What is the best latest cd/dvd burner for quality audio cds

My 4 year old Samsung Combo burner has died.

Read many reviews in mags but emphasis in rating is mainly on speed, lightscribe, dual formating etc.

Often reviews are outdated because models are superseded
and replaced so quickly.

I create cds from favourite tracks on mine and friends cds. I am 65 and find hi tech confusing (only just mastered the VHS recording programme ).

Am considering buying :
Liteon LH 20A1P or 20 A1H or
Samsung SH-S182A.

Is Mt Ranier any benefit for me ? Lightscribe not important
and extra seconds in doing the job means nothing to me.

  • Want retail pack with installation instructions, cable
    connections, beige/silver bezel, good software pack.
    Automatic manufacturer update advice desirable.

  • I want burner/writer in above price range that is:

    easy to install-use, reliable, accurately rips-records audio
    giving cds best sound ( DVD less important ).
    Don’t expect to use it much for movies.

    Must fit tower slot occupied by old Samsung Combo -
    40mm x 147 mm.

  • Based on latest tech data, their experience and my info
    Would the experts please advise me on best
    burner-writer for my requirements.

Since my old one is dead, need to decide quickly

 hope for your fast response.

I use Verbatim CD-R / RW 52x700MB,
Sony DVD-R / RW 1x-2x 4.7GB.

My 4 year old computer :
P4.3 GHZ 800 FSB.
RAM 512 x 400DDR PC 3200 Kingston.
Board :ASUS P4P800 DLX, i865 PE
HD. Seagate Barracuda SATA. - ST380013AS

Appreciate your patience and help.

(a derivation of grandpa used by my 2yo grandson)

Well I have a liteon 20A1H LL0A unit and it has worked well for me in my burning and ripping processes. But if you want to make good backup or burns keep the speed down rather then settting to maximum speed. The audio part will in large part depend on what software you are using to do the task. The dvd burners are releative inexpensive right now around the 40-100 range depending who and what feature your looking for. That slot what is if is a half-height as the 20A1H size is then it should fit-I don’t know the exact deminsion of the drive you might have to go to liteonit.com and check their site to get a more precise deminsion on the unit. But I would stay with a brand name unit that has more update aka firmware updates to keep up with different medias.

Welcome to the forum , [B]Parpi[/B].

I’d prefer the Samsung over the Liteon personally. Maybe because my LH 20A1P went bad within a couple of weeks. The Samsung is a far better reader of poor quality or damaged disks than almost any other burner aswell.

I’d also consider switching to Verbatim for my DVD media , especially the RWs.

Thanks to coolcolors and TimC for such a speedy response.
So far its like game shows that offer a 50/50 answer vote.

LiteOn appears to have a very large following.
Many reviews on the brand, few reviews on Samsung.
The gossip in tech chat has criticism for both brands.

The Liteons in early 06 appear to have been good but more recent models are getting some complaints.
Perhaps the push for higher speed & frills is affecting results/quality.

Samsung very early was OK but appears to have loss reputation to other brands.

The slot size in my tower 40mm x 147 mm.
H.D. Seagate Sata.

Current internal Liteon writers are 43mm x 145mm.
Current internal Samsung 41.3mm x 145mm.

  • What advantage is there in having SATA or Mt Ranier
    in a burner ?
  • Any new burner would be faster than my old Samsung
    Combo, so 16x or 20x has no import to me.

Those who express opinions from their experience of a product they have have used for a year would probably be more accurate.

Problem is that the shops carry current in vogue models
and I don’t want to buy a second hand model.

TimC suggests quality of burnt disc depends on
software rather than burner. I had previously used Media Player. It was easy for a tech dummy like me but results were not ideal.

My intention was to seek the tech experts advice
on software once I bought burner.

Should I tailor burner with software at same time.
None of burner reviews have suggested a particular software with tests.

Should I try to couple a particular software
with a particular burner.

I invite ‘keepers of the wisdom’ to enlighten me.
Either via forum or private e.m.


ill burn 2 audio cds for u now on a lite on one on a samsung and scan em for ya , My personal preference is if yourte wanting to do audio mainly its a really good Reader and burns audio nicer then my liteOn imo :slight_smile:

Don’t think I’ve really ever said quite that.

Software plays very little part in the actually quality of the burn itself but can affect playability. For example for Audio CDs the free Burrrn is likely to produce a better working copy than some versions of Nero.

Hi [B]parpi[/B], welcome to CDFreaks! :slight_smile:

I don’t know about the Samsung, but recent LiteOn DVD burners are not the best for buring Audio CDs in my experience - particularly the jitter can be very high.

My best drive for burning Audio CDs is the Optiarc AD-7170A.

Of the 2 I’d say the Samsung, but since my NEC 4551A is so good at audio CDs, I was wondering how the Optiarcs performed (thanks Drage!) - might want to consider one of those. :slight_smile:

Welcome. There are many opinions here as to what is “best, good” etc. My 65 year young-very tech minded self says go with the Sony drives. That is all I use and they work flawlessly for me. The retail pack model comes nicely bundled. Make sure that whatever drive you get that it is connected with an 80 conductor ribbon cable-the wires are very tiny compared to the 40 conductor cable. As to updating Firmware and so forth-I don’t bother. My software package is Ashampoo Burning Studio and it takes care fo the process of making quality CD’s and DVD’s. If you are at a price point that is tight-check with Newegg as they generally have some really good deals.
Good luck

Apology to TimC.
It was coolcolors who suggested ‘the audio will in large part depend on what software you are using to do the task’.

After a net search the following writers are rating 8/10 based on value, installation, software bundle, performance.

LiteOn - LH 18, 20 A1H + SHM 165H6S + SHOW 832S
(Quite a few complaints on failures – may be due to volume of product and Q.C. of batches made in China).

LG GSA H10N + Samsung SH S18D (few reviews, little chat about either).
Little info on Samsung SHWO8A or SHS182M (similar to S18D)

Often net reviews do not give the date the burners were tested and speed greatly influences rating. An old review may recommend a model no longer available in shops and the newer model may be less worthy of same rating.

Surprised many CDFreaks use a few burners. Don’t know why.


  1. If you could only own/buy 1 burner & you burnt a lot of music
    from cd. What current mid price model would you buy. Why ?

  2. My HD is SATA does it matter if new burner is SATA. What is
    advantage ?

  3. Mt Ranier. Reviews give a + for burners with it. Advantage ?

  4. Allowing for future ie CD’s will be replaced by DVD etc.
    What other features available in current new burners do you
    consider most important to have ?

Thanks to all who have so far responded and to Marcus667
for his offer. I am surprised at the willingness to assist.

A sales assistant will sell a tech dummy what ever is in stock-
not necessarily what is needed. Thus I value unbiased guidance
along the way.