Those speeds aren't normal even if the drive is locked. Unlocking the drive with a hacked irmware should yield higher speeds than 3X. Are you sure you have the drive connected in udma mode and not pio? Check it by: control panel/system/hardware/device manager/ide ata/atapi controllers/right click on primary and secondary channel properties depending on what channel you installed the drive on. If in pio mode, switch to dma mode that is appropriate for your drive. Typically dvd-roms and dvd-rw drives run using udma mode 2 or higher.
Check your cable and its connections to mainboard. Make sure there's no dust or bent pins, etc... The connection should be firm. Best to set dvd-roms used in ripping as Primary Master and not Primary Slave or Secondary Master or Secondary Slave for better read/write performance. In my experience this logic has worked well. Others may disagree.
If these basic suggestions fail, your drive may be damaged or isn't capable of ripping at higher speeds with or without a hacked firmware for riplock removal. I suggest you rma the drive or get a better drive like the Aopen 1648/AAP Pro or nonpro version. The Lite-on drives 166 series are also good. Search the forum for more discussions about these particular drives.
Yes, good media, different DVD formats, etc... do matter in dictating speed. But, I still think that a speed of 2X or 3x is atypical of most drives today. Your drive is likely misconfigured or damaged. My older dvd-rom drives unbrand oem ones will do 6x on copied dvds, dvd+r dl, and pressed or commerical dvds without a riplock removal firmware. You have a Pioneer drive which is branded, I would've expected higher speeds and better performance from such a drive. I would advise to pay closer attention to the hardware and follow some of the above suggestions.
If it matters, I have Aopen 1648/AAP Chameleon Edition dvd-rom for ripping cds and dvds. I typically do 12.3X for DVD+R DL and 15X and above for DVD+/DVD-Rs. Pressed commercial dvds will do 16X. For a 7-8GB DVD+R DL, it will normally take less than 11 minutes to rip to the harddrive. For single layer 4.7 GB DVDs both commercial and copied DVD+R/DVD-R, the average is around 9 minutes.
Best advice is to do your research and invest in a good dvd-rom if you use it for mainly ripping.