There is no difference in scanning functionality between the 716A/SA and 716AL. Also in other functions the models are strictly identical except for slot/tray loading.
When it comes to burning the A/SA model seems to have profited from an additional two firmware updates. (1.02/AL came out around the same time and had the same changelog as 1.09/A/SA, there was no additional FW for the AL model whereas there were 1.10 and 1.11 for the A/SA models). However FW 1.09/A/SA was fine according to user reports here. Check out the scanning results thread. So if 1.02 really is identical to 1.09 burning should be very much OK.
Additionally to what evo69 wrote: Plextors report PIF over 1 Block whereas BenQs report PIF over 8 Blocks.