When is a "spike" too much?



I’ve read all the various interpreting threads and I’ve read about the acceptable amount of PIE and PIF errors. However, I see that people consider a “rise” or “spike” a bad thing.(even when within acceptable levels) So when should you be alarmed by a spike?

See the attached scan. Should a person worry about a rise in PIE errors at the end like that? Will this disc not last as long as the same burn without the rise? Usually all my TY02 scans are perfect, so I’m not used to seeing a rise like this.


That’s a perfect burn.


Yup. I don’t see any spike there either. :slight_smile:


Ok… so the rise (or whatever you want to call it) is ok? Granted the scan I posted isn’t the ideal example for my question. But as far as my question… if there are say… 2 big rises, is it ok as long as everything is within the acceptable levels? Another words it doesn’t matter how “level” your PIE errors are?

And for one more example, see the attached scan. Would the attached scan also be considered an excellent burn?

Thanks for your help.


Yes, that’s an excellent burn.

Limits for a good burn:
PIE max = 280
PIF max = 4 (1ECC, ie Plextor, LiteOn) or 16 (8ECC, ie BenQ)
POF = 0
Jitter max = 9%

Spike here means, for example, one single PIF of 5, or a single PIE of 300.


Yeah those are the max amounts that I found when reading the other “interpreting threads”, but there wasn’t any information on when a sudden rise of PIE errors is acceptable and when it isn’t acceptable. As long as the risen PIE area is within 280 is it a good burn? Even if there is a severe jump to a higher level? Because while browsing CDFreaks forums, I found posts where people said they threw away disc(s) because the PIE’s didn’t look “level”.

Attached is another scan I found when trying to find one to show as an example.


Your scan above is excellent, no need to worry.

There are players that can read disk with >280 PIEs and also there are some players that are sensitive and problem reading/playback a disk with PIE/PIF just below the limits. It all depends on your player.


This did not answer his question. Are single high spikes (For instance well above the recommended max of 15) a bad thing? Can single overly high spikes just be ignored as long as a transfer test shows the disc can be read back without too many speed drops?


I’m not sure where that “15” number comes from, but it’s not part of any known spec. “Single spikes” are a very different thing than “peaks” in a graph, and should not be confused. The Benq PIF values are not properly summed, and cannot be compared to the spec of 4 PIF for 1x scanning.

One again, it’s necessary to remind than scanning does not reveal any absolute characteristics of a disc that should be interpreted as “readability” in any other drive. The purpose of scanning is to compare disc A with disc B to find the best combination of burn speed and media for the drive in question. Lower is better, and that’s all you need to know. Transfer rate tests and file tests are suitable for determining if a disc is readable in the testing drive.


So single PIF spikes are not something to worry about as long as readability of the media across drives is consistent?

I really need to get a Benq (When the 1640 is available in my country) to do some comparative tests. I thought by getting an NEC 3540 with testing I would have a good enough setup to test media adequately but looking at others scans, in order to get a better idea of what the tests mean you need 2 drives that support quality scanning or your results can appear skewed by that drives particular read characteristics.


Single PIF spikes are nothing to worry about period.

At the end of the day, what matters is not whether you have a pretty scan but whether the disc is readable and, if a movie, plays in a standalone. A single PIF spike will not prevent either.