Thanks for the link!
DMA is enabled as it's been since turn-up date. The weird thing about this issue is that nothing -- especially with regards to hardware -- has changed since turn-up. The drive just started to perform slower. It doesn't seem like it's a HD or memory issue because the burner uses the same resources and performs optimally. As a comparison, I ripped a movie using my burner again and it finished in about 36 mintues -- as compared to 1h 10m with the reader. This is driving me nucking futs.
I suppose I could do a firmware upgrade, but that's a band-aid solution in my opinion -- and potentially risky. I'd like to know why the reader slowed down in the first place, because it could surely happen again after a firmware upgrade. The forum on the JLMS website is very basic and discussions are few.
I'm thinking about removing the reader from Windows and re-installing it. Perhaps that will help it "snap back" to fighting form. If that doesn't work, I'll try the firmware upgrade next. If that doesn't work, I'll swap the Lite-On reader (w/ Lite-On firmware) from my old machine.