(This is all in my experience)
A lifetime ago, when the earth was still young, Plextor walked around, king of the burners, being able to backup more than others it strutted its stuff and liked hearing the gasps of fellow burner, (not to mention the gasps of buyers when seeing the price tag $$$ )
Then along came the headstrong Lite-On. Model 24102B, acting like the terminator, it blasted 32bit 1280X1024 shades of 3D accelerated red at the Plextor and the war was on.
With the high price tag of the Plextor holding it back, Lite-On slipped into the lead. Then when it was discovered that Plextor could backup certain discs faster, the lead was even again. Then SafeDisc v2.X in all its horror was discovered battered and bleeding in a corner after going 1 round with a Lite-On.
Basically what this ramble is about, is that Lite-On are cheap and backup a vast majority of copy protected CD’s with almost no problems. And at a minimal price tag. And while their tech support is rumored as nothing to write home about, the Lite-On forum here, makes up for that. Plus with the newer drives you can overclock them (as you pointed out, Free Speed For Nix!!!)
PS - I apologise for above said nonsense, dont sue me, I have no money, and I blame it all on the mood Im in.