Well I did my first rip and burn and I am pleased! The rip speed was noticeably faster, starting at ~7MBs and finishing at ~14MBs. I didn't time it or do a pre/post test disc rip like I should have :o . The burn itself took 5:52 and finished at 14.9x. The burn usually would go all the way to the high 15x. I don't know what to make of it, probably nothing as it was the first burn with new firmware, the time was quick and the results were good. I did do a scan to see the results and except for the first mountain of PIs I think it is quite nice...it needed all of 10 seconds to learn!
As for you CK, retirement isn't a word when a passion is concerned. When you are good at something, you are always in demand:bow:. After reading through the 42 pages of the FW thread, it is nice to have a circle of avid supporters as you do to help with the testing and whatnot. I also saw the answer to this threads question on around page 21 :o.
Though I am far from an expert, I still do tech support/system builds for my close friends and family, but trying to keep it as occasional hobby and not a job. I hope you can also find an agreeable balance