This post (April 4th, 2010) in the Dell Community Forums pins it down to a bad firmware.
I’ve had the above problem for several months and the only way it seemed to go away was to disable the cd player. Finally, I think I figured out what was wrong–I had flashed the burner with the latest firmware-ver 07-and I had nothing but stuttering since-I tried all the other recs-reinstall IDE controllers, make sure things are DMA, renistall sound drivers etc, even completely overhauling the OS but no go. So for those in same boat, here’s a definite way I fixed it:
1. keep a cd in the drive at all times or
2. upgrade the firmware w/ samsung (which is the maker of the burner) firmware:
dl this: http://www.samsungodd.com/eng/Information/Application/Application.asp (which is the firmware upgrade app)
then this firmware (it’s in Korean, just choose the TG00): http://www.samsungodd.com/kor/firmware/fwdownload/
then run the app w/ -nocheck option to disable the “not compatible” message and flash away.
When you’re done, you should have full functioning cd rom/burner w/o the stuttering/choppiness. If you crossflash, you’ll prolly invalidate your cdrom warrenty, but dell 07 firmware breaks your system anyways, so pick your poison…
You can download the firmware from Samsung ODD directly.