Slowly but steadily, the switch to SATA optical drives, especially for DVD writers, is gathering momentum. Just a couple of months ago, we had our first taste of a SATA DVD writer from ASUS and while there wasn't anything particularly outstanding about the hardware besides the newer interface, we were nevertheless pleased at the prospects of finally being able to ditch the chunky grey IDE cable, not to mention the eventual removal of the IDE controller on motherboards.
LG is the next manufacturer to have offered us a SATA DVD writer for review with the LG GSA-H62N. This is an optical drive rated at 18x write speed for DVD-/+R media, the new 'gold' standard for speedy DVD writers. Whether consumers actually require these speeds is a valid question, though the more pertinent one would be the availability of certified 18x media. Only the single DVD media (Verbatim) included with the ASUS retail unit tested previously could be burned at 18x but hopefully, we may have better luck with the LG drive.
LG however followed the footsteps of Plextor and Pioneer by going further and making the GSA-H62N capable of burning selected dual layer DVD media at 10x, a slight increase over the existing 8x speeds commonly associated with this format. For a dual layer disc, that would mean shaving up to a couple of minutes, which should be more tangible than the seconds that one would save going from a 16x write speed (for single layer DVD media) to 18x. But enough of the speculations, let's see how this Super Multi DVD Rewriter performs firsthand: