External Blu-ray burners come in all shapes and sizes, but internal drives have no such freedom – they’re constrained by the physical dimensions of a 5.25in drive bay, and all buttons and LEDs must face forward. Such drives are usually differentiated only by their price, performance and audible output.

Plexor’s PX-LB950SA has a similar specification to its rivals. It can write to standard 25GB BD-R discs at 12-speed, to 50GB BD-R DL discs at eight-speed, and BD-RE discs at two-speed.

The Plextor’s blisteringly fast 12-speed write potential is a moot point, since the fastest media available is rated at six-speed. In our testing with TDK media, however, we found the write speed rose steadily as the burn progressed.

Using four-speed TDK media, the Plextor recorded our 21GB of data in a very good 19 mins 50 secs; its result using six-speed Verbatim media was slower, at 22 mins 1 sec.

Verdict: Plextor’s PX-LB950SA is by far one of the fastest internal drives we've tested when using four-speed TDK media, but its lead over its rivals narrows with six-speed Verbatim discs. It’s not especially noisy either, but we were less impressed with its price tag.

Plextor PX-LB950SA: Specs

  • Drive type: internal
  • Connector: SATA
  • BD-ROM (read): 8x
  • 25GB BD-R SL (write): 12x
  • BD-RE (write): 2x
  • 50GB BD-R DL (write): 8x
  • Lightscribe: yes
  • DVD-R (read): 16x
  • DVD-R (write): 16x
  • DVD-R DL (write): 8x
  • DVD-RAM (write): 12x
  • CD-R (write): 48x
  • CD-RW (write): 24x
  • CD-R (read): 48x
  • Burn time (4x media): 19 mins 50 secs
  • Burn time (6x media): 22 mins 01 secs
  • Warranty: 2 years
  • OS compatibility: Windows XP/Vista/7
  • Dimensions: 146x170x41mm
  • Weight: 670g
  • Powered by: internal PSU
  • Drive type: internal
  • Connector: SATA
  • BD-ROM (read): 8x
  • 25GB BD-R SL (write): 12x
  • BD-RE (write): 2x
  • 50GB BD-R DL (write): 8x
  • Lightscribe: yes
  • DVD-R (read): 16x
  • DVD-R (write): 16x
  • DVD-R DL (write): 8x
  • DVD-RAM (write): 12x
  • CD-R (write): 48x
  • CD-RW (write): 24x
  • CD-R (read): 48x
  • Burn time (4x media): 19 mins 50 secs
  • Burn time (6x media): 22 mins 01 secs
  • Warranty: 2 years
  • OS compatibility: Windows XP/Vista/7
  • Dimensions: 146x170x41mm
  • Weight: 670g
  • Powered by: internal PSU

OUR VERDICT

Plextor’s PX-LB950SA is by far one of the fastest internal drives we've tested when using four-speed TDK media, but its lead over its rivals narrows with six-speed Verbatim discs. It’s not especially noisy either, but we were less impressed with its price tag.

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