I have a 4 year-old NEC NR-9100 OEM ( came with my Dell OptiPlex 260 ) that still works as on the day it was manufactured. No problems with any media or software.
Such excellent experience with NEC gave me an easy answer, when I was deciding to buy a DVD burner - I bought NEC 3540A. Since I wanted to keep my internal Lite-On DVD-ROM, which really proved well with playing many movies on many different media, I also bought Canyon's 5.25" Aluminium external enclosure ( this baby also works without any problems in Suse Linux 9.3 ... ), which also "transformed" my IDE drive to USB device ( enclosure has integrated circuit to convert IDE -> USB interface ).
I was burning movies and I still do with ImgBurn with light speed ( 16,1 ? !!!!! ) on Verbatim DVD-R 4,7GB media ...
Absolutely no problems AT ALL, even under Wine !!!!
Cheers to LIGHTNING UK! !!!