The "dye" myth, or all about the "Mediacode" / "ADVInfo" / "MID

I’m creating this thread mainly to have a handy link. There is some info about this topic in the FAQ, but not enough to my taste when I want to direct someone to some relevant reading.

For most regulars here, there is nothing new in this first post, but for many newcomers some of this info will come as a surprise, due to the huge amount of misinformation about this on the net.

Discussion is of course open, and don’t hesitate to suggest corrections: I may myself have some misconceptions, or I may have forgotten some relevant info :slight_smile:

@Arachne and Dragemester: after discussion and corrections, this post could maybe be appended to the MEDIA FAQ, what do you think?


A persistent Internet myth, apparently instigated by online shops, is that the mediacode (also called ADVINFO or MID) of a disc (TYG02, MCC 004, RITEKG05…) only refers to the dye used when making the disc, as if the mediacode was merely the name of a given dye.

WRONG.

A correlated misconception seems to be that brands make their own discs, using this or that “dye” in the process, and that this dye used is the only difference between discs in terms of characteristics.

WRONG.

These misconceptions often lead to confusion when discussing media quality, because those who have been extensively exposed to these myths, and those who know better, often take some time to realize that they’re not referring to the same thing when talking “dye” or “mediacode”!

Here is the truth:


1. Most brands don’t make their own discs.

There is actually a stunningly little number of discs manufacturers compared to the huge amount of brands available.

Examples :
Memorex, Ridisc, Datawrite, Rimedia, have never made any optical disc. They just put their brands on blanks they buy from a manufacturer.
TDK, Fuji, Sony, Maxell, Ricoh have been making their own discs for quite some time (this has changed recently).
The majority of discs available on the market are actually made by CMC, Ritek and Prodisc (Taiwanese manufacturers), or Moser Baer India. The other manufacturers have much smaller market shares.


2. The mediacode refers to the specific model of the disc and its actual manufacturer.

This includes the dye indeed, but also the reflective layer, the type (+R/-R), the manufacturing technology, everything. Even the polycarbonate used!

Examples:
TYG02 refers to Taiyo Yuden 8X -R discs. Even if you find this mediacode under the Verbatim, Datasafe or Plextor brands, these discs were actually manufactured by Taiyo Yuden in Japan, with Taiyo Yuden technology.
MCC 02RG20 refers to Mitsubishi Chemicals (MCC) 8X -R discs. Even if you find this mediacode under the Datawrite or Infiniti brands, these discs were actually manufactured using Mitsubishi Chemicals technology by one of the authorized MCC manufacturers (though to add to the confusion, Mitsubishi outsources the actual manufacturing to other companies’ facilities, but that’s another story).


3. A same dye may be used by different manufacturers to make different disc models with different mediacodes.

A manufacturer producing/formulating a given dye may sell this dye (or its formulation and manufacturing process) to other manufacturers.

Example: RITEKM02, which used a Mitsubishi dye, the same that Mitsubishi themselves used for MCC 01RG20. But the manufacturing technologies and mediacodes were different and, despite sharing the same dye, these discs were pretty different in their characteristics and each needed to have its dedicated burning strategy in the burner’s firmware.


4. The purpose of the mediacode is mainly to tell the burner’s firmware how to burn the disc.

A burner firmware has burning strategies (burning speeds, methods like CLV or CAV, laser power…) for most disc models existing on the market, assuming the manufacturer of this disc model provided the necessary info and samples to the companies making the burners.

This is one of the reasons why there are faked mediacodes around. Some manufacturers (mainly in Hong-Kong) don’t have (or don’t want to develop) the necessary resources to provide the burners makers with the info and samples so to have a dedicated burning strategy in the burners firmwares. So they use a mediacode from another company to fool the burner (and, incidentally, the customer).


Now that you know the truth, spread the knowledge, and don’t hesitate to bother the online shops by telling them they are wrong and they are spreading misconceptions :slight_smile:

:doh: I forgot the important “Discs with the same MID, even when genuine, are not necessarily of the same quality” point. :doh:

Upcoming:)

Some comments and extra’s. (copy paste style, so screw ups are possible from my hand :bigsmile: )
Let’s use this comment for a building up for a good FAQ part or wiki part. If we can get the wiki back. Or if we create a new one !

A persistent Internet myth, apparently instigated by online shops, is that the mediacode (also called ADVINFO or MID) of a disc (TYG02, MCC 004, RITEKG05…) only refers to the dye used when making the disc, as if the mediacode was merely the name of a given dye.

Not only the online stores do this. Infact quite some online stores just use what there distributer says !!. So it’s the distributers/brands (like E-net) which have caused this mayor screw up !

2. The mediacode refers to the specific model of the disc and its actual manufacturer.
This includes the dye indeed, but also the reflective layer, the type (+R/-R), the manufacturing technology, everything. Even the polycarbonate used!

The reality is a bit different. Based on the licensed production were one licensee makes something with a slightly different material as another and were it behaves different on some drives. Still everything is inside the specified standards of the original technology supplier.
Specified according to the technology supplier, According to the drive manufacturer not specified enough, because they suddenly have to change there super optimized strategy that works for one licensee but doesn’t perform that good for the other.

Example: RITEKM02, which used a Mitsubishi dye, the same that Mitsubishi themselves used for MCC 01RG20. But the manufacturing technologies and mediacodes were different and, despite sharing the same dye, these discs were pretty different in their characteristics and each needed to have its dedicated burning strategy in the burner’s firmware.

Incorrect. RITEKM02 is based on FUJIFILM02. Unless ritek doesn’t know what they are using. (Well they claimed that was the case when they used some dye that infringed a patent of Ciba !,so we can’t rule it out. :bigsmile: )

  1. The purpose of the mediacode is mainly to tell the burner’s firmware how to burn the disc.

That’s the reality for quite some burners. However there is quite some more info in the ADIP which will specify how the disc should be burned.

Nice extra example.
Let’s take the old Memorex PhilipsC16.
It uses Fuji oxolife dye
It is designed by Philips
It is made by CMC.
It is branded by Memorex

Does anybody manufacture media with Organica 16x DVD dye?

This is really useful and has answered any remaining questions I would have had.

It would also be useful to list brands which are known to -use/have used- fake mediacodes, if a thread doesn’t exist already.

http://club.cdfreaks.com/showthread.php?t=112854 (for Taiyo Yuden fakes)

I would add a link here to their copious section on different brands with their variety of media codes.

Make it sticky, master Francksoy. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the contributions guys :slight_smile:
Too busy right now to include corrections and ideas and ask a mod to edit the post (@[B]chef[/B]: hey, it’s been about a year that I’m not a mod anymore, I can’t make it sticky :wink: )
I’ll be back!

Sorry, I wasnt sure about the current mod status.

I think that the information contained in the 7 pages here at digitalfaq.com:
http://www.digitalfaq.com/media/index.htm
has to be linked to here.

And especialy this page:
[B]« Advanced concepts of blank DVD media quality » [/B]

nice work mate :slight_smile:

enjoyed the Write up :slight_smile:

Recently I have been able to read this on cdfreaks:
http://club.cdfreaks.com/showthread.php?p=1902889#post1902754

So because we have some of the main experts posting here in this thread,
could you please tell us what you think about this
[B]« body of evidence suggesting that this oxonol dye is more stable than azo-cyanine »[/B]

Tricky since we don’t know what he means with azo-cyanine.

I think that wilhelm means Azo dyes (Mitsubishi) [B]or[/B] cyanine dyes (Tayo Yuden)
not a combination of both (azo and cyanine), which I think does not exist !

I thought that when it comes to DVDs, Mitsubishi (+ CMC, Moser Baer etc.) and Taiyo Yuden both use Advanced AZO, which would be an azo-cyanine dye?

That’s what I thought years ago. Untill I heard from a certain manufacturer that they used a mixture because pure AZO would be to expensive !! :eek:

Assuming it is about pure azo dye’s then it seems that my information suggests something different. (But I also didn’t agree on that gold couldn’t be used as a reflector after those EMTEC MPO gold dvd+R’s kicked some serious ass in some tests. )

I am not sure at all about these Azo & cyanine dyes

But my main point is:
[B]What do you experts think about this new Oxolife dye developed by Fuji ?[/B]

Here Fuji claims that this dye is eco-friendly and reliable long term storage:
http://www.fujifilm.ca/x14649.xml

They give more details about this dye here in this PDF document:
http://www.fujifilm.ca/documents/Fujifilm_Oxolife_EN.pdf

Fuji’s been using oxonol-based dyes for a while, I’m not sure if there is anything really new about their 16x dye.

Ecofriendly yes.

They give more details about this dye here in this PDF document:
http://www.fujifilm.ca/documents/Fujifilm_Oxolife_EN.pdf

Nice propaganda just like the MAM stuff.

A few things. Oxonol is not a bad dye. It’s cheap and it’s environmental friendly. Also stability is ok (when burned correctly) and power margin isn’t the worst one out there and that’s saying nicely how it is.

If we can go by propaganda from manufacturers a long then it’s clear that MAM-A clearly is the best media out there. (We simpley can ignore reliable third party testing were their media is outperfomed by so called inferior products using inferior materials ) :cool: