I currently have a BTC 1008IM and NEC 3500AG. Both are on external Plextor aluminum cases that I got from an old 40X CDRW writer. (USB 2.0)
The BTC is a so-so burner, but I am amazed at how quiet it is. It is virtually silent when burning, ripping, playing back DVDs and it doesn't vibrate at all. I swear I cannot hear it unless I press my ear against it.
Now, the NEC is an excellent and much more feature rich drive (DL + better DVD burns), but I hate that noise when it's spinning, it sounds like a small jet engine. Not as bad as those old 48X CDROMS, but it's many times louder than my BTC. I have not even taken off the riplock and it's still loud when playing back dvds. And it's horrible @ anything above 12X burn speed...
With this said, are any of the other drives silent like the BTC?
Pioneer (no bitsetting kind of a let down)
I see most of the discussions focus on performance, but there isn't much talk about noise levels...
I know noise is very subjective, but anyone that has a BTC or experience with a similar quest, please provide me with some of your observations.