Back with a report on the third new Pacific Digital (DW1620) drive.
With the encouragement I received from your input, I went back to a different Staples this past Wednesday. I explained to one of the associates there the entire scenario of events, and asked if a replacement could be made. The gentleman listened patiently, and gave me an exchange of the old with a brand new burner; no paperwork, but a direct swap. This way the outstanding rebate from the first unit will not be jeopardized. He also gave me a 20 dollar certificate toward my next purchase at Staples for my troubles. I very much appreciated this, even though I was perfectly happy with a truly no-hassle exchange.
Now on to the testing. I got the burner home and installed it into my W2K machine. Created a Test Disk using the Fuji DVD, and it ran successfully. Quality test also showed a vast improvement to my previous results. I then upgraded the firmware to G7P9, and reran the test with similar success.
To attempt the burning of data, I copied 4gig of files over to the W2K machine, similar to the data that could not be read successfully before. Using Sonic, which has a verify feature to it, I burned the data and it was verified successfully! Woohoo!
I moved the burner over to its permanent location in the XP machine, and created a test disk and ran the quality test. These are the attachments I'm sending along.
I set the Nero CD-DVD Speed test program to read and write at a max of 8x, since the DVD+'s are 8x. I'm not very knowledable to know if it makes a difference in quality burning slower in some cases, with a set speed maximum, and/or a set quality test read speed? What is the standard/typical settings that ought to be set in order to effectively make comparisons with the burns and media. (compare against other on the forum) Anyway, this burner seems to be a keeper.
I'm very pleased with Staples, and I'm happy to have a working DVD burner. I thank you all for your knowledgable input.