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For longevity (data archival) what is the best media?

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For longevity (data archival) what is the best media?

Postby Nick Burns on Sun Dec 28, 2003 7:37 am

For my CDRW, according to the thread: Which media is best:

Code: Select all
TDK veloCD 48X16/24X48..Fuji/TY          80min 24X...................40X
Firmware: S7S5..........Fuji/TY          80min 40X...................48X
........................Imation/CMC      80min 16X...................16X
........................Imation/CMC      80min 40X...................40X
........................Imation/CMC      80min 48X...................48X
........................Maxell/RTK       80min 40X...................48X
........................Memorex/RTK      80min 24X...................32X
........................Memorex/TY       80min 32X...................40X
........................Philips/CMC      80min 40X...................40X
........................Sony CD-RW/MC    74min  4X....................4X
........................Sony/TY          74min  4X...................16X
........................STI/PC           80min 16X...................40X
........................TDK CD-RW/MC     74min  4X....................4X
........................TDK CD-RW/RTK    74min 10X...................12X
........................TDK/RTK          74min 12X...................24X
........................TDK/CMC          80min 32X...................48X
........................Yamaha CD-RW/MC  74min  4X....................4X


What is the best media that will last the longest (data archiving purpose)?

Also, how can I go about checking which firmware I have installed?
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Postby TheWizard on Sun Dec 28, 2003 11:42 am

Hi Nick, welcome to the CDRLabs Forums! You can check your drive's firmware by either using Nero InfoTool or, since it is a Lite-On based drive, Lite-On's SmartBurn software.

As for your first question, that question will depend on who you ask. I'm willing to bet you'll get a few responses from members saying the Fuji/TY media is best for longevity, but that is not meant to sell some of the other discs short. The Taiyo Yuden (TY) media is definitely a good choice, although I also like Ritek (RTK) media. The problem is, in the grand scheme of things, CD burners have not been around for a very long time...at least not in the mainstream market. Therefore, we don't have an abundance of evidence of CD-R discs that was burned 10 years ago, for example. We'll have to wait a while longer before measuring how CD-R discs fare after 10 years.
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Postby aviationwiz on Sun Dec 28, 2003 3:29 pm

Deffinetly the Fuji TY disks. Tayio Yuden is, in my opinion, the best CD-R's around, get them, you won't regret it.
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Postby Action Jackson on Sun Dec 28, 2003 3:40 pm

Also storing any CD's in a place away from excessive heat, moisture, vibration and sunlight might help with it's longevity.
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Postby MediumRare on Sun Dec 28, 2003 3:58 pm

Since you have a LiteOn-based drive, use KProbe or CD-Doctor (or even the newesr CD-Speed) to check the quality of your burns, at least for important data. You can easily monitor the status at intervals (independent of other information re. longevity).

G
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Postby burninfool on Sun Dec 28, 2003 7:54 pm

I have used several differant makes of media and the ones with lowest C1/C2 errors after burning and after one year are MCC(Verbatim) and TY(Fuji).The dyes the manufacturers use are organic and as with all things organic they will decompose over time,I have audio cassettes that will probably outlast most of my CD-R's. :cry:
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Sun Dec 28, 2003 10:07 pm

The best archival discs would be Kodak Ultima Gold CD-Rs... *IF* you can find them! Next would be Mitsui's old gold CD-Rs, before they were bought by C.S.I. and screwed up.... and my third recommendation would be Ritek's Gold CD-Rs... also no longer in production :cry:

Out of all the CD-Rs *still* in production, probably Mitsui's new gold CD-Rs are the best... although not as good as they were.

If you have a LiteON based drive, do *NOT* use Verbatim Discs...

Taiyo Yuden will be good also, but I think the Mitsui Gold discs would be superior.
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Postby Halc on Mon Dec 29, 2003 5:34 am

The real truth is that nobody knows.

While there are various factors that we can take into account, when estimating or simulating media aging, these only tell part of a story.

To me dolphinius_rex's recommendations are mostly along the lines I think personally myself, but that there is no real proof available.

We tend to think that real gold (or mixture of gold and other things) reflective layer is the best due to it's less significant oxidisation.

The dye layer is also very important as it may corrode over time due to many causes (ultraviolet light, noxious gases, fungus growth, grease and moisture). However, which of the current dyes is best, I don't think anybody knows this.

Also, the protective layer is also important as it is the most scratch prone and can easily make or break the discs readability if the disc is scratched (accidentally or in heavy use). Thicker ceramic and other coating usually make the protective layer much stronger to various physical stresses. I'd recommend Mitsubishi DataLifePlus with Crystal coating for a disc like this. EMC/Basf TY-manufactured and Ceramic coated disc was also on my list, but long since gone from retail sector when EMC was sold off.

Then there is the matter of the actual manufacturing and QA process which are completely in the shadow to ordinary users. We may guess which factory a disc was made in, but that's as far as it goes.

After having visited a CD manufacturing plant and discussed cd-r manufacturing with experts there, I can only say that there are many parts of the process which can be done more cost consciously and with more likely compromised quality.

Still, if you want long term archival quality and are willing to pay through your nose through this, try to track down medical grade CD-Rs (sold under brands like TDK, MAME and some others).

These may cost an arm and a leg, but I'd guess that they go through the most stringent quality controls available, if not for any other reason then at least for legal protection against possible law suits :)

best regards,
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Postby Action Jackson on Mon Dec 29, 2003 7:59 am

*hides head realizing he's hoarded a bunch of Kodak media*

:oops:

I use Kodak for things that I really want to save.

One of my friends says Kodak is the worst media he's ever used. I think it might have been the crappy burner and software [or whatever else] that he was using.
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Mon Dec 29, 2003 10:52 am

Action Jackson wrote:*hides head realizing he's hoarded a bunch of Kodak media*

:oops:

I use Kodak for things that I really want to save.

One of my friends says Kodak is the worst media he's ever used. I think it might have been the crappy burner and software [or whatever else] that he was using.


It depends on the Kodaks I'm told. The Gold Ultimas have given some pretty stellar performances! (I've seen these guys in action!) But I'm told the regular Kodak CD-Rs were nothing that special.
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Postby Nick Burns on Mon Dec 29, 2003 7:00 pm

Wow, thanks for the great info! Next questions - I live in SoCal No. OC area, where would be the best place to find the TY or Ritek media? Are these manufacturing plants? IE, what label would I be looking for? Would Fry's be the best place to get them?

BTW, I am using Verbatim with my CDRW, haven't had a problem yet. I guess, YMMV. Right now I'm just looking at getting some quality media now.

Also, according to InfoTool, I'm using S7S8 firmware - which I believe is the latest version.


Thanks for all the help!
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Postby TheWizard on Mon Dec 29, 2003 11:21 pm

The best place to purchase said media would be either online or in a retail store (You mentioned Fry's, that would be a good starting point. So would Staples, OfficeMax, Office Depot, Best Buy, Circuit City, et al). Just look at the section of the "Which Media Is Best?" thread with your drive listed to get an idea of which brand names contain which blank media inside. For example, Fuji sells Taiyo Yuden discs, but only the Fuji spindles labeled as Made in Japan." Maxell, TDK, and some other brands contain Ritek discs inside, but be careful. Not all Maxell or TDK spindles contain Ritek since these brands have been known to put other discs inside their spindles. I would refer to the thread below to help identify which spindles are Taiyo Yuden, which are Ritek, and so on.

http://www.cdrlabs.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=7280
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Postby Action Jackson on Tue Dec 30, 2003 2:51 am

As The Wizard says sometimes the packaging may be a bit deceiving.

I bought some 24x 80min Maxells. The label said "Made in Taiwan". Turns out they were TY's.

Then I bought another spindle. Same exact packaging. Turn's out they were Riteks.
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Postby Nick Burns on Tue Dec 30, 2003 2:17 pm

TheWizard wrote:The best place to purchase said media would be either online or in a retail store (You mentioned Fry's, that would be a good starting point. So would Staples, OfficeMax, Office Depot, Best Buy, Circuit City, et al). Just look at the section of the "Which Media Is Best?" thread with your drive listed to get an idea of which brand names contain which blank media inside. For example, Fuji sells Taiyo Yuden discs, but only the Fuji spindles labeled as Made in Japan." Maxell, TDK, and some other brands contain Ritek discs inside, but be careful. Not all Maxell or TDK spindles contain Ritek since these brands have been known to put other discs inside their spindles. I would refer to the thread below to help identify which spindles are Taiyo Yuden, which are Ritek, and so on.

http://www.cdrlabs.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=7280

Oy, with the poodles all ready! That thread is a good read, though it seems that it is still near impossible to determine what CD-R/RW media you have by merely looking at the packaging. As one member stated, the only real way to check is to buy a bundle, check it with Nero, but then you lose the ability to return it. :-?

Of course my ultimate goal is to find some TY or Ritek 80Min CDRs that are have blank labels (white or clear is fine).

I was recently at Office Max and could get a 100 spindle of Fujifilm 80m CDRs for $30, but they said they were manufactured in Taiwan not Japan (no screw top either), so I did not pick them up. Wonder if I should still consider getting them?

EDIT: I was just thinking: I wonder if people could post the barcode# of those CDRs that are TY or Ritek. Would that be a safe way of seperating the good from the bad, or would that matter? It would be interesting if there were any distinguishable numbers (lot #'s etc) that would be a way to verify the CDs. Hmmm....
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Postby burninfool on Tue Dec 30, 2003 3:04 pm

"I was recently at Office Max and could get a 100 spindle of Fujifilm 80m CDRs for $30,"

Go to BestBuy they have Fuji(TY) 50pk CD-R's on sale every other week for $13(sometimes $5 after MIR),they will say "Made In Japan" and have a black spindle base.
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Postby dolphinius_rex on Tue Dec 30, 2003 9:04 pm

the barcode will likely be the same, as it is techincally the same product as far as any store is concerned.
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Postby Action Jackson on Wed Dec 31, 2003 2:30 pm

Nick Burns wrote:Of course my ultimate goal is to find some TY or Ritek 80Min CDRs that are have blank labels (white or clear is fine).


I've got some "Ridata" 40x 80min media that is blank silver top.

They are Ritek that I've burned okay @ 52x.
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Postby TheWizard on Thu Jan 01, 2004 5:57 am

Your best bet for finding silver or white printable discs would be from online vendors, not in a retail store. A quick search on Google for Taiyo Yuden media returned the following results:

http://www.cdrplanet.com/cd-r-media--ta ... media.html (Recommended by me)
http://www.blank-cd-cdr.com/cdr-media-b ... ?gtse=goog>kw=taiyo%20yuden%20cd%20r
http://store.yahoo.com/meritline/tacdrm ... yuden+cd+r (Highly recommended by Ian, and I would recommend them too)
http://www.rima.com/Merchant2/merchant. ... ry_Code=TY
http://www.omcstore.com
http://store.yahoo.com/emediadepot/unbucd.html
http://www.cdroutlet.com/taiyo-yuden-cdr.htm

I can't vouch for all of these places, so the unrecommended ones I would search for their rating on www.resellerratings.com .

You can also find Ritek printable media on the sites above, or ones like it. Oh, don't forget eBay as well! Good deals can be found there too on blank/printable media. If a certain auction doesn't list the manufacturer of the discs then ask the seller, sometimes they'll know, sometimes they won't. It doesn't hurt to ask though, does it?
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