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Experimental Data on DVD Longevity

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Experimental Data on DVD Longevity

Postby longevity-freak on Wed Jul 27, 2005 3:45 pm

Hi all,

I am living in the hot and humid tropical climate of Singapore. My room temperature is approx. 31 degrees Celcius and relative humidity in the room is about 88%. To date more than 40 DVD discs have either degraded (nero transfer rate graphs show lousy dipping curves) and many DVD discs have CRC/read errors (windows report CRC, dvdinfopro show red color blocks). For those discs that have degraded I have actually reburned those discs (about 40-50 discs so far) and store them inside dry boxes with relative humidity maintained at about 20-30% through the use of silica gel crystals. Brands of dvd media that have degraded in my storage include TDK, Verbatim, Mitsubishi, Panasonic, Ricoh, NEC, etc. These media are considered branded ones. Also, numerous other people in my country have reported dying/dead/unreadable Imation and Maxell DVD media. I am wondering if dvd degradation occurs in tropical countries only. For those of you who stayed in cold, temperate countries, do you experience failing dvd media?

I have many Mitsubishi, Ricoh and NEC dvd discs with darkened purple spots on the recording side of the disc. A comparison of discs stored in dry boxes and unprotected by dry boxes shows that mit and nec discs stored in dry boxes with silica gel do not have spots whereas discs left lying around everywhere developed spots. They are burned and stored for around the same time.

Please refer to the background and details in the following link:

http://forums.hardwarezone.com/showthread.php?t=991675

The entire thread is about 24 pages so far. I apologize for its terrible length and disorganization (as well as some ranting).

This thread contains background information, my storage environments, hypothesis that humidity degrades my media, efforts to use dry boxes and silica gel, video footages of mitsubishi, nec and ricoh with spots, nero transfer rate curves of degraded media, disc quality scans with terrible PI/PO results, and disc quality scans reserved for future comparisons.

I hope you guys could contribute in the reporting of your failing dvd media and storage conditions in the following format. If you have a better format please advise me. If I have missed out anything please advise me as well.

1. Brand, e.g. Verbatim
2. Format, e.g. 8X DVD+R or 16x DVD-R
3. MID, e.g. MCC04
4. Date the DVD was burned or how long you have stored it, e.g. 4 years 2 months
5. DVD burner used, e.g. LG-4163B
6. Burn speed, e.g. 2X
7. Recording software used, e.g. nero, padus, sonic, etc (seems to be irrelevant?)
8. State/Province, Country, e.g. Wisconsin, U.S.A or Sussex, U.K.
9. DVD Storage temperature, e.g. 30 degrees Celcius
10. DVD Storage Relative Humidity, e.g. 10%
11. DVD protection used, e.g. dry box with silica gel, or electric dry cabinet, or left lying around, CD/DVD wallets, jewel case, or paper sleeve.
12. DVD Failure type: CRC/read error or degraded with no error or cannot be detected by reader (gone case)
13. Attach PI/PO graphs or transfer rate graphs or scandisc graphs?

Thank you for your effort. Your effort is greatly appreciated.

Just to add: some of my dvd discs degrade in as little as 3-4 months (early discs not protected by dry box and silica gel).
Last edited by longevity-freak on Mon Aug 01, 2005 1:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby longevity-freak on Wed Jul 27, 2005 3:47 pm

Photos reproduced here for convenience:

DVD Discs with spots on recording side
=========================

Image

Image

An example of a degrading dvd disc (nero cd-dvd speed transfer rate curve):

Image

Image
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Postby longevity-freak on Wed Jul 27, 2005 3:51 pm

Conditions of My Room, hygrometer exposed for 2 hrs 45 mins, taken on 2005-May-15 1:05 AM Sun SGT:

Image

My room temperature = 32C
Relative humidity in my room = 87%
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Wed Jul 27, 2005 4:11 pm

Out of curiousity, do you have any pressed CDs or DVDs that have degraded like your burned media has?

For myself... even my crappiest media usually lasts longer then 4 months, if it doesn't fail during the burn.
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Re: End-user Testing/Monitoring on Longevity of DVD Media

Postby Ian on Wed Jul 27, 2005 4:12 pm

longevity-freak wrote:My room temperature is approx. 31 degrees Celcius and relative humidity in the room is about 88%.


Ughh.. I'd either move or buy AC.
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Postby Alektron on Wed Jul 27, 2005 6:46 pm

This is a very interesting and important discussion. Unfortunately, I haven't done much on-line research on this matter, let alone independent tests. Based on Longevity's posts, it appears that the burned DVDs are deteriorating in terms of the die. Is this agreed by everyone? However, I am wondering if the die deterioration is primarily caused by the higher temperature or the humidity? These two variables are independent, but they coincide in regions like Singapore (the author's home). I believe that only one of these variables is the root cause. The chemical mechanism of die breakdown is a chemical process.

If we assume that the cause is moisture, how can the moisture reach inside the plastic layers to the die? Could it be an imprecise plastic seal? If moisture is seeping into the plastic, the H2O could be providing itself as a catalyst to the die breakdown.

On the other hand, if a higher temperature is the cause, the plastic of the disc makes no difference. The temperature would be breaking down the die.

Therefore, I was wondering if you can make a controlled experiment such that the temperature is held in a favorable condition constantly, with an elevated humidity for Test Setup #1. For #2, reverse the variables. Also, I would like to know which DVD+/-R discs (and dies) are failing the most severly and which are the best.
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Postby longevity-freak on Wed Jul 27, 2005 11:32 pm

dolphinius_rex wrote:Out of curiousity, do you have any pressed CDs or DVDs that have degraded like your burned media has?

For myself... even my crappiest media usually lasts longer then 4 months, if it doesn't fail during the burn.


I have 3 factory pressed DVD movies. I tested one of them last. The PI/PO graph is very good, low error rates. This disc have been around for 2+ years already.
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Postby longevity-freak on Wed Jul 27, 2005 11:35 pm

Alektron wrote:This is a very interesting and important discussion. Unfortunately, I haven't done much on-line research on this matter, let alone independent tests. Based on Longevity's posts, it appears that the burned DVDs are deteriorating in terms of the die. Is this agreed by everyone? However, I am wondering if the die deterioration is primarily caused by the higher temperature or the humidity? These two variables are independent, but they coincide in regions like Singapore (the author's home). I believe that only one of these variables is the root cause. The chemical mechanism of die breakdown is a chemical process.

If we assume that the cause is moisture, how can the moisture reach inside the plastic layers to the die? Could it be an imprecise plastic seal? If moisture is seeping into the plastic, the H2O could be providing itself as a catalyst to the die breakdown.

On the other hand, if a higher temperature is the cause, the plastic of the disc makes no difference. The temperature would be breaking down the die.

Therefore, I was wondering if you can make a controlled experiment such that the temperature is held in a favorable condition constantly, with an elevated humidity for Test Setup #1. For #2, reverse the variables. Also, I would like to know which DVD+/-R discs (and dies) are failing the most severly and which are the best.


Well, I have no control over room temperature. Air-conditioning is too expensive. So essentially my room temperature is constant at approx 30C.

I have discs that are kept in dry boxes maintained at about 20+% relative humidity and *rejected discs left lying around exposed to 80+%. I am monitoring both cases.
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Thu Jul 28, 2005 12:30 am

longevity-freak wrote:
dolphinius_rex wrote:Out of curiousity, do you have any pressed CDs or DVDs that have degraded like your burned media has?

For myself... even my crappiest media usually lasts longer then 4 months, if it doesn't fail during the burn.


I have 3 factory pressed DVD movies. I tested one of them last. The PI/PO graph is very good, low error rates. This disc have been around for 2+ years already.


Well... that's very positive! I wonder how media with protective coatings (I.E. Maxell's BQ media) and Emtec's Gold DVD+Rs (Or MAM's Gold DVD-Rs) would react. Both media types are supposedly made for archiving purposes, and SUPPOSED to be able to survive longer in situations like your own.
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Postby frank1 on Thu Jul 28, 2005 1:10 am

dolphinius_rex wrote:I wonder how media with protective coatings (I.E. Maxell's BQ media) and Emtec's Gold DVD+Rs (Or MAM's Gold DVD-Rs) would react
In your opinion, do TDK DVD R 8x "ScratchProof" also belong to this type of media with protective coating ?

Anyway they got a good rating [Stab +] in "climatic stability"
for the tests recently published by c't magazine

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Postby longevity-freak on Thu Jul 28, 2005 1:34 am

frank1 wrote:
dolphinius_rex wrote:I wonder how media with protective coatings (I.E. Maxell's BQ media) and Emtec's Gold DVD+Rs (Or MAM's Gold DVD-Rs) would react
In your opinion, do TDK DVD R 8x "ScratchProof" also belong to this type of media with protective coating ?

Anyway they got a good rating [Stab +] in "climatic stability"
for the tests recently published by c't magazine

TTH01 - Made in Luxembourg, only ??
Image


Well, in my humble opinion, scratch-proof does not equate to humidity-proof.
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Thu Jul 28, 2005 2:04 am

frank1 wrote:
dolphinius_rex wrote:I wonder how media with protective coatings (I.E. Maxell's BQ media) and Emtec's Gold DVD+Rs (Or MAM's Gold DVD-Rs) would react
In your opinion, do TDK DVD R 8x "ScratchProof" also belong to this type of media with protective coating ?

Anyway they got a good rating [Stab +] in "climatic stability"
for the tests recently published by c't magazine

TTH01 - Made in Luxembourg, only ??
Image


Well, Maxell's BQ media is supposed to be archival quality... not just scratch proof. I haven't personally tested those aspects... but Longevity-Freak's "personal testing chamber" might be the perfect place to give them a good 'ol try :wink:
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Postby RJW on Thu Jul 28, 2005 7:07 am

Alektron wrote:This is a very interesting and important discussion. Unfortunately, I haven't done much on-line research on this matter, let alone independent tests. Based on Longevity's posts, it appears that the burned DVDs are deteriorating in terms of the die. Is this agreed by everyone?

It can be dye or silver ! . But it's mostly the dye in this case.
However, I am wondering if the die deterioration is primarily caused by the higher temperature or the relative humidity?

Check post in cdfreaks. http://club.cdfreaks.com/showthread.php?t=144159

Temperatute accelerates reaction.
A Rule of thumb for reactions suggest each 10 degrees C is double reaction rate. His room is 31 degrees which is bad however not the main problem is his relative humidity is 87 % which is extremely high. ( if You count down C't test results with the rule of thumb you will find results very close to what he is seeing I did this on cdfreaks board. However seeing that cdfreaks user so far hardly react on it makes me think did I got to far ? Maybe fix a easier to read and more explaineing version. )

These two variables are independent, but they coincide in regions like Singapore (the author's home). I believe that only one of these variables is the root cause.

Relative Humidity is temperature dependant ! (Psychometry)

The chemical mechanism of die breakdown is a chemical process.

See my post of cdfreaks. Yes it's a chemical proces. First the mechanism is unlikely to be zero order. No higher order reactions means water concentration is critical. Higher humidity means faster reaction. Now at a higher temperature the reaction goes faster. (Rule of thumb suggests 10 degrees C is double reaction rate.)

If we assume that the cause is moisture, how can the moisture reach inside the plastic layers to the die? Could it be an imprecise plastic seal? If moisture is seeping into the plastic, the H2O could be providing itself as a catalyst to the die breakdown.

Through the sides and/or through the polycarbonate.

On the other hand, if a higher temperature is the cause, the plastic of the disc makes no difference. The temperature would be breaking down the die.

With a temperature as low as 31 degrees I rule that one out. It's to low. If you want to damage purely by temperature you need much higher temperatures.

Therefore, I was wondering if you can make a controlled experiment such that the temperature is held in a favorable condition constantly, with an elevated humidity for Test Setup #1. For #2, reverse the variables. Also, I would like to know which DVD+/-R discs (and dies) are failing the most severly and which are the best.

Not needed I can theoretically (and I think I allready did ) proof that it's just the humidity. Temperature will accellerate the proces but the main problem is humidity a long with poor manufactured media.

I think you (all) should check his topic at cdfreakshttp://club.cdfreaks.com/showthread.php?t=144159 were I posted (under dakhaas) allready a lot of comments and I don't like to repeat myself again. Please people take a look at it.

If things are unclear then you might ask questions here or there. If people want then I will put a more complete and easier to understand article on the to do list which means I will make it some day (However I won't promise when that will be it might take some lightyears. :o )
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Thu Jul 28, 2005 10:14 am

I can also attest that 31C is not going to be enough heat to damage the media... not THAT quickly at least. I'm getting that kind of hear here in my area right now, and things aren't falling apart at the seams. But the humidity I can't easily reproduce.

I *DID* do a test with my stove, with a disc placed about a foot from a boiling pot of water, and only 2 hours of that or so, made the disc nearly unsalvagable.
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Postby frank1 on Thu Jul 28, 2005 12:21 pm

Does anybody know if
the phase change material utilized to manufacture DVR-RAM's
is less or more sensible to this phenomena of degrading ("rotting")
than the "organic dyes" (cyanine, ....) which are utilized to manufacture DVD R's ??
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Postby RJW on Thu Jul 28, 2005 4:14 pm

That's a tricky question.
Normally rewritables are more sensitive.
Verbatim own test results show this (50 year DVD-RW and 75 DVD-R I think it was.).
However DVD-ram which everybody likes as archival thingie is the boxed one. There's a good possibility that the caseing might slightly limit mass transfer of water.

Also the phase change dye's of Ram's are slightly different.
I would have to see if I can dig up any reports on stability of RAM layers.
Currently no time for that one.
If someone happens to have access in some way to some years (starting of 1997 untill now ) of Japanese journal of chemistry then I suggest you might take a look if it states something about the subject. It probally will.
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Postby Alektron on Thu Jul 28, 2005 8:22 pm

If you put a DVD+R in a vacuum seal wrap with an anti-moisture silica package inside, that should be sufficient protection against the deterioration rate seen by Longevity-Freak, correct? (Even if it's true, I imagine that is inconvenient for frequent DVD retrieval.)
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Postby Alektron on Thu Jul 28, 2005 8:39 pm

These two variables are independent, but they coincide in regions like Singapore (the author's home). I believe that only one of these variables is the root cause.


Relative Humidity is temperature dependant ! (Psychometry)


RJW,

I agree with your answer. I think that my intention was not to claim that humidity and temperature are independent terms, but that actual moisture vapor content in the air and the temperature can be independent variables in the cause of the deterioration. Anyway, it seems that the temperature is only a minor factor in the DVD deterioration; the major factor is the moisture content.

From reading the thread on CDFreaks, I believe you have confirmed that moisture is getting into the die layer and causing damage. You said:

So I think we can make the conlcusion humidity is your real problem.



So the solution is for the manufacturers to provide a less moisture-susceptible plastic encasement material and/or process. Then the moisture cannot seep inside and damage the die.

By the way, have you posted the chemical breakdown formula for the die? Hey, perhaps you should patent your own die formula and sell it to everyone?[/quote]
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Thu Jul 28, 2005 10:34 pm

Alektron wrote:By the way, have you posted the chemical breakdown formula for the die? Hey, perhaps you should patent your own die formula and sell it to everyone?


How do you know he hasn't already? :wink:
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Postby RJW on Fri Jul 29, 2005 4:42 am

Hey offcourse I wouldn't tell ya.
Didn't want to loose any money.
:wink:
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Postby Alektron on Fri Jul 29, 2005 2:25 pm

Hey offcourse I wouldn't tell ya.
Didn't want to loose any money.


hahahaha :^o
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Postby RJW on Fri Jul 29, 2005 5:57 pm

Hey who started the joke. :D

I see that I made some horrible typo's in that quote from cdfreaks.
Hmm really ask the guys if cdfreaks can get a longer edit time.
(that's what I really need over there.)
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Postby frank1 on Sat Jul 30, 2005 2:30 am

RJW wrote:That's a tricky question.
Normally rewritables are more sensitive.
Verbatim own test results show this (50 year DVD-RW and 75 DVD-R I think it was.).
However DVD-ram which everybody likes as archival thingie is the boxed one. There's a good possibility that the caseing might slightly limit mass transfer of water.
Also the phase change dye's of Ram's are slightly different.
I would have to see if I can dig up any reports on stability of RAM layers.
Currently no time for that one.

Thanks a lot "RJW" for answering a question about DVD-RAM !

I asked that because I read the dye formula of
the new 5x certified Maxell DVD-RAM contains bismuth
which is not specialy organic
and probably not good for "growing fungi in it"
Bismuth salts were even used in the old days to treat venerial deseases !!
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Sat Jul 30, 2005 3:25 am

frank1 wrote:Bismuth salts were even used in the old days to treat venerial deseases !!


Hrm... so does that mean DVD-RAM could have medical purposes?
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Postby longevity-freak on Sat Jul 30, 2005 4:24 am

You can now view comparisons of disc quality scans (PI/PO or PIE/PIF) for those discs scanned today and a year ago:

http://forums.hardwarezone.com/showthread.php?t=991675&page=29&pp=15
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