The difference between DVD-R and DVD+R



That is a pretty general response. I don’t quite buy those specs. If they were an average then that would make sense as their are more lower quality manufacturers of DVD-R than DVD+R. However, I seriously doubt the reflectivity of Taiyo Yuden DVD-R and Taiyo Yuden DVD+R varries by 20%. There really isn’t that much difference when comparing a quality disc of both formats.


Most informative. Thank you.

I agree with your predictions 110% despite what some others on here seem to have to say. I, too, have made most of the predictions you have made, as well as other predictions, and have watched nearly all of them come true.

I agree also with your opinion on Gates 1 mistaken prediction versus his many successful predictions. One cannot argue with the magnitude of unparalleled success of Gates. His 1 oft-quoted “mistake” is statistically insignificant.

Thanks again for the DVD+R/DVD-R education.



Dr. Spock? He died 7 years ago.


I used the search function and still am unable to determine what to buy+R or -R. Say I have a choice of Maxell 8X -R and +R and want to make movie back ups(on a LG 4163B 100AFW) which should I buy? Why? I did buy the Maxell 8XDVD+R, DVD INFO see’s them as RICHOJPN R02, I made 4 backup’s with them, all play very well on the LG,Toshiba pc drives and Lite on 5005, Pansonic RV31, Daewoo(daughter’s) stand alone players. If I get -R should I expect the same quality?
I’ll apologize in advance if this has been answered many times, for some reason I can’t find the answer, been searching for 4 hrs. :confused:


There’s very little difference between -R and +R as long as you stick to good brands of each. Maxwell is good in both +R and -R. Sometimes +R has compatibility problems with older dvd players if you dont set the booktype of your dvd burner to the ‘dvdrom’ setting before you burn. The LG burners support the bitsetting capability.


Hi jims47,

there is no straight answer to your question.
Personaly i prefer to use +R, because data is not exactly written the same way as on -R and it seems more efficient to use +R.

But in the end the final question is : will i be able to play the burned discs onto all my players, (computer, laptop, standalone player, video walkman and so on).

So, if the price of your Maxell seems fine to you and if your discs play well on your different players, then why change?


Set the booktype of DVD+R media to DVD-ROM to achieve the same level of compatibility as DVD-R media.


Personally to me, the only difference for me would be the price. I’d go with either one. As FreqNasty mentioned, just remember to change the booktype of your DVD burner to “DVD-ROM” if you’re using +R discs. Check the Hardware forum to see if your burner has bitsetting capability (in order for you to change the booktype).

Again, the only difference, IMO, is price of the discs.


Thanks to everyone for the answers. I have been going crazy trying to figure out what the differences in them, besides price, was. As of now, the +R Maxell’s seem to be doing a good job. I don’t get any read errors on the burned discs. They are RICHOJPN R02’s. I am pretty sure my LG(4163b) automatically sets the booktype to DVD-Rom. I can change it but that seems to be the default setting. I guess I’ll continue using these as they even play on my daughter’s Daewoo player. Again Thanks for clearing things up for me.


here’s a good link (including the “More Info” links) that will explain some of the differences between the 2 formats. it gives a general sense of compatibility, etc.

DVD-R is actually just slightly larger in capacity but a negligible amount. also, i believe +R can be burned in multisession whereas -R cannot (not 100% sure of this difference though).


If you are using an LG 4163, it won’t overspeed any 8X -R media, AFAIK, but a lot of 8x +R media can be overspeeded to 12x, including Maxell (MAXELL002)

I am using A102 firmware - not sure if A103 is out yet officialy.


I just burnt Alien V Predator last night with Nero and after it finished the screen that came up said 12X, I didn’t change anything in the speed box, it was checked for maximum. This was with A100 FW. Hope this isn’t too long but here is an excerpt from the Nero History file. Like you said this was with +R, I don’t have any -R media…yet :wink:
Disc Application Code: 0 / 0 h
Extended Information indicators: 3 h
Disc Manufacturer ID: RICOHJPN
Media type ID: R02
Product revision number: 3
Number of Physical format information bytes in use in ADIP up to byte 63: 56
Media Specific [16…63]:
00 00 03 52 49 43 4F 48 - 4A 50 4E 52 30 32 03 38 …RICOHJPNR02.8
23 54 37 18 00 3E 6E 00 - 70 62 15 15 0B 0B 08 08 #T7…>n.pb…
01 19 1B 0B 0B 0E 0F 01 - 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 …

9:10:31 PM #16 Text 0 File DVDR.cpp, Line 4643
Book Type request: DVD-ROM
Changing the Book Type was finished successfully, return code 0

9:10:31 PM #17 CDR -1207 File DVDR.cpp, Line 4577
Book Type automatically set to: DVD-ROM

9:10:31 PM #18 Text 0 File dlgbrnst.cpp, Line 1713
Set remaining time: 4:49,219 (289219ms) -> OK

9:10:31 PM #19 Text 0 File DVDPlusRW.cpp, Line 628
Start write address at LBA 0
DVD high compatibility mode: Yes

9:20:32 PM #20 Text 0 File WriterStatus.cpp, Line 115
<HL-DT-ST DVDRAM GSA-4163B> start writing Lead-Out at LBA 2286092 (22E20Ch), lenght 0 blocks

9:20:32 PM #21 Text 0 File ThreadedTransfer.cpp, Line 229
all writers idle, stopping conversion

9:20:58 PM #22 Text 0 File dlgbrnst.cpp, Line 1713
Set remaining time: 0:00,000 (0ms) -> OK

9:20:58 PM #23 Text 0 File dlgbrnst.cpp, Line 1713
Set remaining time: 0:00,000 (0ms) -> OK

9:20:58 PM #24 Phase 37 File dlgbrnst.cpp, Line 1855
Burn process completed successfully at 12x (16,620 KB/s)


Thanks drpino, that was what I was looking for! BIG help. According to this paragraph on the site

  DVD-R and DVD-RW
DVD-R was the first DVD recording format released that was compatible with standalone DVD Players.
DVD-R is a non-rewriteable format and it is compatible with about 93% of all DVD Players and most DVD-ROMs. 
DVD-RW is a rewriteable format and it is compatible with about 80% of all DVD Players and most DVD-ROMs. 
DVD-R and DVD-RW supports single side 4.37 computer GB* DVDs(called DVD-5) and double sided 8.75 computer GB* DVDs(called DVD-10).
These formats are supported by DVDForum. 

I should be using the -R’s for better compatibility, but I haven’t had any problems so far with the +R’s.


jims47 wrote:

I haven’t had any problems so far with the +R’s

That is what is important to you, that you havn’t had any problems, and if they are playing fine on all of your players then they will continue to play that way.

jims47 wrote:

I should be using the -R’s for better compatibility


-R’s have a highier compatiblity then +R’s, but with the option of having Bit-setting, DVD-ROM has a highier compatiblity then -R’s.


you’re welcome jims47. what hamp said though and as a result i exclusively use +Rs bitset to -ROM and only burn -Rs for “testing” :wink:


From cdfreaks itself:


I was going to make some backups of my dvd movie collection and i was wondering whether it is better to use DVD-R or DVD+R. Both seem to work in my dvd player, but is one superior to the other for movies? and why?
by the way, i have a 3500A.

Thanks in advance


search the forum!
this is an old discussion …



Welcome to the forums-

I have two 3500’s and strongly recommend using only good medias like Ritek, Taiyo Yuden, Verbatim and Maxell-

Check our our Bargin Basement for the current sales in name brand stores like Staples, best Buy, etc-

Best online retailer for good media is or



I can’t get the DVD -R to work but the DVD +R are working OK. Is there some reason why??