Is there a drive that meets these specs?

Hi All.

Is there a drive that meets the following specifications?


CDR/RW reading or writing capabilities
Speed (I’d much prefer results over speed)


Can successfully burn as many types of media as possible, including + AND - DL. RAM (with and without cartridge) would be a bonus!
Can playback as many types, brands and qualities of DVD media as possible especially cheap ones (but good ones too)
DVDs created by it will play on almost anything
Obviously as few coasters as possible
TOP quality playback of DVDs
Excellent and reliable for storing audio and data.
I want to avoid having to use firmware, flashing, cross-flashing or whatever else they call it at all costs, so a drive which can do the ‘bitsetting’ thing already and has no riplock would be a HUGE relief. If it cannot be avoided, then it would be great if it was free and easy to do!
Top results for writing (speed not that important)

Not asking for much, am I??!!

It may seem that I want EVERYTHING in the drive, however, I have noticed that speed plays a CRUCIAL part in many users’ and expert reviewers’ opinions. Since this doesn’t apply to me, maybe there is a drive that is deemed to be not so good by most but would be perfect for me.


PS Do all BenQs have riplocks? I have read that they need MCSE to remove the lock. Does this apply to the DW1655 as well?

All newer drives have some sort of rip lock, including BenQ 1655. You will have to patch its firmware in order to completely remove riplock.

The minute you specify scanning you are either Liteon or BenQ, as I ignore Plextor. That really means you need Liteon as BenQ has some issues scanning some media.

Given the very low cost of drives now you are much better off with two. I would recommend the Pioneer 111D, which by the way has no riplock straight from the factory, and any of the Liteons, probably the 165P6S. Crossflashing and flashing after MCES modifications is a piece of cake and rarely causes a problem if you are careful. I have done hundreds of flashes back and forth and other than an NEC 4570, never seen a problem, and the NEC was recovered thanks to the postings of an experimenter here.

If you limit yourself to factory firmware you miss most of the features.

Agree with chas0039, if you want scanning features then your choices are Plextor PX-760 (or 755), Lite-On 165P6S/165H6S or BenQ DW1650/1655.

PS Do all BenQs have riplocks?
Correction to pejakm’s post, the BenQ 1650/1655 does not have riplock. It can read DVD±R/ROM at 16x and DVD±R DL/ROM at 12x (12x on dual layer is not considered riplocked). With MCSE, it pushes the read speed to nearly 16x on dual layer media.

Thanks for clarification! :slight_smile:

Thanks for all the help.

I’m confused. The review at states “Protected discs are definitely a problem for the drive, as it also happened with the DVR-111DBK. It did not manage to rip Sony’s Key2Audio protected media, although the other two audio protected titles were ripped successfully. Protected games were not successfully ripped, with the drive showing poor capabilities since it was unable to backup even old Safedisc v2 protected discs.”

At, the only two drives which don’t mention anything about needing a riplock unlocker are Pioneer and Plextor. They haven’t mentioned any models, just the general brand.

Pejakm, patch its firmware??? What does that involve? I’m new at this kind of thing.

Chas0039, I’m only looking to get one for the moment and then only getting another one if things go miserably with the first. I read something about the 111D lacking a feature that was important but I can’t remember exactly what it was. I think it was also mentioned that the feature was present in the 111. OK, I’ll consider the firmware experiments, but only if I have to.

Zevia, from what you have stated, I don’t think I fully understand the riplock aspect yet. I didn’t know speed had anything to do with it. If a drive is riplocked, I thought that meant that it just cannot copy protected discs. After your info, I did some searching and came across the following post.

“Riplock is the feature of a drive that limits the speed at which DVD-Video discs are read. Its purpose is to make the drive quiet while you are watching movies. As a side effect, it also slows down the ripping of DVD video discs. The exact limited speed varies depending on the model of the drive. It is usually between 2X and 5X.”

Accroding to this, the drive CAN be copied, but at a slower speed. Is this the case for all drives? If riplock is removed, does the noise increase? As I stated before, writing speed isn’t the most important thing on my list of requirements.

Thanks again all.

Problems reading AUDIO and GAME protection are different from ripping and most DVD drives have this problem. Our comments are DVD related.

If you get the 111D you miss RAM and bitsetting. If you flash the drive to the 8.19 and then 8.26 firmware you get these features back. You aren’t hacking the firmware, just flashing with a Pioneer firmware that has been designed to go on a different (but really the same) drive. To get ripping back you just check a box in MCSE and then flash the drive, really very simple. When the time comes post here and we will guide you step, by step.

The 111 will rip at speeds between 5X and 12X which is fast. Rip lock only affects the Read never the Write

Right out of the box I would recommend the BenQ DW-1650 (1655 is the same except for Lightscribe feature). The BenQ drives are valued for their quality burns on both DVD and CD. You can download the BenQ Q-Suite utility which allows you to control the drive’s capabilities, bitsetting included. Alternatively, try the NEC ND-3550a, which is very easy to flash with Liggy and Dee’s 1.Y6 firmware to give you bitsetting. I use both drives for DVD/CD ripping and playback and they perform well. Both drives have a soft “rushing” sound while playing. They are both inexpensive, but the NEC is a few dollars cheaper and easier to find. Don’t forget to use top-quality blank media whenever possible. cheers, :bigsmile: gamma1

Thanks chas. I think I’ll do some reading on ‘riplock’ as I am still lost on that one.

Gamma, is there ABSOLUTELY NO difference in ANY aspect between 1650 and 1655 apart from the LightScribe?

Does anyone know when the review of 1670 will be up? I am interested in knowing how that compares with the 1650/5, as it has the advantage of RAM.


It is very simple. When you copy DVD files from a drive, the best drives will copy at near 14X speed. The good drives will copy at 12X. The fair drives will hit 10X. The riplocked drives will be at 2X or 5X. These are top speed, not average.

There are those of us who never use the Lightscribe feature who have seen that in some cases, the burns on the 1655 are better than the 1650. If you have any concern, get the 1655 as the price difference is very small. Mine is a 1655.

see here for 1670:

Thanks Chas, now I think I understand the RipLock thing much better!

Yes, I have already read that article. They mentioned that they were going to be a full review soon, so that is what I’m waiting for. On another board, I was told that the 1670 is not so good and that there are problems with the firmware links, etc.

Will have to wait and see.


I would have thought so, but I quoted this from a recent BenQ forum post about the new firmware release:

Re: BenQ DW1655 BCIB and DW1650 BCIC released!

Release Reason (1650 BCIC):

  1. Updated the writing strategy
  2. Improved Power Calibration Judegment.

Release Reason (1655 BCIB):

  1. Updated the writing strategy

OK, thanks gamma1.