Do DVD+R "wear out" after about 6 months?

I recently bought a dvd rewriter to back up my music collection and have now burned off about 12 discs worth off the stuff. Then today i was talking to a friend about backing up data and mentioned my recent back up frenzy being brought on by a worry that my hard drive might fail soon (it’s been acting up).

Now he told me that he doesn’t trust dvds and that he’ll only back stuff up to external hard drives. I asked why he doesn’t trust them and he said “dvds almost always fail after about 6 months”? I said “do you mean dvd+r or rewriteable dvds? or do you mean the dvd burning drives themselves?” and he said “the dvds themselves, writeable or rewriteable”. i said “but surely a dvd will last for years and years unless they get scratched up, melted or something?” to which he replied (this is the important bit) “writeable dvd discs will almost always fail in about 6 months because the chemicals inside them go off (like food goes off and rots), you lose all data on them and it can’t be recovered. also dvds are extremely bad for scratches, one single tiny scratch and the dvd becomes useless too.”

Now this has me worried a little. First of i should point out this guy is not exactly a computer expert and i’ve heard him say some strange things about other issues (the guy owns an ipod and thinks it the best mp3 player available for instance) so i come here to get advice from real experts. Is what he said accurate? Can i expect my dvds to “go bad” after 6 months and lose all the data on them? if so what is my best bet to back up 60gb of information with out needing to write hundreds of cds off?

Thanks for the help in advance people.

Simple answer no, good quality media lasts longer than 6months.

when you say “last longer than 6 months” does that mean it will eventually die? see i always thought that a written dvd was “solid state” and would pretty much last indefinately, like a normal dvd? will the dvds die eventually then and if so how long can i expect them to last before i should look at making a new copy?

Some inferior disks might become unreadable in a short time if there are many errors on them when burned. Good quality disks should last you for years if they are stored properly. Read some of the threads on the “Blank media” forum.


If you spend some time reading here:

you will find that by using known good quality medias like Taiyo Yuden, Verbatim, Maxell or Sony (Made In Japan is the very best) you will insure yourself years of storage - IF they are properly stored IMO


great that article answered my questions, thanks for the help guys!



As they say “Knowledge Is Power”

Glad that we could be of help-

Welcome to the forums-


It seems like the widespread el-cheapo media that degrades faster than fish in the sun is giving the DVDR technology a bad reputation… partly deserved, actually :frowning:

Most people will only buy the cheapest discs they can find, they will eventually experience coasters and short lifespan, and will blame the whole technology. Only logical. How sad.