I started backing up my DVD’s about a year ago to take with me to college so my actual DVD’s stay nice and safe at home. I never cared too much about perfect quality before, so I always compressed the DVD’s to about 50-60% and removed options like 5.1 audio. Well I received a decent television for my dorm and surround sound speakers for Christmas, and I’d like to indulge in higher quality discs without the risk of bringing my sizable collection to campus.
In the past I used DVD Shrink to copy and DVD Decrypter to burn, I bought whatever DVD+R happened to be on sale, and I stored everything in a couple cheap disc wallets. I made a mistake using a Targus disc wallet and it scratched my discs rather badly, not to mention shoved them all tightly together despite the case not even being full. I am currently using 2 Case Logic disc wallets which seem to be perfect, harder shell, no compression, and so far no scratching, I think it has a lot to do with it being able to open completely, unlike the previous.
Anyway, I don’t want to drag on terribly. My intent is to try and correct my improper ripping and burning methods, and attempt to increase the overall quality of my back ups.
I’ve got a couple of questions I hope some people here can help me with. I did in fact try to look around and read what I could to find my answers before I registered, but I didn’t seem to find what I was looking for, at least in an easily comprehendible way, perhaps I’m just too new to this to grasp everything yet.
**My 8 Questions: (I’m sure any knowledgeable member can answer these easily)
1. Is there any way to tell before purchase the quality of the discs I am going to buy? Is the “Media Code” on the exterior package of the DVDR spindles? I seem to see people discuss this while missing exactly how you can do this without putting the disc in a drive and performing a media test. And I find it difficult to imagine you all randomly buy discs and find out only later their quality. (Example: “Get the Verbatim 8x DL mid code MKM003, made in Singapore.”)
2. I have never burned a DVD-R before, my drive seems to burn DVD+R’s very well though, I’ve never had a problem burning one. And I’ve never had a problem playing one, this includes my only DVD player, my PS2 & my X-Box 360. I haven’t seen any true consensus on one format being better than the other, so if one is please inform me of which.
3. What are the ‘best’ single layer DVD-/+R’s currently available.
4. What are the ‘best’ dual layer DVD-/+R’s currently available.
5. What are the ‘best’ ways to store such discs? (I understand that most people feel that disc wallets are the worst thing you could store them in, and that actual DVD cases are the best. I just wondered what the options were in a most harmful to least harmful type of way.)
6. I understand that depending on your drive and the media used, lower burn speeds may result in better quality discs. Is this something worth delving further into?
7. Are there different programs to rip complete dual layer DVDs and burn them? I’ve heard “imgburn” is one of the more popular choices for burning dual layer discs. Should I switch to different software to better accommodate my wishes for superior quality?
8. Should I “test” each of my discs individually before burning?
**My computer specs:
-Dell Dimension XPS Gen 2
-Windows XP Home Edition
-Pentium 4 CPU 3.20GHz
**My disc drive: LITE-ON DVDRW SHW-160P6S
I’m headed to Best Buy tomorrow with several coupons I received in the mail, hopefully by then I’ll know what type of discs I’m looking for exactly.
Thank you very much to anyone who took the time to read my rambling words.