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CD and DVD Media II

FAQ


CD & DVD Media

I heard that Dual Layer Rs are not compatible worldwide, but ROMs are. What's your take on this?
Dual Layers have actually been pretty compatible from what I have seen, even in some older players. The Dual Layer aspect has been part of the DVD+R standard since the beginning, so the playability should be equal.

Any compatibility issues would be equal to the issues you see with single layer DVD recordable, so to answer your question: it would only make sense if they were comparing ROM to Recordables in a classic sense.

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What is the difference between Archive Gold MAM-A CD-R and Standard Gold MAM-A CD-R?
MAM-A's Archive grade product is product that has been pulled from the highest yield points of MAM-A's disc product. Certain points in a CD-R production run offer the highest quality product. MAM-A isolates product from that point and designates it as "Archive' grade. According to MAM-A's website: "They are both produced on the same production lines, but the Archive gold is the 'cream of the crop.' We always sample from production to test quality, and sometimes the quality is exceptionally high (of course it's always within our specifications). At these times we pull the gold product, sampling it at a high frequency to ensure it's consistent high quality. This is what becomes Archive gold."

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What does "unbranded" mean?
When Media Supply calls a product unbranded, it means the disc has no manufacturer markings on the CD surface. Media Supply provides discs that can be printed or labeled by our clients for their own purposes, so selling discs that have the manufacturers name on them would only get in the way of our client's artwork.

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I ordered your product: Verbatim CD-R 80MIN 700MB 52X LightScribe. I expected the high quality that the Verbatim brand was known for. Upon further inspection, I found these to be manufactured by the dreaded CMC Magnetics company, known to be a grossly inferior and deeply flawed manufacturer. What's the story?
With regard to the Verbatim, I'm afraid finding name brands made by companies like CMC, Ritek and Prodisc has become the norm. Companies like Verbatim, Maxell, Memorex, Fuji and TDK all have to have these products made outside of Japan to meet their cost requirements. Unlike Maxell, Memorex and TDK who don't show much difference between their product and product sold by Ritek, Prodisc and CMC, Verbatim and Fuji do come up with a much higher grade of product. Verbatim's process works like this: When they introduce a new product it is made at thier Mitsubishi Chemical plant in Japan, until they can qualify one of thier partnering plants to make the product to thier specification. Once they havequalified a plant, Mitsubishi engineers go to that plant and work with them to build product to Verbatim specs. Currently Verbatim makes producs at plants in China, Singapore (CMC), Mexico and India. I heard the stories of Verbatim engineers going to these plants and how the product was made on "dedicated" Verbatim lines at the CMC plant, and thought they were a joke. But recently I heard of a plant tour in India by another manufacturer, and sure enough, there was a big section of the plant with a Verbatim sign hanging over it where no vistors were allowed to access. I still don't buy it when Fuji and Maxell tell me that, but now I know Verbatim is telling the truth. So, in a nutshell, Verbatim does have product made at the CMC plant, and the product does say CMC on the CD Identifier, but that product is actually very good. The CMC plant has long been one of Verbatim's manufacturing partners, and has made some great product for them.

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Do I need a special adapter when burning or reading a mini or business card CD
No. Both sizes fit in the 8cm groove of the CD drawer.

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How long will my CD-R last?
That depends on what CD-R you use and how you take care of it. MAM-A/Mitsui CD-Rs use their own phythalocyanine dye, which they developed and have exclusive right to. Because of their dye material's strengths and goldís resistance to oxidation, MAM-A/Mitsui gold CD-Rs feature a shelf life of 250 years, a fact that makes them archival standard. These discs have a gold reflective layer in place of standard silver reflective layer. MAM-A/Mitsui silver CD-Rs have a shelf life of 100 years, still pretty nice. Cyanine dye (green bottom) CD-Rs have a shelf life of 30 to 100 years, but the bigger issue with Cyanine CD-Rs is the way they are impacted by light. Leave a Cyanine CD-R on the seat of your car, and you'll lose the content quickly. Leave a Phthalocyanine dye (clear or gold bottom)MAM-A/Mitsui CD-R in the same place and you'll find it much less susceptible to the light. Of course not all phthalocyanine are created equal, so what applies to MAM-A/Mitsui disc may not apply to a low price phthalocyanine disc. Any CD-R you use should be kept away from direct sunlight just to be safe.

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What is the difference between the higher grade media (Verbatim, Taiyo Yuden and MAM-A) and generic media (less expensive brands)?
Differences between CD-Rs & DVD-Rs are largely based on consistency and yields. Verbatim, Taiyo Yuden and other higher grade discs build to the center of the standards established by Orange Book, the "rules" for making discs. Lower quality discs are produced to the inner limits of these standards to save money on raw materials and production time. Higher grade discs are made with much higher yields, meaning they don't have a lot of bad discs as part of the total production. Lower grade media manufacturers are forced to incorporate failed media into their outgoing product in order to keep costs low. What difference does this make? Higher-grade product will be consistent from box to box and from pallet to pallet. It will work better with all recorders and readers in the field and will provide better video & audio performance by maintaining reflectivity standards in production.

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I just bought 500 inkjet printable DVDs, Ritek 8x, for price much lower than the DVDs on your site. It appears to me that you're way over the market.
I appreciate the feedback on our pricing, as it helps us stay on top of where the market is. I also wanted to make it clear that while there is a significant price difference in these products, there is also a significant difference in the products themselves.

Differences between DVD-Rs are largely based on consistency and yields. Taiyo Yuden and other higher grade DVD-Rs build to the center of the standards, or "rules" for making DVD-R. Lower quality DVD-Rs are produced to the inner limits of these standards to save money on raw materials and production time. Higher grade DVD-Rs are made with much higher yields, meaning they don't have a lot of bad DVD-Rs as part of the total production. Lower grade media manufacturers are forced to incorporate failed media into their outgoing product in order to keep costs low. What difference does this make? Higher grade product will be consistent from box to box and from pallet to pallet, will work better with all recorders and readers in the field, and will provide better video performance by maintaining reflectivity standards in production.

The Taiyo Yuden disc is a professional grade product that is designed to work with high-end video and data recording, unlike the Ritek which is manufactured for the mass market. It's tough to explain a price difference like this if the Ritek, Prodisc or CMC user (marketed as Memorex, Maxell or store brands) has been purchasing has never let them down. But our core business is DVD and CD sales to pro-audio houses, video production facilities and fulfillment houses, and these customers prefer the higher quality media we offer.


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What is the warranty on your inexpensive media?
Every piece of blank media we sell comes with a limited lifetime warranty.

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How can I label my DVD-R or CD-R?
There are now many ways of labeling a disc.

One is using a
paper label, which can make for colorful and crisp artwork, but is not recommended for archiving. The heat from your disc drive may cause the paper label to pull away from the disc taking the reflective layer (the layer that stores your information) with it. When a paper label pull away from a disc due to heat, the disc may get stuck in your slot load player. Also, paper labels, if not applied properly, can make for an ugly disc.

Inkjet printing directly on the disc surface is another way of labeling your disc. It requires a special inkjet surface media. Inkjet is colorful, but slow and subject to the quality of the disc print surface. New surfaces like the Taiyo Yuden Watershield make for just beautiful discs, taking advantage of the water proof & glossy surface. 4800 dpi inkjet printers can really make for great looking discs. A thermal printing solution such as the Rimage Prism is more cost effective and permanent than inkjet, but the equipment is more expensive. The Prism yields a crisp monochrome image. Color ribbon options are available, but we donít recommend them unless you are doing a simple color logo or text.

Thermal Retransfer printers, like the Rimage Everest and Teac P55 deliver durable, colorful and attractive disc labels. There cost per print is equal to an inkjet, the printing time is slightly faster and the print has no issues with smudging. The printers are expensive, but we find when an customer sees their disc printed on a Rimage Everest they very rarely go back to inkjet. The quality is equal to offset printing.

Silkscreening is the print type you see when you rent a disc from the movie store, buy and audio disc or buy a video game. The surface is very colorful and durable, but the resolution isnít the highest. Many of our clients combine silkscreen with thermal printing to give a custom look to quality artwork on a disc. The Rimage Prism autoprinter is designed for this type of customization. Many disc replicators now have offset printing, with print quality close to the Rimage Everest, but with much larger volume capacity. These are great looking discs and in many cases can be printed with unique data on each disc, as they are not screened but printed in retransfer process.


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How long does it take to burn a DVD?
Any copy speed depends on the amount of data on your DVD, but if the disc is full, generally a 4x DVD takes 15 minutes, 8x takes 10-12 minutes, and 16x takes about 7-8 minutes. Copy speeds can also be affected by marginal disc quality and the system you are recording on. Also note that disc-to-disc recording can reduce copy speeds as well. Media Supply recommends recording right from your Hard Drive.


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What is the difference between DVD-R and DVD+R?
Here is the scoop on the difference between DVD-R and DVD+R: The two recordable format families (DVD-R/RW and DVD+R/RW) are essentially in competition with each other, but there is little compatibility difference between the -R and +R formats. DVD-R is promoted by Pioneer, and is the default drive in software/video copying and distribution. DVD+R is promoted by Sony and Phillips and is focused more on the home recorder/enduser market. As the market moves forward the formats are becoming more compatible. A recorder with DVD Forumís DVD Multi can record -R, -RW and -RAM discs. Super Combo drives can record in both +R and -R formats. There are a few "super multi" drives can record all 5 disc types (DVD-R, DVD-RW, DVD+R, DVD+RW, and DVD-RAM).

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I want to copy some of my mp3 albums and I need cd-r's that are 120 minute, do they make these? Or can I just use a dvd-r that is 2 hours long will it work the same? Any help or advice is appreciated here thx.
Thanks for your email. Media Supply does not carry CD-Rs greater than 80 minute. There are some 90 & 99 minute discs out there, but we don't recommend them, as their quality is normally poor, and there can be issues in recording to them with your normal drive & software.
You can certainly use a DVD-R, but your playback may be limited to your PC, as there are not many MP3/CD players that also have DVD playback. Some DVD players may have MP3 playback, but I'm not sure if all of them would play the MP3s back from a DVD disc. Its really going to be something you'll need to experiment with on your home set-top DVD player. (If audio system playback is important to you.)

Have a great day!

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Is it safe to use a CD marker pen on my discs?
As long as you use a water-based, felt-tip, CD marker, you should have no problem writing to the surface of your disc. Media Supply does not recommend using Sharpies, or any permanent marker for writing on discs, as the dye is not water-based. Sanford, the maker of the Sharpie pen, claim they have not seen nor heard of any problems resulting from the use of their pen on CD. Based on the information we have about the manufacturing an make-up of CD-Recordable and DVD Recordable, the use of a solvent based marker on a lacquer disc surface coat is not a great combination. Not all lacquer surfaces are created equal, and less expensive discs may have very light coatings, where the solvent can break-down the surface. If you must use a marker on a disc, please don't use it on any disc you plan on archiving, and please limit your writing area to the center hub, which is doesn't have a reflective surface. In order to be fair, here is how Sanford, the maker of the Sharpie pen address this issue: "Sanford has used SHARPIE markers on CDs for years and we have never experienced a problem. We do not believe that the SHARPIE ink can affect these CDs, however we have not performed any long-term laboratory testing to verify this. We have spoken to many major CD manufacturers about this issue. They use the SHARPIE markers on CDs internally as well, and do not believe that the SHARPIE ink will cause any harm to their products." Another more detailed take on this issue is available at Dr. Jerry Hartke's Media Science website

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If you don't recommend using a pen or a paper label to label discs intended for archiving, then what should I use?
My first recommendation would be to identify your disc by using a water based pen, but writing a disc number or date code in the center hub of the disc. Then tie whatever code you come up with to an insert or label in the packaging you use to store the disc. For example, if an audio master is being archived, come up with a code that represents the date or product, and use that as a reference number. Then tie that reference number to a jewel case insert, or a label on a C Shell. (We don't recommend sleeves for long term storage.) This will keep your disc surface clean, and will tie your disc to more detailed packaging.

My second would be to use an inkjet printer, using the extra printable surface layer as a extra barrier of protection for the disc. These inkjet printers use water based inks, and will give you the opportunity to put detailed print on the disc. (Thermal printing may be too expensive from the equipment perspective when dealing with small quantities of unique discs.)

My third would be writing to the disc surface using a WATER based pen.The water based ink will not break down the surface of the disc. I would still reference the content on the packaging you use to play it safe, as I have some concern with water based inks fading over time, leaving the hand-written data hard to readback over time. Finally, just a reminder with regard to media, at this point, definitely go with the MAM-A gold CD-Rs or Vebatim gold DVDs. The MAM-A has a Diamond-Coat" finish that helps protect the disc from scratches, fingerprints, and any solvent based pen inks. The dye material has a shelf life of 300 years, and the gold reflective layer will not oxidize over time like a silver reflective layer would. Verbatimís new gold DVD has been excellent, and it features Verbatimís own long-life reflective layer, quality dyes and high-performance disc bonding agent.If you need some samples to evaluate let me know.

Whatever you do, don't go with paper labels.


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What's the difference between the Mitsui (higher grade) and generic media (less expensive version)?
Differences between CD-Rs are largely based on consistency and yields. Mitsui and other higher grade CD-Rs build to the center of the standards established by Orange Book, the "rules" for making CD-R. Lower quality CD-Rs are produced to the inner limits of these standards to save money on raw materials and production time. Higher grade CD-Rs are made with much higher yields, meaning they don't have a lot of bad CD-Rs as part of the total production. Lower grade media manufacturers are forced to incorporate failed media into their outgoing product in order to keep costs low. What difference does this make? Higher grade product will be consistent from box to box and from pallet to pallet, will work better with all recorders and readers in the field, and will provide better audio performance by maintaining reflectivity standards in production.

What is the warranty on your inexpensive media?
Every piece of blank media we sell comes with a limited lifetime warranty.


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What is the difference between DVD-R and DVD+R?
Here is the scoop on the difference between DVD-R and DVD+R: The two recordable format families (DVD-R/RW and DVD+R/RW) are essentially in competition with each other. DVD-R is promoted by Pioneer, and is default drive in software/video copying and distribution. DVD+R is promoted by Sony and Phillips and is focused more on the home recorder/enduser market. The market will determine which of them succeeds or if they end up coexisting or merging.

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I see that Verbatim uses an AZO dye based DVD disc, and this AZO dye has a very long archival life, but I see some other lower priced brands that advertise the same AZO based dye. Can I assume that any AZO based dye is a quality disc?
Though it is important to use AZO dye for high quality DVD discs, applying AZO dye alone is not enough for qualify a media as an “archival” quality media. Here are some aspects that make the Verbatim DVD ideal for archiving beyond the dye:

1. Disc ID
All DVD writers are checking the disc ID (ATIP encoding) for performing optimized recording. Verbatim has worked closely with all of the leading manufactures of DVD-/+ Recorder Drives from the development stage, so all of the major DVD writers recognize the blank recordable disc ATIP ID and then apply an optimized laser power and writing method (writing strategy). If the recorded signal is a very good quality, this helps secure good playback by the most writers, drivers & players. Many Taiwanese manufactures who are making lower grade DVD-/+R product are using AZO dye, but they can not use Verbatim’s proprietary disc ID.

2. Other materials
When an aging test of DVD discs is performed, it is evaluating, not only dye recording layer, but also other parts of the disc (like polycarbonate substrate, disc geometry, and reflectivity) that degrade. Verbatim and their parent company, Mitsubishi Chemical, are developing and selecting materials in terms of this durability aspect. Verbatim can do this because of their abundant chemical engineering resources, years of experience of developing all type of optical discs, along with the fact they manufacture the key materials, like dye, polycarbonate and the production stamper.

3. Production process
When Verbatim makes their runs on their DVD production lines, they must meet a very strict criteria and apply consistent QA procedures. Taiwanese manufacturers will normally build to the least expensive end of the manufacturing standard, resulting in inconsistent product.


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I just ordered and received my Fuji DVDs, however, there are no markings on either the DVD or the packaging. How can I be assured that I actually received the Fuji brand and not some cheap knock off?
On each spindle of Fuji DVD there is a sticker with the Fuji product code, along with a product description and a UPC code. You can do a Google search of that part number to confirm that Fuji makes the product you purchased. The UPC codes can be checked at:
http://www.upcdatabase.com/
Aside from this information, the product you purchased is a bulk package, designed for high speed copying in a production environment. If you choose to purchase a Fuji branded product you will probably see a higher price. The tradeoff for you is the decision as to whether you feel you can trust the vendor you are buying from to supply you the legitimate Fuji product. Misrepresentation doesn't happen very often; Media Supply is an honest and valued reseller of Fuji's, so you can feel comfortable with your decision.Ē
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I recently ordered a bunch of MAM archival CD-R and also archival DVD-R. The CD-Rs have gold writing surfaces whereas the DVD-Rs have a purplish writing side. Is this okay? Please, let me know since I am backing up photographs and company data for long-term storage.
Thanks for your email and for ordering with Media Supply.
The dye materials on CD-R and DVD-R are quite different. While the CD-R dyes can be gold, silver, blue or green, the DVD-R are a very deep purple. The dye is quite different between the two discs, based on the different recording method. So, yes, purple is the color you want on your DVD. The archival life is generated by a combination of the quality MAM-A dye (the purple stuff), the gold refective layer (doesn't oxidize like the silver), and the high quality bonding agent (DVD-Rs are actually two discs bonded together). Hope that answers your questions.


CD and DVD Media II