Lite-On has made a small step forward however, with the introduction of their iHAS524 DVD Writer which not only features the fastest speeds of any device on the market, but incorporates their new LabelTag technology. The drive offers speeds of 24x for DVD+R/-R, 12x for DVD-RAM, DVD+R/-R DL, 8x for DVD+RW and 6x for DVD-RW. It also includes a 2MB cache and Lite-On’s SmartErase feature.
Unlike Lightscribe, which requires specialized disks to laser etch an image onto the non-data (top) of the media, LabelTag can use any regular DVD as it applies the label to the data-side of the media. The tag burns during recording and requires no extra time over the regular burn session. The technology does have a few limitations however, the tag will eat up the available disc space that it occupies; so when using a label, the capacity of the media will be reduced. Depending on the size, this may between between 10%-20%.
The drive is ready to hit store shelves and will be bundled with a free copy of Nero 8. Reported pricing is 49 EUR ($74USD)