CD Shake/Jitter?

Hi everyone. I tried searching for this, but I guess I don’t have the terminology in my head to do so. This is a problem I’ve encountered occasionally for the last few years:

I burn a CD, either on my laptop or desktop. They play fine in the computers and in my car stereo; however, when I attempt to play them on my CD player (an NAD 512), I sometimes encounter an odd phenomenon. They may start fine, but then I hear a “ch-ch-ch” type of sound; the sound is generally very regular in rhythm, and sometimes even sounds like it’s in time with the music! The volume of the sound can also vary. This is sometimes accompanied by an increased rotation sound (maybe it’s the same thing, I don’t know). Sometimes it starts and gets progressively worse, ending in the CD coming to a crashing stop, while sometimes it only affects one or two tracks and plays right through them. It also seems to fade out between tracks, only to begin again with the next track.

The overwheming majority of my homeburn CDs play fine on this player, but I’ve always been puzzled by this infrequent occurrence . Do any of the experts out there have any insight on this? Thanks in advance.

Try burning at 16X or 24X and try a different brand of media.
What program are you using to burn your CDs?

It’s happened with a variety of media and two or three different programs; two different burners as well. I figure that the problem is something to do with the NAD player itself, but I’m not sure what.

Do you mean these as a slower speed or as a faster speed? Nowadays I usually burn at 16X at the most, usually less. But I have recorded at varying speeds in the past.

Interesting! Have you verified that the CD’s are seated in the player?
Some portable CD players (My Memorex for example) have spring loaded balls around the spinlde hub. These are intended to “grip” the disc as an anti jar/shock mechanism. The problem you pose could be that the disc does not get properly seated. Try pressing the disc firmly on the hub to see if that will resolve the problem.

mipoch, what was being suggested might be put this way: if you have a 48x-rated CD media, burn the audio tracks at 16x or 24x. There are at least 2 other users here I know of that burn data backups at 32x and audio at 16x with CD media, where it is a 48x-rated media. There’s something to it, as I read something on CDR Labs about it as well, where burning audio CDs that slowly is one way to eliminate skipping on songs during playback.

Hi, thanks for responding. Yup, the discs are absolutely seated correctly. As I said, it’s ONLY on home burns - no commercial discs misbehave in quite this way for me.

Thanks for replying. I understand what you’re saying now. The thing is, I’ve ALWAYS burned at near the slowest speed - it’s a habit developed with my first PC/CD burner back in '99, which was, umm…tempermental. Plus, this sound is not necessarily accomanied by actual [I]skipping[/I]; most of the time it will play straight through the song, just with this additional percussion track added!!

It’s just…[I]really[/I] weird.

Are there any labels/stickers etc that you (or the manufacurer) put on the disc?

I’ve noted this with rented DVD’s. Labels or stickers can throw the disc off balance

Also try burning at maximum speed

I must have misunderstood what you are hearing. A lot of the time people are talking about little pops and clicks that you hear from a poor burn or from extracting digital audio too fast. Most newer drives are able to extract digital audio very well at high speeds.
Is the noise you are hearing coming from the speakers or inside the player?
If it is coming from the speakers I would try using EAC (Exact Audio Copy)To copy CDs. It’s free and works quite well. You can download it here


I heard the same noises when I was experimenting with GigaRec on my Plex 712. Disks burned with a setting of 1.2x had this issue with certain players in the last few tracks. Scans in my BenQ reported very high, 20-25% jitter on these disks (as expected, they are out of spec).

You can also get the same noises if you have a cdplayer which you can touch the disk while its playing. Just don’t look at the laser.