AFAIK there are currently two Artec DVD-ROM drives, the DHI-G40, and the DHM-G48. The DHM-G48 is based on a mediatek chipset so it works with mtkflash, I'd buy no other type of drive... Though both drives read DVD's at 16x, the DHI-G40 reads CD's at a maximum of 40x while the DHM-G48 reads at a max of 48x. Both drives are detected simply as "IDE DVD-ROM 16X".
I have the DHM-G48 and so far it is a great drive. I have no problems watching movies or playing CD-R or CD-RW discs. I'm not sure how it reads DVD-R/RW or DVD+R/RW since I've never tried it.
If you're concerned about making the drive region free, the DHI-G40 has three different hardware revisions out signified by having either a 1.XX, 2.XX, 3.XX firmware version, flashing can be kind of confusing if you don't read up a lot. The DHM-G48 has a nice trick where if you hold the Play button for three seconds any time the drive has power, the region counter is reset back to 5 changes. It is also fairly easy to flash the DHM-G48 with a patched firmware, but I recommend just resetting the counter whenever you need to.