4x vs. 8x DVD blanks

What is physically different between an 8x DVD blank vs. 4x DVD blank? I assume an 8x blank will work fine in a max. 4x recorder?

The assumption’s correct. :wink:
It’s even gonna work fine the other way around, i.e. 4x media @8x :

Unique Disc Identifier : [DVD-R:MCC 01RG20 ]
Disc Type : [DVD-R]
Manufacturer ID : [MCC 01RG20 ]
Manufacturer Name : [Mitsubishi Chemical Corp.]
Disc Application Code : [Unrestricted Use : Consumer Purpose]
Recording Speeds : [1x , 2x , 4x] (8x Cannot Be Detected)
Blank Disc Capacity : [2,298,496 Sectors = 4,489.3MB = 4.38GB (4.71GB)]

** INFO : An Empty Writable Disc Is Recommended For Accurate Results
** INFO : Drive = _NEC DVD_RW ND-2500A [FW 1.07]
** INFO : Write Capabilities = DVD+R DVD+R-DL DVD+RW DVD-R DVD-RW
** INFO : Disc = [DVD-R:MCC 01RG20 ]
** INFO : Write Speeds (Supported By This Drive On This Disc) Listed Below

** INFO : GET PERFORMANCE Write Speed Descriptor(s)
Descriptor #1 = 10816 KBPS ( 8.00x) - [CLV/Non-Pure CAV]
Descriptor #2 = 8112 KBPS ( 6.00x) - [CLV/Non-Pure CAV]
Descriptor #3 = 5408 KBPS ( 4.00x) - [CLV/Non-Pure CAV]
Descriptor #4 = 2704 KBPS ( 2.00x) - [CLV/Non-Pure CAV]

** INFO : Format 0Eh - Pre-Recorded Information In Lead-In
0000 : 01 40 c1 fd 9e d8 52 00 02 87 0d 11 66 78 80 00 .@…R…fx…
0010 : 03 4d 43 43 20 30 31 00 04 52 47 32 30 20 20 00 .MCC 01…RG20 .

How, prey tell, does it work the other way around? what’s the trick? I do have an NEC 3500AG w/ 2.17 firmware. (not that i’m skeptical, it’s just i havn’t found the ‘you have to do THIS to it’ post yet).

Yo Mighty Mik-

It’s quite simple-

You open the drive - place it in - close the door and - walla - it burns at the speed that the firmware is set for the media-


I still would like to know what makes a 4x disc, 4x, and what makes an 8x disc, 8x. Understand?


It is the technology improvements driven by consumer demand-

It is in the ability of the lasers to produce a quality burn at a given speed to a specific dye and grooves contained on the disk-

This also applies to the new 16x discs that are coming out-

The 4x discs and the 8x discs are approximately the same price with the 8x tending to be the better quality - especially with the very good media like Taiyo Yuden which will give a high quality burn at speeds in excess of their ratings i.e. TY 8x -R’s burn at 12x in NEC3500’s and the TY 8x +R’s burn at 16x in the 3500-

Hope this helps answer your questions-


What makes a +R a +R? What makes a -R a -R? What makes a -RW a -RW? What makes a +RW a +RW? What makes a -ROM a -ROM?

This is all written into the media it’s self, which your drive’s firmware will read. Along with that is also the manufacter etc. if they aprove the media for 2X, 4X or 8X etc.

Download DVD Identifier and it will show you, I don’t know where this info is written to on DVDs but on CD-R/RW it is the ATIP.

Then why do i see in other forums…‘i took this 4X media, and tried it at 8X, then i tried it at 12X…’? My only choices for G04 are 2X and 4X? How are others getting to burn at 8X?


'Cause - like I said - your FIRMWARE sets the speed of your burner to the speed it thinks it can quality burn at-


I guess you need hacked firmware or burning software that ignores your drives firmware.

I needed newer firmware. Like…REALLY new. :slight_smile: This is confusing to some people like myself because i’m used to using a drive that doesn’t depend on the firmware so much…like my CD burner. I could burn all my old disks all day at 24X, but put them in the new drive, and surprise! they’ll now only write at 16X. The memorex (CMC) media my roommate has is clearly labled ‘48X’, but my drive says they’re only rated at 32X. Now that all the Sept 30th rebates are expired, who has the best buy on disks?

Maybe I’m too dense to understand what you are saying. What is the PHYSICAL difference between a 4x disc and an 8x disc that are created by the same manufacturer? Are they manufactured differently? Does it all boil down to the dye formulation itself? Are those speeds, as marked on the disc itself, meaningless?

You’ll need to do some reseach here, that I have no idea about. I believe it has to do with the dye - however they will be certified at 4X (that they work for 4X) but you can overclock it in a sense and burn at 8X but it is not back up by the manufacture thus you may get errors. I have no idea how to overclock them, I am sure there is a way to do it.

It basically boils down to quality control. A production line must create blanks that work with failure rates below percentage x at speed y for them to be certified at that speed. Improvements in all aspects of the production process can work toward making a better disc: dye formulation, dye spread consistency, groove precision, etc. Think about how Intel and AMD sell processors- aiming for the latest and greatest speed, and selling chips that don’t quite have it in them at lower rated speeds. The difference is that you can’t test a burnable DVD and turn around and sell it, so they have to be confident that very few will fail at the rated speed. I’m not sure, but I suppose that if they test discs from a certain batch, and the results are very bad, they could downgrade the rating for the entire batch and sell them as a lower speed disc. Probably where all the ‘A+’ Ricoh/Ritek talk comes from.

AFAIK, the DVD Alliance and Consortium have some kind of maximum failure rate, but beyond that, it’s up to the scruples of the companies. A lot of people would say that RICOHJPNR01 is rated very conservatively at 4x, and conversely, RITEKR03 is rated very agressively at 8x. Of course, drive manufacturers know this, which is why NEC changed the allowable burning speeds for those discs in the default firmware.

btspm has given you a precise answer and it’s evident he knows.

One thing I might answer is that, no, the speeds marked on the disc are not meaningless. You should get a good burn without coasters at the printed speeds. You may get a good burn a little higher but the number of coasters you’ll get will increase. It boils down to good disc = x speed is ok. Above x speed, no guarantees.

The higher the quality of the disc, the faster you can burn it.