High beta (a+) vs low beta (a-) (TDK and others)

Hi,
First technical post here. Mainly I’m looking for the best threads to help me understand how to address this problem. Thanks in advance.

I do a lot of pro-audio work and am primarily an OpenSource/Linux user. I receive CD-Rs from bands/studios and need to listen to them in numerous environments, one being my car. I typically rip a copy of the CD-R I’m given so as to keep the original safe. Recently I’m having a lot of problems with my ripped copies not playing in my car only. All CD-Rs I make play in every other system I use. (home stereo CD player, home stereo DVDplayer, 5 different PC-driven environments) It’s my opinion that there’s nothing terribly ‘wrong’ with the CD-Rs I’m burning, and there’s nothing terribly wrong with my car’s player, but that probably there’s some degradation somewhere that’s kicked things over the edge. The thing is that EVERY CD-R I’ve received from bands and studios are playing fine, and only about 50% of the ones I burn are in the car.

Using cdrecord and studying the differences between what I’m being given and what I’m burning the most obvious difference I’ve found so far is the medium type sub-category seems to be worse for my blank media, as shown below. All the ones I’m receiving are “Medium Type A, high Beta category (A+) (3)”, all the ones I’m burning are “Medium Type A, low Beta category (A-) (2)”. Note that BOTH of these discs appear to be identical - TDK CD-R80 700MB 80 Min. Up to 52x speed. However cdrecord shows me they are different.

Works:

ATIP info from disk:
Indicated writing power: 5
Disk Is not unrestricted
Disk Is not erasable
Disk sub type: Medium Type A, high Beta category (A+) (3)
ATIP start of lead in: -11634 (97:26/66)
ATIP start of lead out: 359846 (79:59/71)
Disk type: Short strategy type (Phthalocyanine or similar)
Manuf. index: 3
Manufacturer: CMC Magnetics Corporation

Capacity  Blklen/Sparesz.  Format-type  Type
  263932             2048         0x00  Formatted Media

Mounted media class: CD
Mounted media type: CD-R

Does not work:

ATIP info from disk:
Indicated writing power: 4
Disk Is not unrestricted
Disk Is not erasable
Disk sub type: Medium Type A, low Beta category (A-) (2)
ATIP start of lead in: -12508 (97:15/17)
ATIP start of lead out: 359845 (79:59/70)
Disk type: Short strategy type (Phthalocyanine or similar)
Manuf. index: 22
Manufacturer: Ritek Co.

Capacity  Blklen/Sparesz.  Format-type  Type
  263932             2048         0x00  Formatted Media

Mounted media class: CD
Mounted media type: CD-R

I went to Fry’s and purchased 4 different spindles of blank media - different manufacturers, some silver, some black - but they all identify themselves as “Medium Type A, low Beta category (A-) (2)” and they all have problems in my car.

Again, EVERY CD-R I’ve burned works in every other player I have access to including my wife’s car. (Which is newer and supports GPS, etc., and is probably built to read CD-Rs.)

OK, so is there anything I can actually do about this? I find nothing on any of the packaging material that tells me what I’m buying. I’ve read that buying discs that say manufactured in Japan might give better results. I’ve tried numerous write speeds - 8x, 16x, 20x, 32x, 40x and 52x - on all 4 spindles of media and nothing has fixed the problems.

Any ideas? After spending $60 on media that doesn’t work I’m getting to the point where it might just be cheaper to buy a new player for the car! Does it really need to come to this?

Again, if folks have ideas or can at least point me toward the right threads to study I’d really appreciate it. This site is very deep and one hour of searching before I wrote this yielded interesting info but no real answers.

If I need to use Windows software to provide data that others are comfortable commenting on just let me know what software is preferred.

Thanks,
Mark

What model/brand burner are you using?

Have you tried to use a different burner and/or burning app and same thing happens?

Yes one of my suggestions would be use Made in Japan CD-R media but i would think the ones you bought should still play for awhile anyway.

I have tried 5 different burners. The most recent work is from these two Lite-On models:

LITE-ON DVDRW LDW-411S
LITE-ON LTR-48246S

I’ve also tried the following:

NEC DVD_RW ND-2500A

All of the above fail, at least when using any of the media I’ve purchased recently.

I have available but haven’t tested yet:

Matshita DVD-R UJ-845
HL-DT-ST RW/DVD GCC-4482B
LITE-ON LTR-52327S

Not sure if the last one supports writing.

So far the same thing happens using different burning software on my Linux boxes. I haven’t bothered with Windows as I basically don’t trust it enough for my production work, but if I have to use it and can get free software to help with the debug I’m happy to do that. (EAC maybe?)

What is VERY strange to me is I have CDs I burned 6 months ago using these LITE-ON drives, mainly the first one listed, and those CDs still play in my car. It’s only CDs I burn now that fail, but it doesn’t seem to matter which of the drives I burn them in - they all fail. And these CDs that still play are from the same spindles as some of the recent failures so it’s very strange.

Again, if I should be trying some other software then I’m happy to do that.

Thanks.

Try using a can of air with the small straw that comes with them and blowing the inside of your car player out really good and see if that helps.

Sounds like it could be the laser lens is dirty or failing possibly. I’m about out of ideas at this time sorry.

Maybe someone else will have a few ideas for you to try.

OK, I can try that but it means a trip to the store. However I already bought one of those $5 CD cleaning kits - a disk with a little brush that supposedly spins and runs across the top of the laser. It didn’t do anything, but that assumes the little brush actually touches the laser. No way of verifying that, or I don’t have much interest in trying to verify that.

However, even if that was the case, and the problem resides totally in the car, I don’t see logically how it could be that I can take 10 CD-Rs that I burned over the last 3-12 months, using these same burners that are in my desktop machine, and ALL of those 10 CD-Rs play perfectly. However when I place a newly burned CD-R, from either old spindles or new spindles, they fail at a rate of about 50%. Also, the ones that fail ALWAYS fail. The 50% that play ALWAYS play. It’s completely consistent. All of those discs are low beta, A- type discs.

But again, the 50% that fail in the car play perfectly in every other machine I have to play them in. If they have CDDB data then iTunes can rip them, get the song names, etc.

AFAICT EVERY disc is actually ‘good’, in the sense that every tool I have (except the car) tells me they work and can be read error free, at least at lower speeds, and they play in every other player. I don’t suspect my car CD player works at any speed other than 1x, but I don’t know that for sure.

I’m VERY confused! :slight_smile:

Cheers

[QUOTE=MarkKnecht;2289005]I’m VERY confused! :slight_smile:

Cheers[/QUOTE]yeah interesting problem you have here :doh:

Only other thing is does your car player only play certain files. Possibly you can find that info in the manual. Check the discs and see if they are .wav files or .cda files or MP3 files etc…

The discs are all standard CD format discs on CD-R media. Reasonable question but one I answered already.

Can you recommend a good free piece of software for doing duplication on a Windows box?

Thanks.

I use www.imgburn.com and make a .cue file then burn it with ImgBurn. There is a forum there with tutorials. The author is the same man that authored DVD Decrypter but no longer can support it because of legal problems. LUK! is also a member here at CDF’s. I use my old Yamaha CRW-F1 CD-R/W a lot with ImgBurn.

I have a few Plextor CD-RW’s: 2-Premiums and 1-PremiumII and use PlexTools 3.16 which is free now but only works with Plextor drives.

Others here at CDF’s recommend burrrn http://www.burrrn.net/?page_id=6 I used it once but it was a long time ago and it did work ok.

Both are free to use.

If you do find the problem please come back and let us know. I for one would be interested to know what the problem is/was.

As you can see i mainly use my CD-RW’s for burning CD-R’s. I have many CD/DVD players in my home as well as 2 CD players in my vehicles and have never ran across this problem of yours. I also have used AMQR with my Yamaha F1 and my Plextor Premiums and they all play fine in everything using many different media. I do however mainly use Tayio Yuden MIJ (Made In Japan).

I will check them both out. Thanks.

I’m making some headway using Linux tools. Now have a disc that plays the first track in the car, but fails on the rest.

Back later.

Mark, what speed are you burning at? Do not exceed 16x and see what happens.

After a long day of burning disks and continuing to fail I did eventually find a combination that works. Strange one though:

Gentoo Linux
PowerPC-based Mac Mini
Matshita DVD-R UJ-845 drive

To rip: cdda2wav -paranoia -speed=6
To write: cdrecord -speed=8

Both speeds are apparently the max I can rip and write at and have the disc play in my car. I haven’t tried anything slower.

This combination seems to be working well with both the Office Depot & TDK spindles of A- grade 52x max CD-Rs.

Faster than 6x on the rip results in cdda2wav complaining that there are track read errors. Faster than 8x on the write just doesn’t play reliably.

I can live with both based on the number of times/month I need to do this.

Thanks for the inputs guys.

Cheers,
Mark

I had a buddy whose car cd player would only read 74 min burned cds. This was a long time ago but if your cd player is very old, you might want to try and find some 74 min media. Can be really hard to find these days, and even if you did, the disks are probably very old.

It may make more sense to get a new stereo…

[QUOTE=adict2jane;2289204]I had a buddy whose car cd player would only read 74 min burned cds. This was a long time ago but if your cd player is very old, you might want to try and find some 74 min media. Can be really hard to find these days, and even if you did, the disks are probably very old.

It may make more sense to get a new stereo…[/QUOTE]yeah i thought about that also but i didn’t think he had that old of a player in his car.

I have 90 - 74 min (650mb) 8x Verbie CD-R’s here but not for that reason. They are the old dark blue dye for DiscT@2ing.

And even they play in all my players…

It seems to me that your problem is that your car cd player is much more picky about media/burn quality than other CD players.

Most PC drives and newer home stereo/DVD players play as good as everything you throw at them.

As you wrote in your first post, the batch of TDK CD-Rs that work in your car are made by CMC. The new ones, made by Ritek, don’t work.

I don’t know how well those LiteOn CD/DVD burners handle new CD-R media because they’re all very old, if you already bought a lot of CD-R media you might want to try out a recent Pioneer or Optiarc DVD burner.

By the way, colored (eg. black) CD-Rs are less compatible.

I would think it best to try something like Verbatim or Taiyo Yuden CD-R. I dont see a list of the media you have used, its possible that some, or even all of the new spindles you got are the same type/make of disk. Just going by the brand name/manufacturers does not mean that you have got a different type of disk, a while back a friend was having problems (with DVD’s) but after checking out the actual MID’s of the disk builds, most of the different brands of disk turned out to be the same builds MIDs.