Need a 2nd burner NEC or Lite-ON?



ok I need a second burner, I have about 150 prodisc R- that arent friendly to my benq (refrence my previous posts)

now I just found 2 check i never cashed in my room :confused:
and newegg has the liteon 1633 RETAIL for 58.99 after ship! and the nec 3500 for 68$ OEM

now i am a sucker for retail (although the liteon looks no different) but i just get the feeling on this site that benq is favoured first, then nec, than its a tie between liteon pioneer and lg. 6 months ago it seemed lite-on was number one because of kprobe (at least to me) I dont get what it is they dont have perfect.

So what is your opinion? Should I wait for BenQ’s next model? do you think other than 8x rw and dual layer, has dvdR reached it’s peak?



I’d either get an NEC ND3500AG or a Pioneer burner if I had to choose from your list. Probably the other two drives with great write quality. The Prodisc -R’s will probably burn off fine on the NEC ND3500AG with hacked firmware, can’t say for sure with the Pioneer. You might try asking on their forums.


in my opinion i would say do not get either one…use your money and purchase some good quality DVD+R media…if you really want a good DVD-R burner then get a Pioneer…the LITEON drives tend to like DVD+R media so you’ll be wasting your time with burning DVD-R media…NEC drive is one brand I don’t own so I can’t give you any experience with them…but from what i have read about them they lack firmware support from NEC thus there are firmware programmers that create hacked firmware for the drives…i bought my BENQ 1620 because it supported BITSETTING out of the box with no need for any hacked firmware…it burns both types of media well for me.

i’ve only used MAXELL 8x DVD-R, TY 4x DVD-R , TDK 8x DVD-R media with my BENQ 1620 drive which burned great with no problems or any issues in playback…i have burned prodisc DVD-R in my pioneer 107 with no problems.

PLEXTOR 708A DVDRW :slight_smile:
PIONEER 107D DVDRW :slight_smile:
BENQ 1620 DVDRW (2) :slight_smile:
PENT 4 HT 3.00C, 800 FSB, PENT 4 2.40 533 FSB
ASUS MOBO’s P4P800SE (2)


DVD Addict, Lite-On does support bitsetting out of the box, I think the only company that requires a hack is NEC. Plus what is the deal with NEC, what makes them so tuff? I know they have the mitsubishi connection(MCC) and LG has the hitachi connection.
Lite-on is an OEM manufacturer. of course pioneer is always great.

but please enlighten me, what is bad about lite-on. I thought they had a great reputation.

I know benq is great, but to me dvd fanboyism is like religion, every religion thinks they are the best, and it just so happens each religion is going to have a certain amount of people, someone will have to end up in it, and none are better then the others. (oh forget it) imagine someone came in here and said “I am a NEC fanboy, i want a second unit, should i get benq or pioneer”

Once again this unit is 58$ shipped and is RETAIL, retailers like walmart and circuit city sell this unit for 99$ and i know at least circuit city corporate pays more than that!

I am hoping one of the seniors (you know who you are) to chime in

also to the person who said I should just buy quality + media. you further convince me of the wonderful brainwashing phenonoma that is forums. there is no difference between + and - discs except their write strategies(or what ever you call it) before bitsetting i used an LG drive and ONLY R- discs made by prodisc, MCC, and TY. Once bitsetting came out that all changed. before bitsetting I would not even TOUCH a + disc, I laughed at the fools who fell for the marketing gimick of the word plus, being that R- was and still is DVD standard. anyways, I have prodisc R- with three diferent codes (including a MCC) and they all had problems. But dont ever say they are bad, their + discs give me less than 10 PIE and PIF.

I would love to know from those who ‘realy’ know, is lite-on crap, or an optical powerhouse


there’s nothing bad about liteon drives and it’s a known fact that liteon drives tend to like DVD+R media than DVD-R…check out their forum in here…in my opinion they aren’t powerhouse optical drives…but that’s my opinion and i do own a liteon drive that burns DVD+R media better than DVD-R… enough said :wink:


Maybe I could help a little here. First off, kprobe. Kprobe will run on any drive with the mediatek chipset. Supposedly for those who for some reason can’t or won’t use nero cd/dvd speed. As near as I can tell they do the same thing - Scan your disks. So as long as you can use cd/dvd speed I don’t see much point in using kprobe. Second, all Lite-On drives use the mediatek chipset and are next to worthless with -R media. I’m sure you’ll find a few detractors of that statement but I suspect they use players that could play a flapjack. As for +R media, they do fairly well there but tend to be very picky about which brands and due to quality control issues this can vary from drive to drive. Getting one of these drives is like getting cheap media. Some will burn ok and the next disk in the spindle will coaster. Just the luck of the draw. As for bitsetting, I’ve noticed that none of them support it out of the box. Now, now, don’t get all bent. Check the firmware download page. At some point you’ll see each drive has a firmware released that does support bitsetting, but unless you get a unit that’s been out for a while you’ll have to wait until they release one for yours. Never buy one of these if you want bitsetting until you’ve checked to make sure they’ve issued a firmware that supports it or you’re going to wait until they do. Personally, unless Lite-On does some serious magic I wouldn’t get another one of their dvd writers again seeing as there are so many other brands to choose from. In fact, avoid any brand that uses the mediatek chipset or you’ll be trying various media until you find one it likes. However, as far as I know they still make a very good cd writer so it wouldn’t bother me to get one of those. I’m using their 52X cd writer along with a BenQ 1620 right now. My old DVD writer is laying on the floor. It’s just my opinion but I recommend you buy just about any brand that doesn’t use a mediatek chipset and if scanning your disks is that big an issue then just use nero cd/dvd speed for it. BTW, I have no idea if you need nero for that or if that little program can be run as a standalone.


Nero CD/DVD Speed can be run as a stand-alone application. :slight_smile:

Good post, PsychoCat and well said I thought. I personally don’t consider myself a fan boy of any drive. I have a NEC ND3500AG and a BenQ DW1620A (2 of them in fact but that was just how things ended up working out due to me thinking the one drive was dead) and I can honestly say that while in overall usage I like my BenQ’s better the NEC is a fine drive in terms of write quality.

If I had to go out and buy another drive right now I’d get a Pioneer DVR-109. I’ve actually been thinking about getting a second Plumax external case from PC Connection and a Pioneer DVR-109 to put in it but just don’t really want to spend over $100 for a DVD-Burner I don’t need - I need more hard drive space first more than a 4th burner. But that is my short and simple answer - I’d buy the NEC out of the drives listed for the second burner. In my case, since I already have a 3500AG and 2 DW1620A’s I would probably buy the Pioneer DVR-109 and have the best of all 3 worlds. :slight_smile:


I’m with the “LiteOn is crap” world. LiteOn built up its reputation by creating great CD burners, and they’re rapidly destroying this reputation by building mediocre DVD burners. My original drive was a LiteOn 451 and it’s no longer in my system. They read great (hence KProbe) but they don’t write well. Many people have previously owned them and have since replaced them (like myself) with a much better alternative. From the LiteOn forum, I hear that the more recent LiteOn drives are not any better. Strongly NOT recommended for DVD writing.

The BenQ 1620 is an excellent choice as far as writing is concerned, particularly if you restrict it to +R discs. Night and day improvement over the LiteOn.

I recently purchased a NEC 3500 and it surprised me with both its burn quality and its reading speed. It burns well and allows me to do a couple of important things that the BenQ 1620 does not as follows:

  1. I configure Nero to automatically verify my writes. The NEC drive verifies the data at a full 16X read speed instead of the BenQ’s restricted 8X. This reduces my verify time from 9:00+ down to 5:00. Since I nearly always verify my burns, this saving of time is significant for me.

  2. Using Quikee’s hacked NEC firmware, I can now burn cheap 4X -R Prodiscs at either 8X or 12X, depending on whether I want a clean scan or whether I want a fast burn that scans a bit dirtier at the end. Either way, my NEC allows CDSpeed to read them back with a straight-line “Transfer Rate” graph going all the way up to 16X without any hiccups in speed.

The NEC drive has a couple of negatives too, as follows:

  1. It does not allow me to use CDSpeed to do a quality scan. This is a big negative, since I like to know what my burns are like. Fortunately, I have both drives in my system, so I can move the disc to my BenQ for my quality scans.

  2. Burn speed is a bit slower on the NEC 3500 as compared to the BenQ 1620. An 8X burn on the 1620 takes about 8:40 while an 8X burn on the 3500 takes about 9:40. This is because the 3500 leverages off the burn strategies from the older 8X NEC 2500, and begins the burn at 4X write speed instead of 6X. This situation changes when you burn at 12X or faster, since writing starts at 6X. A 12X burn with the BenQ takes about 6:35 while a 12X burn with the NEC takes about 6:45 - still slower with the NEC, but now not enough to matter.

I’d say the burn quality is, in general, a little bit better with the BenQ 1620 than with the NEC 3500, since 12X burns on the BenQ seem to scan a bit cleaner than those made on the NEC. But the difference is minimal and probably not enough to matter one way or the other.

I find that I’m now burning most of my discs on the NEC 3500 for the above reasons. I can write/verify a 4X Prodisc -R in 11:45 with the NEC 3500. Doing the same thing on the BenQ 1620 would take me about 25:00.


Short answer:
Benq 1620 and NEC 3500 are in a different class compared to the Lite-On 1633s. I have owned all three of them, and after two weeks of testing, I decided to return the Lite-On.


Funny you should mention 150 Prodisc -R’s :stuck_out_tongue:

That’s almost exactly what I have that were relegated to the back shelf, having rather poor results with them. (Media Code F01, 8X DVD-r from meritline)

Just recently upgraded to Quikee’s 2.28 v3 or whatever f/w on my NEC 3500AG, and finally getting pretty good results. Still no go on my other burner, a Pioneer DVR-108, even with NIL’s latest and final release.

I am just a little surprised, thinking it was just crap media, and now it just seems to be f/w and write strategies!!

So, I would have to say the NEC 3500AG might be a good choice, except for the non=support of PIE/PIF error reporting, so they aren’t good for testing.


Same for the Samsung TS-H552B. If you see one, run for your life. I tested it 9 or 10 days and was really fed up with it then. NEC is the only correct answer of your “or” question.


Samsung uses the same garbage MediaTek chipset I think that the Lite-On’s use? At least one of their drives did - maybe it was the TS-H552U that incorporated it. After owning a now dead 451S that was so problematic that I replaced it after 2 months with a NEC ND2500A (also dead :frowning: ) I would never touch another drive with the Mediatek chipset again as long as I knew it beforehand.


Yeah you are right on the Samsung - the 552B definitely has the MediaTek chipset, as MediaTek tools like mtkflash and KProbe work on it. The 552U is said to have the same chipset and I saw one persons sig saying he had 552B@552U, so if that is true, they both use it. The U firmwares appear to be better, but crap anyway. Dont know about LiteOn. As the Samsung is not cheap compared to good drives like NEC and BenQ, there is no reason to buy one IMHO.