I've just hopped over here from the Lite On forum where the 5005 model is getting a severe battering for quality issues, mainly around the disk drive it would seem.
One thing I like about Lite On is you can hook up a PAL VCR to one of its inputs and have it output to an NTSC tv with a very good quality picture. You could of course also burn a copy of the PAL tape to a DVD if you wanted to.
Do the Panasonic models do this?, or for that matter is this sort of technology usually part of the big name brands? I like Panasonic products and usually buy that brand. I think the Lite On may well bite the dust judging by some of the comments on the board.