Wavy pattern - uneven dye? Should I be worried?

Hi there,

My first post so apologies, so a lot of this is still new to me.

I bought a spindle of 50 CD-R’s last week of Verbatim DataLife Plus CD-R’s, and unfortunately I didn’t bother to check them until after I burned a bunch of music files and deleted them. (I thought I backed up everything, but there’s definitely a few discs worth of stuff that I apparently did not back up.)

The CD-R’s play fine on my 12-year-old CD/DVD player, but I noticed that half of them have a waviness that’s impossible to miss. It looks like they spilled the dye or something, and it’s very hard to tell but I think there’s a very slight difference in darkness or the deepness in the blue, so I’m wondering if this is what’s referred to as “uneven dye”?

I don’t have a scanner so I tried to take a picture - this was the best one I got, and it shows just one part of a disc that has this:

I have a Mac so there’s no program that can read errors like the ones you all are using. As mentioned it plays in the CD player, but if this is uneven dye, does that mean the pits weren’t burned well and they will deteriorate much faster than a disc that had the dye evenly spread?

Thanks for your help. I’ve already submitted a request for a replacement, so I’m more concerned about the discs that have music that I deleted.

Looks like a manufacturing defect; the dye was not spread evenly as it was being distributed over the surface of the platter.

I wouldn’t be using these for archival purposes but if they play OK on your devices then what’s to worry? When you get better quality media just copy them over.

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Got it, thank you. Does this mean uneven dye will actually cause data to fail sooner than normal? (And if so, is there a general idea of how much sooner?)

I’ve had CD-R’s that play fine in my CD player but fail to rip correctly (i.e. audible errors). I figured I’d need to rip these and re-burn them, but I rather not rip something with errors in general.

Impossible to say with certainly; really. Could last for years.

In general if there are spots where the dye layer is critically thin then the S/N is so low that any further degradation may increase the error rate to where it’s unuseable.

I’m not familiar with what’s available for ripping under MacOS. If it were a PC I’d just rip them using Exact Audio Copy in one of the higher reliability modes to try to recover from such soft errors. Would also tell you how much error correction was in use and whether there were uncorrectable errors.

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