I just picked up an NEC 3500A a few weeks ago and I love it.
It is a great all in-one optical drive solution.
It can burn DVD/+R-R at up 16x, read at 16x and rewrite at 4x and CD-R at up to 48x!
Not bad, but the impotant part is that it delivers consistent high quality burns and the drive is as quiet as I could ask it to be.
It's also convenient that it has a lot of hacked firmware for overspeeding of DVD media (which delivers mixed results mainly depending on the quality of the media). The nice thing is that it removed Rip Lock (so you can rip DVD movies at full speed instead of just 4X).
I've only burned at 4X and I've used [b:0ca0b0bdd1]Ritek M02[/b:0ca0b0bdd1] (branded RiData) with ok results (sometimes I feel the discs are not reading back fast enough to warrant saying they are great disc). I have also used [b:0ca0b0bdd1]MXL RG02[/b:0ca0b0bdd1] branded Maxell made in Japan (from Japan and reads back much faster than the Ritek, an indication of higher quality media as most usually is when produced in Japan). The other one I have used is Maxell made in Taiwan which is RICOH JPN01, supposedly some higher quality Taiwanese media which appears better than Ritek at least.
This drive was also very cheap, only $112 CAD. It makes a good all-in-one drive solution for CD/DVD reading and recording.
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