Does doing anything except burning decrease DVD quality?

Hi. :slight_smile:
The title pretty much says it:
If I do anything like reading office files, watching movies,or playing old games like Quake III Arena when my computer is burning a DVD, does the disk quality gets worse or is there any special defect that is being caused by doing so?
Thanks in advance professional fellas.

Most CPU intensive tasks will affect it in some way, varies program to program. I wouldn’t recommend using Photoshop for instance. Watching DVD movies will probably end up in a I/O error. Gaming isn’t recommended since it is CPU dependent.

Thanks, But is this effect serious and intensive or it’s minor? Can we ignore it? How much percent does it reduce the quality score (Nero CD-DVD Speed)?
Is there any test which shows the effect of running other programs in the forums?

forget about the percents the numbers thats what really counts… , if you have a burner that can reliably do quality scanning then you might wanna try burnning the same iso image file or just same files twice , one time when nothing else is on , and another when your gaming or whatever and when all done just do some scanning and compare , anyway if you wanna have the best writing quality just dont do anything while its burnning (except for maybe surfin sites or playing music) , just think what exactly happens when you burn something , its being read from the hard drive and written to the media , most if not all games have huge files and imagine how much times it takes to the game to fully load em… and with burnning at same time it defintly might cause the burn to fail or to somewhat reduce the writing quality , ram usage might be another thing to hurt the burn process theres alot of heavy games … just imagine the burnning software trying to keep it together and then it doesnt have enough ram to work right… or if you dont have much ram and the burnning software & the game uses the pagefile at same time… , high cpu usage could also be another it could make the burnning software to temporarly stop writing to the media few times til the burn will fail… , so overall just dont do it

My big problem is that it’s been days that I’m burning a lot of DVDs and I couldn’t do anything with my pc while doing that and I was getting really tired.
If listening to music or surfing internet doesn’t hurt anything, then the problem would be gone.
I guess I shouldn’t be worried about listening music or using opera when burning. Right?

I listen to music or browse CDF occasionally whilst I’m burning, hasn’t caused a problem. :slight_smile:

Thank you all guys.
I think I have my answer. If anybody knows anything else about it or has any other suggestion which is amusing but doesn’t hurt burning quality I would be grateful to know about it. :slight_smile:

I just did a little test of my own, and it proved what I really thought all along - burning is not a cpu intensive task. :disagree:

The rig my experiment was conducted on: An AMD 3800+X2 @ 2.25ghz dual core rig, 1GB of generic Nanya RAM (PC3200), a Pioneer 111L, Benq DW1655. The kicker - running a CPU and RAM intensive application - the Folding@home SMP client which runs both CPU cores at 100% usage and ~ 250MBs of RAM.

Used the Pioneer 111L as the burner, and it’s only subpar as a burner by my standards (I think this is actually the best burn I’ve gotten with it). Benq DW1655 as the scanning and TRT drive since the Pioneer is not an accurate scanning drive.

Results: An A+ scan and transfer rate test. Note the 100% cpu average usage in the burn graph, smooth jitter in the quality scan, and perfect read curve in the TRT. Both the scan and TRT were ran with the F@H SMP client running full bore as well.

There isn’t a simple yes or no answer to your question. Your DVD writer needs to be fed with a steady stream of data to burn to the DVD. Ideally, the source of the data should be faster than the DVD burning rate so that the DVD writers buffer is always full or almost full. If you are running a program that makes intensive use of your CPU or uses a lot of disc I/O, you can easily get into a situation where the flow of data to the DVD writer falls below the burning rate. If this interruption is longer than a few hundred ms, the drive’s buffer will run out of data and DVD burning will have to stop. This is called a 'buffer underrun". Back in the bad old days, a buffer underrun would result in a wasted disc or ‘coaster’. Modern drives have buffer underrun protection so that they can recover from this situation.

Drives with buffer underrun protection can suspend the burning process and wait for the drive buffer to catch up. Once the buffer is full again, burning can resume as normal. A small number of underruns shouldn’t cause too much degradation of the burn quality. A large number of buffer underruns is likely to cause severe problems.

It is best to avoid running CPU or I/O intensive programs while you are burning a DVD. Audio or video encoding (MP3/MPEG etc), action games, DVD playing or copying large files can lead to problems.

If you have a reasonably fast PC, you don’t need to keep your hands in your pockets while the disc is burning, but you should avoid doing anything that is like to cause problems. Reading messages on CDFreaks, composing or reading e-mail and similar tasks shouldn’t interfere with your burns.

The biggest place you can run into problems is with your hard drive and it providing data fast enough. You can do a simulated burn and test the speed of your hard drive (without wasting any disks as it is a simulation). You might want to try a simulation while doing some of these other things. you need about 22MBps minimum for 16x burning, but if you are not resonably higher than that I might get worried.

There is no degradation, You either can do it or have a failed burn.

:cool: :cool:

When you are ripping often your CPU usage is almost %90 (at least mine is), but when you are burning the usage drop to %5-%10, therefore I see no harm to your quality of your burning process if you choose to do a light work with your remaining CPU power.

Why don’t you just get a second computer?

You don’t need that much of a machine to do burning. A modest PIII system will do and won’t cost you much.

Then you can do whatever you like on your current machine. :slight_smile:

My notebook is way faster than my desktops so I often transcode on this machine but generate an image file, then burn the image file on the desktops. It depends on what I want to do on the notebook.

If your machine has lots of RAM and a very fast processor you can definitely multitask to some degree, but I’d keep it to web surfing and doing productivity software (e.g. word processing). The more buffer underruns you have during the burn, the lower your burn quality.

This is a very bold statement, and if right, it’s very important to me.
How do you know it? Can you prove it? Are you sure this is right?
If yes, this means to me that I can do anything while burning, cause I’ve done lots of things while burning before, and I’ve never encountered a failed burn. :bigsmile:

See post #8. :iagree:

Yes, you’re right.
This test is a good reason to platinumsword’s idea.
Sorry I didn’t notice the heavy program that you used while burning the first time I read your post.
Thanks for taking time and doing that test, I think the results of the test puts an end to my question in the best possible way. :slight_smile: :iagree: :flower:

I still would not recommend doing anything that requires access to another cd/dvd drive, more than likely it would result in a I/O error and a failed burn. Anything on your hard drive should be safe though. :slight_smile:

I think that your test shows that burning is not cpu intensive. Hard drive throughput can effect it though. I have actually gotten 3 burners to burn at 16x from one hard drive though (just experimenting). What was even more surprising was that none of the burns failed and all the disks played. If I recall right, the longest one took about 45 minutes though (for a 16x burn). I guess it depends on how well your drive can maintain quality after slowing down and or pausing the burn, but I got the impression that error levels were higher. Of course that was a while ago so unfortunately I cannot remember exactly how much worse they were. I would think something similar would happen if you had something else using to much hard drive bandwith and the buffer ran out.