i saw a post about some one reaching 16 with i think a benq in an external case. i can't seem to find the post now and i've searched, any one know what thread i'm talking about?
No sure what thread you mean, but here is a picture of me reaching x16 on my external Sony 710-UL (on firewire). And I get very nice burns at this speed too!!
Most externals cannot reach 16x because of the USB2 limitations.
Here is the same burner, media and pc, but this time connected with USB2 instead of firewire - I was shocked how bad it went. I think that this is maybe an extreme example!!!