What is considered acceptable media?

I have been creating backups for a couple years now, and have gone through several different manufacturers of discs. I’ve just recently begun checking disc quality on both my new discs, and out of curiousity the old to determine the manufacturer and the current condition.

I use Nero CD-DVD speed. My question is what kind of results is considered “acceptable” for a backup that will only need to be used in a standalone DVD player, or perhaps in my PC to create another copy (assuming the old backup is on the fritz).

The various media I’ve been using turns out to be the following:

Ritek G04 (Newegg branded discs)
Ritek G03 (started using these very recently, Arita Branded)
ProdiscF01 8x -R (Fuji Branded)
Verbatim DVD-R DL (forgot media Code)
Verbatim 8x and 16x (forgot media code)
Ritek F1 (Dynex Branded 16X -R)
CMC MAG F01 000 (Philips 4x +R)
TTG02 (TDK 8X -R burned at 12x)
MXL RG03 (Maxell -R 8x)

Oddly enough the best results I’ve gotten were from the older Ritek G04’s (couple years old), and even the G03 (which are much newer) are producing quality scores in the 90’s. The rest seem to be hit-or-miss, with most falling in the 60+ range, couple as low as 40, and even one that was 0, but still readable and I was able to create another backup.

I tested a couple of each type of disc, but I’d like to know what is acceptable so I’m not having to test every single one. The TTG02 results seem fairly dismal with most scores being 70’s or less, and one being 0. Ritek F1 scores are 40 and up, CMC Mag scores 70+, Prodiscs are newer and score in the 80-90’s. The Riteks, verbatims and Maxells seem outstanding all scoring in the 90’s.

My tests on the dual-later Verbatims come out okay, 50 or higher, most have good sized spikes at the layer change which lowers the score considerably.

Now don’t get me wrong, these aren’t absolutely critical backups… If I lost a couple every now and then it wouldn’t be a huge deal to me, but I’d like to believe that I could go years without constantly checking quality and not be worried that my whole collection might be unreadable.

Is there any certain kind of disc I’ve been using I should be worried about? At what score should I consider “too low” and make a new backup? If one disc fails, should I re-backup every disc of that brand/batch/type? Should I be checking disc quality at certain intervals (I would hate to have to check each and every one), or would checking one disc from every batch every year or so suffice?

Also I just purchased a bunch of new media (unfortunately before I checked this site) with the following media codes:

CMC MAG M01 (Philips 16x +R)
CMC Mag AM3 (Philips 16x -R)
Ritek P01 (Ritek DVD-R DL 4x)
MKM 001 (Verbatim DVD+R DL 2.4-8x)

I also have quite a few of the ProdiscF1 and Ritek G03 left. Are these types of discs good quality media that I can be confident in using to create backups that will last? What would be good inexpensive discs to buy in the future?

I know there’s a lot of questions, any help, info, suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Btw, burners are NEC 3550A and Lite-On SHW-160P6S, both used as burner and scanner.

I buy Verbatim DVD-R’s - 16x speed. They always seem to work reliably. Why buy anything else if you have the ability to purchase Verbatim DVD’s?

when scanning, only use the liteon as it gives more reliable scan results than NECs. On the scan itself the quality score doesn’t mean much, what you really want to look at is the PIF max, ideally it should be under 4, but if there are a few single spikes over 4 its usuall not a big deal, the disk usually will give you trouble when there are clusters of pif over 4. also the max PIE should be under 280, but this is not as important as PIF levels IMHO. you do not need to scan every backup you have as long as they can be easily remade, if this is the case you really don’t need to scan any, just watch them until they start skipping on your player then reburn, and your liteon is an excellent ripper so it should have no trouble reading a disk that skips in a standalone player. However, if you have data that you absolutly can’t lose, scan every disk and reburn as neccessary. For burning, you will probably get the best results burning single layer in the liteon and dual layer in the NEC, but if you get bad results on a MID in the liteon, by all means try it in the NEC to see if it can do better, this is the beauty of having multiple dirves :iagree: (remember to scan in the liteon tho). 8x media should be burnt at 8x, but lower quality media might do better at 4x or 6x, for 16x media 12x is usually the sweet spot, but sometimes 8x might do better. As for media I agree to stick with verbatim, [I]especially[/I] on dual layer (also stick to +R DL booktyped to rom, as it is more compatable with standalones than -R DL), some other good SL options that go on sale quite regularly are Sony MIJ 8x +R and Sony MIJ 16x -R with an octagonal spacer, both are taiyo yuden and while the 8x is better, it is getting rare, the 16x doesn’t scan as pretty, but its still very good and does quite well on my 160P6S. If you want cheap SL, try to find 8x +R CMC E01 for less than $.20/disk under a trusted brand like HP, Imation, etc. it is usually fairly easy to find a deal on this media, and it burns very good. The 16x CMC you have is extremely variable and can range from decent to crap, if it does burn crappy you could try to get a refund, and if it burns okay you could use it for temporary stuff or burn stuff for friends on it, but I wouldn’t put anything important on them. The ritek DL aint so hot, but NECs are really good at burning DL, so it might make them useable, but again, try to get a refund and if you can’t, don’t put anything important on them :disagree:

sorry its kinda long, hope it helps tho

Thanks for the great response. I noticed a huge difference in the scans between the NEC and Liteon confirming your suggestion. The NEC would mark many, many discs as bad (200+ PIF’s, actually causing me to trash and reburn) when the Liteon would read those same backups easily with a max PIF of less than 10, which is acceptable as these aren’t mission critical backups.

I’ve come across two Ritek G03’s that flagged 40-50 PIFs on the Lite-on scan that will not rip using the NEC. I get a CRC error with both, and they’re not even a month old. I’m trying the Lite-on now.

I’ll stick to the better media, before I’d always done the cheap mail-in-rebate things, or cheapest on Newegg. So far the consensus is TY, Verbatim and CMC E01. Is verbatim and TY the only decent choice for 16x?

I’ll start burning on the new 16x CMC’s and see how the scans look like, if they’re okay I’ll just keep an eye on them and reburn as necessary. The DL’s despite their bitsetting so far have had no problem playing on my standalone, but I’ll do a scan every couple months to be sure. So far, so good, only a couple have turned out to be garbage, most of my scans on the Lite-on have produced good results, even the Ritek G04, but I have a big concern about the fate of the G03’s.

Nope the Lite-on won’t rip these discs either. Looks like the reputation for Ritek/Arita G03 media is well deserved :frowning:


As far as 16x media goes - the Verbatim +R and -R are about the best if not the best going right now - the Taiyo Yuden’s are not fairing that well in the 16x flavors - now the Taiyo Yuden 8x +R T02’s do extremely well-eh!

Verbies are so good I just want to buy them up by the thousands and pass them out instead of candy at Halloween… :stuck_out_tongue:

I do LOVE my Verbies!


“Trick-R-Treat” -eh!

LOL! Good One! :smiley: