Which 18x Burner?

I’m looking for a decent fast DVD burner, my deciding factors are ;

  1. Highly compatible burns .i.e. can play in PS2, most standalone dvd players and in-car cd players
  2. Ability to bitsett because of compatibility (is this a moot point when playing back with most new dvd units ?)
  3. Good firmware support - either official or 3rd party
  4. Ability to burn reliably, dvd films as fast as possible, without annoying skips/jitter ( is it possible to burn films at more then 8x ? with decent media)

The problem is that there’s too much information and alot of it is contradictory, for every good posting I read about a dvdr, there’s usually a bad one too, some reviews also. I have a shortlist of units ;

  1. Nec Optiarc 7173A (good previous reputation, good firmware support from Liggy and Dee, decent reviews http://www.cdfreaks.com/article/286)

  2. Sony AW-G170AB2. Essentially the same drive as above, if so any preference for NEC/SONY

  3. LG GSA-H22NBAL. Some good reviews, seems quite popular. Poor firmware support ?

  4. Pioneer DVR-111D. Solid and reliable reputation. But abit dated, burn speeds are abit slower, no lightscribe/lightflash.

I’m leaning towards the Nec Optiarc 7173A, I’d appreciate any advice, on the above, or any others I should consider.