Grumble Grumble Grumble
Actually, any of the major brands (Sony, Phillips, LG, Samsung, Pioneer) make reliable high speed burners at a very reasonable price. Plextor has the reputation for the highest quality drives, but they are overpriced compared to the rest of the market..
Now if you really want something 'L337', LG has a Blu-Ray/DVD burner with HD-DVD read capability, (but it has a MSRP of $1100!!!). And late this fall, combo DVD burners with Blu-Ray and HD-DVD read ability will be coming out in the $400 price range...
(I just recently replaced my Plextor 8X single layer DVD burner with a LG 18X double layer burner, and the new burner can do a write with verify DVD burn in less time then what the old Plextor would take just to burn...)