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    Artec 16x DVD

    *Note* Thanks to Directron for providing this product for review; you can buy it here.

    The Artec 16x DVD is a nice DVD-ROM for the money. Many of you may not have heard of the Artec brand, but it is fairly popular (not as popular as Lite-On, granted). So what do you get?

    First, some pictures of the drive itself (sorry for the low-quality)

    Ok, pretty standard stuff. Here's the accessories:

    You get a manual, some screws, audio cable, PowerDVD 3, and silica gel (which was tasty btw). I would have preferred PowerDVD 4, but as long as it works I'm happy.

    Installation was a breeze. Install drive, put in CD, install PowerDVD, download updated version, install, and enjoy. I tried various movies, from Lord of the Rings, to Tomorrow Never Dies, with no problems. I tried the trailers on each movie, as those usually have the most action in the shortest amount of time, with a lot of scene changes (if a drive or player is going to choke, it'll do so here). Didn't have a single problem.

    I figure some peole will want to see what a benchmark says, so I fired up Sisoft Sandra. I'm not sure how it got these low scores (possibly something wrong with Sisoft, had similar low scores with another drive) but here they are so you can compare with what you have.

    Benchmark using DVD disc:

    Benchmark using CD disc:

    While there are better drives out there, I believe this is one of the best ones you can get for your money. Priced under $40 at many places, with no major flaws (PowerDVD 4 still would have been nice), you can't go wrong with this drive.

    Questions? Ask in the forum or email me.

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