Samsung SH-S223Q
Samsung SH-S223Q

Best DVD burner

In tests of real-world performance, reviewers say that the 22x Samsung SH-S223Q is about as fast as any internal DVD drive that's currently available. Experts and users say that it reliably burns DVDs (regular and dual-layer) and CDs, although reliability drops at higher burn speeds -- a shortcoming that's common to all burners. The Samsung SH-S223F (*Est. $30) is the same drive, but lacks LightScribe monochrome label-printing capability. Both Samsung drives are compatible with Windows only, and both use an SATA connection.
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Pioneer BDR-203
Pioneer BDR-203

Best Blu-ray and DVD burner

While they remain expensive, Blu-ray Disc burners let you record tons of data -- including high-definition video -- onto a single disc. However, Blu-ray burners in general aren't really recommended over USB flash drives as a storage medium. But if you want to both record to and play Blu-ray Discs, this Pioneer burner gets some of the strongest reviews. Rated at 8x, it can burn Blu-ray Discs faster than any other consumer drive. It can also burn standard DVDs at a respectable 16x, though CD-writing speeds lag behind. Operation is relatively quiet, which is a big plus for watching movies on Blu-ray. The Pioneer BDR-203 is Windows-only and connects with an SATA cable.
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Pioneer BDC-2202B5PK
Pioneer BDC-2202B5PK

Best DVD burner with Blu-ray playback

The Pioneer BDC-2202B5PK is a combination drive that adds Blu-ray playback -- but not recording -- to a DVD burner. It's a great choice for those who want to watch Blu-ray movies on their PC, but don't need or want to pay for the ability to record up to 50 GB of data to a single dual-layer disc. Performance when playing back movies on Blu-ray is excellent, as is the recording quality when burning standard DVDs or CDs. The most notable negative is that reading and writing speeds to CDs or DVDs is on the slow side, especially compared to the latest drives without Blu-ray capabilities. Additionally, many PCs don't meet the minimum hardware requirements to adequately play back Blu-ray Discs.
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DVD Burners Runners Up:

LG GGC-H20L/GBC-H20L *Est. $220

2 picks by top review sites.

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