FYI: I use a BenQ 1620 Pro (was 52 shipped at newegg) for both ripping and burning
With ala42's hacked firmware, I can rip a DVD Video in 6 minutes with DVD shrink. With TY02 +R media, I can burn at 12 speed and have a 98% quality disk in another 8 minutes.
When/if the drive dies, I'll just buy another for $50. I'm at about 150 burned dvds on it - kids can destroy dvds almost as fast as you make them:)