CMC MAG. AM3 is not 4th class media - don't believe everything you read on teh intarweb.
I'm quite happy with my HP branded CMC MAG. AM3 media. I burn at 8x like I do for almost all media, and I get results that are very good. If you understand scans, you can check out my scans here (8 discs) and here (1 disc).
I wouldn't return those discs if they were mine.
Also after a bit of research in which DVD-R to get most people say that Verbatim is a reliable brand but I've read that mostly all Verbatim in the US are made by CMC Magnetics. Am i missing something?
Almost all blank media production is outsourced these days.
Mitsubishi/Verbatim outsource most of their blank media production to CMC Magnetics, Prodisc, Moser Baer and Taiyo Yuden. Except for Taiyo Yuden, the other manufacturers use Mitsubishi (MCC/MKM) technology for those discs that are manufactured on behalf of Mitsubishi/Verbatim, so e.g. the media manufactured by CMC using MCC/MKM technology and using MCC/MKM media codes are not identical to those using CMCs own technology and media codes.