Lite-On have done an excellent job with their two newest optical burning drives and if you're on the market for a DVD burner, you should definitely have a closer look at the offerings from Lite-On. It's going to be up to you if you want to spend the extra money on buying something that can perform Dual Layer burning but at the moment the media is expensive and hard to find (this holds true in Australia) and the burn time is slow.
The 1213S is a great burner but as you can see when compared to the 8X burn time on the 832S there really isn't too much of a difference. If you're looking for a burner now we would recommend looking at the 12X but if you are thinking about upgrading from your current 8X we wouldn't recommend it as the speed difference really doesn't warrant the purchase. We hope to take a look at Lite-On's brand new 16X DVD burner soon which we would be confident in saying would be worth the jump from your existing 8x or slower burner.
While the media included was only rated for 8X it didn't have any problem burning at 12X which was really good news. It was annoying to find that Lite-On didn't include 12X media specifically but the fact that the 8X media doesn't have any problems was good enough for us. Keep in mind just because our no-name media rated at 8X was able to burn at 12X it does not mean any 8X media you pickup will be able to do the same. Check around first before you buy to be safe.
The 832S is one of the latest burners on the market and has the ability to burn Dual Layer which is great as it almost doubles the amount of data you can store on a single disk to around the 8GB mark. When it comes to backing up DVD movies this is where you are going to see the greatest benefit. Some movies might have 40% or 50% compression on a normal single layer DVD but when writing to a Dual Layer capable disk you can almost get it down to 0% compression. In an environment where you need to backup more then 4GB of data, it can be done cheaper and more reliably then something like a Tape Drive. This is an excellent unit and with the increased data storage on Dual Layer media it adds a number of extra uses which will be well received by all consumers.
Unfortunately the price of Dual Layer media is still expensive. At the time of writing and from a home user perspective, it's probably not the best option at the moment unless you are looking at buying a DVD burner for the first time. And not to forget one of Lite-On's classical features, a quick search at some of our favorite retailers shows us both burners are a good deal cheaper than their nearest competitors.
- Package has all you need to get started
- Dual Layer compatible (832S)
- 12X Burning (1213S)
- Competitively priced (no fuss)
- Typical good Lite-On quality and reliability
- Dual Layer burning is still quite slow 2.4X (832S)
- No included Dual Layer Media (832S)
- 12X media is hard to come by (1213S)
Combined Rating - 9 out of 10 and TweakTown's "MUST HAVE" Best Value Award
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