I was setting up a new computer for a friend, and I had installed the Nec 3550. This was a brand new drive from Newegg. I flashed it to the latest firmware, rebooted, burnt two DVDs and then when I went to burn a 3rd, the software told me I did not have a DVD drive. And indeed, I don't. I had to power down and use a paper clip to get the blank out of the drive. I also tried this drive in another computer, and it is not recognized at all. The BIOS doesn't even see anything attached to the IDE channel. I am certainly glad I purchased this from Newegg, with automatic RMAs.
It's kind of funny how this went out, though. I had successfully burnt two DVDs, went away for a few minutes (computer still running), and then came back to burn another disk. I pushed the button, the drawer opened, I inserted a blank disk, pushed the button again, and the drawer shut. Started the software program (CDSPEED, actually, I was going to burn an ISO image). CDSpeed told me "no drive detected". The light on the front of the drive was on, but the drawer would not open. The only way to open the drive was with a paper clip, after powering off the computer.