Thank you vroom!
I was hoping and didnt see any reference to this on the Liggy's and Dee's modified NEC and Optiarc firmwares webpage.
I guess I am stuck with the 8x with this drive.
Do you have any opinion on how well external USB DVD drives work when connected to notebooks? I inherited a good Plextor internal drive which can write at 4x, but no USB external case for it.