always always recommend Toshibas when discussing optical drives. They don’t have the best performance or features or price, but the damn things last forever.

I once had to assess the condition of a database server that had been returned to my company as “damaged in shipment”. I have no idea what sort of forklifting jousting happened to this poor server, but the case had been twisted into a helix shape! It was, not too surprisingly, a non-functioning server. I believe the MB had snapped. The Toshiba CD drive still worked though :D

Currently, yes. Other dual layer burners will be out in a few weeks, though. But I haven’t heard any specifics from Plextor, only that they’re working on it.

Media is a problem. Dual Layer media will be expensive, and slow to market. And the DL media I tested wasn’t compatible with all DVD-ROM drives.

cdrinfo.com had a post/thread last week about this, and they tested it… it’s not a rumor… it’s not quite ‘official’ by any means, either.

I have a Memorex DVD burner. Hasn’t burned a CD or DVD coaster yet. Also flawless MP3 rips even from scratchy CDs.

I second the Memorex burner–it’s worked like a charm so far, and Memorex updates the firmware regularly.

Thanks for all the info. I’d forgotten about dual layer but I don’t know if I see the point since its so new. By the time the media is cheap they’ll have faster drives out anyway. I’m leaning towards the NEC but lite-on has a newer version out, the 812 and apparently there is a software tool you can use to change the bitsetting on discs to make them easier to read in some players.

I’m not real big on paying the premium for a plextor or sony, not after some of the lackluster reviews I’ve read. So I’m looking mostly for value (never had any burn probs with liteon cdrw). Here is a page I found on the dual layer firmware for the nec 2500:


Which is basically a Pioneer ;-)

(At least, the 4x and 8x drives were).

I am using a Pioneer DVR-A07XL and it works extremely well. It can also burn at 8X DVD with the appropriate media. This drive is also amazingly quiet.

Rumors about the 2500 being up’d in firmware to support dual disc? It’s the exact same drive as the 2510, and there’s all ready hacked firmware to support dual layer disc burning.

So you tell me.

Was reading a hardware site last night and the guy mentioned installing the new firmware on his 2500 and it would now burn NOTHING. It’d still read CDs and DVDs, but wouldn’t burn double OR single-layer.

Downloader emptor.

The keyword was hacked firmware, Denny. :D

Right right right- downloader canem!

Sorry, just a Latin freak.