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Discussion Starter #1
We may not be able to answer this yet, but I've been wondering about the reliability/lifespan of homemade DVDs lately. I recently became a father & started videotaping my baby daughter's growth on miniDV tape. I've been creating DVDs off of them, then re-using the tapes. I'm now thinking I should maybe archive my minDV tapes instead...


A couple of the early DVD-Rs I made circa the Panny E20 days don't playback right anymore. The same is true of a few old CD-Rs for that matter. So, how reliable are the latest crop of DVD & CD blanks for storing precious videos or digital photos? Perhaps -RAMs are better, or maybe making back-up copies of recorded DVD-Rs & CD-Rs.
 

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Depends on many factors.


What media did you use that no longer plays?

What burner did you use?

How do you store it?

How do you label it?


As far as media is concerned, you should stick to of the highest quality such as Taiyo Yuden and Verbatim.


Sometimes the burner could be the problem. You should do PIE/PIF tests on your DVD's to make sure the burn is good.


As far as storing it, do you use a spindle, jewel case, humid area? It's fine to keep it in a spindle box, or a case, but you must leave it in a cool area with low humidity, in a dark area.


Labeling. It's good to use permanent felt tip markers like a Sharpie. You don't want to use ballpoint, or slow drying markers. It can scratch sensitive areas, or the ink can spread into the dye. Most people avoid using CD Labeler's as they create playback problems from being unbalanced or something. I don't know that much about them, since I don't use it.


Basically, use only good media, and store them in a cool, dark place, free of high humidity.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Good points dollarbill. The few DVD-Rs that went bad were early esbuy.com & Apple brands. When the Panny E20 made its debut, those two were pretty much the reasonably-priced options available. I don't stick labels on the disc surface, & do store them in keepcases.


Regarding media, I know Verbatim has had a long-standing good reputation, so I may keep copies of treasured homemade DVDs on those or Taiyo Yuden.
 

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I would keep the original source DV tapes and not reuse them, regardless of the DVD method used for archiving. Tapes of the kids are something not replaceable. DVD copies of television programs are.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yeah, I'm planning to do that going forward. Guess I have more faith they'll playback fine in 10 years as opposed to DVD-Rs I'm making from them.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brajesh
I've been creating DVDs off of them, then re-using the tapes. I'm now thinking I should maybe archive my minDV tapes instead...
That's what I've been doing & will continue doing. I wasn't so concerned with longevity though. I'm waiting for the next format that will come along that I can transfer my video onto with literally no loss in quality, unlike DVD of today.
 

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I'm surprised to hear about the Apple discs, as none of mine went bad. Did you make sure they had been "finalized?"


And if they have paper labels, that can be the problem; I managed to save some older discs by removing the paper labels.


Most Vivistar discs failed over time.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I just checked & it was my error--the failed discs were the esbuy.com gold-plated discs. Yes, I had finalized them. The Apple discs do still play fine.
 

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I share your pain!


I have 15+ years of videos I want to transfer to dvd. They are in various formats (svhs, hi8 & minidv). Last year I bought a computer that I thought would do this for me. I found out that a 30 minute tape would take, at a minimum, of 2.5 hours to get a finished dvd. The quality, however, was excellent. I figured at that rate, I would never get them copied so I got a stand alone dvd recorder.


From what I've read on the web, dvd's should last 50-100 years. On the other hand, I've read that dvd's suffer from delamination, "rot" and damage from felt markers.


Since a computer captured video file runs about 13 gig per hour, I tried using my back up software to span disks. How do I know my backup software will be around in 50 years?


Right now I'm only using tapes once and keeping the orginals. They say tapes are only good for 15-25 years, so I don't know if this is worth while either.


Hopefully, in 50 years, there will be a permanent solution for these videos and we'll be able to transfer them.


For now, I'm using Sony & Verbatim disks and using markers made especially for dvd/cds to label them.
 

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Quote:
Expected longevity of dye-based DVD-R and DVD+R discs is anywhere from 20 to 250 years, about as long as CD-R discs. Some dye formulations (such as phthalocyanine and azo) are more stable and last longer, 100 years or more, compared to 20 or 30 years for less stable dyes.


The phase-change erasable formats (DVD-RAM, DVD-RW, and DVD+RW) have an expected lifetime of 25 to 100 years.


In all cases, longevity can be reduced by poor quality. Poor quality pressed DVDs may deteriorate within a few years, and cheap recordable DVDs may produce errors when recording or may become unreadable after a while. (See 1.24.)
http://www.dvddemystified.com/dvdfaq.html#3.12
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin C Brown
Join Date: May 2003

Location: Santa Clara, CA

Posts: 1,512


Quote:

Expected longevity of dye-based DVD-R and DVD+R discs is anywhere from 20 to 250 years, about as long as CD-R discs. Some dye formulations (such as phthalocyanine and azo) are more stable and last longer, 100 years or more, compared to 20 or 30 years for less stable dyes.

http://www.dvddemystified.com/dvdfaq.html#3.12
Some may last for many years, but many of today's DVD-Rs and DVD+Rs will not. NIST has done accelerated aging and has found huge differences between brands. Those posting in this forum have seen some brands fail in months.


Until (1) accelerated aging tests are published, and (2) enough people modify their buying habits accordingly, we should not expect our media to last.


My approach: burn every DVD to two different brands and to a hard drive.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by rick1matthews
My approach: burn every DVD to two different brands and to a hard drive.
If you're really, really concerned about not loosing something, then
  • burn every DVD twice using different brands and formats (ie, DVD-R and DVD-RAM/DVD-RW), and
  • store one of the copies offsite (ie, in a friend's care) as insurance against your house burning down or (more likely) being burgled
 

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Personally, I now only buy "name" brands, and have never had a problem. I have tried a few no-name brands in the past, and usually had a problem with them. Just not worth it to be cheap when buying media like this.


There are web sites out there that rate media quality down to the manufacturing plant where the discs were made. That is one more way to be sure. Use the experience of others. (Shoot, I have some links at home but not here.)



Added:

http://www.digitalfaq.com/media/dvdmedia.htm

http://www.videohelp.com/dvdmedia


Good web sites that rate media. :)
 
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