Yes, the read speed is normal for the market. Very few drives can rip faster. Most Sony DVD drives rip so fast you'll split your pants, however the ultra-fast rip speeds can introduce errors. Fast rip drives introduce timing errors and glitches into video. BenQ reads even scratched discs with quality results.
So, it's a compromise of speed for quality, but that's okay by me!
Shrink for 30 min? Not 12 to 20 min?
Well, you can clean the original discs with pledge/favor, but don't get the one that includes REAL oil. Try it on sunglasses first to test it. Spray it on slow so that it is "gunky" and then rub it in with clean fingertips till it turns to completely to liquid. Buff with a very clean T-shirt. That can really clean dirty originals without adding any scratches in the process. The movie rental gal has noticed that some of her discs are totally clean and smell really wonderful. I had some videotapes to replace, but I admit to nothing. . .
You can use a faster processor and some more memory.
If Norton is installed, you can turn off the Norton Protected Recycle Bin slowdown bug.
If you have Norton Ghost available, you can turn off System Restore feature of Windows. Using real backup discs is much more effective, and then you won't have System Restore slowing down your system.
You can use a faster processor and plenty of FREE memory (lots of add-on goodies IE weatherbug and 4 messanger programs running at once result in 0 free memory).
Some of the user selectable options in Shrink can cause dramatic speed differences.
Oh, and there's that 40 wire cable, round cable issue. Either one can slow down a 1620 just a little bit. Imagine talking to grandma over a staticy telephone connection: "cat". . ."cap?". . ."No, not cap! Cat!!". . ."Yes cap!". . ."NO! CAT!!!!". . ."What? Did something happen to your cat?". . ."Nothing's wrong with my cat. I was just talking about my cat.". . ."I wasn't asking about your cap. I want to know about your cat.". . ."He's fine!!!". . ."Oh. That's good. So what's this about a cap?". . . Anyway, you get the picture. Imagine yelling over the telephone until you're blue in the face, and still can't communicate at normal speed. How's your IDE cable?