Another which DVD drive to buy thread!

Hello all,

I’ve been reading through this forum for the last three days, and I still can’t decide what should I choose from the following (I know some of them are old models, but the store that I’m going to buy has only the following):

BenQ DW1650
BenQ DW1655
LG GSA-H10N
Lite-On SHM-165H6S
LiteOn SHW-160P6S
NEC ND-3550
Pioneer DVR-111D
Samsung SH-S162L

Price doesn’t matter that much (but plextor is really expensive !), although lightscribe is a plus, but I don’t really need it, and I want to use the drive in an external enclosure, so I don’t care that much about read/write speed. What is really important for me, is read/write quality and compatibility. I want to be able to read scratched media, I want to write to DVDs that all other DVD readers can read, and the most important, given a good quality media I want to write at the best quality on it, also I prefer to have a drive that is able to read/write protected CDs/DVDs (to some extent).

I know that there are mixed opinions from different users, but I hope to be able to reduce my choices to two-three drives.

Thank you so much for helping a clueless buyer !

The models from LG, NEC and Samsung can be replaced by newer models. :wink:

BQ and pio

If you use high quality media, all drives will be good burning them. Technically there will be differences, but PI/PO tests will shows insignificant difference of error rates on burning high quality media, thus I will say again, for daily use you will not see any difference.

For using in external enclosure: BenQ 1650/1655 current firmwares supports only UDMA2 so you wont be able to achieve max performance. You need drive with firmware that supports UDMA4. But if you dont care then the BenQ is a good choice. The Lite-on is UDMA4 but Kprobe will get some glitches if you use them externally. My older LG drive will have trouble updating firmware in external enclosure but burning is fine. I have never put the other drives you mentioned externally so I can’t comment on them.

Hi again,

Thanks to your great comments, and also other threads, I’ve limited my choices to the following:

Pioneer DVR-111D
Lite-On SHM-165H6S
BenQ DW1655

Based on the reviews from cdrinfo benq is the best of the three, but from what I read in another thread, they prefered liteon over benq, moreover, I’m mentally inclined to pioneer (at least for the brand name).

If I go with benq, I’m wondering about the UDMA. I’ll be using the drive in an external enclosure, how bad would be not supporting UDMA 4 ? Is there a possibility that the future firmware versions support it or it is out of the question ?

Also does anybody have any experience about using liteon or pioneer with usb to ide interfaces ? Any comparison with benq ?

Thanks in advance,

BQ1655 for sure and Nec is better than the other 2

111 is a winner with us that have one, but it must be the master and UMDA4.
The 1650 is a fine slave.

I tried putting a 111D in an external USB enclosure. Perfomance using the Buffalo 111L v8.26 EXT firmware was as good or better than my DW-1640 @ EW-164B with both T02’s and MCC-004, but the drive got so warm after a few burns that I took pity and put it back in my tower.

Edit: I just finished scanning a DVD backup burned with the DVR-111D @ 8x… looks okay except for the jitter, which seems a BIT high. Sorry, removing the menus kept this from being a full burn, but it’s pretty close.


Hi,

no DVD-RAM, no Lightscribe, UDMA4

Lite-On SHM-165H6S
supports DVD-RAM and Lightscribe, UDMA2

BenQ DW1655
supports Lightscribe, no DVD-RAM, UDMA4
That’s about the features.

If I go with benq, I’m wondering about the UDMA. I’ll be using the drive in an external enclosure, how bad would be not supporting UDMA 4?
The drive will be speed limited.

Also does anybody have any experience about using liteon or pioneer with usb to ide interfaces ? Any comparison with benq ?
I am using a Sony DW-G120A crossflashed to Liteon SHM-165P6S (=SHM-165H6S without Lightscribe) in a Cypress based USB enclosure. The drive works fine, with some media it performs better than my (internal) Benq DW 1650 (=DW 1655 without Lightscribe).

It is useful to check The big external enclosures thread, and Ext. Enclosure Burn Tests on Nine Drives

Michael

Hi,

can you give some further explanation? Actually, I am using CD/DVD speed with my external “SHM-165P6S” and Kprobe with my USB connected SOHR-5239V CDRW (CD/DVD speed does not work here).

Michael

…regarding the Pioneer 111D, this is correct.
But just to mention, it can be easily flashed to allow Labelflash and DVD-RAM recording (111L).

I believe the BenQ DW16xx drives are UDMA2, except for the BenQ DW1620 and DW1640 which can be flashed with firmware for the external variant which then makes these drives UDMA4.

But no UDMA4 for the BenQ DW1655 or DW1650 (yet).

:doh: Ouch! :doh:
:o That was probably due to the lack of coffee :o

This is, what I wanted to write:
[I]Pioneer DVR-111D[/I]
no DVD-RAM, no Lightscribe, UDMA4
[I]Lite-On SHM-165H6S[/I]
supports DVD-RAM and Lightscribe, UDMA[B]4[/B]
[I]BenQ DW1655[/I]
supports Lightscribe, no DVD-RAM, UDMA[B]2[/B]

Drage, can you fix my original post?

Michael