DVD Rot, or Not? (PC Magazine Article)

Hi, All!

I just grabbed a PC Magazine issue (June, 22, 2004). There is an article discussing DVD’s anatomy, care and handling, and other aspects of storing DVD. Perhaps, many of you won’t find much new info in the article, but I think it’ll be useful for some people.

Two points in the article caught my attention. I’ll quote.

It’s a good idea to store them vertically in their original packaging whenever possible.
Well, original packaging is a spindle in many cases, so the discs are originally stored horizontally. Any comments on that? I’m also curious how cdfreaks members store recorded DVDs: vertically or horizontally?

Never store DVDs in CD jewel cases, which may apply too much hub stress. DVD-approved jewel cases, designed to reduce hub pressure, can be differentiated from CD versions by an embossed DVD logo on the tray insert.
There’s an explanation on why is that, and it does make sense for me. However, I don’t buy special DVD cases, and store my burnt DVDs in CD cases. Again, I’m curious how many of you use special DVD cases.

Thanks for your attention.

I use actual DVD Cases… Only because they were really cheap… 100 2-Disk DVD Cases were $50 Canadian after shipping and taxes…

I’m curious how many of you use special DVD cases.

Well, I’m fairly new to the whole DVD-burning scene. So far, I’ve used slim cd jewel cases, but just ordered a batch of DVD cases a few days ago. I’m concerned that the DVD dye will get scratched more easily in a cd case, since the bottom of the disk actually makes contact with the case’s plastic surface. Given that DVDs are more prone to scratches than CDs, it seems worth it to buy dvd cases for the added protection.

I found them for a great price HERE with free shipping!

Storing discs vertically, regardless of what is their original casing, is the right thing to do.

Also, spindles are not the best way to store discs (due to abrasion).

You should also avoid excess humidity, excess temps and constant exposure to light and noxious gases (ozone, sulfides, etc).

> It’s a good idea to store them vertically
Definitely. I do so of course. If You don’t then over time they will bend direction earth a little bit. That’s not good for the readability. The same comes for cd-dvd-stickers You put on them. Also printables of course. They also tend to bend the disc over time.

> Never store DVDs in CD jewel cases, which may apply too much hub stress
Well the point here is too much hub stress. I use white slim CD jewel cases, but they don’t put much hub stress on the disc. But I also saw cases that did It were seethrough slim jewelcases and those normal jewelcases that audio-cds usually come in when they come from the shop. You can mostly feel whether it’s too tight, when it is hard to get them out of the case.

> Also, spindles are not the best way to store discs (due to abrasion).
Absolutely. And I don’t think they had spindles in mind when they wrote that article.

>constant exposure to light
Absolutely. I store them in the cupboard. (really dark there)
I know people who store them in the window near the computer. I don’t think this to be a good idea.

Thanks for your input, guys, very interesting.
I’ve examined jewel cases that came with DVD media I purchased. I have Fuji (TY) Made in Japan, and indeed the case is designed for DVDs, according to the logo. I also have TDK (CMC) Made in ?, and the case has no logos at all - the space for the logo is blank. The case itself does look like it is designed for DVDs.

Is anyone keeping track of disk longetevity? I see lots of threads on media quality after a burn at various speeds…but I don’t see any threads talking about how well a disk can be read back 6 months later, 1 year later, 2 years later and so on.

I just found some of my old Prodisc burns from 2 years ago don’t work anymore. They were stored in jewel cases in a dark room. Really sucks…now I’m worried about all my Riteks…if those die after 2 years argh…

Maybe it’s good to tell you my experience. When storing thousands of CDs, I was really out of space, so I ended up keeping them in paper sleeves. I know it’s one of the worst way to save data. But anyway my data were not so precious. As long as the failure rate is reasonably (<1%) low I was happy enough.

About 15 month ago I moved into DVD world. (heck… did I really copy all 2000 CDs to DVDs? No wonder my writer failed after 10 month. :slight_smile: ), I used the cheapest media available, and even though the space problem is gone temporarily I still kept them in paper sleeves, let them stand up vertically in my bookshelf. (Temp, light or moist were not so extreme. But as you guess, absolutely no special care was given.)

So… after 15 month? Practically no DVD disc failed due to timeflow until now. I see a few discs struggling but still readable, but hard to judge if it is due to time because I didn’t even confirm the written data for most discs. Most of you who spend more care for DVDs should have better luck. At least in an order of 1 year period DVD is reliable. Don’t be confused. I’m just saying that it’s good enough for my purpose. You can expect more than 99% of your data is alive… even after handing it without special care. But… even a hard drive can’t guarangee 100% suceess.

I’m still curious about 5 to 10 year stability. From my experience of CDs I expect a good survival rate, but DVD may be more subtle. There could be theoretical expectations but you really can’t know until the year 2010 comes.

Jk, which brand did you use?? Were those all Riteks or something else?

I’m really at a loss as to why more people aren’t collecting data about how long their dvd-r’s have lasted or not lasted. It seems interesting information to me. Unfortunately, I have no friends who like burning dvd’s…well one, but he uses princo and doesn’t even check if they still work. (total slob)

DVDs have been in masses for a relatively short period of time. How do you expect people to post experience about 5-10 year longivity?

Uhm, I don’t. I never said I did!??

I think you read the posts in this thread too fast and blurred them all together…cause I never suggested such a thing.
I at least have dvd’s that I burned 2 years ago…so data from 2 years ago would be great.

Practically “unbranded”. I see codes such as TDK and MXL, but probably they are discs with fake code. I also used some princos. So as I mentioned, “the cheapest media I can find” is the best description. Some of them failed to burn. But most of those who were readable after burning are still readable if not all are.

Now better media came down to a price range good for me, so I’m currently using Ridata -R and Verbatim +R with CMC code. Maybe at my next purchase TY can be affordable, I hope.

No, you didn’t say that. I just took 5-10 years as an example of longivity. The minimum time span, actually. What is longivity then? 2 years is not long enough to make conclusions, IMHO, unless your media has already degraded. I’ve seen a few reports about Princos becoming unreadable in 6-12 months.

Well its nice to know they at least last 2 years :slight_smile:
I mean sure we won’t really know anything till 5-10 years goes by…but by then we’ll all be burning HD DVD-R’s and will just backup it all up to those…don’t ya think?
or maybe not

CDs have been on the market for a relatively long period of time, so I don’t know how long DVDs will last. It’s all OT anyway :wink: