Ok, lots of new developments to report today in this saga...
First off, I ran new tests with "streaming" on and with the drive connected to the SATA bus directly. Performance was increased a bit...
My burst rate running my Pioneer BDR-205 on internal SATA is 31 MB/sec and I get a transfer speed up to just under 8x (never hits 8x). Still below what others are getting with this drive and media. Again, my external firewire performance is only 22MB/sec and I only get up to 4x burns.
Onto other news...
Going off of a hunch that my PSU might be a little underpowered for my system, I just purchased a Corsair HX1000 (1000W) power supply upgrading from a Corsair HX620. Unfortunately I ran into huge problems with the HX1000. The first one powered up one time and then the second time I tried to boot, it was absolutely dead (no POST, no fans or HD spin-ups). Reverting back to my Corsair HX620 everything worked fine (whew!). After a return to the store for a replacement, I got the second HX1000 installed right before a client came in. Right after starting work, the computer abruptly shut down without warning and again would not boot again. Number two down!
After a phone call to Corsair this morning, I found there are compatibility issues with Corsair PSUs and early builds of the Asus P6T Deluxe V2 apparently having to do with the Asus voltage regulator. I then called Asus who is now processing an advanced RMA for my mobo.
I'm obviously wondering if the wonky voltage regulator on the board has been causing the choked throughput I've been seeing with the burner? We'll see in a few days when the new board comes in but does anyone have any thoughs on this?
I really feel like I opened Pandora's box when I decided to buy a blu-ray burner!
BTW, another friend has recommended the iHES208-08 and it looks to be my best bet for an all-in-one scanner. I make two copies of each backup and between the burn verification and then scanning with a drive like this I feel I would be about as protected as reasonably possible.
deanwitty, If you don't mind me asking, what is your background and need for uber-accurate scans? Is it work related as well? You are obviously very current and thorough with your knowledge of optical drives!