Not too bothered with brand, though one which records with a good quality picture at SP is good.
I currently have a LiteOn, which I heard has a bad rep of lasting not long.
Only reason I want rid of it, is due to the fact it wont record NTSC signals, it outputs them but doesnt record, when my Yamada(same brand just different name) I had before that, which died did!
I think its due to setup having a option to change to PAL or NTSC output, thats all I need I think.
80gig hard drive is fine, heck even 40 is, as I plan to record to DVD as soon as possible after I remove adverts and trim start and end so its like a real dvd lol.