Help Choosing from 3 Burners



Hey, i read all the reviews fo the following burners.

  1. DVD Burner-Pioneer-109
  2. DVD Burner-NEC-3540A
  3. DVD Burner-LG-4163B

and they all claim to be excellent drives.

Im about to buy a new Drive and i was wondering which should i buy.

my main usage of the burner will be simlpe Single DVD writing.
and in Israel we dont have such quality Media or it is very expensive,
so it will have to work well with media of firms like SilverLine ect’.

which of the following is best for me? which offers region free control?
they all come at about the same price.

help please.


and in Israel we dont have such quality Media or it is very expensive,

If thats the case the NEC is your first and best option. As the other two have poor media compatabily for non big name brands. I have a NEC 3540 myself and A Benq, i much prefer the NEC. So much so i told all my relitives to get one too.


Well thanks, i should probably add Sony DWD23A.
is it in any way better then the Nec?

and is it true that the Nec is Loud?


OMG sony’s are terrible drives. They’re just repackaged Liteons you could get the same drive cheaper if you bought it called Liteon. (If you read the forum you will see people slating liteon drives) as do I.

The NEC 3540 has rip lock on it and mine is as quiet as a whisper. I love it!. When people say it is noisy is referring to if you use hacked firmware to remove the rip lock to rip pressed (bought) DVD’s faster, then it is noisy as it is ripping at 16x.

Hope this helps


Yes, it helps a lot!!!

I heard something about Sony being Shit…

what about ASUS? i heard they are also other drive repackaged?

and Plextor? the Plextor is x2 the price (a bit more) of the NEC but i heard it is a
Great drive. worth the Price?


If all you are doing, is burning on cheap media, either get the BENQ , or the NEC. If you need to be able to read and copy weak sectors, go with Pioneer, Plextor, or Liteon.


what do you mean by “Weak Sectors”?

if im using Verbatim media will a Liteon be better then NEC?

and Wich one is better from the three Vendors you mentioned? (Plextor Liteon or Pioneer?) and what are their top models?


The Pioneer DVR-109 is currently the best burner you can get. It costs a lot more than any other burner and it also has poor media compatibility for non well known brands. Which is why i suggested the NEC. If you will be burning with Verbatim then the pioneer would be a good choice.

But as you said in your first post you couldnt get any quality media in your region then the best option is the NEC. I have a benq also but it doesnt have the media compatibilty of the NEC 3540.

If it were me i would own these drives in this order

  1. NEC 3540 (i own this)
  2. Pioneer 109
  3. Benq 1625 (i own this)
  4. LG GSA 413

Trust me buying the NEC would be a good choice.

The only downside of the NEC is its ability to read DVD’s with problems on them, dirt, errors etc. Therfore if this is important you should also get a cheap DVDROM drive. The best DVD-Rom’s for this are Liteon and Aopen.


Well, sorry for nagging but i like to be sure before i buy my Burner.

Here the pioneer is 84$ and the NEC is 76$, which is not a big diffrence.

and i can -if i will gain in burn quality- get a Verbatim/TDK/Teac media.
but the Question is will it not burn at all on media such as Silverline?
and if a future firmware upgrade wont change it to be more compatible so it will be worth the wait.

Becuase the Quality of the Burner as a DVD player is also important.


Weak sectors are normally what is used for copy protected CD’s. The drives I mentioned are also better at reading scratched old old CD’s and DVD’s.


Long Post Coming.

Here are some experts opinions on the drives

Firstly Pionerr 109

Pioneer DVR-109 DVD-Writer Review - Conclusion
Posted by Tor Magne on 07 June 2005


* Supports 6x DVD+/-R9 Double Layer writing
* Supports 16x CAV DVD+/-R writing speed
* Supports 8x DVD+RW (in the future) and 6x DVD-RW
* Excellent DVD+/-R Writing quality
* Good CD-Writing quality
* Reads DVD+/-R media at 12x.
* Good DVD+/-R Double Layer writing quality with verbatim media
* Reads DVD-RAM media.
* Drive is solid constructed. 


* Supports 8x DVD+RW only on the paper.
* Very poor DVD+/-R media compatibility.
* Very poor CD-R media compatibility.
* Only 40x CD-Writing and CD-Reading speed.
* 6x DVD-RW writing quality need improvements.
* Doesn’t support PIE/PIF error checking in Nero CD/DVD speed.
* Problems backing up some protected audio discs.
* Can’t overburn CD-Media.
* Problems reading 99 minute CD-Media
* Does not support Mt. Rainier.
* Does not support bitsetting for +R/RW.
* Drive gets hot to the touch under use.
* Some reading tests indicated that the error correction capabilities of the drive are not the best.
* Has a riplock at 5x for reading DVD-video discs. 


Have Pioneer learned from their mistakes in earlier drives? Unfortunately not, it seems like it still fails in the same categories as before. But let us summarize our impressions of this drive:

The main positive points: You can’t get around it; this drive has some of the best, if not the best writing quality of all DVD-Writers on the market. This could be the key point for many to get just this drive. It also supports 6x DVD+R double layer writing and 6x DVD-R dual layer writing, as well as 16x +/-R writing using CAV writing technology.

The main negative points: The key point is that the media compatibility with this drive is horrible, media that have been on the market for over a year and more is still not supported at certified speed, even from large known manufacturers like Ritek and CMC Magnetics. Pioneer should really work on improving the CD-R and DVD+/-R media compatibility. 8x DVD+RW media have been available as samples since late last year, and even with the latest 1.50 firmware there are no support for the 8x DVD+RW that is available, very disappointing to see 8x DVD+RW in the specs when it doesn’t support it. Besides this there are some other noticeable drawbacks; missing bitsetting support for +R/RW, missing PIE/PIF scanning support in Nero CD/DVD speed, No overburning abilities, problems with protected audio discs as well as an riplock at 5x.

NEC 3530 (Basically the same as 3540 except for dual layer burning speeds)

  • The Good

    • Can burn DVD+RW media at 8X, and DVD-RW media at 6X
    • DVD-R DL support at 4x, and DVD+R DL support at 6x
    • Very good DVD error correction capabilities
    • Supports CD-Text (reading/writing)
    • Supports audio protected discs
    • Good Single Layer DVD writing quality
    • Can overburn up to 89min CDs
    • Faster copy protected games ripping than former NEC burners
    • Fast DAE speed
  • The Bad

    • Does not support quality scan measurements
    • Poor CD error correction
    • Slow ripping CSS DVD-Video performance (Rip-Lock feature enabled)
    • Mount Rainier is not supported
    • Cannot recognize 99min Audio CD’s
    • Cannot create working backups with SafeDisc protected games over v2.60
    • Cannot overburn DVD recordable media
    • Can only burn Verbatim double layer media at 6X


ok, so every drive has his advantages and disadvantages.

any burner is just good all around? :slight_smile:

but if its not to hard i will like to understand what im reading a little better.

  1. what is error correction and what part of the Burner does it take place (burning, playing…)
  2. do i need Mt. Rainier and bitsetting support?

what to buy?!
:slight_smile: why cant it be easy as buying Graphic Card where you know X800 is the best.


If you want an answer to those questions, you need to contact the manufacturer’s of the drives. It would be nice to have one drive that does everything good. Maybe that is why when you see what most on this forum have, they list multiple burners of various brand names. One for scanning, one for burning cd’s, one for copy protection, etc…


If you dont know what mt rainer is you dont really need it. Its just a way of using a CDRW like a floppy disk.

Bitsetting is extremelly useful if you are backing up DVD films only. If your using it for data backup its really not usefull to you. All Bitsetting does is changes the booktype of DVD+R DVDs to be read as DVD-Rom Disks, this means if you have a standalone DVD player that wont play DVD+R or DVD-R disks, it will now by this. You can make the NEC 3540 do bitsetting by upgrading the firmware (its currently not an official firmware though). It works great as i have it on mine.

What i would honestly suggest is you buy both a DVD burner and a DVD-rom drive, you machine should have 2 drive bays. You can have 2 drives on you machine. The majority of people have one burner and one DVD-Rom. You can pick up a DVD-Rom for next to nothing £7-13 here in the UK. Try Ebay people sell them for pennies on there. I saw a used liteon go for £1.50 a couple of weeks ago.

I would recommend personally through experience either the liteon or Aopen DVD Rom and The NEC 3540 burner. You are fully covered then for all aspects of your needs.

If though you are concerned about reading ability, and bitsetting out the box. And you dont want to buy a DVD-Rom. And also want extrmelly good quality burning then your absolute best option is the Benq. (in the UK its also one of the cheapest DVD drives you can get). The 1625 is good as it does litescribing too. (However the Benq has slightly less media compatability for unkown brands of recordable disks than the NEC has.

Really its up to you what you want to do more with your drive which one to get. As they each have specific strengths

This should hopefully help


Thanks alot.

I think i will buy the NEC and settle for its weaknesses.
i cant use a DVD-ROM cause i already have a great CDRW (ASUS) and i dont want to
replace it.

so i guess i will haev to use it as a DVD-ROM as well.
but i just hope it wont be too bad.

thanks a lot for all the help,
this forum is really professional and usful.

keep up the great work!


You may not have considered this but i found about this myself and was pleasently amazed but you can get enclosures which turn internal drives into external.

I bought a few when i upgraded to my Benq and NEC in order to still use my Aopen DVDrom. You can get them for about £10 from ebay.

I also got one when i bought i third hard drive.

Heres an example of what i mean


Hi :slight_smile:
I have a 3540a & it does quality scans ( only jitter not covered )
Plus support for 8x Verbatim DL
Improved ripping speed up from 10x to 12x (this is with riplock still on)
Error correction improved
In short much better allround
Maybe the BenQ 1640 may go one better but it’s availability is patchy to say the least & I’ve not been able to get one