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37 of 38 people found the following review helpful
Verified Purchase
PROS:
LightScribe technology lets you burn labels right into LightScribe-capable discs
quiet for slower operations
appears to be decent quality
handles all modern formats up to (not including) blu-ray
decent Windows software included
fast CD ripping

CONS:
NO software included for Mac users
No obvious warranty beyond an Amazon 30-day return policy

NEUTRAL:
According to LG Web site, product is discontinued

WHAT MODEL IS IT?

You'll notice that this Amazon product fails to list the model number anywhere. About the only thing you know when you order it is that it is a LG Super Speed USB 24X DVD blah blah blah. I guessed, correctly as it turns out, that it was the model GE24LU20. It may be that the difference is that this is the OEM version meaning, I guess, that this comes in a plain white box with a sticker with the model number, whereas the one Amazon lists with the model number may have a proper box. Same seller, same price, and who cares about the box anyway, since I'm just going to recycle it at the end of 30 days?

You might like to know that this drive is listed as discontinued on LG's Web site. I bought it knowing that, because the alternative was slower, flimsier, "slim" external drives. It may be that we are stuck in the gap before external blu-ray burners, or at least blu-ray player / dvd writers are out.

USING THE WEIRD POWER SUPPLY

I was genuinely puzzled by the power supply. Turns out this power supply has a cap you have to remove, then snap on a separate part in its place that adapts it to your local mains. There are no instructions to help you figure this out; you have to know to look for the part that fits your outlet. Once found, it is reasonably straightforward.

ATTENTION MAC USERS

The product says "compatible with Windows or Mac systems". Other reviewers say that the hardware works fine on Mac, but NOTE: THE SOFTWARE IS ALL FOR WINDOWS, NO MAC SOFTWARE on the included software disc. [UPDATE: according to a comment below, "Mac has its own software for anything you plug into it." I can't say whether that is true or not.]

SOFTWARE DISC

Here's what's on the included software disc:
Power Tools (see below)
User Manual
Norton Internet Security (60 days)

LG isn't doing a great job of supporting this drive, because they do not provide any of this software online for download, not even the manual. So make a backup of your software disk if you think any of it is useful to you.

The disc manual is a bit of a joke. It is in TIF format (and in several languages). I let the AutoRun program open it, and it started Photoshop, which is only capable of showing one page. I suppose it is probably some TIF format that has multiple pages, but I don't have a viewer for it, and I don't think there is one on the disc.

The unspecified "Power Tools" are by Cyberlink, which is a bad sign, based on my previous experience with their blue ray software. The programs are for Windows. They appear to be compatible with Windows 7; Mac users get nothing. Here's what we get:

Cyberlink LabelPrint 2.5 - "Create and print a variety of labels for your discs including cover pages, disc labels, and inlay sheets." It looks like this is what you have to use to use the LightScribe technology (burning labels directly onto LightScribe discs), because there is no printer driver to print to LightScribe.

LG Burning Tool (a.k.a Cyberlink Power2Go) - "Create discs by burning photo, music, and data files quickly and easily."

PowerBackup 2.5 - "Protect your valuable data by archiving files to your PC or a disc. Restore your data quickly and easily." Don't think I'll be using this; I have my own ways of backing up.

YouCam 2.0 - "A creative little program that provides you with some fun and interesting effects and add-ons for your webcam." Wonder what this has to do with a DVD burner though? They didn't include the webcam in the box.

LG F/W Update - "Download / update the latest drive firmware." If there is any.

USBFast - "in order to improve the writing performance with USB connection, please install USBFast program." I really hope I don't need to use this, because it sounds like a hack. USB is what it is, and should be fast enough for a DVD writer if it has adequate buffer memory. So far I have not used it and not had problems.

WARRANTY? WHAT WARRANTY?

It isn't at all clear that this product has any warranty at all. Check what DBROTH (the seller says) on their return and exchanges page: "The following items are not allowed for return/exchange under any circumstances if opened: [snip] Warranties" I suspect the best you can get is a 30-day return through Amazon.

WHAT YOU GET

The burner itself, which seems to be of decent quality. The power supply, 12 volts, 3 amps, which seems reasonably beefy for a unit like this. A USB cable of reasonable quality, though if your drive gets flakey, that would be the first thing I would try replacing. The software disc, and the printed instructions. All of this comes in a generic white box with a sticker with the model number on it.

SO HOW DOES IT WORK?

Once I figured out the trick with the power supply, I plugged it in, plugged in the USB, and it was pretty much plug and play with my Windows 7 laptop. Windows 7 installed whatever drivers were needed, and I was able to install the software on the included disk.

I made an ISO file, right clicked on it, and Cyberlink Power2Go (a.k.a. LG Burning Tool) was an available burner, so I tried it, it worked just fine. It correctly detected the 4x DVD+R disc in the drive. At 4x, the drive was nearly silent. All the discs I have made so far work just fine, and that without the USB speedup program running. However, I do not have the full range of discs that it supports. However, I WILL update this review as I try other discs.

An audio CD I made some time ago, which was a full 80 minutes long, ripped at the beginning at 50-10x (every drive starts slow), and reached top speeds of 41x, the fastest of any drive I have seen.

BOTTOM LINE

When you weigh the price against what you do and do not get, I would give this about 3 and 1/2 stars. The biggest concern to me is no meaningful warranty. A big concern to Mac folks is no software support. If I was a Mac user and had to buy my own burner software, especially if I could not find LightScribe support, I'd give it 3 stars.

As a Win7 user, I'll be optimistic and assume it will last for a few years, and round it up to four stars, meaning "I like it". Generally I find that computer hardware that is treated well and was not bought too cheaply from an unknown vendor does tend to last a few years, other reviews here not withstanding.

I always update reviews when something changes - something fails, or I discover something good that I didn't notice at first. If you don't see a prominent UPDATE, that means it is still working for me.

UPDATE 1/2/2013: This unit is still working flawlessly for me.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on January 19, 2012
Verified Purchase
The good news: does a great job burning audio CD's and the lightscribe feature creates an amazing looking disc. In addition, although it is listed as a 20X speed, I received a 24X speed model.

The bad news: the drive has caused the Windows 7 start-up process on my new HP PC to slow from less than a minute to almost 10 minutes. As long as I remember to disconnect the USB cable after use or before restarting the computer, all is well. Need to check the driver and possibly re-install the related software to see if I can end the problem and leave the device connected at all times.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on December 23, 2011
Verified Purchase
It is so nice to have something that works very well and quickly. I had no idea how fast data can be transferred until I used this. Easy set up, easy to use...love the thing. Haven't tried the light scribe yet but that tends to be notoriously slow and I doubt that time will be significantly reduced.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on May 17, 2012
Verified Purchase
I REALLY LIKE MY LIGHTSCRIBE DRIVE, AND SUPER SPEED READER. It is external drive, and uses USB Cable. It reads at 24X DVD, OR 48X CD. It is a READER AND A WRITER WITH SILENT PLAY. I really like this alot And when you use the LIGHSCRIBE DRIVE it prints very darke. When you use the LIGHTSCRIBE DRIVE, you have to use lightscribe discs too, DVD OR CD'S. You can even use color lightscribe discs. Makes it more interesting, by the way this is a LG, THAT MEANS, (LIFES GOOD).You will really like the features that this unit has. The drawer, when you push the button comes and you don't even hear it. OUT OR IN.

I HIGHLY RECCOMMEND THIS UNIT AND GAVE IT 5 STARS.

Jim in Ohio

.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on July 23, 2012
Verified Purchase
The drive seems to do exactly what it claims. It writes Lightscribe labels on Lightscribe CDs in about 3 minutes. I have nothing to compare to, but that seems acceptable. It burns full 75-80-minute CDs in about two minutes. It is quiet and seems reliable. I have made only about a dozen CS so far, so time will tell about the reliability. It seems to be a great value for the price, and I am very happy with it so far.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Verified Purchase
I really wanted an external DVD burner with Firewire. But they aren't making those. I am happy with the USB 2 speed although it is nowhere close to Firewire. One great thing is that it is quiet. My other DVD burners sound like a helicopter revving up to lift off. I was concerned with the negative reviews saying that theirs died after a few burns. I've done 30 discs and so far the drive is working perfectly.

Update: I have stored this burner away and am now continuing to burn more DVDs all day long on a 2nd one of these I purchased once I was convinced that the first one was going to perform as expected. So far this drive is working perfectly on CDs, DVDs, and dual layer DVDs.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on May 18, 2012
Verified Purchase
I bought as an external drive for my new mac mini w/Lion on it. It drives me crazy! I have to plug it in an unplug a million times before the computer recognizes it. Then it says the disk isn't blank, so I put it in my macbook pro and it burns fine. Its the same trying to light scribe an image on the disk. Very, very frustrating and with a business, I don't have time to wonder if it will work today or not. It's off to buy something else! I guess you get what you pay for!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 17, 2012
Verified Purchase
As of the date of this review I have burned well over 200 Lightscribe discs without even one failure or bad disc. I have tried Verbatim DVD-R, Philips DVD-R, HP DVD+R and HP DVD-R. This unit takes from 20 to 25 minutes to burn a Lightscribe disc; but one burn is as dark as what my previous burner would take two 25 minute burns to accomplish.

The unit is portable in the since that it can be picked up and carried. However it is not portable in the since that you can put it into your laptop or notebook case and travel with it. It is bulky and heavy. These drawbacks do however work in its favor if you wish to add a Lightscribe disc drive to your desktop. It sits nicely on top of a standard size tower and the unit's weight works in it not moving around. Another plus is that the software that comes with the unit was easily installed and the Lightscribe portion of the software has many variations of size, placement of titles, sub-titles and the addition of a picture if you wish.

One problem that I did encountered is that I have a Canon scanner that I use in conjunction with Picasa Pictures. When I open that program this unit wants to dominate even when I select "scanner" from the Picasa dropdown list. I solved that problem by simply unplugging USB connection from the LG drive. When I plug the unit back in it readily comes back on line and is ready for use. Other than that I have had no issues with this drive and I'm very pleased with its price, software and quality of the product produced.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 30, 2012
Verified Purchase
One of the things you realize when you purchase any PC as is, with all the optional extras, such as the following...

-CD/DVD ROM
-Multiple USB ports
-Floppy Drive (Although most PC's don't have these anymore)
-600 Gig Hard Drive
-4 Gigs RAM
-3 Ghz Processor
-Ethernet Connection

you then realize that sometimes, not long after you purchase your PC, you notice odd problems with certain devices, such as a CD/DVD drive starting to lose it's ability to function, or even read errors of all kinds. After a while, you can't help but consider what to do that is low cost and easy to fix. Well, this situation happened to me. My internal CD/DVD drive went out, not too long after I bought a new desktop PC, and needless to say, was not happy. After doing some browsing, I came upon this device. The price was right and seem like a good idea at the time. When I finally got it and started using it, I was really surprised. Very good burn speeds, reads CD's/DVD's flawlessly, the device is very nice and sturdy, and being that it's USB, works with any device that can support USB. Only down side is that you will have to add another outlet to the device, as it requires power from an A/C adaptor. The device also comes with drivers as well as a simple CD/DVD burning software. My personal opinion, buy it new. The price is perfect as a new device and I have not had a problem with it in the last 2 months I have had it. One other thing to note, I have not experienced overheating with this device, so that should be something to consider for you. They also did a great job with the packaging so I was very impressed with the service and I got it within about 10 days of purchase. Mind you of course, this is only my opinion, everyone else's experience might be the same, or could be different.

Hope this review helps you decide. ^_^
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 27, 2012
Verified Purchase
This LG burner worked to make recovery disc for my Sony Vaio plus I used it to make custom CD mixes
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