Toshiba is one of the better drives. I tried 2 NEC drives, a USDrives, and a Cyberdrive, and they were all really bad - noisy and read problems. I have a Creative now which seems to be pretty good thus far. My friend tried a NEC and a Cyberdrive, and he concurs with me about the poor quality and problems of these drives. You should be able to get a high quality drive for under $100.
I have a Teac that catchs CDs in the tray when closing; I have a Toshiba thats been great. Someone above put down Mitsumi but I got a 32X a couple weeks ago for $39 and its been great- I don't see any advantages in my Toshiba and the Mitsumis are usually cheaper. Maybe it won't last as long but the Misumi seems pretty popular amoung retail PC manufacturers even offering 3 year system warranties.
Mitsumi, Toshiba, Asus, take your pick, if it is over 24X, runs and is inexpensive, then you bought the right one!!! LOL PC Sustem Tech here, have used all 3 makes, do not have a preference, as long as they work. www.bunta.com has some good pricing on CDROMs.
486 CPU/32MB Memory/Windows 3.11(it rocks!) Sigh.........the good ol Days........