What's the BEST overall DVD reader?

Hi, I’m in the market for a new top quality DVD/CD drive. I’d like to know if there are some clear-cut KINGS in this genre where the #1 priority is: READING ABILITY.

I want it to read all formats. Old CDs. Scratched/dirty CDs. Is there a clear #1 here?

Plz help.

I did some more research and it seems the Lite-On 166 and Asus E616P1 come highly recommended. However, I am still seeing 25% of the comments as complaints even still (tho I realize that often times the ppl who post are those with problems). (example, the Lite-On is initially noisy and can’t read all media).

I’m looking just for a drive that can READ the most media and up to the worst quality/condition as possible. Things like ripping speed and other stuff doesn’t matter to me. Just need readability reliability…any suggestions and/or links to reviews would be most welcome.

The Lite-on is very tolerable of skips and scratches and very good at playing backed up protected CD’s. The ASUS I can’t comment too much on other than what I read here but it too is a close contender.

However, I have read from various sources (forums here and cdmediaworld.com) that the best optical drive for reading scratches and glitches on a CD is a Plextor. It recovers best if say a music cd is all scratched up, better than the other two.

So consider your specific needs and I would suggest any of the above 3 mentioned.

Yes, the Plextor drives are indeed very good for reading scratched CDs. I still miss my 40x Plextor CDRoms!

Another DVDROM that is quite a nice drive (especially when it comes to reading scratched discs and DAE) is the Toshiba SD-M1712. Too bad it isn’t in production anymore. The newer version of the drive, the 1812 is quite good as well, but has a very limited compatibility with DVD media. As they are the future, I wouldn’t recommend that drive though.

Pioneer 121s rips dual layer DVD’s at 8.76 average. I haven’t seen anything better than this